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.
Once Side Effects gets into its crime story, medication is swept aside by movie nonsense. The storyline goes into tangles that have to be dealt with very rapidly if the audience is not to start laughing.
As a thriller in the Hitchcock mould, 'Side Effects' is great fun: its characters are well acted without being entirely likeable, which makes their jeopardy all the more enjoyable while putting us at a clinical remove.
Side Effects was shot on digital video that makes it look as if we're peering through dirty glass, but it's still a lavishly dread-fueled suspense movie full of twists, reversals, double crosses, and dangerous liaisons.
The movie respects a viewer's intelligence, which should also serve as a warning; don't be lulled into a stupor. Keeping sharp will allow all the fun and menace in this terrific thriller to seep into your head.
Of the many twists and turns in Steven Soderbergh's vastly entertaining thriller Side Effects, the most gratifying has less to do with the nimble plotting than the fact that it isn't the type of movie it initially appears to be.
We'd like to believe that our SSRIs and MAOIs will bring us happiness, that love is real, that art or spirituality can offer transcendence. Steven Soderbergh would like to remind us that it's all a trick, and we're on our own.
The emotional depths of the film's first half get bludgeoned by the simplistically lurid twists and turns, which hinge on some egregiously homophobic stereotypes that Soderbergh's clinical touch fails to complicate.
According to Steven Soderbergh, "Side Effects" is the filmmaker's final feature-length directing credit -- and it shows, partly because this rambling genre exercise, while skillful, offers nothing new.
In trying to merge this alarmist theme with an old-fashioned murder mystery, the filmmakers throw at least one plot-twist sucker-punch too many, leaving the viewer with an "Oh, come on" reaction to the entire film.
It is a bugf--k crazy yarn, more like what you'd expect out of Brian De Palma, but with that ineffable hum -- the Soderbergh snap -- the cool camera, exquisite framing, shallow focus and scenes that don't last a frame longer than they have to.