Variety's Scores

For 8,740 reviews, this publication has graded:
  • 53% higher than the average critic
  • 3% same as the average critic
  • 44% lower than the average critic
On average, this publication grades 1.8 points lower than other critics. (0-100 point scale)
Average Movie review score: 60
Highest review score: 100 Court
Lowest review score: 0 Bio-Dome
Score distribution:
8,740 movie reviews
    • 58 Metascore
    • 40 Critic Score
    A hare-brained wild ride through big surf and bad vibes, Point Break acts like a huge, nasty wave, picking up viewers for a few major thrills but ultimately grinding them into the sand via overkill and absurdity.
  1. A mechanically efficient yet soulless dramatization of the U.S. Navy SEALs in action, Act of Valor ultimately misses its target: The hearts and minds of American audiences.
  2. While only the converted will likely see the redemption behind the manipulation, picture delivers a strong enough dose of spiritual saccharine to yield solid if not heavenly returns from its trusty target audience.
  3. Director Baget clearly strives to replicate the ersatz Dixie flavors of "O Brother, Where Art Thou?" right down to the vintage '30s music in a film set in the 1970s, but nailing the Coen brothers' precisely calibrated style is far harder than it looks.
  4. A professionally assembled genre mashup that’s too silly to be scary, and a bit too dull to be a midnight-movie guilty pleasure.
  5. The Sweet Inspirations ranked as one of the most important backup singing groups in record-industry history, having performed with Aretha Franklin, Van Morrison, Dionne Warwick, Jimi Hendrix, Nina Simone, the Drifters, Wilson Pickett, Dusty Springfield and Elvis Presley. Yet, aside from an occasional still photograph, not a single frame of archival footage from their illustrious careers shows up in This Time.
  6. The gambits in Ghost Dog seem simply like literary and cinematic games devoid of any larger meaning.
  7. Bug
    A ranting, claustrophobic drama that trades in shopworn paranoid notions, William Friedkin's overwrought screen version of Tracy Letts' play assaults the viewer with aggressive thesping and over-the-top notions of shocking incident, all to intensely alienating effect.
  8. This bad idea is then underlined by pallid direction from tyro helmer and TV ad vet Kevin Donovan, a virtually incomprehensible plot line and a less-than-satisfying co-starring turn from Jennifer Love Hewitt.
    • 23 Metascore
    • 40 Critic Score
    The script, while largely historically accurate, is undermined by stilted dialogue, and the picture is laced with ill-fitting parts that wind up literally all over the matte. The result is a film better suited to classrooms than theaters.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 40 Critic Score
    Scarecrow is a periodically interesting but ultimately unsatisfying character study of two modern drifters.
  9. Serviceable but uninspired, this latest version of Emile Zola’s much-adapted 1867 novel “Therese Raquin” sends its characters to their doom on schedule without stirring much sense of tragedy or emotional involvement.
  10. A genially haphazard but frequently amusing neo-stoner comedy that plays like "Cheech and Chong Go to Animal House."
    • Variety
  11. Featuring a strong central perf by Bill Sage, a raincoated detective turn by Roy Scheider and the upscale autumnal serenity of the Hamptons, If I Didn't Care remains a stylistic exercise in elegant gratuitousness.
  12. Mannion's script goes a bit too far in terms of twists, capping the third-act suspense with a plot U-turn, and then another, that leaves audiences feeling played. Worse, the final development loses credibility in retrospect, reducing the film to the level of an exercise in paranoia, effects and one actor's ability to hold attention for nearly 90 minutes.
  13. It's an unabashedly corny but occasionally stirring dramedy based on the true-life story of scrappy young baseball players from Mexico who, in 1957, scored an improbable string of successes while playing their way from a Monterrey sandlot to the Little League World Series.
  14. A sci-fi thriller as generic as its title, Alien Abduction generates only low-voltage shocks.
  15. Although there are moments when lead thesps Zach Braff ("Scrubs", "Garden State") and Isabelle Blais just about pull off the implausible conceit, the picture still suffers from major problems of tone as well as stilted camerawork and editing.
  16. Scarcely more amusing than spending 90 minutes in a pre-K classroom.
  17. Cool it may be, but scary (or even mildly shudder-inducing) it ain’t, even in 3-D.
  18. Even by its genre’s comfort-food standards, this movie feels blandly circumscribed, almost child-proofed, as if any sharper reality or wit might be harmful to the intended audience.
  19. Except for the physical aspects of this bleak odyssey by a father and son through a post-apocalyptic landscape, this long-delayed production falls dispiritingly short on every front.
  20. The lively but wildly erratic result will surely please Jaglom’s winnowing fan base, while baffling most others and doing little to deter Jaglom himself.
  21. Largely listless and witless, this extensive reworking of the 1968 sci-fi favorite simply isn't very exciting or imaginative; most surprisingly, given the material, it's also Burton's most conventional and literal-minded film, the one most lacking in his trademark poetic weirdness and bracing flights of fancy.
  22. If all that Ian Inaba's latest Guerilla News Network missive, American Blackout, wants to do is get left Democrats worked up into a lather of righteous anger at crafty Republicans, it does so at the expense of speaking to any other group of Americans. As such, docu is extremely limited and almost without purpose except as an organizing tool for party foot soldiers.
  23. A clumsily edited feature-length version of five episodes from History’s hugely popular 10-hour miniseries “The Bible,” this stiff, earnest production plays like a half-hearted throwback to the British-accented biblical dramas of yesteryear, its smallscreen genesis all too apparent in its Swiss-cheese construction and subpar production values.
  24. “Oh, Toto, this doesn’t look like the Oz I remember,” Dorothy murmurs at one point. Truer words were never spoken.
  25. Result is a loose personal piece of reportage that places people over ideas and larger issues, and reveals the pic's severe limitations long before a surprisingly upbeat ending.
  26. Begins as a smartly promising, gently farcical comedy of manners and ends as sourly and haphazardly as the lives it is poking fun at.
  27. The latest model in the recent spate of underwhelming female star vehicles, Enough, a thriller detailing how a good wife gets back at an evil, possessive husband, is never provocative enough to generate strong emotional response.

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