The New York Times' Scores

For 9,826 reviews, this publication has graded:
  • 49% higher than the average critic
  • 4% same as the average critic
  • 47% lower than the average critic
On average, this publication grades 3 points lower than other critics. (0-100 point scale)
Average Movie review score: 59
Highest review score: 100 Bliss
Lowest review score: 0 Hush
Score distribution:
9,826 movie reviews
  1. Brilliant, maddeningly enigmatic puzzle of a movie.
  2. By focusing on such a narrow slice of Nepali life, Ms. Spray and Mr. Velez have ceded any totalizing claim on the truth and instead settled for a perfect incompleteness.
  3. A huge, thrilling three-and-a-quarter-hour experience that unerringly lures viewers into the beauty and heartbreak of its lost world.
  4. The film's sleek moodiness and visual sophistication are so effective that there's even a scene here that makes Detroit look like the most romantic city in the world.
  5. In spite of its modest scale, tactful manner and potentially dowdy subject matter, is packed nearly to bursting with rich meaning and deep implication.
  6. The reason the film prompts laughter, and finally elation, is not because it's jolly or has any feel-good words to live by. It's because of the utterly demonic skill with which these foulmouthed characters carve one another up in futile attempts to stave off disaster.
  7. Bad Education is a voluptuous experience that invites you to gorge on its beauty and vitality, although it has perhaps the darkest ending of any of the films by the Spanish writer and director.
  8. The most voluptuous comic-book movie ever made.
  9. In setting Andre on his search for self, Mr. Rock has carved out a third way, in the process creating a black character who’s fully human and a comedy that’s wholly a blast.
  10. A haunting, voluptuously beautiful portrait of a teenage boy who, after being suddenly caught in midflight, falls to earth.
  11. The ancient Greeks believed that character should be revealed through action. I can’t think of another film that has upheld this notion so thoroughly and thrillingly. There is certainly no other actor who can command our attention — our empathy, our loyalty, our love — with such efficiency.
  12. A small miracle of a film.
  13. It is a film of enormous visceral power with, in the central role, a performance by Tom Cruise that defines everything that is best about the movie.
  14. This is his sleekest and most engaging film thus far. If you like a good cat-and-mouse game with a keen ear for language, then go.
  15. One of the most deliriously funny, ingenious and stylish American adventure movies ever made.
  16. It's been a long time since a commercially oriented film with the scale of "King" ended with such an enduring and heartbreaking coda.
  17. This remarkably terse movie doesn’t waste a word or an image. It refuses to linger over each little crisis its characters endure. And its detachment lends a perspective that widens the film’s vision of people reacting to events beyond their control.
  18. New York becomes a complex character in this vital and sharply intelligent film.
  19. Was it all for naught? Only weeks after the 23 partisans were arrested (and all but two promptly executed), Paris was liberated. Army of Crime is a passionate act of remembrance.
  20. Several times while watching the movie I laughed until the tears were running down my face.
  21. A supremely elegant and thoughtful parable. [14 September 1994, p. C11]
    • The New York Times
  22. Like most of Mr. Wiseman’s work, the movie is at once specific and general, fascinating in its pinpoint detail and transporting in its cosmic reach.
  23. Particle Fever is a fascinating movie about science, and an exciting, revealing and sometimes poignant movie about scientists.
  24. Hannah Arendt conveys the glamour, charisma and difficulty of a certain kind of German thought.... The movie turns ideas into the best kind of entertainment.
  25. Gideon’s Army is a bare film with no narrator and a minimal soundtrack. That’s all it needs to grab you by the throat.
  26. A moving, intelligent and funny film about disasters that are commonplace to everyone except the people who experience them. Not since Robert Benton's "Kramer vs. Kramer" has there been a movie that so effectively catches the look, sound and temper of a particular kind of American existence.
  27. What makes this exquisitely observed slice of American screen realism transcend itself is finally its moral sensibility.
