David Edelstein

David Edelstein
Tomatometer-approved critic
Biography:
I started way back at the Harvard Crimson, then moved on to the Boston Phoenix, then the Village Voice, then the New York Post, then oblivion, then Slate and Fresh Air. I also wrote a book with Christine Vachon called Shooting to Kill and a couple of plays, chiefly Blaming Mom (a comedy).
Favorites:
The Lady Eve, The General, McCabe and Mrs. Miller, Shop Around the Corner, The Godfather, Smiles of a Summer Night, Rules of the Game, Jaws, Ride the High Country, His Girl Friday, Bride of Frankenstein, Seven Samurai, Ashes and Diamonds, Touch of Evil, Singing in the Rain, Night of the Living Dead, and about 100 others.

Movie Reviews Only

T-Meter Title | Year
88% Girlfight (2000) Diana's fighting isn't about delivering knockout blows; it's about staying alert and winning on points. It's a means of self-control and of acquiring the self-knowledge on which self-control depends. - Slate EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 24, 2021
98% An Honest Liar (2015) Whatever his foibles, An Honest Liar depicts a great American original... - New York Magazine/Vulture EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 3, 2020
88% Mother (1996) Brooks' minimalism can be amazingly jampacked, but Mother is perilously slack. - Slate EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 5, 2020
88% Spaceship Earth (2020) I was reminded of everything I'd been missing in a culture that ridicules "crunchiness" more than amoral consumption and greed. - New York Magazine/Vulture EDIT
Read More | Posted May 8, 2020
90% Bull (2020) It's a stoic work, but its stoicism looks, in the end, like mercy. - New York Magazine/Vulture EDIT
Read More | Posted May 1, 2020
75% The Other Lamb (2020) Although The Other Lamb is heavy-handed in every conceivable way and a few ways you'd never have conceived of, it has a special resonance in the spring of 2020. - New York Magazine/Vulture EDIT
Read More | Posted Apr 3, 2020
100% Crip Camp: A Disability Revolution (2020) [It] sounds as if it's going to be Good for You rather than good, but it actually turns out to be both - as well as surprising, which is surprising in itself, given that inspirational civil rights documentaries tend to be more alike than unalike. - New York Magazine/Vulture EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 27, 2020
72% Lost Girls (2020) Garbus brings off something extraordinary in a film that sets out to leave us sad, enraged, and profoundly unsatisfied. Lost Girls makes us want to rethink our need for a certain kind of closure in a world that has so little of it. - New York Magazine/Vulture EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 13, 2020
96% First Cow (2020) This haunting movie transports you to another world - and redefines home. - New York Magazine/Vulture EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 7, 2020
42% Wendy (2020) The style is immersive, meant to envelop us and bring us into the story, but it ends up making the movie feel abstract and distant. And there's a void at the center. - New York Magazine/Vulture EDIT
Read More | Posted Feb 27, 2020
95% Little Women (2019) That Gerwig in only her second feature film manages to meet the likes of Alcott partway is a blooming miracle. - New York Magazine/Vulture EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 25, 2019
94% Transit (2019) Once Transit's bitterly ironic vision takes hold, it eats into the mind. - New York Magazine/Vulture EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 20, 2019
52% Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker (2019) The Rise of Skywalker is another of those zillion-dollar franchise films where I felt embarrassed for the actors but pleased for them, too, because the money is no doubt amazing and will presumably free them to do things they care about. - New York Magazine/Vulture EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 18, 2019
77% Richard Jewell (2019) Eastwood... has twisted the story to suit his ends. The sad thing is that he didn't need to - he has plenty of good material, and his direction is fluid and unfussy. - New York Magazine/Vulture EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 13, 2019
