Washington Post's Scores

For 8,081 reviews, this publication has graded:
  • 47% higher than the average critic
  • 2% same as the average critic
  • 51% lower than the average critic
On average, this publication grades 3.7 points lower than other critics. (0-100 point scale)
Average Movie review score: 59
Highest review score: 100 Amy
Lowest review score: 0 8MM
Score distribution:
8081 movie reviews
  1. Yet as sophisticated a piece of filmmaking as it is, it seems hamstrung by the banality at its center; that's why it never assembles into a satisfying whole. It's pretty -- oh, what's the word? -- stupid in its dramatization of the silly little connections that unite us, and it's somewhat selective in its choice of them.
  2. The movie never rises to the level of the professional, much less the comic. The gags are witless and surprisingly gross. The four actors, each accustomed to being at the center, never develop any rhythm, any chemistry, any anything.
  3. This is definitely a family trip to stay home and skip.
  4. The story's tired, as are the main characters.
  5. The main problem with Patriot Games, though, is that the inevitable confrontation between Ryan and Miller takes forever to materialize. In the interim, Noyce gets bogged down in the mass of technical detail -- the inside-CIA baseball -- that is such an integral aspect of Clancy's books. On the page, Clancy's research is impressively exhaustive, and if by chance you become bored, you can always skip ahead. But a movie doesn't afford us this luxury. Some of what we're shown about the inner working of the intelligence network is fascinating, but sometimes it can become an irritating distraction. You just want to cut to the chase.
  6. The best thing about Murder at 1600? Speed of exposition. Directed by Dwight Little, who made Steven SeagalĂ­s "Marked for Death," this thing whizzes from one unbelievable story point to the next. Your suspension of disbelief appreciates the momentum, if nothing else.
  7. Blake Edwards directs this unfunny farce, a banal boozer's comedy that relies on the comedic e'clat of Basinger: basically, Barbie doing standup. Meanwhile leading man Bruce Willis is all buttoned-down and leashed.
  8. Parillaud is expressive but rather mundane. She's best at playing sullen, but there are so many French actresses who specialize in this particular talent -- the French have mastered the apathetic pout -- that she seems generic.
  9. To paraphrase her infamous Oscar speech: You will have to like Sally Field, you will have to really like Sally Field, to sit through Two Weeks.
  10. It feels more like a prosaic knockoff than a classically inspired original.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 40 Critic Score
    Telling Lies in America may not be terrible. But it flickers inconclusively between ordinary and not-so-good. [24 Oct 1997]
    • Washington Post
  11. The effects are murky and the giant worm looks more like a smear on the lens than anything else. Most of the intensity is generated by sudden sound effects like ringing phones, alarm clocks or oven timers.
  12. An absurdly upbeat romantic vehicle for John Travolta. The film-makers appear to believe that the moviegoing public craves a reassuring love story, at any cost. This film ends up as s counterfeit endorsement of the so-called simpler so-called values.
  13. The sad truth is that Wonder Boys is little more than a sentimentalized encomium to the disheveled, childish life it ascribes to writers.
  14. Ultimately, The Guardian veers off into slobbery touchy-feeliness, and the tone becomes mock-religious, almost liturgical.
    • 38 Metascore
    • 40 Critic Score
    Chan's normally homegrown stuntwork is replaced by a lot of wire fighting and special effects, and this makes one think that the days of "Drunken Master" are far behind him.
  15. Producer Ismail Merchant, director James Ivory and screenwriter Ruth Prawer Jhabvala bring the customary polish, but no pizzazz, to this simplistic portrait of the artist as a dirty old man.
  16. Hogan seems skittish about going all the way with the darker side of his material...It's a bright, buoyant comedy about a very sad young woman -- and, regrettably, the mix just doesn't work.
  17. While Phenomenon attempts, tritely, to ascend into mind-blowing significance, it also plummets into a pit of sentimental mush.
  18. While it never sags as alarmingly as its immediate predecessor, Spy, the 10th film in the series, is at best a tolerable disappointment.
  19. When a master dedicates his genius to the production of schmaltz, it's not a pretty sight.
  20. The movie is so shabbily written (by Dennis Hackin) and unevenly directed (by Eastwood himself) that the traditional obstacles to romantic comedy consummation are overwhelmed by superfluous complications and imprecise calculations.
  21. Desperado also has some entertaining twists, some sexy goings-on, but on the whole, watching the film is about as much fun as sitting on a cactus.
  22. The documentary never gets more than skin deep. It rarely delves into the troubling regions that are the very orchards of documentary.
  23. You have to wonder whether writer and director Steve Conrad, who wrote the films "Wrestling Ernest Hemingway," "The Weather Man" and "The Pursuit of Happyness," had something more hefty in mind before Harvey and Bob Weinstein came aboard and marketed his movie as a laugh riot. Regardless, it's not the stuff of lighthearted summer comedy.
  24. The special twist-which Paramount Pictures has implored critics not to divulge-redefines the story completely. It also ruins everything.
  25. We find ourselves wondering about the real story, not this version.
  26. What the movie is supposed to accomplish -- laying out a fairly complex mystery in a way that creates suspense -- is precisely what it doesn't do.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 40 Critic Score
    Martin is pretentious in a way that pornography is when it is dressed up for people who don't want to admit to their taste. We're not really coming for that , it seems to say; that is just there because it is an integral part of the story.
  27. With 10 writers gnawing on it, there is little originality left in the story.

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