Stephen Dalton

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For 175 reviews, this critic has graded:
  • 40% higher than the average critic
  • 5% same as the average critic
  • 55% lower than the average critic
On average, this critic grades 3.1 points lower than other critics. (0-100 point scale)

Stephen Dalton's Scores

  • Movies
  • TV
Average review score: 61
Highest review score: 90 Vox Lux
Lowest review score: 20 Songwriter
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 80 out of 175
  2. Negative: 14 out of 175
175 movie reviews
    • 25 Metascore
    • 30 Stephen Dalton
    This bloodthirsty comic-book fantasy is let down by its infantile humor and derivative, incoherent plot.
    • 60 Metascore
    • 60 Stephen Dalton
    It may lack the refined wit and revered pedigree of blue-chip animation franchises such as Toy Story, but it still ticks plenty of lightweight fun boxes for its prime target audience of younger children, with just enough adult humor to keep parents from yawning, too.
    • 81 Metascore
    • 80 Stephen Dalton
    I Do Not Care if We Go Down in History as Barbarians is a mature, ambitious work from a spirited auteur who has mastered the cinematic rules well enough to break them with confidence.
    • 55 Metascore
    • 60 Stephen Dalton
    Despite its title, this mild-mannered feature debut from British TV actor turned writer-director Shelagh McLeod remains determinedly earthbound for most of its duration, more heart-tugging family saga than intergalactic adventure.
    • 79 Metascore
    • 80 Stephen Dalton
    Examining the idea of paranoia as an engineered reaction, a tool of control that inhibits potential activism and self-expression, it's more than a lesson in living history. It's a powerful argument for how necessary it is to watch the watchers.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 60 Stephen Dalton
    A charming exercise in low-key romantic realism that risks being too subtle for its own good.
    • tbd Metascore
    • 60 Stephen Dalton
    Breezy and bright, with the stylized look and feel of a stage play, Honore’s bubbly bottle of cinematic champagne runs out of fizz somewhere around its midway point. Even so, there are still enjoyably shallow pleasures to be savored here.
    • 89 Metascore
    • 70 Stephen Dalton
    Like much of Bong’s work, Parasite is cumbersomely plotted and heavy-handed in its social commentary. The largely naturalistic treatment here may also alienate some of his fantasy fanboy constituency. That said, this prickly contemporary drama still feels more coherent and tonally assured than Snowpiercer or Okja, and packs a timely punch that will resonate in our financially tough, politically polarized times.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 60 Stephen Dalton
    The director's latest rise-and-fall chronicle suffers from a few structural problems that did not bedevil Senna or Amy. Most obviously, the subject is still very much alive, which may explain why this officially endorsed film feels more cautious and compromised than it might have been.
    • 77 Metascore
    • 70 Stephen Dalton
    It offers little thematically or stylistically novel that devotees of Japan’s most prolific B-movie maestro will not have seen many times before. Even so, the Tarantino-style rollercoaster ride is as effortlessly enjoyable as ever, accentuating the director's lighter comic leanings over his bloodthirsty side.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 60 Stephen Dalton
    Though handsome in style and admirable in ambition, this sprawling neo-Western never comes together as a satisfying whole.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 80 Stephen Dalton
    There is no big redemptive payoff here, just a few small victories and hopeful pointers to the future. The struggle continues. But this is still a very necessary story, delivered with rigor and conviction.
    • 52 Metascore
    • 30 Stephen Dalton
    Run
    Graham begins Run with a solid premise, but he lacks the dramatic horsepower to move the story out of second gear.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 70 Stephen Dalton
    It looks and feels far more substantial than most indie debuts, confidently bending genre rules with its minimalist dialogue and hallucinatory plot, which owes more to David Lynch or Lars von Trier than to more orthodox horror maestros.
    • tbd Metascore
    • 60 Stephen Dalton
    The Man Who Feels No Pain is a fun ride, unashamedly zany and eager to please, even if the humor is very broad and the sprawling plot too baggy for an action-driven piece.
    • 82 Metascore
    • 80 Stephen Dalton
    The director is such an engaging presence onscreen — wry and humane, balancing sly social commentary with a playfully child-like attitude — that even a minor autumnal work like this is still a heart-warming mood-lifter.
    • 53 Metascore
    • 50 Stephen Dalton
    While not exactly a misfire, Rodriguez and Cameron's joint effort lacks the zing and originality of their best individual work.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 70 Stephen Dalton
    Alexis Bloom's damning documentary is a competent but conventional affair, highly watchable but low on fresh angles or bombshell revelations.
    • 63 Metascore
    • 70 Stephen Dalton
    This schlocky horror picture show combines a zesty young cast with an infectious comic energy.
    • 49 Metascore
    • 40 Stephen Dalton
    This unflinching yet compassionate depiction of marginalized misfits boasts a few pleasingly poetic flourishes, but it suffers from some common first-time director flaws, notably a listless narrative, thinly developed characters and a relentlessly somber mood.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 70 Stephen Dalton
    Cam
    Cam is a suspenseful mind-bender with plenty of timely feminist subtext. It takes viewers down some unexpected rabbit holes and commendably avoids pandering to male-gaze sex-thriller tropes, even if it ultimately fails to deliver on its grippingly weird early promise.
    • 82 Metascore
    • 80 Stephen Dalton
    For all its narrow focus, this is a pleasingly personal breakdown of a fascinating episode in recent European history, tightly composed and crisply edited, with an appealing undertow of dry humor and some cautionary lessons for modern voters.
    • 91 Metascore
    • 80 Stephen Dalton
    As a immersive primer on the first-hand experiences of British soldiers, this innovative documentary is a haunting, moving and consistently engaging lesson in how to bring the past vividly alive
    • 39 Metascore
    • 40 Stephen Dalton
    Johnny English Strikes Again is an oddly mirthless addition to the series.
    • 47 Metascore
    • 50 Stephen Dalton
    This prosaically competent comedy-thriller turns a rich true story into a tonally uneven blend of lukewarm laughs and low-level suspense.
    • 60 Metascore
    • 50 Stephen Dalton
    Quincy is an unapologetically partisan insider's portrait. The material is rich and the cast list starry, but the overall package veers a little too close to gushing vanity project in places.
    • 63 Metascore
    • 70 Stephen Dalton
    The splatter violence is fairly tame by modern gore standards, and the episodic narrative sags in places, but the ecological subtext and feminist folk-horror elements make this almost entirely female-driven road movie an agreeably fresh addition to the zombie canon.
    • 28 Metascore
    • 30 Stephen Dalton
    Dolan has labored hard to yoke together these tricksy, time-jumping, intertwined plots, reportedly editing down a mountain of material over two years. In the process, a whole character played by Jessica Chastain was surgically removed. But however long he tinkered, Dolan has not quite salvaged a story whose default setting seems to be mirthless, ponderous navel-gazing.
    • 79 Metascore
    • 90 Stephen Dalton
    Crucially, like its predecessor, Gloria Bell maintains a warm but rigorously unsentimental tone despite material which could easily lend itself to mawkish sentimentality.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 90 Stephen Dalton
    Corbet's high-caliber melodrama combines food for thought with sense-blitzing spectacle. Between screaming tantrums and booming anthems, it leaves us with a nagging sense that history never quite repeats itself, but sometimes rhymes. Usually to a thumping disco beat.

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