  28. Virtually nonstop exhilaration--a dramatic comedy not quite like any other, and one that sets new standards for Mr. Allen as well as for all American moviemakers. [7 February 1986]
    • The New York Times
  29. Lebanon is meticulous, nearly clinical in its attention to what happens in war -- specifically what happened in the first days of the Israeli invasion of Lebanon in 1982 -- but it is also a palpably and intensely personal film.
    • The New York Times
  30. The movie itself is a nonstop barrage -- somewhere between a riot and an orgy -- of crude, obnoxious gags and riffs. If you are a connoisseur of sexual, scatological or just plain stupid humor, you will find your appetite satisfied, even glutted.
  31. In its modest scope and mellow tone, 35 Shots of Rum resembles Olivier Assayas’s "Summer Hours," another recent film by a French director who has sometimes trafficked in provocation and extremity. Both movies embed extraordinary thematic richness within a simple, almost anecdotal narrative framework, and both achieve a rare eloquence about the state of the world by means of tact and reticence.
  32. It is the work of a director as fascinated by decency as by ugliness, and able to present the chaos of life in a series of pictures that are at once luminously clear and endlessly mysterious.
  33. Steven Spielberg's soberly magnificent new war film, the second such pinnacle in a career of magical versatility, has been made in the same spirit of urgent communication. It is the ultimate devastating letter home.
  34. There are few concert movies that were filmed were such abiding feeling and respect. It's of a potent vintage that goes down deceptively smoother with age.
  35. The rapport between Ms. Watts and Mr. Serkis is extraordinary, even though it is mediated by fur, latex, optical illusions and complicated effects. Mr. Serkis, who also played Gollum in the "Lord of the Rings" movies, is redefining screen acting for the digital age, while Ms. Watts incarnates the glamour and emotional directness of classical Hollywood.
    • 82 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    Check your cynicism at the ticket booth. To Be Heard is one of the best documentaries of the year.
  36. You won't come out unaffected, because the depths of intimacy that the Mexican director Alejandro González Iñárritu plumbs here are so rarely touched by filmmakers that 21 Grams is tantamount to the discovery of a new country.
  37. My Perestroika gives you a privileged sense of learning the history of a place not from a book but from the people who lived it. Watching it is a little like attending a party in an unfamiliar city and discovering the place's secrets from the guests.
  38. When it's over, the realization of how much the movie means to you really sinks in; you can't get it out of your heart.
  39. The Grand Budapest Hotel, Mr. Anderson’s eighth feature, will delight his fans, but even those inclined to grumble that it’s just more of the same patented whimsy might want to look again. As a sometime grumbler and longtime fan, I found myself not only charmed and touched but also moved to a new level of respect.
  40. Timbuktu is an act of resistance and revenge because it asserts the power of secularism not as an ideology but rather as a stubborn fact of life.
  41. The importance of seeing, seeing the world deeply, is at the heart of this quietly devastating, humanistic work from the South Korean filmmaker Lee Chang-dong.
  42. A blazing, unlikely triumph about a man who is nobody's idea of a movie hero. Smart, funny, shamelessly entertaining and perfectly serious too.
  43. Mr. Kechiche’s style is dizzy, obsessive, inspired and relentless, words that also describe Adèle and Emma and the fearless women who embody them. Many more words can — and will — be spent on “Blue Is the Warmest Color,” but for now I’ll settle for just one: glorious.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    Scene for scene, The Camden 28 is a brilliant merger of political outrage and filmmaking chops, and the most suspenseful movie in theaters right now.
  44. Together with his extraordinary performers, Mr. Chéreau breathes life into characters who long ago set a course for death.
  45. The strength of Tuesday, After Christmas, Mr. Muntean's fourth feature, lies in its rigorous, artful and humane fidelity to quotidian circumstance.
  46. A stunning feat of literary adaptation as well as a purely cinematic triumph.
  47. It is a rich, beautifully organized and illustrated modern history of Eastern European Jewry examined through the life and work of the author, born Sholem Rabinovich in Pereyaslav (near Kiev) in 1859.
  48. An instant classic, a comedy that captures the sexual confusion and moral ambivalence of our moment without straining, pandering or preaching.
