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.
The problem with the film is its very staginess -- it never really seems to get out of drag. Between the impersonations of the priesthood, the impersonations of the transvestites and the impersonations of the actors themselves, there is little to choose.
Like a Chinese box, it has layers under layers, fictions within fictions. A mystery and an intricate triangular love story, it's also a tale about storytelling itself, the uses of art and artifice to make the unbearable bearable.
Almodovar wants to intrigue and entertain us, and he certainly does, proving along the way that Gael Garcia Bernal has the same kind of screen presence that Antonio Banderas brought to Almodovar's earlier movies.
Mr. Almodóvar's fantastic and unconventional film -- and Mr. Bernal's astonishing passion, tenderness, vulnerability and magnetic velocity in it -- are blazing headlights in an often bleak and blurry year.
The performances are fine, and there are occasional flashes of the kind of inspired direction we have come to expect from Almodóvar, but, ultimately, Bad Education must be considered to be a minor effort from a major director.
This is an often surprising, sometimes upsetting, intricately woven masterwork that sums up many of the obsessions and trademark characterizations that reach back into Almodovar's already storied career.