97% Knives Out (2019) I suspect that Johnson, an adolescent genre enthusiast to his core, has waited since age 10 to make a movie like this. His enjoyment is contagious, even for those of us who don't think Knives Out quite hits its marks. - New York Magazine/Vulture EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 27, 2019
89% Dark Waters (2019) The bad guys have all the money but at least we have indie filmmakers and movie stars like Ruffalo. - New York Magazine/Vulture EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 22, 2019
94% Marriage Story (2019) Baumbach's main characters are written and acted straight as befits their personal integrity, but the rest of Marriage Story is done in a satirist's broad strokes - a penetrating, often inspired satirist. - New York Magazine/Vulture EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 9, 2019
61% The Current War: Director's Cut (2019) The Current War: The Director's Cut is visually lucid but thematically scattershot. - New York Magazine/Vulture EDIT
Read More | Posted Oct 25, 2019
70% Terminator: Dark Fate (2019) The technology of Terminator: Dark Fate is exponentially more advanced, but the pacing is so unvaried that even the miracles make you say "Whatever." - New York Magazine/Vulture EDIT
Read More | Posted Oct 24, 2019
98% Parasite (Gisaengchung) (2019) What keeps you rapt in Parasite is the visual wit - every shot distills the movie's themes - and the richness of the characters and performances... - New York Magazine/Vulture EDIT
Read More | Posted Oct 11, 2019
71% The King (2019) I admire the sentiment but wish Michôd had crafted something more surprising. - New York Magazine/Vulture EDIT
Read More | Posted Oct 10, 2019
97% Dolemite Is My Name (2019) Everything clicks in the comedy Dolemite Is My Name - it's almost alarming how easily, breezily, larkishly the film goes down. - New York Magazine/Vulture EDIT
Read More | Posted Oct 4, 2019
95% The Irishman (2019) I heard all sorts of huzzahs about Pacino - and he is wonderful - but it's Pesci who thrilled me to the core. - New York Magazine/Vulture EDIT
Read More | Posted Sep 28, 2019
40% The Laundromat (2019) Labored in parts but... as a whole, sensationally valuable. - New York Magazine/Vulture EDIT
Read More | Posted Sep 27, 2019
26% Rambo: Last Blood (2019) I don't know why I had high hopes for Rambo: Last Blood. - New York Magazine/Vulture EDIT
Read More | Posted Sep 20, 2019
83% Ad Astra (2019) I could hardly agree more with the humanist message of Ad Astra, while at the same time my inner Trekkie is saying, "We came millions of miles for this?" - New York Magazine/Vulture EDIT
Read More | Posted Sep 20, 2019
92% Ford v Ferrari (2019) Though a mite long, Ford v Ferrari is so thrillingly well made that it's only later, when your pulse slows, that you see how formulaic it is. But formulas are made to be overhauled, and this film has some fascinating upgrades. - New York Magazine/Vulture EDIT
Read More | Posted Sep 13, 2019
21% Lucy in the Sky (2019) Even when we don't know what the hell Lucy is doing, Portman makes her certainty a blast. - New York Magazine/Vulture EDIT
Read More | Posted Sep 13, 2019
25% The Goldfinch (2019) The adaptation is way too reverent. - New York Magazine/Vulture EDIT
Read More | Posted Sep 12, 2019
68% Joker (2019) As Hannah Arendt saw banality in the supposed evil of the Nazi Adolf Eichmann, I see in Joker an attempt to elevate nerdy revenge to the plane of myth. That's scary on a lot of different levels. - New York Magazine/Vulture EDIT
Read More | Posted Sep 11, 2019
80% Jojo Rabbit (2019) Even if I don't love Jojo Rabbit (which is based on a novel by Christine Leunens that I now intend to read), I love that it exists and that Waititi has forced me to reexamine my own responses. - New York Magazine/Vulture EDIT
Read More | Posted Sep 10, 2019
95% A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood (2019) It ought to make you roll your eyes - except that Mr. Rogers had a way of disarming doubters who fell into his orbit, and the film does, too. - New York Magazine/Vulture EDIT
