Moira Macdonald

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For 431 reviews, this critic has graded:
  • 71% higher than the average critic
  • 3% same as the average critic
  • 26% lower than the average critic
On average, this critic grades 8.5 points higher than other critics. (0-100 point scale)

Moira Macdonald's Scores

  • Movies
  • TV
Average review score: 73
Highest review score: 100 E.T. The Extra-Terrestrial
Lowest review score: 25 Fifty Shades Darker
Score distribution:
  1. Negative: 29 out of 431
431 movie reviews
    • 85 Metascore
    • 100 Moira Macdonald
    Director Jon M. Chu (“Crazy Rich Asians”) lets us feel the hot, heavy air of a Washington Heights summer, and dazzles us with movement.
    • 59 Metascore
    • 88 Moira Macdonald
    The fashion alone, designed by the great Jenny Beavan (an Oscar winner for “A Room with a View” and “Mad Max: Fury Road”), is worth the ticket price; if that doesn’t do it for you, there’s also slyly brilliant work from the two Emmas — Stone and Thompson — working hard to upstage the gorgeous outfits in which they’re swathed.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 75 Moira Macdonald
    A Quiet Place, Part II, with its skillful jump scares and sly central premise (silence is safety, noise is fear), delivers the goods, and sent me home nervously worried that something might sneak up on me — as all scary movies should. Bring on Part III, quietly.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 88 Moira Macdonald
    The familiarity is part of what makes The Dry tick along so nicely; it reminds you of other good movies even as you enjoy its own special flavor.
    • 57 Metascore
    • 50 Moira Macdonald
    French Exit isn’t without its pleasures; but you watch it dreaming of the movie it might have been.
    • 89 Metascore
    • 88 Moira Macdonald
    Over its quiet two hours, beautifully punctuated by long shots of sunlit green fields and fireflies flitting at twilight, Minari lets us become part of the Yi family.
    • 93 Metascore
    • 100 Moira Macdonald
    Zhao shows us the difficulty of this life — the endless laundromats, the cramped bed in the van, the cold, the possessions left behind — but also its beauty and freedom. I wished I could have seen Nomadland on a theater screen, to see the horizons and pale-peach sunrises stretching endlessly in Joshua James Richards’ beautiful cinematography. And I wished I could have seen McDormand’s face as big as a house, looking wonderingly outward, finding possibility.
    • 60 Metascore
    • 63 Moira Macdonald
    Wonder Woman 1984 feels a bit perfunctory; just another massive superhero movie, with little fresh brought to the mix.
    • 83 Metascore
    • 88 Moira Macdonald
    A holiday gift, it’s bringing some much-needed light to these dark days.
    • 87 Metascore
    • 100 Moira Macdonald
    It’s also a celebration of language — Wilson’s glorious storytelling is given its due by this masterful ensemble cast, who weave colorful tapestries with his words — and of music’s transformative power.
    • 79 Metascore
    • 75 Moira Macdonald
    There isn’t much here that hasn’t been explored in countless movies and novels before, but what makes “The Nest” utterly compelling is its front-row seat for two splendid performances.
    • 40 Metascore
    • 63 Moira Macdonald
    It just feels like a pretty idea that didn’t get fully developed; an origin story that we didn’t need.
    • 46 Metascore
    • 50 Moira Macdonald
    We can’t travel these days, so it’s fun to wallow in the scenery and its vivid colors. Want a great movie? Go watch the original Rebecca instead, but you probably knew that already.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 88 Moira Macdonald
    It’s a performance that deserves a bigger playground — but this “Mulan” is still a treat, at any size.
    • 58 Metascore
    • 88 Moira Macdonald
    Hope Gap is a deeply sad film, and maybe not what a lot of us are in the mood for these days, but it’s ultimately uplifting, in its quiet way.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 75 Moira Macdonald
    The fun is watching the shivery details — such as a shot of the back of Cecilia’s neck, in which we can almost feel the sudden scent of a presence — and appreciating the skill of Moss’ performance.
    • 89 Metascore
    • 88 Moira Macdonald
    There is a touching universality to these life stories, which at this point have a lulling near-sameness: grown children, long careers, lasting passions and friendships (Paul’s and Symon’s is particularly touching), a looming shadow of illness, the nearness of twilight.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 88 Moira Macdonald
    This film is both a loving homage to Austen and a celebration of fashion and decorative arts.
    • 95 Metascore
    • 100 Moira Macdonald
    “Do all lovers,” wonders Héloïse in a passionate moment, “feel as though they’re inventing something?” Portrait of a Lady on Fire, a bittersweet celebration of passion and art, feels like that; you’ve never seen another movie quite like this. In its quiet gaze, love becomes art — and vice versa.
    • 79 Metascore
    • 88 Moira Macdonald
    You leave The Assistant thinking about why some of us are invisible and some of us don’t notice — and about how evil lives in the places from which we look away.
    • 49 Metascore
    • 63 Moira Macdonald
    I enjoyed Downhill purely for Louis-Dreyfus’ performance; we don’t get to see the “Veep” star on the big screen very often, so why not revel in her talent when we get the chance? As an exhausted working mom unable to keep from micromanaging the vacation — and a wife suddenly questioning her choices — she’s funny and moving and utterly believable in every moment.
    • 60 Metascore
    • 75 Moira Macdonald
    Sometimes too many ideas collide into each other — a zippy back-and-forth structure in the screenplay gets abandoned, and the pacing in the final act feels off — but Birds of Prey is never boring and often great fun.
    • 45 Metascore
    • 38 Moira Macdonald
    You watch wondering what good actors like Lively, Law, Jeffrey and Sterling K. Brown (as a former C.I.A. officer) saw in this muddy screenplay, and why Morano, best known for the Hulu series “The Handmaid’s Tale,” couldn’t find a way to make them spark.
    • 33 Metascore
    • 50 Moira Macdonald
    If Like a Boss had a decent screenplay, and was competently directed, it might have been pretty good.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 88 Moira Macdonald
    While occasionally the film wanders a bit too far into sentimentality (a scene involving a baby feels like it crosses a plausibility line), watching 1917 is an emotional and moving experience. You think of these two young men as one minuscule piece of an enormous tragedy, filled with individual stories.
    • 91 Metascore
    • 100 Moira Macdonald
    This Little Women purist was moved to tears by this movie, and didn’t want it to end. Beautifully intimate, gentle and wise, it made me — and all of us — part of the March family. And what better Christmas gift could we wish for than that?
    • 64 Metascore
    • 50 Moira Macdonald
    Ultimately, the film’s unwillingness to go deeper makes it fall flat.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 88 Moira Macdonald
    You can imagine how other filmmakers might approach this — it’s a beautifully cinematic story — but no one else would film it quite as Malick has. This quiet, meditative and very deliberate film (nearly three hours long, though not a great deal happens) is at once historical drama, love story and ode to nature.
    • 32 Metascore
    • 38 Moira Macdonald
    “Cats” the movie is deeply, deeply weird, and not in a good way.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 63 Moira Macdonald
    Eastwood’s very good with actors, and the central trio of Richard Jewell make the film worth watching.

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