Total Film's Scores

  • Movies
For 797 reviews, this publication has graded:
  • 59% higher than the average critic
  • 4% same as the average critic
  • 37% lower than the average critic
On average, this publication grades 3.6 points higher than other critics. (0-100 point scale)
Average Movie review score: 65
Lowest review score: 20 The Big Wedding
Score distribution:
  1. Negative: 17 out of 797
797 movie reviews
    • 88 Metascore
    • 60 Critic Score
    Snowden proves surprisingly sympathetic. His intentions appear to have no subtext, but sadly neither does the doc; the irony of an infodump approach to mass surveillance goes disappointingly unexploited.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 60 Critic Score
    Anders Danielsen Lie gives a compelling, deep-etched lead turn, and you'll find yourself drawn in as he searches for a reason to continue living.
  1. One of the strangest films you’ll see this (or any) year, it unsettles, bores, elates and amuses in equal measure. Not for everyone, but there’s plenty to chew on.
  2. The results – achieved through small cameras clipped to nets, masts and the crew – will hook some and induce seasickness in others.
    • 81 Metascore
    • 60 Critic Score
    Russell follows "The Fighter" with a softer, soapier family dysfunction drama, lightly comic enough to make for palatable Friday-night viewing. As its nutty lovebirds, Cooper and Lawrence save Playbook from the director's surprisingly mundane impulses.
  3. An impressive study of guilt, responsibility and the bad things that happen to good people.
  4. A sombre crimer that resists easy thrills, investing instead in grit, intelligence and complex characterisation.
  5. Keep The Lights On feels lopsided in its focus on Erik, with Paul remaining a strangely remote object of the former's romantic devotion.
  6. The resulting pickle may seem alien to many, but Yaron’s navigation of Shira’s struggles make it tangible.
  7. Assured, adult filmmaking from a writer/director who knows her way around the ups and downs of relationships.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 60 Critic Score
    The film strips away ideas of heroism mercilessly.
  8. Not the promised insider’s peek but Assayas and Binoche are still a potent combo, nailing the fragility of an actress facing the ageing process.
  9. The restlessness of the camerawork may drive you to distraction, but director/co-writer Calin Peter Netzer’s film is held steady by Gheorghiu’s staunch performance.
  10. It’s technically a doc, but neither Rivers nor his inscrutable subject is interested in backstory.
  11. The 3D is completely redundant and the action sporadic but unexpected gearshifts provide plenty of narrative meat.
  12. Though awkwardly assembled, with an overemphatic voiceover, it’s chilling stuff.
  13. It’s a poetic elegy to a lost tribe that conjures up the Meryans’ secret lifestyle via surreal rituals and stunning widescreen visuals, although an over-explained voiceover and clunky symbolism sometimes weaken the spell.
    • 76 Metascore
    • 60 Critic Score
    Though set in a divided country, it’s an effervescent period piece, edited with verve: Persiel combines recreations with archive footage, animation and home videos.
  14. First-time writer/director Ritesh Batra deserves credit for mining gently captivating drama from a pitch that could have just ended with passive-aggressive Post-its left on the office fridge.
    • 76 Metascore
    • 60 Critic Score
    Mud
    More accessible than "Take Shelter" but not as powerful, Mud boasts stunning photography, a mesmerising lead and a strong evocation of Americana. McConaughey’s gold run continues…
  15. Quillévéré’s elliptical plot isn’t always spot-on, skipping years to a near maddening degree. But treading a fine line between poetry and realism, it’s still heartfelt and harrowing.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 60 Critic Score
    If Eric Rohmer were British, this is the kind of film he’d make.
  16. Mostly, it’s a study of an analogue ghost turned digital star; yet because Maloof is vested in building Maier’s reputation, the film leaves some uncomfortable questions about the ethics of posthumous fame.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 60 Critic Score
    Not quite up there with "Tangled," but a solid addition to the canon. Catchy tunes will have you humming, but the hunt for the next "The Little Mermaid" continues...
