Alison Willmore

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For 139 reviews, this critic has graded:
  • 33% higher than the average critic
  • 1% same as the average critic
  • 66% lower than the average critic
On average, this critic grades 2.7 points lower than other critics. (0-100 point scale)

Alison Willmore's Scores

  • Movies
  • TV
Average review score: 62
Highest review score: 100 Little Women
Lowest review score: 10 Tom Clancy’s Without Remorse
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 72 out of 139
  2. Negative: 15 out of 139
139 movie reviews
    • 95 Metascore
    • 90 Alison Willmore
    Zero Dark Thirty makes you feel every step of Maya's journey, but it's her impressive achievement and that of the film itself that we're left contemplating, not her humanity - a stunningly well-realized whole with few soft spots to latch onto.
    • 93 Metascore
    • 100 Alison Willmore
    The mechanics of Sciamma’s film are simple, but they’re realized so delicately, and with the help of such unaffected child performances, that they feel miraculous.
    • 93 Metascore
    • 100 Alison Willmore
    Through these characters, Zhao is able to examine the idea of wide-open frontiers without nostalgia or the need to pathologize the parts of our social structures that are eroding or have failed. Those shots of Fern, a tiny, determined dot out there on a stunning panorama, are breathtaking and elegiac. She is a woman eking out the life she wants to lead, a woman who has gone to look for America.
    • 92 Metascore
    • 80 Alison Willmore
    Never Rarely Sometimes Always isn’t agitprop for an era of increasingly restricted abortion access, though it’d be entirely justified and effective in being so. It is, simply, a depiction of a reality of our present, and the fact that it often feels like a thriller is a damning reflection of how much peril those restrictions have created, especially for the already vulnerable.
    • 91 Metascore
    • 90 Alison Willmore
    Time is an extraordinary documentary from director and artist Garrett Bradley, who didn’t make a film about Rich and her family so much as make one with them.
    • 91 Metascore
    • 100 Alison Willmore
    It feels, exhilaratingly, like the throwing down of a gauntlet. Gerwig’s Little Women demands its viewers reconsider these familiar characters and what we’ve always assumed they stood for. It doesn’t just brim with life, it brims with ideas about happiness, economic realities, and what it means to push against or to hew to the expectations laid out for one’s gender.
    • 90 Metascore
    • 70 Alison Willmore
    Licorice Pizza — a movie as exasperating as it is delightful — could be described as an exploration of the unstable ground where Alana’s arrested development and Gary’s precociousness meet.
    • 90 Metascore
    • 80 Alison Willmore
    There’s a sealed-off quality to The Souvenir Part II that the first installment doesn’t have, a sense of surrendering to the idea that it’s possible to authentically portray only oneself — which may be true and may be a creative dead end. But even that turns out to be by design, something both the film and its protagonist can acknowledge and then escape.
    • 89 Metascore
    • 80 Alison Willmore
    Chung is a patient filmmaker who works in small sequences that accrue imperceptibly into something grander.
    • 88 Metascore
    • 100 Alison Willmore
    Masterful and agonizing, The Father is a gorgeously crafted film about a doomed arrangement entered into with love, even though it can only end in tragedy.
    • 88 Metascore
    • 80 Alison Willmore
    The Human Voice is all about the muddied lines between the fabricated and the genuine, and about how much a performance can be divorced from the sincere feelings that might be undergirding it.
    • 87 Metascore
    • 90 Alison Willmore
    At the age of 78, Andersson continues to make films that desire to capture no less than a grand sense of human existence — and that somehow achieve it. Here’s hoping this one isn’t his last.
    • 87 Metascore
    • 80 Alison Willmore
    Washington manages the near-impossible feat of delivering his lines as though he’s putting the words together in the moment, speaking some of the most famous sentences in the English language as though they’re actually being dredged up out of Macbeth’s roiling consciousness.
    • 85 Metascore
    • 90 Alison Willmore
    The Green Knight is about someone who keeps waiting for external forces to turn him into the gallant, heroic figure he believes he should be. But at the film’s heart is a lesson that’s as timeless as any legend — travel as far as you like, but you’ll never be able to leave yourself behind.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 90 Alison Willmore
