Joe Morgenstern

Select another critic »
For 2,292 reviews, this critic has graded:
  • 42% higher than the average critic
  • 2% same as the average critic
  • 56% lower than the average critic
On average, this critic grades 2.6 points lower than other critics. (0-100 point scale)

Joe Morgenstern's Scores

  • Movies
  • TV
Average review score: 61
Highest review score: 100 White God
Lowest review score: 0 Georgia Rule
Score distribution:
2292 movie reviews
    • 52 Metascore
    • 60 Joe Morgenstern
    After a quarter-century the franchise may be terminally long in the teeth; much of this fifth iteration is absurd, both intentionally and un. Yet it’s also funny, intriguingly dark and visually sumptuous.
    • 56 Metascore
    • 70 Joe Morgenstern
    Tag
    Tag ends up being good fun, with an unexpectedly sweet spirit that stays with you. It’s really about the persistence of friendship, a vision of adult life as the playground we would love it to be.
    • 80 Metascore
    • 70 Joe Morgenstern
    Plenty good enough as exuberant entertainment with elegant graphics, plus a showcase for female superempowerment.
    • 87 Metascore
    • 100 Joe Morgenstern
    A meta-mystery lurks here — how it is that this horror flick can be so shocking and dismaying, so genuinely upsetting in spasms and spurts, yet at the same time so madly entertaining.
    • 85 Metascore
    • 80 Joe Morgenstern
    This beautiful film celebrates a deeply good man with a great gift for repairing.
    • 81 Metascore
    • 90 Joe Morgenstern
    Ms. Simón, who has used both of her young performers to powerful effect, also wants us to know how resilient children can be. Some creatures are able to grow new limbs. Frida, given more than half a chance after demanding it, achieves something no less remarkable. She grows new joy and hope.
    • 82 Metascore
    • 90 Joe Morgenstern
    An impressive and self-impressed documentary by Jennifer Peedom, has some of the best speck shots you could imagine—not spec as in speculation, though the film offers plenty of that on the subject of why human beings choose to climb tall peaks, but speck as in the size of a human seen against a stupendous alpine landscape.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 50 Joe Morgenstern
    The neutral news about “Solo” is exactly that, its dramatic neutrality. Time ticks by at a drifty pace while lots of action of no great consequence grinds on.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 30 Joe Morgenstern
    It’s overstuffed, and essentially empty.
    • 53 Metascore
    • 70 Joe Morgenstern
    A chance to see four terrific actresses — let’s not use the gender-neutral term in this context — having varying degrees of fun with matters of sisterhood, sex and hope in a movie that touches on mortality and holds out the prospect of later-life joy.
    • 85 Metascore
    • 90 Joe Morgenstern
    Grapples with eternal questions of faith, to be sure, but confronts just as powerfully, if not more so, the urgent matter of how to live a good, useful life in the turbulent here and the terrifying now. First Reformed has its steeple in the clouds and its foundation on solid ground.
    • 82 Metascore
    • 90 Joe Morgenstern
    The Guardians, though, is special in a new way. Imagine devoting several years, as Mr. Beauvois did, to making a reflective, bucolic feature that is organized around the themes of community and evolving culture. It’s all too subtle for words, but perfect for moving pictures.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 80 Joe Morgenstern
    This film, a formidably accomplished debut feature by Michael Pearce, takes us down familiar paths into a darkness all its own.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 70 Joe Morgenstern
    RBG
    What makes the film valuable is its focus on Justice Ginsburg as a champion of women’s rights.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 90 Joe Morgenstern
    Tully turns out to be a twofer. There’s the movie you see, which is whipsmart, intimate, affecting and fearlessly funny about the mixed blessings of motherhood. And there’s the movie you replay in your mind to sort out its several mysteries. That one is richer, deeper and strangely beautiful.
    • 88 Metascore
    • 100 Joe Morgenstern
    The first thing to be said of Lucrecia Martel’s Spanish-language film is that it stands as a startling original. Though the story is elusive, the images speak for themselves, and they are stunning. (The cinematographer was Rui Poças ; what does he know about light and color that others don’t?)
    • 79 Metascore