  17. Great beginning, patchy middle, bum-note ending. Like the Roses’ 1980s-90s lifespan, Meadows’ loving report on a “live resurrection” is indeed alive and passionate, until too many gaps render it less than godlike.
  18. Although a bit over-neat in its contrasts between the respective families, Like Father, Like Son remains an affecting film, thanks to Fukuyama’s understated turn and Koreeda’s typically graceful visual storytelling.
  19. As much as Nicholas Jarecki’s debut feature simmers, it never quite boils.
  20. Though we'd love to see how Aardman handle Defoe's followup, An Adventure With Communists, this amiable but overstretched diversion is unlikely to spawn a Caribbean franchise.
  21. What emerges is a touching study (in more ways than one) of the trials, terrors and triumphs of living with physical disability.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 60 Critic Score
    The stand-out, though, is Mikkel Boe Folsgaard as the King. Teetering on the edge of sanity, he is both detestable and sympathetic.
  22. The culture clash comedy cleaves to predictability but the story’s specificity sustains its perceptive look at the human impact of post-9/11 jingoism.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 60 Critic Score
    Gorgeous animation and inspired set design help patch over a lacklustre script. The horror hardcore will enjoy playing spot the homage.
  23. It's probably the best three-star movie this month. An effortless, emotional, funny little indie that few people will see. Be one of them.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 60 Critic Score
    Where Elmo proved to be spiky Kevin Clash’s alter-ego, this sweet if superfluous doc shows that Spinney is Big Bird, a tireless performer who refuses to retire.
  24. Familiar territory, especially if you've seen "Hoop Dreams" and "Friday Night Lights," but the intimate style offers its own rewards.
  25. Two fine performances - particularly from an unhinged Winstead - almost elevate Smashed to greatness. But an under-worked script leaves you feeling groggy and bleary-eyed by the end.
  26. This muted procedural promises more than it can deliver.
  27. If Miyazaki Jr elevates the material, it’s through style. Dripping with watercolour warmth, the rapturous images convey how a country’s efforts to right itself resonate with the young.
  28. It’s wildly melodramatic, typified by the ear-assaulting score. But there’s something compelling about Dolan’s supreme self-confidence, even when misplaced. He takes risks – and that’s attractive.
  29. Built around a multilayered performance from Duris, it's a film unafraid to pose more questions than it answers.
  30. Handsomely mounted and energetically played, this movie captures much of the real genius of James Brown... then obscures it with needless chronological fiddling.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 60 Critic Score
    With his trademark subversive playfulness and delight in human foibles, Ozon weaves together comedy, suspense and occasional intimations of darker emotional themes, aided by subtly gauged performances from his two principals.
  31. A challenging watch, steeped in numbing horror.
  32. It takes real talent to make something so studied feel this soufflé-light, especially in the Hatchers’ charming naturalism. Trouble is, Bujalski is too successful – in the end, everything is left hanging.
  33. A fashion world Who's Who offer accolades, while Vreeland's vulnerabilities are revealed in interviews telling how, ridiculed by her socialite mother as ugly, she invented herself on her own terms.
  34. Family entertainment with death, limb-lopping and other horrors. If you go Into The Woods today, you’ll be surprised how faithful this is to the dark stage musical.
  35. Slick but overstretched, Predestination deserves respect for what it tries to achieve rather than dismissal for not getting there. Either way, you will not be bored.
  36. Spearheaded by a strikingly self-assured turn from Elle Fanning, this ’60s-set coming-of-ager follows two teenage girls whose bond starts to crumble under the emotional and political pressures of adulthood.
  37. With Hill on co-scripting duties with Scott Pilgrim scribe Michael Bacall, 21 Jump Street was always going to live or die by its gags. Fortunately, it boasts that sweet-yet-dirty comedy that Hill revels in.
