Geoffrey O'Brien

Geoffrey O'Brien
Geoffrey O'Brien's reviews only count toward the Tomatometer when published at the following Tomatometer-approved publication(s): Film Comment Magazine The New York Review of Books

Movie Reviews Only

T-Meter Title | Year
92% Caesar Must Die (2013) The determination-at times it seems close to anguish-with which they seize that opportunity reenacts what must have been the astonishing force and challenge launched by the actors who first played Julius Caesar. - The New York Review of Books EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 13, 2019
95% My Night at Maud's (Ma Nuit chez Maud) (1970) Rohmer's work will be around to contemplate for a long time-to contemplate with endless curiosity and pleasure-or so one would like to think. - The New York Review of Books EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 7, 2019
91% La La Land (2016) I left the theater, if not enchanted or swept away then at the very least diverted and perked up. I had been irrationally touched near the beginning by a shot of Stone standing alone on a hilly street in Los Angeles at night. - The New York Review of Books EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 7, 2019
91% Nebraska (2013) An authentic pathos is extracted with great skill from in between the constant jabbing notation of gesture and attitude and manners; which is to say that Payne seems a true comic artist of the oldest and most deadly serious kind. - The New York Review of Books EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 6, 2019
93% Moonrise Kingdom (2012) The filmmakers have not gone to children for the sake of their bewildered innocence but for their ferocious clarity of intention and their radiant intelligence not yet reined in or habituated to sullen conformity. - The New York Review of Books EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 20, 2018
No Score Yet Salt for Svanetia (1930) [A] sublime contemplation of Central Asian isolation and unforgiving folkways. - The New York Review of Books EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 12, 2018
100% The Phantom Carriage (1921) Whatever the suggestiveness of the fable, the film works on us with the bare palpability of its elements-even of its visual tricks. - The New York Review of Books EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 12, 2018
93% Hugo (2011) For Scorsese the door to the past is never closed. Hugo does not so much revisit the past as reveal that it is still alive, elaborately disguised as the present. - The New York Review of Books EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 12, 2018
95% The Artist (2011) The movie has the effect of a perfected and unrepeatable gesture. - The New York Review of Books EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 12, 2018
85% Crazy Horse (2012) Crazy Horse manages to achieve a kind of constant double image. When we watch the numbers we see both the fantasy and the labor that goes into simulating it. - The New York Review of Books EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 6, 2018
84% The Tree of Life (2011) [Malick] does his thinking by means of cinema in its full range of possibilities, and that is at any time a rare spectacle. - The New York Review of Books EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 5, 2018
75% War of the Worlds (2005) On one hand the movie is a game, a conscious display... of Spielberg's technical mastery; on the other it reaches toward what might be prophecy, or passionate allegory, or exhortation to mindfulness of real human suffering. - The New York Review of Books EDIT
Read More | Posted Aug 21, 2018
73% A.I. Artificial Intelligence (2001) The movie consistently goes against the grain of the emotional expectations that it invokes in Spielberg's expertly realized shorthand... - The New York Review of Books EDIT
Read More | Posted Aug 17, 2018
95% Les Vampires (1915) Without buildup or the slightest hint of backstory, it unleashed a succession of perturbing images and inescapable situations, which neither had nor required any justification beyond their own intensity. - The New York Review of Books EDIT
Read More | Posted Aug 17, 2018
76% Twelfth Night (1998) Nunn's film succeeds beautifully in its chosen course. - The New York Review of Books EDIT
Read More | Posted Aug 16, 2018
81% Looking for Richard (1996) One of the best movies about the acting life. - The New York Review of Books EDIT
Read More | Posted Aug 16, 2018
95% Hamlet (1996) For all the sometimes athletic action, this Hamlet is strung on its language. The words are the play, unfolding in a space open enough to give scope to its unruly energies. - The New York Review of Books EDIT
Read More | Posted Aug 16, 2018
72% Romeo + Juliet (1996) Little more than a stunt. - The New York Review of Books EDIT
Read More | Posted Aug 16, 2018
92% Ed Wood (1994) Burton succeeds in creating a benign parallel world where the last are the first and the insulted and injured become the recipients of all-star tributes. - The New York Review of Books EDIT
Read More | Posted Aug 15, 2018
73% Bram Stoker's Dracula (1992) Dracula's deepest problem is that for all its playing with the history of the genre, it stirs little sense of dread, barely even a tingle of uncanniness. - The New York Review of Books EDIT
Read More | Posted Aug 14, 2018
98% Kiss Me Deadly (1955) Mickey Spillane's Mike Hammer represents the deformed endproduct of a thousand 1940s tough-guy movies, transformed by now into a leisure-oriented 1950s man more interested in his hi-fi and his sports car than in heroics. - The New York Review of Books EDIT
Read More | Posted Aug 13, 2018
53% Human Desire (1954) The director manages to extract precisely the same numbed unease from a murder, an embrace, or a moment of dead time in which someone looks out the window. - The New York Review of Books EDIT
Read More | Posted Aug 13, 2018
91% Pickup on South Street (1953) It took a director with Samuel Fuller's oblique angle of approach to find a vein of poetic anarchism in the conformist heart of the 1950s police-procedural melodrama. - The New York Review of Books EDIT
Read More | Posted Aug 13, 2018
94% On Dangerous Ground (1952) Considering the talents of all involved, it ought to be a masterpiece; but genre takes its revenge, and the picture's rhythm never recovers from the unanticipated quiescence of the rural milieu. - The New York Review of Books EDIT
