Philadelphia Daily News' Scores

  • Movies
  • TV
For 257 reviews, this publication has graded:
  • 45% higher than the average critic
  • 3% same as the average critic
  • 52% lower than the average critic
On average, this publication grades 2.4 points higher than other critics. (0-100 point scale)
Average Movie review score: 66
Highest review score: 100 Lady Bird
Lowest review score: 25 Adrift
Score distribution:
  1. Negative: 13 out of 257
257 movie reviews
  1. It’s a story with too many influences, no cohesion, no apparent narrative purpose.
  2. In conceptual terms, the movie has more in common with Scream, in that it’s an examination of genre clichés (in this case romantic comedies) that both satirizes and embraces them.
  3. The acting is fine throughout, and director Labaki (she plays Zain's lawyer) has a genius for handling untutored performers like Al Rafeea.
  4. They Shall Not Grow Old avoids geopolitics to concentrate on the lives of the common soldier and the reality of trenches — the horseplay, camaraderie, boredom, disease, squalor, and terror that were all part of life on the front. It’s a sobering, moving success.
  5. The remake, directed by Twilight’s Catherine Hardwicke, makes substantial changes — taking the bare bones of the story and turning into a sort action-fable about female empowerment, starring Jane the Virgin headliner Gina Rodriguez.
  6. Cold War, a love story about music and musicians, is for people who found A Star Is Born way too cheerful and optimistic. It’s pretty downbeat, but it’s also another black-and-white (subtitled) marvel from Pawel Pawlikowski.
  7. There is a lot of plot in those final minutes, and don’t bother trying to outguess the magician. He pulls a rabbit out of a hat, just to distract you from the next rabbit.
  8. This is a funny, affectionate and surprisingly touching film.
  9. Even if you haven’t seen The Intouchables, you have a pretty good idea where the drama is headed. Still, The Upside nonetheless does an amiable job of taking you there, thanks to hard work by the two leads.
  10. The fact that it’s a Razzie contender, of course, is no reason not to see it. In fact it could be an inducement — Razzie movies can be quite fun.
  11. The story circles cleverly back on itself, putting an original spin on the familiar tale of the burned-out investigator reckoning with the defining event in a checkered career.
    • 48 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    The setup may seem recyclable, but really it’s disposable.
    • 49 Metascore
    • 63 Critic Score
    Bohemian Rhapsody doesn't throw itself into the tale of the band with anything approaching the abandon of the boldly unconventional 1975 smash hit that gives the movie its name. Instead, Bohemian Rhapsody plays it safe in a manner that's often cliched and always predictable — but not entirely unsatisfying.
  12. A more nuanced Bale portrait of a man enamored of secrecy, strong-arming, militarism, and vigilante impulses can be found in The Dark Knight.
  13. Ben is Back, operating with the flexibility of fiction, flirts with the idea that a mother’s intuition and love can be decisive, even as it acknowledges the pitiless, relentless nature of the disease. Or maybe all the movie wants to propose is that miracles — rare as they are — can happen.
  14. The movie works best when it falls back on plain old acting. Merritt Wever is sweet presence as the hobby shop worker and gentle soul who understands Mark’s obsessions, and appreciates his art. Her scenes with Carell are the movie’s least technological, and its best.
  15. At least Aquaman has a different palette, and new shapes to work with. It’s still ultimately silly and dreary, and will test the endurance of fans who then must withstand an even longer credit sequence to get a whiff of the next DC story wrinkle.
  16. The elegiac air that surfaces here and there in Bathtubs blends nicely with Young’s own final days on Late Show, reading his separation papers and wondering how to look for a job in his 50s.
  17. The more-is-more approach to superhero movies is usually a deadly mistake, but it works nicely in the animated Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse.
  18. While the movie is often dazzling, it’s also frequently dull.
  19. Ronan is good (as usual) as the spirited and rather haughty Mary, making the most of what, to be fair, is the plum role.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 75 Critic Score
    It’s not an easy watch: It might be the darkest pop music movie ever made. But it largely succeeds at its main goal, which it not to entertain, but make you think.
  20. This glossy, handsomely budgeted musical deploys topflight talent throughout, from casting to choreography to songwriting to animation and modern digital effects, and though it achieves a Poppins-like level of hyper-competence, it lacks the most elusive attribute we associate with Mary — magic.
  21. The foster-care comedy Instant Family has more heart than laughs, but enough of the former to squeak by.
  22. The premise is a borderline gimmick, but director Steve McQueen (12 Years a Slave) invests the movie with enough grit — it's set in the world of hardboiled Chicago politics — to draw us in.
  23. As played by Jackman, he's imperious, self-righteous, and humorless, and it's hard to imagine such a figure capturing the imagination of the public, policy acumen notwithstanding. The movie is better at showing Rice (Sara Paxton) as a woman trampled by the press stampede — ditto Hart's wife Lee, played elegantly by Farmiga.
  24. Buster Scruggs, it seems, is about not just the Old West, but The West in a larger sense.
  25. Ali and Mortensen make the friendship feel real, using some unexpected tools from Farrelly's kit. His comedic instincts help the movie tiptoe through some dangerous cultural minefields.
  26. The movie sticks to formula, and spells everything out.
  27. Hedges is an efficient, expressive actor, and has the knack for conveying complex information with a look or a gesture, as he does here, suggesting the turmoil within his character on the night when his parents assign him to undergo therapy.

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