    It’s an homage to radio dramas, maybe, but also works as a reminder that while film is a visual medium, sometimes sound can be enough to sustain you. It’s a sound, after all, that opens up the cloistered world that Everett and Fay are living in, exposing them to something terrible and awe-inspiring and new.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 80 Alison Willmore
    McBaine and Moss are the team behind 2014’s The Overnighters, a wrenching film about the North Dakota oil boom, and they’re interested in something beyond the contrast of adolescent faces and grown-up topics — or, for that matter, serving up simple optimism about Gen Z when taking in these young men at the cusps of their political lives.
    • 83 Metascore
    • 80 Alison Willmore
    It’s whimsical and bold and also easier to admire in the abstract than to get deeply emotionally invested in, though it features a late-breaking burst of beauty that will soften the hardest of hearts.
    • 83 Metascore
    • 90 Alison Willmore
    Effervescent and ridiculous and grounded in a pastel-shaded Toronto and the nearby throwback details of 2002, it has texture and specificity to spare, and the only person it cares to speak on behalf of is its 13-year-old heroine, Meilin Lee (Rosalie Chiang).
    • 83 Metascore
    • 90 Alison Willmore
    The Lighthouse is such an effective exercise in projecting claustrophobia, in both a physical and psychological sense, that it’d be unbearable to watch if it weren’t so funny. Thankfully, it’s a scream.
    • 83 Metascore
    • 90 Alison Willmore
    As is often the case with Hosoda, it’s the extracurricular details that make his work so moving, the textures of the everyday lives of his characters that become something larger and more profound when placed in contrast to the genre elements at the center of his story.
    • 83 Metascore
    • 70 Alison Willmore
    As a film, it’s warm and beautiful without being sentimental about the temporary intimacy that alcohol can provide, creating bonds that can dissolve in the daylightlike haze but are no less legitimate in the moment for it.
    • 83 Metascore
    • 80 Alison Willmore
    Palm Springs would have been a scream and likely a word-of-mouth hit in theaters, but maybe there’s something fitting about its going straight to streaming in the middle of a pandemic. What is quarantine, anyway, if not waking up and going through the same routine over and over without end?
    • 82 Metascore
    • 70 Alison Willmore
    Agrelo steers clear of the straight-up hagiography that plagues so many docs framed as tributes to their subjects.
    • 82 Metascore
    • 90 Alison Willmore
    The Northman doesn’t invite its viewers into its world, but instead dares them to try to catch up.
    • 81 Metascore
    • 90 Alison Willmore
    In its glimpse into the lives of partnered-up fictional directors, Bergman Island invites its viewer to guess how much it’s a reflection of Hansen-Løve’s actual relationship, while also acknowledging the gap between the art someone makes and the person they are.
    • 81 Metascore
    • 90 Alison Willmore
    Everything Everywhere All at Once may be a kaleidoscopic fantasy battle across space, time, genres, and emotions, but it’s an incredibly moving family drama first.
    • 81 Metascore
    • 60 Alison Willmore
    The film also comes across like a rough cut that was never looked at as a coherent whole, and some segments that start off as promising become interminable while others feel entirely unnecessary. There's no pressure on or expectation for Tarantino to please anyone other than himself, and the film feels overstuffed with ideas that should have been pruned.
    • 80 Metascore
    • 70 Alison Willmore
    They don’t feel like black characters grafted onto roles that were initially conceived of as white, but they don’t always feel entirely formed either, an impression that’s not helped by the choice to keep the siblings in largely separated narratives.
    • 80 Metascore
    • 80 Alison Willmore
    Shot in black-and-white with occasional accents of color, and given to camera-facing testimonials from characters around Radha’s neighborhood in a nod to Spike Lee, The 40-Year-Old Version feels like a ’90s indie throwback, loose and left raw at the edges, marked by an intimacy that can only come from drawing from the stuff of its multi-hyphenate creator’s life.
    • 80 Metascore
    • 70 Alison Willmore
    As a statement on a decade of consumerism, The Nest doesn’t have anything particularly new to say, but as a fable of familial dysfunction, it’s resonant and, yes, frightening, with nary a ghost in sight.

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