Variety's Scores

For 8,498 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 1.9 points lower than other critics. (0-100 point scale)
Average Movie review score: 60
Highest review score: 100 Girlhood
Lowest review score: 0 Rollerball
Score distribution:
8,498 movie reviews
    • 68 Metascore
    • 40 Critic Score
    The spirit and elan that captivated the Vietnam protest era are long gone, and what Forman tries to make up with splash and verve fails to evoke potent nostalgia.
  1. The Hudsucker Proxy is no doubt one of the most inspired and technically stunning pastiches of old Hollywood pictures ever to come out of the New Hollywood. But a pastiche it remains, as nearly everything in the Coen brothers' latest and biggest film seems like a wizardly but artificial synthesis, leaving a hole in the middle where some emotion and humanity should be.
  2. What begins as a moderately interesting set of interconnected mysteries involving race and identity soon grows eye-rollingly laborious, not to mention increasingly derivative of Christopher McQuarrie's "Usual Suspects" script.
    • 35 Metascore
    • 40 Critic Score
    Watching Flashdance is pretty much like looking at MTV for 96 minutes. Virtually plotless, exceedingly thin on characterization and sociologically laughable, pic at least lives up to its title by offering an anthology of extraordinarily flashy dance numbers.
    • 61 Metascore
    • 40 Critic Score
    The crazier Nicholson gets, the more idiotic he looks. Shelley Duvall transforms the warm sympathetic wife of the book into a simpering, semi-retarded hysteric.
  3. Nocturnal settings and musical interludes create their own kind of allure, but picture feels like an art film imitation, not an authentic art film itself.
  4. Pic stays on the surface, without attempting any exploration of painful depths. Result is at best amusing; at worst, uninvolving, often confusing, and sometimes a little boring.
  5. If you're going to ask an audience to sit through a three-hour, nine-minute rendition of an oft-told story, it would help to have a strong point of view on your material and an urgent reason to relate it. Such is not the case with Wyatt Earp, a handsome, grandiose gentleman's Western that tries to tell evenhandedly more about the famous Tombstone lawman than has ever before been put onscreen.
  6. Trite, sententious and generally unfunny.
  7. Despite engaging performances from a cast led by Matthew Rhys and Kate Ashfield and pro direction by first-timer Richard Janes, yarn about art grifters lacks real snap, which ultimately stems from the so-so script and lack of real coin.
  8. Rather like a cross between "Up in Smoke" and an episode of "The Jeffersons, Friday is a crudely made, sometimes funny bit of porchfront humor from the 'hood.
    • 43 Metascore
    • 40 Critic Score
    Director John Milius does a nice job of setting up the initial story.... But for whatever reasons, [Schwarzenegger] has a minimum of dialog and fails to convey much about the character through his actions.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 40 Critic Score
    Director Ted Kotcheff has all sorts of trouble with this mess, aside from credibility. Supposedly, the real villain here is society itself, which invented a debacle like Vietnam and must now deal with its lingering tragedies. But First Blood cops out completely on that one, not even trying to find a solution to Stallone's problems.
    • 54 Metascore
    • 40 Critic Score
    Despite its intermittently amusing dialog, however, Deathtrap comes across as a minor entertainment, cleverness of which cannot conceal its essential artificiality when blown up on the big screen.
  9. A noisy, soulless, self-conscious pastiche that mixes elements of sci-fi, action-adventure and romance, then pours on a layer of comedy replete with Hollywood in-jokes.
    • Variety
  10. Standard-issue directorial approach is perfectly in keeping with a script whose natural berth is on the tube.
    • 38 Metascore
    • 40 Critic Score
    All of the top talent involved - especially Gene Hackman - is hardly needed to make Uncommon Valor what it is, a very common action picture.
  11. 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.
    • 45 Metascore
    • 40 Critic Score
    The film might have worked if the thoroughly selfish characters were striving after something.
    • 61 Metascore
    • 40 Critic Score
    The polished comic vision that gave Twins, Arnold Schwarzenegger's comedy breakthrough, a storybook shine completely eludes director Ivan Reitman here. Result is a mish-mash of violence, psycho-drama and lukewarm kiddie comedy.
  12. Marshall has tried to do too much, dealing with certain subplots too sparingly to deliver on their promise.
  13. Undone by a thorough lack of visual craft.
  14. A dour study of terrorism, 1880s style, The Secret Agent represents an adaptation of Joseph Conrad's only London-based novel, the fidelity of which to the original text does not yield a terrifically exciting film.
  15. Brit filmmaker Sue Clayton's muddled feature bow is full of intriguing ideas and incidental charms that fail to come together into a cohesive whole.
  16. Result is still innocuously mild and inconsequential.
    • 39 Metascore
    • 40 Critic Score
    In an effort to be more 'realistic' Annie winds up exposing just how weak a story it had to start with [stage play book by Thomas Meehan], not helped here by the music [songs by Charles Strouse and Martin Charnin].
  17. A bland, perverse round-robin of teen angst.
  18. Billed as a phantasmagoria rather than a biopic, Klimt falls into the philosophical conundrum it attempts to resurrect -- whether portrait and allegory can coexist. Notwithstanding moments of great beauty, in this case the answer is clearly "no."
  19. Plays more like '70s drive-in fare than a monster mash of recent vintage.
  20. An instantly forgettable trifle.

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