Read More | Posted Aug 13, 2018
100% The Narrow Margin (1952) Rapid, concise, and beautifully photographed, The Narrow Margin is an exercise in craft with few reverberations beyond the fascination of its technological exactness. - The New York Review of Books EDIT
Read More | Posted Aug 13, 2018
No Score Yet Try and Get Me (1950) Forceful, bitter, and evidently designed to be as unpalatable as possible. - The New York Review of Books EDIT
Read More | Posted Aug 13, 2018
No Score Yet The Underworld Story (1950) It has a kind of Jacobean wildness to its plot twists, and some acting that borders on the hysterical. - The New York Review of Books EDIT
Read More | Posted Aug 13, 2018
96% Panic in the Streets (1950) The ostensibly documentary approach veers into something more dreamlike. - The New York Review of Books EDIT
Read More | Posted Aug 13, 2018
97% Gun Crazy (Deadly Is the Female) (1950) A relentless little melodrama-the cinematic equivalent of juke-joint music... - The New York Review of Books EDIT
Read More | Posted Aug 13, 2018
100% Caught (1949) Despite the hurried wrapup Caught is mesmerizing in its orchestration of nuances. - The New York Review of Books EDIT
Read More | Posted Aug 13, 2018
No Score Yet Follow Me Quietly (1949) Pallid polemics don't interfere with the bracing virtues of Follow Me Quietly, a throwaway artifact swarming with the gratuitous pleasures of visual storytelling. - The New York Review of Books EDIT
Read More | Posted Aug 13, 2018
100% Road House (1948) What makes it different is Ida Lupino's incarnation of the torch singer Lily: a singular instance of Hollywood trying to imagine an autonomous adult woman. - The New York Review of Books EDIT
Read More | Posted Aug 13, 2018
100% The Street with No Name (1948) This dreamscape of vice is the American cinematic paradise, a visual and aural carnival appropriate to the gang leader played by Richard Widmark in high psychotic gear. - The New York Review of Books EDIT
Read More | Posted Aug 13, 2018
100% Desperate (1947) B-movie as country-and-western ballad, seventy-three minutes of total involvement followed by oblivion: except for one's lingering uneasiness about unlit corners and warehouses near the river. - The New York Review of Books EDIT
Read More | Posted Aug 13, 2018
67% The Dark Mirror (1946) The texture triumphs, partly because Robert Siodmak's direction imparts an appropriately somnambulistic tone to the proceedings. - The New York Review of Books EDIT
Read More | Posted Aug 13, 2018
93% The Seventh Victim (1943) The frame itself becomes an exotic carnivorous flower about to swallow the spectator. - The New York Review of Books EDIT
Read More | Posted Aug 13, 2018
100% L'eau froide (Cold Water) (1994) Cold Water can finally be recognized as a singular masterpiece on the most familiar of themes, the sufferings and misfortunes of youthful passion. - The New York Review of Books EDIT
Read More | Posted May 15, 2018
85% Kill Bill: Volume 1 (2003) ... Kill Bill confirms [Quentin Tarantino] as a filmmaker of astonishing invention and aplomb... - Film Comment Magazine EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 21, 2018
91% Phantom Thread (2018) Phantom Thread, a film about concealment that is also an exercise in concealment, can very satisfyingly be read backwards and forwards, from inside out and outside in. - The New York Review of Books EDIT
Read More | Posted Jan 16, 2018
73% Prometheus (2012) A movie like Prometheus-and that is the extraordinary power of its genre-serves as an outlet for irrational connections. - The New York Review of Books EDIT
Read More | Posted Aug 21, 2017
87% Beasts of the Southern Wild (2012) In all that profusion there are some few films where the watery element so predominates as to create a kind of pool for the mind: Jean Vigo's L'Atalante was one such, Beasts of the Southern Wild is another. - The New York Review of Books EDIT
Read More | Posted Aug 21, 2017
85% The Master (2012) [Director Paul Thomas] Anderson has taken whatever he needed from the early history of Scientology. . .to create an intimate epic of irrational need, an inner history of cultish transactions reconfigured as a sorrowful and distinctively American poem. - The New York Review of Books EDIT
Read More | Posted Aug 21, 2017
89% Lincoln (2012) Steven Spielberg's Lincoln is a work of sufficient richness to instantly invite repeat viewings. - The New York Review of Books EDIT
Read More | Posted Aug 21, 2017
93% American Hustle (2013) American Hustle slides with such grace through its intrigues, slipping in so many diverting props and devices and walk-ons that you may start to feel you're being hustled by the film itself. . . - The New York Review of Books EDIT
Read More | Posted Aug 21, 2017
85% Under the Skin (2014) [Director] Jonathan Glazer's Under the Skin is a film with the courage of its silences and ellipses. - The New York Review of Books EDIT
Read More | Posted Aug 21, 2017
88% Adieu au langage (Goodbye to Language) (2014) Filming in 3-D, Godard forces a reconsideration not only of his own films but of all films. - The New York Review of Books EDIT
Read More | Posted Aug 21, 2017
73% Inherent Vice (2015) Yet Inherent Vice the movie is utterly its own thing, as thoroughly a piece of Anderson's imaginative universe as of Pynchon's. - The New York Review of Books EDIT
Read More | Posted Aug 21, 2017
82% Fahrenheit 9/11 (2004) The movie works by the primal curiosity that lured people into nickelodeons, the desire to see what comes next in the string of attractions; and unlike some of those nickelodeon operators, Moore makes good on the promise. - The New York Review of Books EDIT
Read More | Posted Aug 21, 2017
72% Interstellar (2014) Having set out to be a journey into what can hardly be depicted at all, Interstellar must find oblique ways of suggesting further imperceptible dimensions of the real. It is worth the journey to see what Nolan has constructed as a model of the unknowable. - Film Comment Magazine EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 19, 2014
97% Life Itself (2014) Deep currents of love and sorrow flow under the succession of often funny recollections of a busy life. But it is a wake where the departed is still present. - New York Times EDIT
Read More | Posted Jul 3, 2014