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 exaggerated raw violence of "Reservoir Dogs" leaves one feeling cheated in the end. For this movie isn't really about anything. It's just a flashy, stylistically daring exercise in cinematic mayhem.
The film ends without a satisfying resolution, since these characters are so ugly only an agonizing affliction would qualify as just deserts. Crime doesn't exactly pay in this case, but it doesn't cost enough either.
Perhaps it's a bit too knowing in places, and perhaps it packs in one pop cultural reference too many, but this is an in-your-face, look-at-me kind of debut, designed to function as the calling-card of a major new talent.
Exuberance over violence is mostly reined in. Coiled male panic and ricocheting accusations carry the action. At its best, at a time before Tarantino became all show, Reservoir Dogs reveals masculinity as a bloody, savage, two-faced performance.
It's unclear whether this macho thriller does anything to improve the state of the world or our understanding of it, but it certainly sets off enough rockets to hold and shake us for every one of its 99 minutes.