Variety's Scores

For 10,899 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 Command and Control
Lowest review score: 0 Vulgar
Score distribution:
10899 movie reviews
  1. Writer-director Matt Mulhern confidently anchors his drama-comedy about an alcoholic Atlantic City pit boss with good writing and sharp dialogue. Script never treats characters as less than human.
  2. What little dimension Maudie offers is a direct result of Hawkins’ contributions, which draw from her character’s past to add texture to her performance.
  3. Much like its predecessors, Paranormal Activity 3 is a slow-building, stealthily creepy supernatural thriller that takes a teasingly indirect approach to generating suspense and escalating dread.
  4. It’s all quite nicely handled by Adams’ direction and his script (co-written with Jeremy Phillips), though the latter ultimately somewhat disappoints.
  5. Amusing and engaging yet lacking in snap and cohesion, this insider's look at the world of standup comics in contempo Los Angeles rings true in its view of the variously warped, stunted and narrow lives of its mostly male denizens.
  6. If Caranfil’s mix of comedy and tragedy seems too scattershot to fully achieve catharsis, it does boast a rather Jewish sense of humor, itself a curious testimonial to the past.
  7. Does a lot with little, milking a single location and minimal dialogue for deadpan humor, tension, and macabre payoff.
  8. Where the film runs into some difficulty is in sustaining its initially very promising mood of incipient violence. Withholding revelations can be an effective strategy, but it’s perhaps slightly overused here, as the result feels ever so slightly dry.
  9. Surfing the crowd in Altman-lite style, pic skims the surface entertainingly but goes limp in its stabs at seriousness, especially in the final scenes, which all but drown in emotional confrontations and hasty happy endings.
  10. Too formally well crafted to be dismissed, but too straightforward and uncurious to be particularly exciting or insightful.
  11. For those not hip to its smug "out is in" mentality, Dirty Girl's redeeming feature is its cast. Temple is vixen enough to carry the part, but manages to project a real wit burning beneath the layers of makeup and dumb-blonde shtick her character affects around others.
  12. Jeremy Lovering’s tense debut might have worked better had it left more to the imagination. Still, crisp camerawork and amplified sound yield paranoia aplenty.
  13. The potent imagery never meshes with narrative logic in Agnieszka Wojtowicz-Vosloo's first feature, promising more than it can deliver.
  14. Both intensely exciting for its cinematic inventions and terribly uninvolving on emotional and dramatic levels.
  15. Strikes some resonant chords but also hits notes that simply don't ring true and are borderline risible at times
  16. The film has humanity to burn, but its loose structure makes it hard to connect with the multiple characters.
    • 91 Metascore
    • 60 Critic Score
    Unquestionably a finely observed, deeply felt work, though with some nagging problems in pacing and structure.
  17. Set in cramped apartments and hole-in-the-wall storefronts in the East Village, Michael M. Bilandic's nanobudget comedy Happy Life plays like a poor schlub's "High Fidelity."
  18. One-liners and dry sight gags still abound, but the ennui-sodden formlessness of "Slacker" doesn't fly as well in this $ 6 million, smoothly lensed package, which calls for shapelier narrative and resolution.
  19. Though its absurdist inventions occasionally border on twee, this affectionate slow-blooming romance mines an understated vein of comic melancholy that the actors' wistful performances perfectly capture.
  20. It is entirely well intentioned. But the fair-mindedness of Lennon’s approach also contributes to a sense, ironically enough, of godlike detachment from the slivers of life and faith the film comprises.
  21. Despite all the globe-encircling eye candy, there’s a certain monotony of pacing imposed by the nonstop spoken input of various elders whose wisdoms seldom come in anything chewier than (at most) paragraph-length soundbytes.
  22. The film's persistent skimming from one vantage point to another, with no dominant dramatic line until midway through, will unsettle audiences expecting a more regular construction and something on which to hook their emotions over the long term.
  23. A slight but lightly amusing sitcom-style comedy, strongly recalls dinner theater fodder of three decades ago.
  24. While the results may be perilously slight, Suburban Gothic’s particular brand of low-key sarcasm and absurdity will tickle those looking for laughs more dry than slapstick (or splatstick) in nature.
  25. Powerful material doesn’t automatically yield a timeless or artistic documentary, and for better or worse, Trapped is an op-ed aimed squarely at the present moment in an enduring national conversation.
  26. Waist Deep packs considerable energy and style into its tale of an ex-con forced back into a life of crime to rescue his kidnapped son. Yet the kinetic direction and occasional sly humor can't disguise the tale's banal brutality or pump much excitement into its routinized pileup of shoot-outs and car chases.
  27. Brillante Mendoza’s latest opus that revels in shock value.
  28. An easygoing kitchen-sink comedy with an unsettling final act.
  29. Regular Lovers evokes the '60s pretty well just through dialogue and rhythm -- better, in fact, than Bernardo Bertolucci's more reverently detailed "The Dreamers." However, the film's slow tempo induces the feeling one is living through the whole of 1968 in one sitting.

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