    • 70 Joe Morgenstern
    The movie is maddening too, just as it intends to be, but you do watch, and care, and learn. What seems at first to be a gallery of narcissistic rogues turns into something else, a study in equal-opportunity romantic folly.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 50 Joe Morgenstern
    As for everything that happens this time around, it’s a function — or malfunction — of the sequel’s two-part structure. The problem is penultimateness, too much setup and too little payoff. The solution comes, presumably, around the same time next year.
    • 55 Metascore
    • 70 Joe Morgenstern
    The result is an entertainment of surprising liveliness. It’s also mindbait for Godard fans in which admiration for what the venerable filmmaker has achieved--he’s still turning out films at 87--is mixed with faintly elegiac regret for the stern, remote figure he’s become.
    • 47 Metascore
    • 20 Joe Morgenstern
    The writers haven’t given her the nuance needed to differentiate confident from crazy, and the directors, who are two and the same, haven’t given the production as a whole consistent verve; the pace drags when it isn’t frenetic.
    • 92 Metascore
    • 100 Joe Morgenstern
    This poetic, laconic and ineffably beautiful drama has an unerring feel for its subject, a young cowboy struggling against his implacable fate in the American West. That’s notable in itself, and all the more so since the film was written and directed by Chloé Zhao, a Chinese woman born in Beijing.
    • 80 Metascore
    • 80 Joe Morgenstern
    Mr. Haigh’s previous feature was “45 Years,” a drama of marital distress, starring Charlotte Rampling and Tom Courtenay, in which the strongest feelings went unspoken. The words in his new film are pungent in themselves, but they’re given greater power by Mr. Plummer’s remarkable performance.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 60 Joe Morgenstern
    Many of the characters are cut from recycled cardboard, while Kennedy himself, played by Jason Clarke, remains a cipher. (Mary Jo is played by Kate Mara.) The movie makes a point of not judging him, but that only highlights the impossibility, after all these years, of penetrating the mystery of his behavior.
    • 82 Metascore
    • 90 Joe Morgenstern
    It may not make the masterpiece cut, but this taut horror thriller is enormously entertaining, because it’s organized around a terrific idea — the necessity of absolute silence.
    • 58 Metascore
    • 80 Joe Morgenstern
    Still, the family dynamics work out beautifully, and Jean’s return also leads to a deeply affecting revelation of his father’s feelings for him. As far as winemaking is concerned, Back to Burgundy is rich in vistas of the fabled côtes; stuffed with oenophile info (who knew how directly de-stemming affects a wine’s structure?) and studded with casual tastings of wines that most of us can only dream of. A 1990 Pommard? A 1995 Meursault Perrières?
    • 64 Metascore
    • 60 Joe Morgenstern
    It misses the point to ask, as some have recently, whether he’s still able to have fun at the age and status he has attained. Sure he is. He must have had great fun making this immense Tinker Toy of a movie, but there’s a fundamental mismatch between artist and material.
    • 63 Metascore
    • 30 Joe Morgenstern
    Meant to evoke such distinctive examples of the genre as “Shock Corridor,” “The Snake Pit” and, on a much grander scale, “One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest.” And it’s also safe to say that whether or not you enjoy Unsane — I didn’t, for the most part — there’s a terrific scene in a padded cell.
    • 82 Metascore
    • 100 Joe Morgenstern
    This one follows its own goofy rules, fills the screen with astonishing images, tells a touching tale of outcast dogs and a faithful boy, and does so with ultralively deadpan wit. My only regret after seeing it at a screening was that I couldn’t stay and see it again.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 80 Joe Morgenstern
    This modest drama invokes the power of incipience — fear of what will happen next — and amplifies it with lean writing in the service of flawless acting. Antiwar films don’t have to be great to be worthy; this one is very, very good.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 60 Joe Morgenstern
    The most touching scene is the most conventional, an intimate moment between Simon and his mother, Emily (Jennifer Garner). Will she or won’t she accept him as the person he is? Love, Simon is many things, but not Greek tragedy.

Top Trailers