Wall Street Journal's Scores

  • Movies
  • TV
For 2,554 reviews, this publication has graded:
  • 42% higher than the average critic
  • 2% same as the average critic
  • 56% lower than the average critic
On average, this publication grades 2.7 points lower than other critics. (0-100 point scale)
Average Movie review score: 60
Highest review score: 100 Atonement
Lowest review score: 0 Land of the Lost
Score distribution:
2554 movie reviews
  1. One of the reasons documentaries often take so long to make is the filmmakers' need to keep their subject from giving a performance. They want something genuine, something that materializes only when the camera disappears. Nothing Mr. Courtney is says is inaccurate or, God knows, dishonest. But it isn't quite true either.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 60 Critic Score
    Director David Yates, who is new to the Potter franchise, moves the story along briskly, at the expense of texture and nuance.
  2. Although The Good Girl is peppered with amusing small-town eccentrics in refreshingly original guises, it gets off to a long, slow start.
    • Wall Street Journal
    • 71 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    Like a dinner whose hors d'oeuvres are far more satisfying and well-composed than the slightly warmed-over main course. Among them are the inspired mock movie trailers and the fake ad that precede "Thunder's" opening credits.
  3. Trumbo doesn't pretend to be tough-minded about its subject, and its failure to date the letters is an annoyance. But the substance of those letters, along with documentary footage and a touching appearance by Kirk Douglas, throws a baleful light on a bleak chapter of American history.
  4. The movie looks lovely, but it's luminous prose.
  5. Mr. Nichols decided to preserve the jokiness of the original material, even while shifting the emphasis to the mother-daughter conflict. There may have been a way to do this and end up with a clever movie, but Mr. Nichols seems to have had an even cleverer idea: He decided to use this movie as a way to pay back social obligations. [13 Sep 1990, p.A14]
    • Wall Street Journal
  6. The problem isn't a lack of substance, and certainly not a dearth of talent, but a shortage of fun.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 40 Critic Score
    Lacks a crucial element of the heist subgenre: ingenuity.
    • Wall Street Journal
  7. Ms. Ferrera is an engaging performer; you find yourself rooting for Ana from the start, even though you know, from the predictable script by George LaVoo and Josefina Lopez, that rooting isn't required for a happy outcome.
  8. Endearing, though sometimes belabored.
  9. Unfortunately, the climax comes with more than a half hour to go, and the film, losing its focus on Jane Jacobs, turns its attention to the urban-renewal plague that devastated cities across America.
  10. The movie is a pleaser, for the most part, even though the attitude it takes toward its subject is often problematic.
  11. Walks a fine line between bold indie film, with the attendant in-your-face roughness, and sodden Lifetime Original Movie.
  12. The film, like its subject and everyone who talks about him, is frustratingly short on analysis or insight. It’s as if BASE jumping had been invented and psychology had not.
  13. The narrative engine leaves the rails when Irving, like Hughes, plunges into paranoia (though Irving actually is the object of a high-level plot) and the style turns to the sort of intensely manipulated surrealism that Charlie Kaufman practiced, not successfully, in "Confessions of a Dangerous Mind."
    • Wall Street Journal
  14. I wanted to believe in Bad Santa. At least half of the time I did.
    • Wall Street Journal
    • 69 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    Nothing about the emotionally unmoored Inglourious Basterds adds up. Whether it's parody, farce or a fever dream is anyone's guess.
  15. For its delicate tone, provocative themes, impeccable craftsmanship and superb performances-by Carey Mulligan, Andrew Garfield and Keira Knightley-Never Let Me Go earned my great admiration. I wish I'd been affected in equal measure, but I wasn't, and it's not the sort of film you can will yourself to enjoy.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 40 Critic Score
    The ultimate poor judgment: the decision to put Babel before the camera. That defies comprehension in any language.
    • Wall Street Journal
  16. This is less a film in the lustrous Pixar tradition than a Disney fairy tale told with Pixar's virtuosity. As such, it's enjoyable, consistently beautiful, fairly conventional, occasionally surprising and ultimately disappointing.
  17. The movie is stifling, all right, and depressing in the bargain.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 40 Critic Score
    The press notes boast that Mr. Cutler was given "unprecedented access" and the right of final cut; these advantages don't seem to have done much for this listless film.
  18. One's confidence in factuality is weakened by a cliché-ridden narrative that reads Ma di Tau's mind during her buffalo hunt, and by incessant manipulation of the imagery-not only the use and abuse of slo-mo, but digital enhancement of colors in concert with an almost obsessive concentration on stalking and killing.
  19. Its ironic complexities tease the brain without pleasing the heart.
  20. Terrific actors give glum performances.
    • Wall Street Journal
  21. The more elaborate the plot becomes, the sillier it gets.
  22. A slow start, a single star performance surrounded by indifferent acting and an onslaught of computer effects that range from seen-it-all-in-"Transformers" to a whole sky full of spectacular stuff in the midtown Manhattan climax.
  23. But even as the film's weaknesses make themselves more and more apparent, so does Mr. Turturro's virtuosity. [15 Aug 1991, p.A10(E)]
    • Wall Street Journal
  24. If only the showmanship were equal to the scholarship. As beautiful as the film is (despite notable variations in the quality of the cinematography), it is also sluggish, underdramatized after that initial suspense, and for the most part emotionally remote.
    • Wall Street Journal

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