Michael Rechtshaffen

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For 1,101 reviews, this critic has graded:
  • 52% higher than the average critic
  • 10% same as the average critic
  • 38% lower than the average critic
On average, this critic grades 7.4 points lower than other critics. (0-100 point scale)

Michael Rechtshaffen's Scores

  • Movies
  • TV
Average review score: 57
Highest review score: 100 The LEGO Movie
Lowest review score: 0 I Know Who Killed Me
Score distribution:
1101 movie reviews
    • 53 Metascore
    • 60 Michael Rechtshaffen
    It turns out Pokemon Detective Pikachu isn’t half bad.
    • 83 Metascore
    • 80 Michael Rechtshaffen
    As informational as it is inspirational, Patrick Creadon’s Hesburgh is a thoroughly engaging documentary chronicle of the life and turbulent times of longtime Notre Dame president Father Theodore M. Hesburgh, whose tenure coincided with a particularly pivotal stretch of American history.
    • tbd Metascore
    • 70 Michael Rechtshaffen
    While not exactly uncharted documentary territory, the Iraq conflict is thought-provokingly portrayed in “Mosul,” an up-close-and-personal examination of recent events that puts a human face on a land that remains vulnerable as a result of clashing ideologies.
    • 46 Metascore
    • 40 Michael Rechtshaffen
    As long as he maintains his focus on the notoriously private Land and the painstaking efforts of Impossible Project’s chief technology officer and Polaroid vet Stephen Herchen to recapture lightning in an SX-70, Baptist delivers something reasonably compelling. Unfortunately the bulk of the overly artsy production is preoccupied with the exploits of others.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 80 Michael Rechtshaffen
    A moving testament to the boundary-shattering language of music.
    • 76 Metascore
    • 70 Michael Rechtshaffen
    While director Penny Lane (not a pseudonym) energetically goes about shattering our preconceived notions at every intriguing turn, the film is at its most potent tracing society’s history of “satanic panic,” from the Salem Witch Trials to the rise of the evangelical lobby on the shoulders of the Red Scare to the 1980s when Dungeons & Dragons was viewed as a demonic gateway game.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 80 Michael Rechtshaffen
    Even more than those acclaimed lion, chimp and bear films that have preceded it, Penguins proves especially delightful — a coming-of-age story outfitted with an engaging anthropomorphic overlay that can make you forget you’re watching an intimately filmed documentary instead of an animated adventure.
    • 57 Metascore
    • 80 Michael Rechtshaffen
    In Disney’s hands, William eschews freak show theatrics for something much weightier.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 90 Michael Rechtshaffen
    Director Seet’s gorgeously filmed production proves to resonate as much today as it did 40-plus years ago.
    • tbd Metascore
    • 40 Michael Rechtshaffen
    Perhaps he was too distracted by wearing so many hats (Dara also performs the self-penned Once-style ditties on the twee soundtrack), but both he and Lancaster didn’t bother to imbue their sketchy characters with sufficient likability.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 50 Michael Rechtshaffen
    One wishes the script might have shared the degree of precision that has obviously been applied to the technical side of the production, which is resplendent in visual dazzle from the smallest beads of sweat on a character’s forehead to the vintage knit fabrics to those sprawling exotic vistas.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 70 Michael Rechtshaffen
    Inevitably, the oddball Elmore Leonard-meets-the Little Rascals conceit loses some of its wacky effectiveness, but while Corben might not hit this one out of the park, Screwball energetically rounds the bases.
    • tbd Metascore
    • 80 Michael Rechtshaffen
    But while both bands would go to court to sever ties with the man they once affectionately referred to as Big Poppa, it’s what happened after they bid “Bye Bye Bye” to Pearlman that makes Aaron Kunkel’s documentary so compelling.
    • 57 Metascore
    • 70 Michael Rechtshaffen
    Although the often humorous film may not quite rank among Chen’s best and that CGI-enhanced feline isn’t always convincingly up to scratch, the buoyant yarn nevertheless casts a beguiling spell.
    • 30 Metascore
    • 40 Michael Rechtshaffen
    Unfortunately Marryshow, in his various capacities, has neglected to instill his terminally obnoxious character with a vital shred of audience empathy, let alone to provide sufficient comedic beats that would have better engaged his thoughtfully diverse cast.
    • tbd Metascore
    • 30 Michael Rechtshaffen
    Ultimately coming across more like a bloated, corporate infomercial, Beers of Joy will undoubtedly leave only those who know their ABV (Alcohol by Volume) from their IBU (International Bittering Units) thirsty for more.
    • 76 Metascore
    • 80 Michael Rechtshaffen
    While Stewart didn’t live to see the enactment of a new California law last fall that will see the phasing out of the practice already banned elsewhere in the world, his passionate documentary, boasting stirring underwater photography and an equally poignant Jonathan Goldsmith score, speaks urgently on his behalf.
    • tbd Metascore
    • 70 Michael Rechtshaffen
    Pig
    With its parade of finger-pointing vloggers, picture-posting stalkers and hijab-wearing, smartphone-clutching schoolgirls, Pig (“Khook”) makes it savagely clear Western society hasn’t cornered the market on selfie-centered behavior.
    • tbd Metascore
    • 30 Michael Rechtshaffen
    A committed cast fails to elevate Beneath the Leaves, an otherwise draggy and derivative thriller.
    • 34 Metascore
    • 40 Michael Rechtshaffen
    For every poignant keeper...there’s a clunker.
    • tbd Metascore
    • 60 Michael Rechtshaffen
    Even as it treads on familiar Stephen King (“The Mist”) and John Carpenter (“The Fog”) territory, the film has moments that will leave you gasping for oxygen — as long as you choose to avoid all those gaping plot holes.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 40 Michael Rechtshaffen
    Replaying many of the visual gags that worked so amusingly before, the latest edition proves every bit as repetitive and uninspired as its glib title, bringing little that’s fresh or funny to the interlocking brick table despite boasting a script penned by originators Phil Lord and Christopher Miller.
    • tbd Metascore
    • 50 Michael Rechtshaffen
    It’s all quite amusing up to a point, but unfortunately that point arrives early on in this practically two-hour-long take on a one-gag premise.
    • 40 Metascore
    • 40 Michael Rechtshaffen
    There’s the kernel of an intriguing political thriller buried beneath all the strained exposition and pompous speechifying enveloping An Acceptable Loss, but writer-director Joe Chappelle never manages to find it.
    • tbd Metascore
    • 50 Michael Rechtshaffen
    Hernández ultimately fails to inject sufficient empathy into his moody character, while all those alternating flashbacks and episodes of delirium take a toll on the film’s ability to maintain a firm grip of its own on viewer engagement.
    • 60 Metascore
    • 80 Michael Rechtshaffen
    In Genesis 2.0, the prehistoric past and the near future intersect at a most intriguing — and disturbing — juncture.
    • 77 Metascore
    • 80 Michael Rechtshaffen
    The film, which debuted last year at Sundance, covers considerable, resonant socio-political ground while being anchored by the compelling performances of its’ leads.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 80 Michael Rechtshaffen
    Pulling off a rare three-peat, How to Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World is a tender, spirited coming-of-age CG-animated feature that proves every bit as emotionally resonant and artistically rendered as its 2010 and 2014 predecessors, if not even more so.
    • tbd Metascore
    • 80 Michael Rechtshaffen
    A disturbing portrait of the substantial emotional and physical price exacted when mental illness hits devastatingly close to home.
    • tbd Metascore
    • 60 Michael Rechtshaffen
    Amid the despair, Spitak nevertheless offers a glimmer of hope in the bleakness.

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