  49. Manages to be touching as well as silly, thrilling and just a bit exhausting. The secret to its success is a genuine enthusiasm for the creative potential of games, a willingness to take them seriously without descending into nerdy pomposity. I am delighted to surrender my cynicism, at least until I've used up today's supply of quarters.
  50. Like “The Shining” and its maze within a maze, Mr. Ascher’s movie is something of a labyrinth. Puzzling your way through its compilation of vaguely lucid and crackpot ideas is pleasurable though, for avid movie lovers, it may also feel like a warning.
  51. Neither the neighborhood intimacy of "Mean Streets" nor the grandeur of the "Godfather" movies is imaginable without Visconti's example. Its richness, though, is inexhaustible, and well served by the spotless new 35-millimeter print being shown at Film Forum.
  52. The genius of 12 Years a Slave is its insistence on banal evil, and on terror, that seeped into souls, bound bodies and reaped an enduring, terrible price.
  53. Surely the best movie yet made from Mr. Irving's fiction. It may even belong in the rarefied company of movies that are better than the books on which they are based.
  54. By introducing funky licks, fancy footwork and many of his own compositions to the band's stodgy set list of jazz standards, this indomitable leader (whose declining health adds a poignant twang to the film's final scenes) instilled racial pride alongside musical competency.
  55. No Country for Old Men is purgatory for the squeamish and the easily spooked. For formalists -- those moviegoers sent into raptures by tight editing, nimble camera work and faultless sound design -- it’s pure heaven.
  56. To skip Moolaade would be to miss an opportunity to experience the embracing, affirming, world-changing potential of humanist cinema at its finest.
  57. Go see this movie. Take your children, even though they may occasionally be confused or fidgety. Boredom and confusion are also part of democracy, after all. Lincoln is a rough and noble democratic masterpiece - an omen, perhaps, that movies for the people shall not perish from the earth.
  58. In exchange for three hours of your time, Yi Yi will give you more life.
  59. A triumphant, cleverly disorienting journey through a demimonde that springs entirely from Mr. Tarantino's ripe imagination, a landscape of danger, shock, hilarity, and vibrant local color. Nothing is predictable or familiar within this irresistably bizarre world. You don't merely enter a theater to see Pulp Fiction; you go down a rabbit hole. [23 Sept 1994]
    • The New York Times
  60. Probably the most breathtakingly gorgeous film of the year, dizzy with a nose-against-the-glass romantic spirit that has been missing from the cinema forever.
  61. Children of Men may be something of a bummer, but it’s the kind of glorious bummer that lifts you to the rafters, transporting you with the greatness of its filmmaking.
  62. Line for line, scene for scene, it is one of the best-written American film comedies in recent memory and an implicit rebuke to the raunchy, sloppy spectacles of immaturity that have dominated the genre in recent years.
  63. It is a great movie, by a major figure in world cinema.
  64. What Maisie Knew lays waste to the comforting dogma that children are naturally resilient, and that our casual, unthinking cruelty to them can be answered by guilty and belated displays of affection. It accomplishes this not by means of melodrama, but by a mixture of understatement and thriller-worthy suspense.
  65. Something close to a masterpiece, a work of extreme -- I am tempted to say evil -- genius.
  66. Mr. Boyle has a knack for tackling painful, violent or unpleasant subjects with unremitting verve and unstoppable joie de vivre.
  67. With Where the Wild Things Are Jonze has made a work of art that stands up to its source and, in some instances, surpasses it.
  68. Mr. Nance turns his thought into a performance of vulnerability that’s all too relatable in its indulgences. It has heart without becoming cloying.
  69. Dropping us into a perfect storm of avarice, this cool and incisive snapshot of global capitalism at work is as remarkable for its access as for its refusal to judge.
  70. Full of brilliantly executed coups de théâtre, showing the director's natural flair for spectacle.
  71. Not merely an interesting document from a far-off place; it is a masterpiece.
  72. [Allen's] most sustained, satisfying and resonant film since “Match Point.”
