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 doesn't coast on its premise but follows where it leads, which is into some serious territory. What might have been a joke with a tagged-on sentimental ending becomes instead a sensitive movie that affirms the value of life.
Besides being inventive and witty, Stranger Than Fiction is a tribute to the power of literature. But art is not its only domain. It also delves into the world of ultimate certainties: death and taxes.
Take a cool premise, a smart director and a top-flight cast, then throw an ex-TV sketch comedy knucklehead into the mix - and voila, a thinking person's dramedy that grapples with issues of fate and free will, love and liberation. Look out, Oscars.
If Stranger Than Fiction has a central flaw, it's overly sentimental. Although the story would work better as a tragedy, Forster and Helm can't resist tacking on a mushy love story, involving Crick and combative tax cheat Ana Pascal.
Stranger Than Fiction is no Eternal Sunshine. But if you can look past its clunky attempt to be exactly that, there's great pleasure in watching Ferrell, like Harold, turn into someone you never knew he could be.
It takes a great premise and runs with it, neither wasting opportunities nor going off on tangents. It features strong work from both the main and supporting actors, and manages seamlessly to incorporate both humor and poignancy.