Movie Reviews Only

T-Meter Title | Year
62% Out of Africa (1985) Beautiful in an illustrative and rhapsodic, rather than dramatic, way, this large-scale adaptation of Isak Dinesen's famous 1937 memoir never works up much steam. - New York Magazine/Vulture EDIT
Read More | Posted Jan 12, 2021
80% Don's Party (1982) It's a dispiriting, ugly experience, cliched rather than illuminating, smarmy rather than funny. - New York Magazine/Vulture EDIT
Read More | Posted Sep 9, 2020
80% The Escape Artist (1982) The Escape Artist is a heartbreaker, a movie with atmosphere, wit, soul, and absolutely zero narrative logic. - New York Magazine/Vulture EDIT
Read More | Posted Sep 9, 2020
95% Gregory's Girl (2019) Forsyth has a very pleasing light touch; the movie is sweet, lulling, and often funny -- in all, perfect for young teenagers. - New York Magazine/Vulture EDIT
Read More | Posted Sep 9, 2020
36% Grease 2 (1982) What I want from this material is a stylized rock musical, and what I keep getting are stale Broadway routines. - New York Magazine/Vulture EDIT
Read More | Posted Sep 9, 2020
88% Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan (1982) It's TV all the way: The actors race up and down plastic corridors in the same old story about the universe almost coming to an end. - New York Magazine/Vulture EDIT
Read More | Posted Sep 9, 2020
100% Shadow of a Doubt (1943) Shadow of a Doubt may or may not be Hitchcock's greatest film, but it's his most intimate and heart-wrenching. - New Yorker EDIT
Read More | Posted Apr 9, 2020
87% The Servant (1964) Losey does masterly work in confined spaces, and Bogarde's performance as the scheming servant sets the standard for sly corruption. - New Yorker EDIT
Read More | Posted Apr 8, 2020
20% Richard's Things (1980) A patch of dreariness. - New York Magazine/Vulture EDIT
Read More | Posted Jan 15, 2020
75% Frida (2002) Smart, willful, and perverse, this Frida is nobody's servant, and the tiny Hayek plays her with head held high. You may want to laugh now and then, but you won't look away. - New Yorker EDIT
Read More | Posted Jan 7, 2020
89% The Breakfast Club (1985) [Hughes] understands adolescents as well as anyone who has ever made movies about them, and he has a fluent way with young actors. In this picture, his dramatic ideas may be cheesy, but Hughes still manages to create some excitement and laughs. - New York Magazine/Vulture EDIT
Read More | Posted Jan 2, 2020
56% La Truite (1982) La Truite is Losey's most chic and empty film yet. - New York Magazine/Vulture EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 31, 2019
93% WarGames (War Games) (1983) Like a man drawn to the edge of a cliff by the lure of the abyss below, we're secretly obsessed by the apocalypse. Moralists may claim that WarGames is more exploitation than warning, but it's still an exciting, giddily entertaining movie. - New York Magazine/Vulture EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 31, 2019
93% Diner (1982) In conventional dramatic terms, little happens in Diner, but it offers a completed vision of life, ecstatic in its recovery of forgotten pleasures, melancholy in its knowledge of how small a chance these men ever had of claiming their freedom. - New York Magazine/Vulture EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 31, 2019
100% Heartbreakers (1984) How interesting is childishness in grown men? Less than Bobby Roth thinks. Yet Roth brings a natural filmmaker's intensity to the material. When I play this movie over in my head, I laugh at it, but I'm still enjoying it, too. - New York Magazine/Vulture EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 31, 2019
83% Desperately Seeking Susan (1985) A few scenes are very funny, but the picture would have worked much better if Seidelman had thrown away half the dialogue and built some momentum. - New York Magazine/Vulture EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 31, 2019
No Score Yet Mississippi Blues (1984) This valedictory for the disappearing traditions of the South is a funny and stirring work. - New York Magazine/Vulture EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 31, 2019
87% Superman II (1981) Superman II is easily the best spectacle movie of the season. - New York Magazine/Vulture EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 31, 2019
58% History of the World---Part I (1981) What [Brooks] takes to be the glorious folk humor that modern people have repressed looks to many of us like the tired jokes that were yawned off the burlesque stage 50 years ago. - New York Magazine/Vulture EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 31, 2019
92% Risky Business (1983) Risky Business, a movie about a nice boy losing his virginity, is a first-time director's clear failure that I normally wouldn't get belligerent about, but the picture is so confused, so strange, and so openly corrupt that I can't resist. - New York Magazine/Vulture EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 31, 2019
No Score Yet J'ai épousé une ombre (I Married A Shadow) (1982) Robin Davis has yet to learn Hitchcock's trick of charming us out of our disbelief through wit, insolence, and intricacy of visual design. - New York Magazine/Vulture EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 31, 2019
75% Empire of the Sun (1987) Empire of the Sun is a great, overwrought movie that leaves one wordless and worn out. - New York Magazine/Vulture EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 31, 2019
79% Wall Street (1987) Oliver Stone's Wall Street is exactly what I had hoped for -- a sensationally entertaining melodrama about greed and corruption in New York, a movie that evokes the power of big money so strongly that you can savor it on your tongue like Stilton and port. - New York Magazine/Vulture EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 31, 2019
90% Much Ado About Nothing (1993) Much Ado About Nothing is one of the few movies of recent years that could leave its audiences weeping with joy. - New York Magazine/Vulture EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 31, 2019
