Jessica Kiang

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For 619 reviews, this critic has graded:
  • 56% higher than the average critic
  • 5% same as the average critic
  • 39% lower than the average critic
On average, this critic grades 6.1 points higher than other critics. (0-100 point scale)

Jessica Kiang's Scores

  • Movies
  • TV
Average review score: 71
Highest review score: 100 Birds of Passage
Lowest review score: 0 After We Collided
Score distribution:
  1. Negative: 30 out of 619
619 movie reviews
    • 69 Metascore
    • 80 Jessica Kiang
    As the movie dances right up to the conventions of this well-worn genre, then deftly slides (To the left! To the right!) to avoid them, you might just find yourself clapping along in spite of it all being terminally uncool. Uncool can be a lot of fun.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 75 Jessica Kiang
    Rasoulof’s film, while understandably angry, is nothing if not singleminded . It’s a saturnine morality tale that unfolds in shades of rainy gray beneath leaden, overcast skies, gritting up the nation’s cinematic tradition of humanist drama to an almost unrecognizable degree.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 50 Jessica Kiang
    Visually and sonically, Enys Men is utterly intoxicating, but a lack of any nourishing interplay between form and content makes it feel like getting drunk on an empty stomach, alone on an island where everything happens at the same time, and nothing really happens at all.
    • 44 Metascore
    • 20 Jessica Kiang
    [Bruni Tedeschi] fails to make much of a case for why any of it should resonate with anyone outside this tiny, hermetically enclosed community. ... [An] indulgent, histrionic personal history.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 70 Jessica Kiang
    Before a final act dealing with the fascinating social fallout once Saeed’s crimes are known and he becomes, in some quarters including his own household, a hero on a righteous moral crusade, Abbasi’s film hews close to this established template.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 80 Jessica Kiang
    Stately and serene from a distance, but up close riven with the fissures and follies of a friendship that costs both men so much but gives them even more, the movie, too, is a mountain.
    • 88 Metascore
    • 100 Jessica Kiang
    After the world-conquering success of Bong Joon-ho’s “Parasite” and the small-screen domination of “Squid Game,” your new, sublimely accomplished Korean thriller obsession is here, and it is Park Chan-wook’s Decision to Leave.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 80 Jessica Kiang
    R.M.N. is a slow-motion snapshot of a deeply riven community flying apart in all directions, as though some bomb, detonated years or perhaps even centuries ago, has never stopped exploding.
    • 81 Metascore
    • 90 Jessica Kiang
    Full of odd glitches and deliberate flubs in period detail, the film feels like an invitation into a secret conspiracy to reach back through time and, with deft, irreverent 21st-century fingers, loosen the stays on Empress Elisabeth’s corsetry just a little.
    • 8 Metascore
    • 0 Jessica Kiang
    It’s piping hot trash.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 70 Jessica Kiang
    A set-your-watch-by-it riff on the unlikely-friendship-helps-two-lonely-people formula, this time involving a troubled schoolgirl and a stage magician, it is however so nicely performed and takes such honest pleasure in the flourishes of its little magic show, that only a hard heart would mention that the palmed coins and hidden cards of its construction were visible all along.
    • 79 Metascore
    • 90 Jessica Kiang
    This superior chiller is both a satisfying genre exercise and a minute observation of the process by which young children acquire morality; its most striking aspect may just be the empathy Vogt displays for his 7- to 11-year-old stars, and the extraordinary juvenile performances that empathy brings out.
    • 80 Metascore
    • 80 Jessica Kiang
    Will Nikola, like Job, regain some measure of grace if he stoically endures enough suffering? The barely discernible uptick of optimism that closes the powerful but grueling Father is a small mercy in suggesting he might
    • 60 Metascore
    • 60 Jessica Kiang
    Even just the rooftop of this vast, scabbed Phnom Penh apartment complex seems to have a thousand stories to tell — it’s perhaps little wonder that Neang’s melancholic, perplexed, slightly ponderous feature debut gets a little lost navigating them.
    • 79 Metascore
    • 80 Jessica Kiang
