L.A. Weekly's Scores

For 3,748 reviews, this publication has graded:
  • 46% higher than the average critic
  • 3% same as the average critic
  • 51% lower than the average critic
On average, this publication grades 8.4 points lower than other critics. (0-100 point scale)
Average Movie review score: 56
Highest review score: 100 Grindhouse
Lowest review score: 0 The Jackal
Score distribution:
3748 movie reviews
    • 49 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    As with a concert or favorite record, sometimes it's best not to overthink things but simply let the visceral power take over. That is what made Queen and Freddie Mercury so special and that is why Bohemian Rhapsody will rock you, if you let it.
  1. Rohrwacher’s work unites a passionate interest in social realism, in the hardships faced by people on the streets and in the fields, with a daring refusal to be held by the rules of narrative realism.
  2. Often, a scene-survey doc that takes on so much — cultural history, present-day portraiture, regional distinctions, celebrity interviews, fly-on-the-wall reportage — can play as scattershot. That’s not so with United Skates. Round and round it flows — why not jump on in?
  3. Firth is all panicked reserve in the role of Crowhurst, and Rachel Weisz invests the familiar stay-at-home role with antsy, agonized spirit as the wife of the doomed man, facing the truth that her family’s lives will never be what they once were.
  4. I’ll be straight with you: This movie is awful. And not the fascinating, Alexander Nevsky (the action star/filmmaker, not the 13th-century prince) kind of awful — it’s the does-anybody-involved-know-what-the-hell-they’re-doing kind of awful.
  5. It’s a Rocky movie, just the latest go-round, its story more formulaic, its people less specific, its rhythms as wheezily familiar as a workout you should have changed up weeks ago. It’s a diminishment of Creed, a dumbing down, just as Rocky II was a diminishment of Rocky.
  6. The best I can say about Buster Scruggs is that it seems as though the Coens picked their favorite actors and wrote them a part specifically tailored to their abilities.
    • tbd Metascore
    • 60 Critic Score
    A curious, thoroughly reported, handsomely shot, ultimately frustrating portrait of the event.
  7. The film unfolds as a sort of first-person procedural, a vivid step-by-step account of a reporting trip to hell.
  8. In Vladimir de Fontenay’s Mobile Homes, Imogen Poots gives a performance of such multifaceted distinction that it might be hard to believe you’re watching the same actress from frame to frame.
  9. There’s nothing preachy about Jinn, even though Nijla Mu’min’s elegant debut feature is about a teenager coming to terms with her mother’s newly embraced religion.
  10. Sure, it’s kind of entertaining to see the studly, studious Mortensen slap on a few pounds and go way out with the fuggeddaboutit talk as he tries to shoot the shit with Ali’s pedantic, closeted virtuoso. It’s the first time I’ve ever seen him ham it up. But the leads mostly are saddled with literal, middle-of-the-road material.
  11. The Tsuk children, with remarkable equanimity, evince the least surprise at their parents’ later actions. Hebrew speakers may be better able to appreciate nuances that the sometimes stilted, distracting subtitles seem to obscure. But those open, honest faces — the story they tell transcends words.
  12. Too often, viewers just have to take a movie love story’s word for it that its characters actually belong together. Not so in Carlos Marques-Marcet’s loose, observant Anchor and Hope.
  13. Director Derek Doneen opens hearts wide with his documentary The Price of Free, his tale of enslaved children working in factories in India. But he’ll also crush many of those hearts with the revelation that viewers are among the villains activist Kailash Satyarthi is fighting.
  14. Everything has been watered down: the intensity of the hero, the sense of sexual danger, the violence.
  15. It makes for an intriguing combination of tones and rhythms — urgency running up against paralysis — that speaks to the twisted dynamism of our political process, then and now.
  16. El Angel is a crime spree as improvised reverie, one with a subject who is as quick to give away his loot as the director is to make the subtext explicit.
  17. Little here will surprise cineastes but much of it will charm them.
  18. The acting is stiff, the pacing sluggish, the framing uncertain, the music an intrusive mush and the scenario schematic. But it’s an interesting schematic, at least, complete with thoughtful/exhaustive discussion of the difference between justice, revenge and forgiveness.
  19. Jaron Albertin’s mix of crisp realism and oblique dream logic results in a haunting experience.... Still, while his first feature (shot by Darren Lew) may be gorgeous, the characters in this rural family drama prove so amorphous that their struggles engender detachment instead of empathy.
  20. When Jared finally erupts, Hedges nimbly navigates the character’s hurt, fear and burgeoning pride — his relief at having at last found his voice.
  21. Volf’s refusal to address key choices that Callas made to shape her own career and fight her insecurities suggests that he’d prefer to imagine Callas as a victim of fate — and bronchitis, fame, Onassis, etc. — instead of a strong-willed but human prima donna.
  22. While the movie does address white people’s thorny relationship with rap and cultural appropriation, it demonstrates how delicate satirizing that can be when it gets kind of serious near the end — a long, long end — and suggests that being the best at battle rap can also mean being the worst.
  23. Wiseman doesn’t engage with immigration or migrant labor in his town portrait, which helps make Monrovia, Indiana a stubborn entry into his canon. Many of his subjects are invested in the continuity of what they perceive as a timeless American normalcy, but they’re too polite — and cagey — to say what that means on camera.
  24. Wang favors static, wide, one-take shots, to underscore the relentlessness of his characters’ suffering. But — like Jost — he also has a knack for primitive in-camera effects. The final shot is a triumph of both economy and feeling.
  25. This The Other Side of the Wind has a haphazard “well, he shot it, so we better include it” vibe. One wonders just how much of the existing editing Welles got to oversee himself; the answer is: probably not much. There’s a tight, 80-minute feature trapped in The Other Side of the Wind, one that Welles most likely would have exhumed had he not run out of money while filming.
  26. Early on, sex addiction is called “a gaping hole in the soul” but Unlovable barely has us feel it.
  27. The animation that brings Liyana to life, created by Shofela Coker, is gorgeous, but the reason it resonates has everything to do with the way it’s woven into footage of the children telling Liyana’s story or going about their everyday business.
  28. Naturally, not everything is what it seems; there are a couple of necessary untruths even in this plot synopsis. But the part where it seems like some excellent actors have been roped into propping up a hopelessly by-the-numbers horror movie? That’s totally on the level.

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