Michael Phillips

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For 1,933 reviews, this critic has graded:
  • 57% higher than the average critic
  • 2% same as the average critic
  • 41% lower than the average critic
On average, this critic grades 2.2 points higher than other critics. (0-100 point scale)

Michael Phillips' Scores

  • Movies
  • TV
Average review score: 66
Highest review score: 100 Museum Hours
Lowest review score: 0 Chappie
Score distribution:
1933 movie reviews
    • 46 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    Forgettably entertaining/entertainingly forgettable.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    The movie’s an artfully sustained guessing game, tense and rarely dull. It’s also afflicted with a jokey, jaunty tone as deliberate as it is limiting.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    Much of Puzzle feels schematic and, in the convenient solution to the family’s financial problems, a bit lazy. Yet Macdonald is so good, on her own or with a scene partner, director Marc Turtletaub’s movie refuses to fall apart.
    • 51 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    McKinnon’s apparent improvisations and inventions create a second, better movie in the margins.
    • 60 Metascore
    • 75 Michael Phillips
    The core human/bear connection is treated with respect. Pooh’s wisdom and kindness cannot be denied. The same impulses worked for the two “Paddington” movies, God knows. Christopher Robin isn’t quite in their league, but it’s affecting nonetheless.
    • 90 Metascore
    • 75 Michael Phillips
    Eighth Grade works you over, audience wincing followed by audience gratification, narrative tension followed by release, crises leading to just-in-time catharsis.
    • 76 Metascore
    • 88 Michael Phillips
    That’s Blindspotting all over: an exuberant, brightly colored, zigzagging portrait of a city, an uneasy transformation and a friendship.
    • 87 Metascore
    • 88 Michael Phillips
    McKay has worked mostly in episodic television in recent years, and “On the Seventh Day” marks his confident, neatly ordered but freshly observed return to feature filmmaking. He’s working with nonactors here, in a fruitful halfway point between documentary and conventional fictional narrative.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 88 Michael Phillips
    The movie sidesteps the conventional breadth of a documentary subject’s resume. We learn nothing about Sakamoto’s early years, and little about his private life. Yet simply by lingering with his pensive, compelling subject at the keyboard, or engaging Sakamoto (discreetly) in his thoughts on his life and his music, Schible casts a spell and captures the spirit of a uniquely gifted composer.
    • 86 Metascore
    • 88 Michael Phillips
    Some of it’s pleasingly old school in its reliance on formidable stunt work. Enough of it, though, gets a digital effects assist for the amazements to scale the heights of plausibility and then leap, like a gazelle, to the adjacent mountain of sublime ridiculousness.
    • 81 Metascore
    • 88 Michael Phillips
    It’s a provocative, serious, ridiculous, screwy concoction about whiteface, cultural code-switching, African-American identities and twisted new forms of wage slavery, beyond previously known ethical limits.
    • 54 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    The latest “Purge” is an erratic, fairly absorbing and righteously angry prequel.
    • 61 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    At its mean, snakelike best, it’s also a brutally assured commercial action picture, unburdened by the moral qualms or unnerving ambiguity of its predecessor.
    • 57 Metascore
    • 75 Michael Phillips
    It’s fun to hang out with these people for a while.
    • 63 Metascore
    • 38 Michael Phillips
    Wasikowska struggles to activate a vague notion of female disenfranchisement and victimhood, triumphant. She and Pattinson fill in as many blanks as they can, where they can.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 75 Michael Phillips
    Visually here’s the crucial thing with Ant-Man and the Wasp, and it sounds like a small thing, but really it’s a big thing: The sequel has upped the instances and exploits of the rapidly changing superheroes, and every time the movie cuts to a shot of the heroes’ miniaturized car, scooting around the streets of San Francisco, it’s good for a laugh.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    The actors do most of their best work in between the lines. Krieps, especially, provides a subtle symphony of feeling, even as her role confines her to a prescribed range of narrative support. Director Peck’s work is handsome; what it lacks is a true sense of danger, a feeling of history roiling in the present tense.
    • 51 Metascore
    • 75 Michael Phillips
    I like the new “Jurassic World” movie better than the 2015 edition. Bayona’s direction is considerably more stylish and actively mobile than Colin Trevorrow’s was.
    • 91 Metascore
    • 88 Michael Phillips
    As Assayas himself has pointed out, the passing years have magically transformed a movie made in 1994 into a seeming product of post-1968 cultural turbulence and unresolved matters of the heart. It feels honest, in other words.
    • 56 Metascore
    • 38 Michael Phillips
    Tag
    I kind of hate the movie’s mixture of bro comedy, sadistic practical jokes (don’t call it slapstick) and last-ditch pull for the heartstrings.
    • 52 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    If you can forget about the movie’s general moral vacuousness, the extremely uneven digital photography and the slavish devotion to designer assault weapons...the screenplay by “Watchmen” scribe Alex Tse keeps the shifting alliances and power plays in clever circulation.
    • 80 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    Bird’s rather strenuous sequel lands more in the camp of “Cars 2” and “Monsters University,” mistaking calamity and mayhem for real excitement and wit.
    • 85 Metascore
    • 88 Michael Phillips
    Without undue fawning, Neville’s moving portrait does a lovely job of presenting Rogers as two people, the public figure and the private one, sharing the same closet full of zip-up sweaters.
    • 58 Metascore
    • 75 Michael Phillips
    It’s essentially the Hotel Earle from “Barton Fink,” augmented by the latest in robotic surgical techniques for bullet extraction.
    • 61 Metascore
    • 50 Michael Phillips
    It’s smooth, and far from inept. But it isn’t much fun. That’s all you want from a certain kind of heist picture, isn’t it? Fun?
    • 87 Metascore
    • 88 Michael Phillips
    Above all, there’s Collette, who sometimes can overdeliver a dramatic moment or an aghast reaction, but in this storytelling context she’s fabulous. It’s a fierce performance with a human pulse, racing one minute, dead still the next.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    Whannell is learning how forward motion can allow a filmmaker to get away with some pretty outlandish brutality. I wish the talk-dependent sequences weren’t so foreshadowed and clunky; only Gabriel transcends them.
    • 56 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    They never quite got the script right, but director Kormakur toggles well enough. And Woodley sees it through.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 50 Michael Phillips
    The ending is very different from the novella, and I was surprised at its shameless, ruthless emotional effectiveness.
    • 85 Metascore
    • 88 Michael Phillips
    An act of spiritual inquiry, a coolly assured example of cinematic scholarship in subtly deployed motion and one of the strongest pictures of 2018.

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