  73. Duchess of Langeais seems to me a nearly impeccable work of art -- beautiful, true, profound.
  74. A small movie perfectly scaled to the big performance at its center.
  75. "Print the legend," Mr. Wilson says at one point, both quoting John Ford and laying the foundation for his own often fact-free fabulous fabulism. And this movie is just that -- fabulous.
  76. A parent-tickling delight, is a work of incredible cleverness in the best two-tiered Disney tradition. [22 November 1995, p. C9]
    • The New York Times
  77. With its careful, unassuming naturalism, its visual thrift and its emotional directness, Million Dollar Baby feels at once contemporary and classical, a work of utter mastery that at the same time has nothing in particular to prove.
  78. Turns out to be a smashing success, a juggernaut of an action-adventure saga that owes noithing to the past. To put it simply, thi is a home run. [6 August 1993, p. C1]
    • The New York Times
  79. Mr. Turner is a mighty work of critical imagination, a loving, unsentimental portrait of a rare creative soul. But even as it celebrates a glorious painter and illuminates the sources of his pictures with startling clarity and insight, the movie patiently and thoroughly demolishes more than a century’s worth of mythology about what art is and how artists work.
  80. A beautifully written, seamlessly directed film with award-worthy performances by Ms. Rampling and Ms. Young.
  81. A tough, gorgeous, vastly entertaining throwback to the Hollywood that did things right. As such, it enthusiastically breaks most rules of studio filmmaking today.
  82. An entire family chronicle, along with four decades of French social and economic history, is recapitulated as a lavish, hectic dinner, complete with music and belly dancing. It will leave you stunned and sated, having savored an intimate and sumptuous epic of elation and defeat, jealousy and tenderness, life and death, grain and fish.
  83. Even as Mr. Mungiu maintains a detached, objective point of view, allowing the details of the story to speak for themselves, he also allows you to glimpse the complex and volatile inner lives of his characters.
  84. The audacity of The Missing Picture — a brilliant documentary about a child who held on to life in Cambodia’s killing fields — is equaled only by its soulfulness.
  85. I'll go out on a limb: I can't believe the year will bring forth anything to equal The Purple Rose of Cairo. At 84 minutes, it's short but nearly every one of those minutes is blissful.
  86. Here he (Murray) supplies the kind of performance that seems so fully realized and effortless that it can easily be mistaken for not acting at all.
  87. How did Mr. Panahi do this? I'm at a bit of a loss to explain, to tell you the truth, since my job is to review movies, and this, obviously, is something different: a masterpiece in a form that does not yet exist.
  88. Merchant, Ivory and Jhabvala triumph again with their entertaining, richly textured film. [13 March 1992]
    • The New York Times
  89. Nikolaus Geyrhalter's superb documentary is an unblinking, often disturbing look at industrial food production from field to factory.
  90. Mr. Greengrass knows how to do his job, and there’s no one in Hollywood right now who does action better, who keeps the pace going so relentlessly, without mercy or letup, scene after hard-rocking scene.
  91. Ms. Bigelow's direction here is unexpectedly stunning, at once bold and intimate: she has a genius for infusing even large-scale action set pieces with the human element.
  92. Mr. Zürcher has concocted something intimate yet otherworldly with this highly original debut.
  93. With her dramatically pale face framed by a voluptuous dark cloud of hair, Ms. Elkabetz is never more effective than when she’s holding still, her face so drained of emotion that it transforms into a screen within the screen on which another, indelibly private movie is playing.
  94. It's movie making of the high, smooth, commercial order that Hollywood prides itself on but achieves with singular infrequency.
  95. Ms. Bell, who plays Carol with a perfect blend of diffidence, goofiness and charm, has written and directed an insightful comedy that is much more complex and ambitious than it sometimes seems.
  96. By the time the movie is over, you feel as if the people in it were friends you know well enough to tire of, and to miss terribly when they go away.
  97. In most movies, something happens; in Archipelago, many things happen, quietly yet meaningfully.
  98. This film, which was never released in America and will now be making its way across the country in limited release, has been immaculately restored and features new subtitles. You can get lost in the blackness of its heart and its shadows. You might never come back.

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