Variety's Scores

For 10,821 reviews, this publication has graded:
  • 52% higher than the average critic
  • 4% same as the average critic
  • 44% lower than the average critic
On average, this publication grades 2.1 points lower than other critics. (0-100 point scale)
Average Movie review score: 61
Highest review score: 100 Life Itself
Lowest review score: 0 Outta Time
Score distribution:
10821 movie reviews
    • 100 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    Being a pessimist at heart, Kieslowski, who cowrote all 10 scripts, unfolds a variety of human weaknesses, shows how difficult it is to conform to one commandment, let alone 10, and considers human frailty with sympathy but little hope.
  1. A searingly visceral combat picture, Steven Spielberg’s third World War II drama is arguably second to none as a vivid, realistic and bloody portrait of armed conflict.
  2. A socially conscious work of art as essential as it is insightful.
    • 85 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    Spielberg has deftly veiled proceedings in a sense of mystical wonder that makes it all the more easy for viewers to suspend disbelief and settle back for the fun.
    • 92 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    In a decade largely devoted to male buddy-buddy films, brutal rape fantasies, and impersonal special effects extravaganzas, Woody Allen has almost single-handedly kept alive the idea of heterosexual romance in American films. Annie Hall is a touching and hilarious love story that is Allen’s most three-dimensional film to date.
    • 90 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    He (Allen) makes nary a misstep from beginning to end in charting the amorous affiliations of three sisters and their men over a two-year period.
  3. As with Reichardt’s more streamlined miniatures, regional detail accounts for much of the film’s lingering resonance, as her characters are molded by (and, in some cases, rail against) the landscape they inhabit.
  4. Utterly unpretentious and deeply touching.
  5. Villeneuve earns every second of that running time, delivering a visually breathtaking, long-fuse action movie whose unconventional thrills could be described as many things — from tantalizing to tedious — but never “artificially intelligent.”
  6. Skillfully blending intimate human drama with sharp political observations, Deepak Rauniyar’s outstanding second feature sends a powerful message about the need for tolerance if Nepal is to overcome divisions that remain long after the Comprehensive Peace Accord of 2006
    • 79 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    Planet of the Apes is an amazing film. A political-sociological allegory, cast in the mold of futuristic science-fiction, it is an intriguing blend of chilling satire, a sometimes ludicrous juxtaposition of human and ape mores, optimism and pessimism.
    • 88 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    An outstanding rock documentary.
  7. Bigelow, working from a script by her regular collaborator Mark Boal (it’s their first film since “Zero Dark Thirty”), has created a turbulent, live-wire panorama of race in America that feels like it’s all unfolding in the moment, and that’s its power. We’re not watching tidy, well-meaning lessons — we’re watching people driven, by an impossible situation, to act out who they really are.
  8. A powerfully intimate domestic drama, Ordinary People represents the height of craftsmanship across the board.
  9. A captivating 1930s-set caper whose innumerable surface pleasures might just seduce you into overlooking its sly intelligence and depth of feeling.
  10. Anderson’s seventh feature film is a groovy, richly funny stoner romp that has less in common with “The Big Lebowski” than with the strain of fatalistic, ’70s-era California noirs (“Chinatown,” “The Long Goodbye,” “Night Moves”) in which the question of “whodunit?” inevitably leads to an existential vanishing point.
  11. A gemlike picture crafted with rare and immaculate precision.
  12. Filmed in simple documentary fashion and performed with immaculate conviction by a non-professional cast, the pic, helmed by Zhang Yang (“Shower,” “Getting Home”) is a stirring study in faith and spirituality that will inspire many viewers to think about big and small questions of life.
  13. It’s not every documentary that can so exhilaratingly make us feel a part of something so special.
  14. Mike Leigh is at the peak of his powers with Vera Drake, a compassionate, morally complex drama that stands easily alongside his best work, "Secrets & Lies" and "Topsy-Turvy."
    • 97 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    Some Like It Hot, directed in masterly style by Billy Wilder, is probably the funniest picture of recent memory. It's a whacky, clever, farcical comedy that starts off like a firecracker and keeps on throwing off lively sparks till the very end.
    • 86 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    An outstanding picture.
  15. A mesmerizing slow burn of a martial-arts movie that boldly merges stasis and kinesis, turns momentum into abstraction, and achieves breathtaking new heights of compositional elegance: Shot for shot, it’s perhaps the most ravishingly beautiful film Hou has ever made, and certainly one of his most deeply transporting.
  16. An intensely political film so wildly inventive and witty that it will become a touchstone for years to come, Il Divo is a masterpiece for maverick helmer-scribe Paolo Sorrentino.
    • 87 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    Robert Shaw [is] absolutely magnificent as a coarse fisherman finally hired to locate the Great White Shark; and Richard Dreyfuss, in another excellent characterization as a likeable young scientist.
  17. A mesmerizing companion piece to his 2008 debut, "Hunger," this more approachable but equally uncompromising drama likewise fixes its gaze on the uses and abuses of the human body, as Michael Fassbender again strips himself down, in every way an actor can, for McQueen's rigorous but humane interrogation.
  18. A scorching blast of tense genre filmmaking shot through with rich veins of melancholy, down-home philosophy and dark, dark humor, No Country for Old Men reps a superior match of source material and filmmaking talent.
  19. A handsomely mounted adaptation of the like-titled Portuguese novel, Ruiz's 4 1/2-hour epic establishes the essential ambiguity of its chameleonic characters from the get-go and proceeds thereby, with riveting results and revelations that continue right to the end.
  20. Watching *Corpus Callosum and marveling at its sprightliness, its joyous, imaginative air, its effortless attenuation to all that is wonderful and horrible and comical about modern technology, makes you want to jump up and shout for joy, too.
  21. Dramatically spellbinding and intellectually stimulating, picture abstractly manipulates multiple layers of representation to shattering effect.

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