A.O. Scott

A.O. Scott
Tomatometer-approved critic
Biography:
(Photo Credit: Rob Kim/ Contributor/Getty Images Entertainment/Getty Images)
Publications: New York Times, At the Movies

Movie Reviews Only

T-Meter Title | Year
52% Coming 2 America (2021) [A] genial, mostly inoffensive, sometimes quite funny sequel to a beloved comedy from way back in the 1980s. - New York Times EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 4, 2021
100% The Truffle Hunters (2020) Without spoiling the delicate mood with narration or straight-to-camera interviews, Dweck and Kershaw bring us into the company of a band of idiosyncratic adherents to an ancient way of life. - New York Times EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 4, 2021
53% The United States vs. Billie Holiday (2021) What's shocking about this movie, in the context of [Daniels'] arresting body of work, is how thin and wooden it is, how cautiously attached to the conventions of its genre. - New York Times EDIT
Read More | Posted Feb 25, 2021
94% Nomadland (2021) In a fine Emersonian spirit, the movie rebels against its own conventional impulses, gravitating toward an idea of experience that is more complicated, more open-ended, more contradictory than what most American movies are willing to permit. - New York Times EDIT
Read More | Posted Feb 18, 2021
98% Minari (2020) "Minari" is modest, specific and thrifty, like the lives it surveys. There's nothing small about it, though, because it operates at the true scale of life. - New York Times EDIT
Read More | Posted Feb 11, 2021
96% Judas and the Black Messiah (2021) The script, by King and Will Berson, is layered with ethical snares and ideological paradoxes, and while King's fast-paced direction doesn't spare the suspense, it also makes room for sorrow, anger and even a measure of exhilaration. - New York Times EDIT
Read More | Posted Feb 11, 2021
88% News of the World (2020) Neither performer overdoes the sympathy that develops between Kidd and Johanna, and the film is tender without descending too far into sentimentality. - New York Times EDIT
Read More | Posted Feb 3, 2021
47% The Little Things (2021) Thanks to Hancock's craft and the discipline of the actors, it's more than watchable, but you are unlikely to be haunted, disturbed or even surprised. - New York Times EDIT
Read More | Posted Jan 28, 2021
92% The White Tiger (2020) The characters don't quite come to life. They aren't trapped by prescribed social roles so much as by the programmatic design of the narrative, which insists it is showing things as they really are. - New York Times EDIT
Read More | Posted Jan 21, 2021
99% MLK/FBI (2021) "MLK/FBI" is fair to all parties without being neutral or timid. - New York Times EDIT
Read More | Posted Jan 14, 2021
100% Acasa, My Home (2020) It's both intimate and analytical, a sensitive portrait of real people undergoing enormous change and a meditation on what that change might mean. - New York Times EDIT
Read More | Posted Jan 14, 2021
98% One Night in Miami (2020) This is one of the most exciting movies I've seen in quite some time. - New York Times EDIT
Read More | Posted Jan 14, 2021
95% Soul (2020) Like other great New York movies, it invites you to identify particular intersections and storefronts, to compare its imagined geography with the city of your own experience. - New York Times EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 25, 2020
98% Ma Rainey's Black Bottom (2020) "Ma Rainey's Black Bottom" is a powerful and pungent reminder of the necessity of art, of its sometimes terrible costs and of the preciousness of the people, living and dead, with whom we share it. - New York Times EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 17, 2020
83% Mank (2020) A worthy, eminently watchable entry in the annals of Hollywood self-obsession. - New York Times EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 3, 2020
25% Hillbilly Elegy (2020) The best thing I can say about this movie is also the most damning, given Mamaw's proud indifference to anyone's good opinion of her. It's respectable. - New York Times EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 23, 2020
90% The Climb (2020) The emotional core of the film - the love that supposedly binds Kyle and Mike in spite of everything - is empty. - New York Times EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 12, 2020
39% Rebecca (2020) Who thought this was a good idea? - New York Times EDIT
Read More | Posted Oct 21, 2020
98% The Forty-Year-Old Version (2020) It's a romantic comedy and also a backstage farce; a classroom drama and also a grief memoir; a portrait of the artist as a no-longer-young woman and also a love letter to her hectic hometown. - New York Times EDIT
Read More | Posted Oct 8, 2020
47% A Rainy Day in New York (2020) The young actors all struggle with the blend of pretense and nonsense that is Allen's current screenwriting idiom, a rigged match that can be painful to witness. - New York Times EDIT
Read More | Posted Oct 7, 2020
90% The Trial of the Chicago 7 (2020) It's talky and clumsy, alternating between self-importance and clowning. But it's also not a movie that can be easily shaken off. Partly this is an accident of timing. - New York Times EDIT
Read More | Posted Sep 24, 2020
28% Antebellum (2020) "Antebellum" presents the lurid spectacle of a woman's humiliation as if it were a fable of empowerment. - New York Times EDIT
Read More | Posted Sep 16, 2020
82% I'm Thinking of Ending Things (2020) Plemons and especially Buckley play this somewhat abstract conundrum for real existential stakes, either tricking you into caring about them or sincerely expressing the need to be cared about. - New York Times EDIT
Read More | Posted Sep 2, 2020
82% Bill & Ted Face the Music (2020) I don't know if it made me feel young or old, but it was all in all a most non-bogus experience. - New York Times EDIT
Read More | Posted Aug 27, 2020
