Variety's Scores

For 9,296 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 2 points lower than other critics. (0-100 point scale)
Average Movie review score: 60
Highest review score: 100 Iron Man
Lowest review score: 0 Divorce: The Musical
Score distribution:
9296 movie reviews
  1. A low-key but sharply observed work that benefits from real local flavor and a gift for lyric image making.
  2. DuVernay’s razor-sharp portrait of the Civil Rights movement — and Dr. King himself — at a critical crossroads is as politically astute as it is psychologically acute, giving us a human-scale King whose indomitable public face belies currents of weariness and self-doubt.
  3. The Winding Stream is cogent and compelling as a pop-culture history lesson, and genuinely uplifting while it shows how contemporary artists — along with descendants like Rosanne and John Carter Cash — keep the legacy of A.P., Mother Maybelle, June and Johnny alive and thriving.
  4. Calmer and less shattering than his masterly psychodrama "Secret Sunshine" (2007), Poetry is a deceptively gentle tale with a tender ache at its center, as well as a performance from Yun Jung-hee that lingers long in the memory.
  5. A love letter to silent cinema sealed with a smirk, The Artist reteams director Michel Hazanavicius with dapper "OSS 117" star Jean Dujardin for another high-concept homage, delivering a heartfelt, old-school romance without the aid of spoken dialogue or sound.
  6. The Piano confirms Campion as a major talent, an uncompromising filmmaker with a very personal and specific vision.
    • 89 Metascore
    • 70 Critic Score
    Simultaneously fascinating and repellent, Goodfellas is Martin Scorsese's colorful but dramatically unsatisfying inside look at Mafia life in 1955-1980 New York City.
  7. If films about coping with memory loss and/or reverse-order storytelling now constitute a mini-genre, then Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind is arguably the best of the lot.
    • 89 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    In every respect it is outstanding.
    • 89 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Cooper does an unusually able job of portraying the marshal. (Review of Original Release)
  8. Taken together, "Flags" and "Letters" represent a genuinely imposing achievement, one that looks at war unflinchingly -- that does not deny its necessity but above all laments the human loss it entails.
  9. Winningly unpretentious tale uses a wispy romantic narrative as a vehicle for attractive original tunes.
    • 88 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    An outstanding rock documentary.
  10. Dramatically spellbinding and intellectually stimulating, picture abstractly manipulates multiple layers of representation to shattering effect.
  11. By sharp turns poignant, disturbing and hysterically funny.
    • 88 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Chillingly hilarious.
    • 88 Metascore
    • 40 Critic Score
    The film's biggest limitation is its oversexed, underdeveloped male duo. Playing like a south-of-the-border version of Beavis and Butt-head, the teenagers have but one thought in their heads.
  12. The mesmerizing performance of Phillip Seymour Hoffman as the celebrated writer dominates every scene, while director Bennett Miller and screenwriter Dan Futterman's penetrating study enthralls in every aspect.
  13. A brave, challenging picture that makes the viewer complicit in the action, it is also perhaps the first film since the declaration of the Islamic Republic to confront so directly the brutality of the feared security apparatus.
  14. Chazelle proves an exceptional builder of scenes, crafting loaded, need-to-succeed moments that grab our attention and hold it tight.
    • 88 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    US director Stuart Cooper gives it the right understated, unheroic feel. (Review of Original Release)
  15. It stands as a unique film-within-a-film, of significance for the historical value of the raw images, the memories they spur and internal evidence of how the Nazis staged scenes long assumed to be real.
  16. A captivating 1930s-set caper whose innumerable surface pleasures might just seduce you into overlooking its sly intelligence and depth of feeling.
  17. Nuri Bilge Ceylan is at the peak of his powers with Winter Sleep, a richly engrossing and ravishingly beautiful magnum opus that surely qualifies as the least boring 196-minute movie ever made.
  18. It’s a simple, even predictable story, yet textured so exquisitely and acted so forcefully as to feel almost revelatory.
  19. Adapting the cold language of data encryption to recount a dramatic saga of abuse of power and justified paranoia, Poitras brilliantly demonstrates that information is a weapon that cuts both ways.
    • 88 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    A standout picture.
  20. Theater veteran Recoing is utterly compelling. Both the script and the resourceful, subtle actor provide enormous insight into the troubled character.
    • 88 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Even those who don't rally to pic's fed-up feminist outcry will take to its comedy, momentum and dazzling visuals.
    • 88 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Under Elia Kazan's direction, Marlon Brando puts on a spectacular show, giving a fascinating, multi-faceted performance.

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