59% Alive (1993) Not every good story needs to be made into a movie. - New York Magazine/Vulture EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 31, 2019
8% Body of Evidence (1992) This movie makes Basic Instinct look like a masterpiece. - New York Magazine/Vulture EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 31, 2019
54% Carrington (1995) Even those unfamiliar with Strachey's biographies may be fascinated by Jonathan Pryce's impersonation of him in Carrington. - New York Magazine/Vulture EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 31, 2019
100% Toy Story (1995) Toy Story takes a number of surprising turns, and though I didn't fall in love with it -- there's a lot of routine clobbering, scrambling, and zooming about -- I remained interested and happy until the end (and children, I think, will adore it). - New York Magazine/Vulture EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 31, 2019
33% Heaven Help Us (1985) The picture is timid, and all but worthless, but moviegoers who have always longed to see Donald Sutherland as a monk -- and I know that you guys are out there -- will be in ecstasy. - New York Magazine/Vulture EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 31, 2019
100% Sugar Cane Alley (Rue Cases Negres) (1984) Miss Palcy, who was born in Martinique but now lives in Paris, begins to pull a good story out of the crowded, noisy atmosphere. - New York Magazine/Vulture EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 31, 2019
87% Swing Shift (1984) Swing Shift isn't boring, but nothing in it startles, nothing explodes. - New York Magazine/Vulture EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 31, 2019
59% Deep Blue Sea (1999) Scary, absurd, inessential. - New Yorker EDIT
Read More | Posted Jan 11, 2019
43% Ghosts of Mississippi (1996) I've grown increasingly restive at such films as Mississippi Burning, A Time to Kill, and Ghosts of Mississippi... All three films celebrate the heroism of white law officers in prosecuting racist killers. - New York Magazine/Vulture EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 5, 2018
No Score Yet Near Death (1989) The film grows in power as it goes on and on. - The New York Review of Books EDIT
Read More | Posted Aug 13, 2018
No Score Yet Meat (1976) Meat is a handsome and scornfully witty film-a sly parody of those celebratory industrial documentaries we were all forced to watch at summer camp on rainy days. - The New York Review of Books EDIT
Read More | Posted Aug 13, 2018
No Score Yet Hospital (1970) As the hospital workers struggle to cope with the disasters pouring into the emergency room, the viewer begins to realize that he is watching not the dim events of bureaucratic procedure, but large and grave instances of suffering, courage, and endurance. - The New York Review of Books EDIT
Read More | Posted Aug 13, 2018
No Score Yet Law and Order (1969) Law and Order is moving, finally, as an expression of a flowing and undoctrinaire sense of life that is almost melancholy in its acceptance of confusion and loss. - The New York Review of Books EDIT
Read More | Posted Aug 13, 2018
No Score Yet Welfare (1975) No one could deny Wiseman's extraordinary sympathy for the insulted and the injured of American society. Yet he doesn't romanticize or politicize the oppressed. - The New York Review of Books EDIT
Read More | Posted Aug 13, 2018
No Score Yet Central Park (1991) Even if this uncharacteristically sensuous film interests us less than many of Wiseman's more relentless portraits, his structural inventiveness is much in evidence. - The New York Review of Books EDIT
Read More | Posted Aug 13, 2018
No Score Yet High School (1968) High School is a sinister and very shrewd portrait of the American pursuit of mediocrity, a film of almost Nabokovian wit. - The New York Review of Books EDIT
Read More | Posted Aug 13, 2018
46% Hollywood Ending (2002) Hollywood Ending has its satirical charms, but it repeats itself remorselessly, and it has no emotional center. - New Yorker EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 17, 2015
65% Star Wars: Episode II - Attack of the Clones (2002) Allowing for some dull moments, this movie has considerable visual style. - New Yorker EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 16, 2015
44% Daredevil (2003) Much of the rest of Daredevil is so dark that you can't see it. I don't think you're missing a great deal. - New Yorker EDIT
Read More | Posted Jul 14, 2015
72% Big Eyes (2014) A feminist psycho-melodrama made without insight or dramatic excitement. - New Yorker EDIT
Read More | Posted Jan 12, 2015
89% A Most Violent Year (2015) Some of the menacing atmosphere, and even a few scenes, descend from the first two "Godfather" movies. But, in fact, Chandor has done something startling: he has made an anti-"Godfather." - New Yorker EDIT
Read More | Posted Jan 5, 2015
72% American Sniper (2015) Both a devastating war movie and a devastating antiwar movie, a subdued celebration of a warrior's skill and a sorrowful lament over his alienation and misery. - New Yorker EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 15, 2014
99% Selma (2014) DuVernay has made a very good movie. - New Yorker EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 15, 2014
51% Unbroken (2014) An interminable, redundant, unnecessary epic devoted to suffering, suffering, suffering. - New Yorker EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 15, 2014
97% Mr. Turner (2014) "Mr. Turner" is a harsh, strange, but stirring movie, no more a conventional artist's bio-pic than Robert Altman's wonderful, little-seen film about van Gogh and his brother, "Vincent and Theo." - New Yorker EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 1, 2014
88% Wild (2014) "Wild" is about the renewal of self, but it's a film made without sanctimony or piety. - New Yorker EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 1, 2014