The Tomatometer rating – based on the published opinions of hundreds of film and television critics – is a trusted measurement of movie and TV programming quality for millions of moviegoers. It represents the percentage of professional critic reviews that are positive for a given film or television show.
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The Tomatometer is 60% or higher.
The Tomatometer is 59% or lower.
Movies and TV shows are Certified Fresh with a steady Tomatometer of 75% or higher after a set amount of reviews (80 for wide-release movies, 40 for limited-release movies, 20 for TV shows), including 5 reviews from Top Critics.
Percentage of users who rate a movie or TV show positively.
No character -- including William Hurt in the central role -- is even vaguely likable, and the mawkish ending is a laugh. In the Russell tradition, there are brilliant flashes on an overwrought trip to nowhere.
The film's too aggressively enjoyable to be completely dismissed, though the ending is risible -- I preferred it when this finale was later reconfigured and reused in a-ha's music video for "Take On Me."
There isn't a lucid moment in it (and much of the dialogue is rendered unintelligible by Russell's subversive direction), but it has dash, style, and good looks, as well as the funniest curtain line since Some Like It Hot.
Though deviating from Paddy Chayefsky's script (and novel), the reliably flamboyant Ken Russell made a spooky but engaging psycho-horror film about experimentation with human consciousness that deservedly received Oscar nods for sound and music.