  38. Forceful and arresting, Ayer's follow-up to "Harsh Times" and "Street Kings" sees him confidently playing to his strengths.
  39. Daniel Craig makes a decent fist of the narration. But you could also do without its gush about the “incredible journey” all beings on the planet share.
  40. The sci-fi premise seems preposterous, but get beyond that and Gedeck’s predicament absorbs.
  41. It’s absorbing to a point, but adds little to what’s gone before.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 60 Critic Score
    Logan Lerman delivers a career-making turn in this sweet, sincere film. It might not be a massive hit, but it will certainly ease a few paths through the awkwardness of adolescence.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 60 Critic Score
    A feelgooder spiced by social conscience, this is one of those underdog productions with potential to punch well above its weight.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 60 Critic Score
    A mixed return for Stillman, Damsels is so whimsically out of step it's like a time-travel comedy without the time travel. Fortunately, Gerwig and some dazzling dialogue save his blushes.
  42. Writer/director Trapero arguably crams too much into the film’s running time, but potent turns and Michael Nyman’s yearning score are among the compensations.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 60 Critic Score
    It offers a surreal slant on post-Fukushima Japan where aggression lurks in every scene - even the romantic ones between high-schooler Yuichi (Shôta Sometani) and his stalker classmate, Keiko (Fumi Nikaidô).
  43. This is a perceptive, warm-hearted work, anchored by Knoller's impressively less-is-more performance.
  44. Though more forgiving than previous Solondz films, Dark Horse is too slight to herald a wholesale change of direction. Yet it's still worth catching, if only for Walken's terrible toupee.
  45. Engagingly off-centre, like Charlie Kaufman taking down Quentin Tarantino, this sunbaked shaggy-dog story is a place-holder film for McDonagh, and often closer to chaos than it is to genius.
  46. Jordan’s apparent resolve to make an anti-Twilight unfortunately results in a movie that, if not for a fistful of moments of shock, style and excess, would be as drained of colour and tension as Ronan’s victims are of hemoglobin.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 60 Critic Score
    Sharp and shiny as the jewellery its twisted teens pilfer, Coppola’s cautionary tale eschews action for angsting about celeb- obsessed culture. Worth it just to hear Watson snarl “I wanna ROB!”
    • 66 Metascore
    • 60 Critic Score
    Amini’s film offers elegant pleasures and holds the interest – but it never grips as it should.
  47. Freestyle, funny but finally just too repetitive, Ice's affectionate home-movie needed someone to structure it into a deeper documentary.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 60 Critic Score
    It may skip so quickly through historic events that it can feel rushed and flimsy, but excellent performances elevate it to serious Oscar contender.
  48. It's definitely the 'other' Gordon-Levitt film out this month, but this silly cycler whizzes by amiably. Star charm helps: JGL's enjoyment in his job adds welcome levels of Levitt-y.
  49. Thoughtfully shot by first-time director Karl Markovics, the only warmth comes from the stiffening cadavers.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 60 Critic Score
    Gleeks and Glee-haters alike should rally around this raucous musical comedy. Rebel Wilson is hilarious, Anna Kendrick is terrific and there are as many gross-out gags as there are singing numbers.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 60 Critic Score
    Some overripe dialogue and a well-worn plot are tempered by an admirable reluctance to humanise the terrorist.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 60 Critic Score
    Fine turns from Streep and Jones bedrock this compassionate, quietly subversive drama.
  50. All prologue and no pay-off, but compelling all the same, this curio plays out like Diary Of The Dead with more diaries and fewer dead.
  51. Hanks takes to Walt like a pair of cosy slippers, but it’s Thompson who adds layers to a classy but predictable slice of Disney schmaltz.
  52. The thematic weight drags down the tension, yet just when it seems Janiak has forgotten the scares she pulls off a creepy finale.
  53. Pixar falls back on the tried and tested in an entertaining caper that will be a surefire kid pleaser this summer. Old favourites are always welcome, but it would have been nice to see some more new ideas too.
