Wall Street Journal's Scores

  • Movies
  • TV
For 2,120 reviews, this publication has graded:
  • 41% higher than the average critic
  • 2% same as the average critic
  • 57% lower than the average critic
On average, this publication grades 2.8 points lower than other critics. (0-100 point scale)
Average Movie review score: 59
Highest review score: 100 Lebanon
Lowest review score: 0 A Guy Thing
Score distribution:
2,120 movie reviews
  1. (It doesn't hurt that Ms. Redgrave gets to play opposite Franco Nero, who was once the love of her life and is the father of her son.) Not even she can transform lines like "Destiny wanted us to meet again."
  2. A slow and lugubrious film about the impact of adoption on the lives of three women.
  3. Pathetically unfunny most of the time.
  4. Still, Eat Pray Love preaches a sermon it doesn't practice-the need to open one's self to the world. In a pictorial sense this is exactly what Liz does; she vacuums up the transformative essence of three continents. Yet the world gets weirdly short shrift because this transcendently narcissistic movie is, in a narrative sense, almost entirely about Liz and the movie star who plays her.
  5. This children's entertainment-grownups beware!-is preoccupied by squishy stuff that includes mud and poop, as well as by syrup that oozes from cabinet drawers.
  6. Secretariat stumbles along beneath the weight of leaden life lessons. They're dispensed at frequent intervals by Diane Lane, who does better than anyone had a right to expect, since she is saddled with dialogue of exceptional dreadfulness.
  7. Either you buy their Vaseline-lensed visions of the hereafter, or you watch in stony silence, as I did, wondering why there's no one to care about.
  8. This dreary drama telegraphs every punch, emotion and plot point with a dedication that would have done the old Western Union proud.
  9. What's worse, some mysterious movie curse has turned the three once-lively adventurers into wood.
  10. The result is a queasy combination of speculation and dramatic invention with the ring of half-truth, though the co-stars, Ryan Gosling and Kirsten Dunst, add as much color as they can - not much - to a monochromatic script.
  11. The only reason to see it is Riz Ahmed's performance as Omar, the supposed brains of the operation. Mr. Ahmed reminded me a bit of Robert Carlyle. He's dynamic, quick-tongued and intense. And much too classy for this tatty room.
  12. This production is a mess for many reasons, most of them having to do with its frantic efforts to be funny.
  13. The basic problem is the script, which is credited to three writers plus the director - seldom a good sign. Never mind that it's a retread of "Planes, Trains & Automobiles" minus the trains, and minus John Candy.
  14. It's dispiriting to see how little attention the filmmakers have paid to the dramatic - read human - possibilities of the original, or how much they've been overwhelmed by technology's demands. It's as though rogue programs took over the production.
  15. Country Strong comes to spontaneous life from time to time, despite maudlin devices and manipulative set pieces.
  16. Mr. Statham, the specialist in English tough guys who was so affecting in "The Bank Job," has more to offer than The Mechanic has the grace to receive.
  17. All of the nonsense piled on nonsense does provide some measure of pleasure. Unknown gets better by getting worse.
  18. There's nothing to be said in favor of sitting through garbage, and this movie is awash in the stuff, both figuratively and literally: One of its main locales is a vast garbage dump.
  19. The IMAX print I saw was so murky as to make you give thanks for the few scenes shot in simple sunlight, the 3-D wasn't worth the bother, and never before have I wanted to chloroform an entire orchestra.
  20. Green Lantern was meant to be a sci-fi adventure, but it proves to be a genuine mystery. How could its megamoola budget have yielded a production that looks almost as tacky as "Flash Gordon" (which had the good grace to deprecate itself at every turn)?
  21. Horrible Bosses has preposterousness to burn, but no finesse and no interest in having any.
  22. The movie transforms a dim idea - "Elmer Gantry" lite - into comedy that's dead in the water and as dull as it is broad.
  23. Cowboys versus aliens is a concept that may make you smile in anticipation, but wipe that smile off your face before buying your ticket.
  24. Ms. Weisz is always a strong presence, but her talents are wasted here on a naive heroine - the fictional Kathy is exceedingly slow to grasp the extent of the corruption - and a narrative style that turns the horror of the prostitutes' plight into harrowing melodrama.
  25. Long after lice from her children's school infested Kate's scalp, I was scratching my head about why a 91-minute movie seemed so long. The answer came from reframing the question. Why was a string of sitcom problems stretched to 91 minutes?
  26. The failure lies not with the film's director, Marc Forster, nor with its impressive star, Gerard Butler, but with Jason Keller's dreadfully earnest script, which charts the hero's spiritual journey, and his Rambo-esque exploits, without offering a scintilla of mature perspective on his state of mind.
  27. In a movie that rings false at every turn, Ms. Redgrave's Elizabeth is truly and infallibly regal.
  28. Despite all the nervous tension, the central drama is flawed - Jonathan isn't trying to find a killer. He is the killer. Something is lacking in the dramatic equation.
  29. When bad movies happen to good people, the first place to look for an explanation is the basic idea. That certainly applies to My Week With Marilyn, a dubious idea done in by Adrian Hodges's shallow script and Simon Curtis's clumsy direction.
  30. Meryl Streep as Margaret Thatcher is the main reason to see The Iron Lady, which was directed by Phyllida Lloyd - not just the main reason but the raison d'ĂȘtre of an otherwise misconceived movie.

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