58% Tesla (2020) You might not learn everything there is to know about Tesla - that's what the internet is for - but you will nonetheless feel illuminated by his presence. - New York Times EDIT
Read More | Posted Aug 20, 2020
72% An American Pickle (2020) The flimsiness of the movie's conceit also works to its benefit. At its best, it's a brisk, silly plucking of some low-hanging contemporary fruit. - New York Times EDIT
Read More | Posted Aug 5, 2020
94% Palm Springs (2020) [A] wildly funny, admirably inventive movie... - New York Times EDIT
Read More | Posted Jul 9, 2020
80% The Old Guard (2020) I'm not usually someone to hope for sequels, but I guess if you live long enough ... - New York Times EDIT
Read More | Posted Jul 9, 2020
98% Hamilton (2020) The optimism of this vision, filtered through a sensibility as generous as Miranda's is inspiring. - New York Times EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 30, 2020
92% Da 5 Bloods (2020) This is unmistakably a Spike Lee Joint. It's also an argument with and through the history of film. - New York Times EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 10, 2020
88% Symbiopsychotaxiplasm: Take One (1968) Delighted with the artifices of filmmaking, Mr. Greaves is also after the truth - about human interactions, about cinematic image-making, and also, slyly and unmistakably, about race. - New York Times EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 5, 2020
100% Losing Ground (1982) It is highly cerebral, thick with abstract and erudite dialogue and also full of charm and sensuality, lingering in landscapes and rooms and savoring the pleasures of music, color and talk. - New York Times EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 5, 2020
87% Shirley (2020) Moss, brazen and witty and seeming to push herself to the very edge of control, is a galvanizing presence, convincingly wild even as she's trapped in a hothouse of sometimes dubious ideas. - New York Times EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 3, 2020
65% The Lovebirds (2020) Rae and Nanjiani do their best, but neither the dialogue nor the direction serves their talents adequately. - New York Times EDIT
Read More | Posted May 20, 2020
94% Beastie Boys Story (2020) It's a jaunt down memory lane and also a moving and generous elegy. - New York Times EDIT
Read More | Posted Apr 23, 2020
96% Beyond the Visible - Hilma af Klint (2020) "Beyond the Visible" bristles with the excitement of discovery and also with the impatience that recognition has taken so long. It refreshes the eyes and the mind. - New York Times EDIT
Read More | Posted Apr 16, 2020
57% The Hunt (2020) Anger is the source of its humor and its horror, both of which are fairly effective. - New York Times EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 11, 2020
95% First Cow (2020) A parable of economics and politics, with shrewd insights into the workings of supply and demand, scarcity and scale and other puzzles of the marketplace, the movie is also keenly attuned to details of history, both human and natural. - New York Times EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 4, 2020
82% The Whistlers (2020) An ingeniously structured, engaging and witty display of filmmaking skill. - New York Times EDIT
Read More | Posted Feb 26, 2020
60% Young Ahmed (Le jeune Ahmed) (2020) "Young Ahmed" is suspenseful and economical, with a clear sense of what's at stake, but something crucial - perhaps a deeper insight into the character or the contradictions that ensnare him - is missing. - New York Times EDIT
Read More | Posted Feb 20, 2020
38% Downhill (2020) "Downhill" is a vacation-gone-wrong comedy that lives up to its ill-advised title. - New York Times EDIT
Read More | Posted Feb 13, 2020
93% Ordinary Love (2020) As persuasive as the performers can be, Tom and Joan seem less real the more time you spend with them. - New York Times EDIT
Read More | Posted Feb 12, 2020
100% Cane River (2020) "Cane River" invites a rethinking of American film history, and also, in its disarmingly offhand, uniquely charming manner - of other aspects of American history as well. - New York Times EDIT
Read More | Posted Feb 6, 2020
78% Birds of Prey (And the Fantabulous Emancipation of One Harley Quinn) (2020) The mood of antic, playful obnoxiousness feels forced rather than liberated, the result of careful note-taking during repeated viewings of "Deadpool." - New York Times EDIT
Read More | Posted Feb 6, 2020
84% The Traitor (2020) Masino dwells in an ethical gray zone, and his biography is a chiaroscuro of compromise and partial vindication. But "The Traitor" has the glow of truth. - New York Times EDIT
Read More | Posted Jan 29, 2020
85% Just Mercy (2020) "Just Mercy" is saved from being an earnest, inert courtroom drama when it spends time on death row, where it is opened up and given depth by two strong, subtle performances, from Foxx and Rob Morgan. - New York Times EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 24, 2019
95% Little Women (2019) Without resorting to self-conscious anachronism or fussy antiquarianism, Gerwig has fashioned a story that feels at once entirely true to its 19th-century origins and utterly modern. - New York Times EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 23, 2019
51% Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker (2019) "The Rise of Skywalker" isn't a great "Star Wars" movie, but that may be because there is no such thing. That seems to be the way we like it. - New York Times EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 18, 2019
77% Richard Jewell (2019) This is a morality tale - in a good way, mostly - about the vulnerability of the individual citizen in the face of state power and about the fate of a private person menaced by the machinery of publicity. - New York Times EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 12, 2019
81% A Hidden Life (2019) [An] earnest, gorgeous, at times frustrating film. - New York Times EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 12, 2019