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
99% 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
98% 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
100% 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
43% The Laundromat (2019) Labored in parts but... as a whole, sensationally valuable. - New York Magazine/Vulture EDIT
Read More | Posted Sep 27, 2019
27% 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
84% 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
88% 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
22% 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
24% 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
76% 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
96% 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
43% Hope Gap (2019) 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
43% 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
83% 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
97% 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
48% 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
81% 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
99% 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
92% 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
100% 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
85% 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
62% 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
32% Shaft (2019) It stinks to heaven. - New York Magazine/Vulture EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 15, 2019
56% 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
33% Domino (2019) Underfunded, sketchily written, and heavily cut (maybe one reason the writing seems sketchy), Brian De Palma's Domino still puts contemporary thrillers to shame. - New York Magazine/Vulture EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 7, 2019
23% Dark Phoenix (2019) Like most good superhero movies, Dark Phoenix operates on two levels, comic-book fantastical and psychological. Like most not-so-good ones, it doesn't do justice to either aspect. - New York Magazine/Vulture EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 6, 2019
89% Rocketman (2019) Rocketman has unusual dramatic heft for a jukebox musical, but that's a big curve on which to grade - the characters are still skin-deep. - New York Magazine/Vulture EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 1, 2019
41% Godzilla: King of the Monsters (2019) This thing is an unholy mess. - New York Magazine/Vulture EDIT
Read More | Posted May 31, 2019
57% Brightburn (2019) I wish there were more to Brightburn. - New York Magazine/Vulture EDIT
Read More | Posted May 23, 2019
57% Aladdin (2019) I never thought I'd say these words and am horrified doing so, but I miss Gilbert Gottfried's voice as the evil bird sidekick, Iago. - New York Magazine/Vulture EDIT
Read More | Posted May 23, 2019
61% Trial by Fire (2019) The movie is painstakingly well made and murderously hard to sit through. - New York Magazine/Vulture EDIT
Read More | Posted May 20, 2019
90% John Wick: Chapter 3 - Parabellum (2019) The movie should by rights be a "Wow!" But it feels bloated, self-conscious, and pretentious, with long waits between its few dazzling fights. - New York Magazine/Vulture EDIT
Read More | Posted May 14, 2019
90% The Souvenir (2019) There is nothing in The Souvenir that's obvious or banal or that represents anything other than a struggle to get something inchoate onscreen in a way no one else has. That by itself is unspeakably moving. - New York Magazine/Vulture EDIT
Read More | Posted May 14, 2019
59% Charlie Says (2019) You want to see how a person could surrender herself - her self - to something so diabolical, which demands a higher level of insanity than the filmmakers can muster. - New York Magazine/Vulture EDIT
Read More | Posted May 10, 2019
81% Long Shot (2019) I generally like Rogen a lot but this performance is bad - worse than it even seems because of the drain it is on the movie. - New York Magazine/Vulture EDIT
Read More | Posted May 7, 2019
54% J.T. LeRoy (2019) JT LeRoy isn't a bad movie, and with these actresses it's certainly worth seeing. - New York Magazine/Vulture EDIT
Read More | Posted Apr 27, 2019
94% Avengers: Endgame (2019) Even at three-plus hours, the gargantuan Avengers: Endgame is light on its feet and more freely inventive than it needed to be. - New York Magazine/Vulture EDIT
Read More | Posted Apr 24, 2019
90% Shazam! (2019) It's a bummer when the bad guy shows up and Shazam becomes like every other superhero movie - worse, really, because the storyboarding is so poor that it's hard to tell what's going on. In the climax, Sandberg misses nearly every one of his marks. - New York Magazine/Vulture EDIT
Read More | Posted Apr 5, 2019
45% The Cell (2000) The Cell is pretty silly. But I admired its cinematic ambition until the final scenes. - Slate EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 31, 2019
57% The Beach Bum (2019) The Beach Bum would be more entertaining if it weren't the same scene over and over, with escalation in lieu of evolution. But that's Korine's strategy, for better or worse, possibly both. - New York Magazine/Vulture EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 29, 2019
93% Diane (2019) Trying to forestall our loneliness is what connects us. That's not a depressing conclusion - it's the beginning of a design for living. In its mundane way, Diane gives you a glimpse of the sublime. - New York Magazine/Vulture EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 28, 2019
39% But I'm a Cheerleader (2000) As it happens, I couldn't agree more with the point of view of But I'm a Cheerleader, but I couldn't like the movie less. - Slate EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 27, 2019
75% Dragged Across Concrete (2019) For all the absurdist-tragic trappings... this is still your basic boneheaded, right-wing action movie - skewed so that its heroes' moral relativism is meant to be a sign of their manly integrity. - New York Magazine/Vulture EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 22, 2019