Variety's Scores

For 13,591 reviews, this publication has graded:
  • 52% higher than the average critic
  • 4% same as the average critic
  • 44% lower than the average critic
On average, this publication grades 2.6 points lower than other critics. (0-100 point scale)
Average Movie review score: 61
Highest review score: 100 The Tribe
Lowest review score: 0 Being Human
Score distribution:
13591 movie reviews
  1. Caetano Gotardo and Marco Dutra, collaborating as directors for the first time, channel the artificiality of late Manoel de Oliveira but without the enticing mystery, hampered by an understandable earnestness that yearns for a more subtle approach.
  2. Oddly, Funny Face feels more like a promising but overreaching debut than any of his earlier films, particularly at the level of its slender script, heavy as it is on banal, minimalist dialogue that doesn’t fuel the flickering chemistry between leads Cosmo Jarvis (“Lady Macbeth”) and appealing newcomer Dela Meskienyar as best it could.
  3. The movie doesn’t show a complex enough representation of either adult life or the New York literary world to offer much depth to grownups (it’s far more engaged with Joanna’s romantic life and dream sequences set at the Waldorf Astoria), which means that My Salinger Year must have been intended to inspire young women for whom 1995 seems like the ancient past.
  4. The emperor is naked, Greed wants us to realize, but unless we agree to radically rethink our own wardrobes, does it make any difference?
  5. With vibrantly expressive aesthetics that match the energy of its defiant and distressed heroine, this impressive coming-of-age indie . . . heralds the arrival of both a distinctive new filmmaking voice and a leading lady with charisma to burn.
  6. Balloon is decent entertainment to a degree, and that is mostly thanks to its handsome production values.
  7. Emerald Run is one of the weirdest hodgepodges to make its way to theater screens and digital platforms in quite some time.
  8. Impractical Jokers: The Movie is an undistinguished and unnecessary extension of a brand whose primary attributes are likability, authenticity and relative modesty (given the worst impulses of the genre).
  9. The movie is a dreamily austere shaggy-dog story that recalls the matter-of-fact absurdism of early Jim Jarmusch, yet at the same time generates a fair amount of suspense by repeatedly hinting at a potential for melodramatic upheaval. Ultimately, however, Tseden finds an audaciously different way to pull the rug out from under us.
  10. This gratifyingly clever and, at times, powerfully staged thriller is too rooted in our era to be called old-fashioned — its release, in fact, feels almost karmically synched to the week of the Harvey Weinstein verdict. Yet there’s one way that the movie is old-fashioned: It does an admirable job of taking us back to a time when a horror film could actually mean something.
  11. By the end of Onward, you’ll have chuckled and maybe choked up, and enjoyed a conventional ride.
  12. Thanks largely to the performers (and Crystal in particular), the end result is diverting enough if unmemorable.
  13. While Premature may seem less professional than your average Sundance movie (much less entry-level studio fare), that doesn’t diminish what’s fresh, vulnerable and true about the film.
    • 44 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    Sheridan and de Armas’s scenes together leave an impression long after the rest of the movie evaporates.
  14. The State Against Mandela and the Others outlines a complex network of motives and tensions underpinning this single sensational trial: Nothing here is exactly revelatory to those with a working knowledge of apartheid history, but few documentaries have gathered the stakes involved in the trial quite so deftly.
  15. Unadventurous in its design — Barnett goes for a conventional mélange of clips and talking heads to structure the story — Changing the Game admittedly benefits from a traditional approach that slowly familiarizes the audience both with the subjects and the layers of an ongoing discriminatory debate around fairness.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 70 Critic Score
    Cheng delivers a mood that is unquestionably human and, at times, unexpectedly hallowed (as when Jose stares down the worn face in a Mayan ruin). José brings to light the promise of a director as compassionate as he is observant.
  16. For all the wholesome cheesiness of much of the film, you’d have to have a pretty hard heart not to be touched by it.
  17. It’s not enough just to be offbeat. Defy whatever rules it might, a movie has to find its own beat, and After Midnight still seems to be weighing its options when the final credits roll.
  18. The finished film plays at times like an out-of-control pitch meeting, lurching from one ostensibly clever idea to the next without having taken the trouble to connect the dots, or even to remain consistent with the two simple rules it sets out for itself.
  19. If you can surrender yourself to the measured rhythms of the film and accept its mix of feeling and artifice, you may find much to admire here.
  20. There’s a relaxed yet energetic comic rapport between players that suggests a good time was had by all.
  21. It’s a looser, warmer, and more meditative romance, one that takes its time by giving its actors room to breathe.
  22. We all know that your average Hollywood comedy tends to include some on-set improvisation, but in this case the contrast between the leaden pseudo-brashness of the rest of the movie and the ping! of Carrey’s dialogue is so marked that it almost feels like he made up his entire character on the spot. (I’m not declaring that he actually did. I’m just sayin’.)
  23. With Weinstein on the ropes, Macfarlane pulls no punches, doing a fair but unflinching job of letting those he once dominated share their narrative. That they do so on camera makes what they have to say that much more impactful, and Macfarlane does their testimony justice, delivering a hard-hitting documentary that speaks truth to power.
  24. It’s an inspired goof — for a while, before it turns into waaaaaay too much of a good thing.
  25. Created Equal is structured as a monologue of self-justification, a two-hour infomercial for the decency, the competence, and the conservative role-model aspirationalism of Clarence Thomas.
  26. The trouble with “P.S. I Still Love You” is that nearly all the reasons that Lara Jean makes such a refreshingly different romantic lead are contained in the earlier film, and here, she’s reduced to a version of the passive Disney princess, trying to decide between two dudes who both think she’s swell.
  27. The intriguing ambiguity suffusing Kôji Fukada’s “Harmonium” returns to a certain degree in A Girl Missing, but this time the writer-director neglects to reinforce onscreen relationships, resulting in a disappointing and unmoving drama.
  28. Not everyone will appreciate the ambiguity of a climax that can be read as either an uplifting act of pure and selfless love or a depressing capitulation to the malign forces of inevitable decline, but either way, “art-house horror” has its 2020 tidemark set high.

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