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.
It's an affectionate, fairly funny riff on 1950s sci-fi movies, which often featured aliens, sometimes in the form of gelatinous glop, trying to take over Earth before earthlings, usually of the military variety, save the day.
True, the story doesn't amount to much, but the plot tends to take a back seat when you've got a not-quite-50-foot version of Reese Witherspoon duking it out with a mighty alien robot alongside the Golden Gate Bridge.
The cool stuff -- like 3-D and collapsing bridges -- may get filmmakers halfway there, but to make it all the way home, they need the usual movie elements, like a good story and vivid characters, and here Monsters vs. Aliens comes up short.
MvA isn't, and isn't pretending to be, as ambitious a project as Pixar's almost universally lauded Wall-E was. But does it have to feel like something that's just rolled off a conveyor belt, made according to an exacting but dull set of specifications?
The super-duper-3-D-big-screen-Imax-deluxe extravaganza that is Monsters vs. Aliens has bells and whistles, superb technical sophistication and dazzling visual effects, sound, fury and Reese Witherspoon. What it doesn't have is heart.
"Nice" is the adjective that seems to surface most in trying to pin down the film's most salient quality, which means that while the film is enjoyable enough, it is unlikely to become a classic for us, or a Shrek sort of franchise for DreamWorks.
While it has a crisp 3-D look and nice vocal performances, this action-comedy will seem fresh only to 8-year-olds -- though it may give parents an excuse to introduce some of the '50s horror movies it parodies.
An amalgam of the vintage sci-fier Attack of the 50 Ft. Woman and Pixar's Monsters Inc., Monsters vs. Aliens is a goofy computer-animated romp that works just fine in the traditional moviegoing format.
Children won't get the references to atomic-age monster movies, but the film offers more than nostalgia: there are slyly funny performances by Seth Rogen as an omnivorous blue blob and Stephen Colbert as the U.S. president.