Variety's Scores

For 9,655 reviews, this publication has graded:
  • 52% higher than the average critic
  • 3% same as the average critic
  • 45% 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: 60
Highest review score: 100 Grizzly Man
Lowest review score: 0 Mother's Day
Score distribution:
9655 movie reviews
  1. While no film from the narrow perspective of Israeli intelligence could purport to offer a thorough view of the conflict, what makes The Gatekeepers ultimately so compelling is its pervasive sense of moral ambiguity.
  2. Part of the beauty of Nostalgia is that the many metaphors and surprising parallels between the universe, archaeology and Chile’s recent past rise organically from the material.
  3. Ida
    It’s one thing to set up a striking black-and-white composition and quite another to draw people into it, and dialing things back as much as this film does risks losing the vast majority of viewers along the way, offering an intellectual exercise in lieu of an emotional experience to all but the most rarefied cineastes.
  4. Plentiful screen time for three generations of femme jazzers, led by energetic and witty gals from the golden age of big band and swing who unlock a treasure trove of memories, make this a real crowdpleaser.
    • 90 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    Ben-Hur is a majestic achievement, representing a superb blending of the motion picture arts by master craftsmen.
    • 90 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    The cinema of paranoia and persecution reaches an apogee in After Hours, a nightmarish black comedy from Martin Scorsese. Anxiety-ridden picture would have been pretty funny if it didn't play like a confirmation of everyone's worst fears about contemporary urban life.
  5. An astonishingly good and daring film that richly develops several intertwined thematic lines, The Crying Game takes giant risks that are stunningly rewarded.
  6. 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.
  7. Raw but utterly enveloping.
  8. The beautifully modulated script, ripe with moments of liberating humor, builds to a crescendo of indignation, allowing Elkabetz several cathartic outbursts, but they’re no more riveting than the actress’ silences.
  9. An irresistible treat with enough narrative twists and memorable characters for a half-dozen films.
  10. A weightier, more nuanced and fulsome experience than the film the world has known up to now.
  11. A stunning work, revisiting controversial events with journalistic objectivity and a meticulous eye for detail.
  12. Scorsese's heartfelt love letter to Italian movies up to 1961.
    • 90 Metascore
    • 60 Critic Score
    A curious amalgam of the visually striking, the dramatically feeble and the offensively sadistic.
  13. Her
    What begins like an arrested adolescent dream soon blossoms into Jonze’s richest and most emotionally mature work to date, burrowing deep into the give and take of relationships, the dawning of middle-aged ennui, and that eternal dilemma shared by both man and machine: the struggle to know one’s own true self.
    • 90 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    Badlands is a unique American fairy tale...and it's an impressive debut.
    • Variety
    • 90 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Canadian writer-director Atom Egoyan's most ambitious work to date, The Sweet Hereafter is a rich, complex meditation on the impact of a terrible tragedy on a small town.
  14. Taped in stark black-and-white and clocking in 15 minutes shy of six hours, invigorating pic is big, passionate and brimming with compelling human details and broad sociopolitical idealism.
    • 90 Metascore
    • 70 Critic Score
    Basically an excuse for set pieces, some amusing, others overdone.
  15. Had James Thurber worked in animation, the waggish result might look and sound a bit like It’s Such a Beautiful Day, indie cartoonist Don Hertzfeldt’s alternately poignant and absurdist triptych.
  16. 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.
  17. Very clever and imaginative indeed, and its pictures are so gorgeous that they alone could warrant a second viewing.
  18. Standing at his balcony, filming the revelry with his iPhone, he seems to be saying that directing is more defiant an act than lighting a firecracker or two. Truth be told, Panahi's poignant "Film" is infinitely more explosive.
  19. This beautifully crafted and lively romp around the 1880s stage world should enjoy its longest life as a vid classic.
  20. Devilishly inventive and so far out there it's almost off the scale.
  21. A savvy sequel that should speak to anyone who's let that one great love slip away.
  22. As deliriously smart escapist fare, The Incredibles is practically nonpareil.
  23. Though less pleasurably offbeat than the helmer’s well-received “Read My Lips” and “The Beat That My Heart Skipped,” this is solid, sinewy pulp fiction.
  24. In essence it’s an historical artifact created in a time capsule: impressive in its way, yet its retardataire mannerisms require more distance before judgment can be passed on whether it’s a major work engaged in earlier forms, or an intriguing footnote trapped in a spent modality.

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