  54. Though it covers similar thematic ground to Laurent Cantet’s haiti-set "Heading South," Seidl’s gruelling film proves his knack for leaving viewers emotionally discomfited.
  55. Propelled by Lust’s performance, this is a fascinating study of solitude and sociopathic obsession, up to a point.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 60 Critic Score
    Jaw-dropping in colour and splendour, but if the constant awe gets a bit tiring, at its best you can genuinely feel some great wheel turning.
  56. The cumulative effect offers a tender tribute to the resilience of his subjects’ spirits against the thrum of traffic.
  57. As cozy as a mug of Horlicks inside an electric blanket, Hoffman's film couldn't offend if it tried. Age, however, has yet to wither its veterans' undimmed star appeal.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 60 Critic Score
    Lionising the pulverising, this is more fun than it has any right to be. The hockey technicalities may alienate, yet the demented, bone-crunching scraps, war-time team mentality and Whip-It style anarchy is addictive.
  58. Veteran French actor Bouquet brings a lifetime of experience to his arthritic old master, though, while the frequently unclad Theret captivates and exasperates in equal measure.
  59. Tough, stylish, violent and studded with stars – but like so many of its American gangsters, Killing Them Softly doesn't quite get the job done.
  60. The home stretch is drenched in sticky-sweet sentiment, but Murray’s fans will rejoice at the chance to see their idol in full-on grouch mode.
  61. Required viewing as a critique of US foreign policy but forgettable as a drama, Good Kill is a timely warning, even if it lacks the power of the horrors it depicts.
  62. Reversing his "Take Shelter" role, Michael Shannon convinces as her grounded husband and "Mad Men's" John Slattery offers good support as a fellow vet. But this is Cardellini's film, and she dominates with a terrific, tough-minded turn.
  63. The vagueness won't win Dumont new fans, but his enigmatic allegory of intertwined good and evil does linger in the mind.
  64. Christian Bale’s earnest, emotional turn sustains a thriller that throws a few mean jabs but staggers towards a punch-drunk resolution.
  65. If you loved Pitch Perfect you’ll find plenty to enjoy here because it’s pretty much exactly the same film, but there’s enough wit and warmth that it feels like a worthwhile sequel.
  66. Pimped, primped and dressed to the nines, Joe Wright's Tols-toy story looks the business. Like a disappointing Christmas present, though, the pleasure quickly evaporates once you remove the shiny paper.
  67. Shame that the plotting favours narrative intrigue over character depth, creating a film whose message is witnessed rather than felt.
    • 63 Metascore
    • 60 Critic Score
    A much-admired text is respectfully brought to the screen in a film that nonetheless struggles under the burden of its war movie clichés.
  68. Thorough if workmanlike documentary.
  69. The resulting puff-piece is a warning to crusading filmmakers about what happens after they’ve beaten the system.
  70. Choosing quantity over quality, intensity over tension and big-screen thrills over low-fi shocks – this is probably what the zombie apocalypse will actually look like.
  71. A bright, breezy Irish monster mash boasting gorgeous cinematography, appealing performances and great SFX, even if it’s a little slight for can’t-miss status.
  72. Next to message-laden, CG-soaked kids’ animations, SpongeBob stands alone. His return is a skittish but winning splash of nonsense: dip in.
  73. Adams is as watchable as ever as Margaret, backed by fine support, but the problem lies with Waltz. He’s more caricature than character, and Burton proves unable to harness his energy as well as Tarantino did.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 60 Critic Score
    The minions give good mayhem and the twig-armed animation’s lovely. Despite the coolest submarine-car since Bond’s Lotus Esprit, though, Despicable Me 2 is light on gadgets – and surprises, too.
  74. Though its influences (Badlands, early Coens) are writ large, and the denouement disappoints, the performances convince, the dialogue captivates and the sense of backwater boredom is overpowering.

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