    The sad, wise heart of Drljača’s small, impressively controlled film condemns neither of them, but instead understands what horror stories and fairytales have in common: both are narratives in which the characters have no control, and are instead propelled by forces far bigger than they are, toward destinies they were born into that they cannot avert.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 90 Jessica Kiang
    Murina is rife with symbolism, but it’s a mark of Kusijanović’s command — an astonishing quality for a first-time feature director — that the recurring motifs and metaphors are worn so lightly and feel so organic to the film’s microcosmic universe.
    • 79 Metascore
    • 80 Jessica Kiang
    Part John Ford, part Sam Fuller, the film’s old-fashioned approach is oddly impressive: To tell this kind of story in such blunt-edged, straightforward style is a distinctive choice when the temptation to veer into revisionist war-is-hell commentary, Malickian nature-study or Herzogian descent-into-madness bombast must have been strong.
    • 55 Metascore
    • 60 Jessica Kiang
    Ambulance is not good, exactly. Still it is an enjoyable, oddly inspiring reminder of how many more flavors not-good used to come in, in the olden days, back when we had the luxury of regarding Michael Bay’s brand of adrenalized, lobotomized moviemaking as a menace to blockbuster cinema, rather than — gulp — one of its potential saviors.
    • 87 Metascore
    • 90 Jessica Kiang
    Only a few seconds into Payal Kapadia’s shimmery, poetic essay doc A Night of Knowing Nothing, it feels like we are a few hours deep into the excavation of someone else’s memories.
    • 34 Metascore
    • 0 Jessica Kiang
    The Bubble is so charmless, joyless and jokeless — and at more than two hours so endless — that by its close you have to check your smile muscles for signs of atrophy.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 70 Jessica Kiang
    If as a thriller, the cryptic It Is in Us All, doesn’t thrill quite enough, as an examination of the kind of perverse death-obsession that unloved, unhappy, estranged boys can develop, it is a darkly provocative and promising debut mood-piece from Campbell-Hughes.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 50 Jessica Kiang
    Master ends up a genre film in which the outlandish generic elements — the witches and the maggots, the fizzing bulbs and out-of-sync shadows — are far less frightening than its portrayal of this real, everyday world in which racism isn’t a long-dead bogeyman; it’s alive, breathing, banal.
    • 59 Metascore
    • 50 Jessica Kiang
    Love After Love goes through the motions of classic, rousing melodrama but not the emotions.
    • 83 Metascore
    • 80 Jessica Kiang
    Turning Red is definitely a persuasive manifesto for “releasing the Red Panda” to be added to that list of menstruation euphemisms, but that’s not all it is. It is also a bright, moving, funny, happy film about adolescent angst, that doesn’t condescend but also doesn’t overload. It is, perhaps most remarkably, a movie about 13-year-olds that 13-year-olds might actually enjoy.
    • 20 Metascore
    • 30 Jessica Kiang
    In execution (and there are precious few of those), Asking for It is too much like its cardboard heroines: edgy on the outside, empty within. It’s the “Charlie’s Angels” freeze-pose of rape-revenge movies.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 90 Jessica Kiang
    This remarkable performance documentary may be for the Nick Cave-curious exclusively, but for them (us) it is close to essential.
    • 49 Metascore
    • 40 Jessica Kiang
    To reduce a titanic struggle for survival in one of the most inhospitable climes on earth to such by-the-numbers drama is in many ways akin to standing on a jagged frozen peak, gazing across blizzard-assailed permafrost plains to crumbling white cliffs and ice shelfs beyond and thinking “Snow.”
    • 59 Metascore
    • 80 Jessica Kiang
    Lê Bảo’s rich film reaches further back too, beyond the politics of globalization and migration, beyond even culture, into a pre-ethnographic past, to see us as trapped animals, paradoxically dehumanized by the sunless concrete ugliness of human civilization.
    • 81 Metascore
    • 90 Jessica Kiang
    This is not, in the end, a tale of hubris brought low, or even of a tacky life staring down a long lens at a tawdry, dwindling death. Instead it’s a chilling parable about the sins of the father becoming the punishments of the son, and about the moral arc of the universe bending, across generations, toward the coldest justice imaginable.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 50 Jessica Kiang
    Everything in Fassbinder’s rightly canonized movie is fake, except the emotions. In Ozon’s loving, diverting but inessential homage, everything is real except the bitter, glycerine tears.

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