Read More | Posted Sep 9, 2019
64% Hope Gap (2020) Abrief, sad little piece that doesn't quite hurdle the blood-brain barrier and rattle you to the core, but it does achieve a half-sublimity... - New York Magazine/Vulture EDIT
Read More | Posted Sep 8, 2019
45% After the Wedding (2019) After the Wedding doesn't so much as skip among its four main characters as arc and gyrate and generate emotional torque. It's intense - you break a sweat just keeping up. - New York Magazine/Vulture EDIT
Read More | Posted Aug 29, 2019
82% Official Secrets (2019) Bloody hell, the Brits do low-key, paranoid procedural dramas like Official Secrets well, with a pervading chill and no flash: The crispness cuts like a knife. - New York Magazine/Vulture EDIT
Read More | Posted Aug 29, 2019
88% Brittany Runs a Marathon (2019) On balance, I admire the hell out of Collaizo for choosing to tell a more emotionally convoluted story, even if it sometimes kills the momentum. - New York Magazine/Vulture EDIT
Read More | Posted Aug 26, 2019
96% American Factory (2019) The movie is eye-opening - a windshield on the new world. - New York Magazine/Vulture EDIT
Read More | Posted Aug 23, 2019
50% Where'd You Go, Bernadette (2019) [Linklater] can't find a suitable form for Maria Semple's patchwork best seller... - New York Magazine/Vulture EDIT
Read More | Posted Aug 16, 2019
83% Cold Case Hammarskjöld (2019) People have died trying to tell this story, or appear to have died. There are photos and testimonies, and the trajectory as a whole makes terrible sense. I want to believe. - New York Magazine/Vulture EDIT
Read More | Posted Aug 14, 2019
98% One Child Nation (2019) This sort of film calls for bracing yourself and keeping your eyes open. Funny how many of those there are these days. - New York Magazine/Vulture EDIT
Read More | Posted Aug 12, 2019
90% Luce (2019) In the end, you're left with a movie that doesn't quite jell but expands in the mind. It's an excellent Book Club movie - it demands to be discussed, debated, embraced, or (perhaps) rejected. - New York Magazine/Vulture EDIT
Read More | Posted Aug 3, 2019
86% The Nightingale (2019) It's constructed like a meathead melodrama - though with odd, last-act dissonances that might reflect Kent's ambivalence. - New York Magazine/Vulture EDIT
Read More | Posted Jul 30, 2019
98% For Sama (2019) Watching the film, I felt it would be an act of cowardice to look away from what Waad was showing us. I trusted that this wasn't just propaganda - that I was being asked by a mother to bear witness. - New York Magazine/Vulture EDIT
Read More | Posted Jul 26, 2019
85% Once Upon a Time In Hollywood (2019) For a while, Once Upon a Time seems as if it's going to be nothing but a series of extended digressions. But it's shaped like a Western, and gets better, tighter, and more surprising as it moseys along... - New York Magazine/Vulture EDIT
Read More | Posted Jul 26, 2019
87% Luz (2019) If Luz had been a play, I'd probably have walked out halfway through, but as a film I found it eerie enough to stay rooted. - New York Magazine/Vulture EDIT
Read More | Posted Jul 19, 2019
90% Spider-Man: Far From Home (2019) Although he's the youngest Spider-Man, Holland has a classic farceur's energy and focus (he's a Brit, after all), and his Spider-Man is never a cartoon. - New York Magazine/Vulture EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 28, 2019
63% Yesterday (2019) It's a good, dumb premise. Only the first half works, though. - New York Magazine/Vulture EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 25, 2019
83% Midsommar (2019) Perhaps Midsommar doesn't jell because its impulses are so bifurcated. - New York Magazine/Vulture EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 19, 2019
33% Shaft (2019) It stinks to heaven. - New York Magazine/Vulture EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 15, 2019
54% The Dead Don't Die (2019) The Dead Don't Die is not unenjoyable but not quite enjoyable, either. - New York Magazine/Vulture EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 11, 2019