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Jay Boyar, Orlando Sentinel

  1. Danny Deckchair 2004 Balsmeyer may remind you of the guy at the party who, after one too many shots, puts a lampshade on his head. It's funny for maybe a moment -- until you realize, to your horror, that he doesn't know when to stop. full review
  2. The Final Cut 2004 This premise sounds like the sort of a screwy, non-idea that a young film student might dream up while editing a documentary. And according to the press notes, that's just what happened. full review
  3. The Forgotten 2004 You could wind up with whiplash watching this film, and that's a compliment. full review
  4. Little Black Book 2004 One of those annoyingly coy romantic comedies in which people try to improve their relationships by deceiving and investigating each other. full review
  5. Mean Girls 2004 It's that rare teen comedy that both teens and former teens can enjoy. full review
  6. White Chicks 2004 Moronic. full review
  7. Beyond Borders 2003 Beyond Borders should have been called Beyond Boredom. full review
  8. Brother Bear 2003 Brother Bear is bearable, but just barely. full review
  9. Daddy Day Care 2003 It's pitched at kids, but adults will be guffawing too.
  10. Darkness Falls 2003 The best thing to be said for Darkness Falls is that it contains one decent piece of advice: Stay in the light. When the lights are on, after all, this movie won't be shown.
  11. Dirty Pretty Things 2003 This is the sort of film that requires your full attention -- and then amply rewards it with a wealth of nuances.
  12. Mona Lisa Smile 2003 When was the last time you saw a mainstream movie with big, flashy stars that featured a fairly sophisticated discussion of the nature of art? full review
  13. Radio 2003 It's still a tear-jerker, but it doesn't make you feel like a jerk for tearing up. full review
  14. Something's Gotta Give 2003 Nicholson and Keaton do what they can to compensate for the script's weaknesses, which is actually quite a bit. Even without age-specific dialogue to help them out, they manage to suggest a strong connection between their characters. full review
  15. Swimming Pool 2003 Ozon simultaneously manages to make his film lazily sexual and crisply suspenseful.
  16. Tears of the Sun 2003 Willis' performance redeems much of the film.
  17. Touching the Void 2003 For a movie like this, touching the void just isn't enough. It has to touch the audience, too. full review
  18. Uptown Girls 2003 Not an especially raucous comedy, but it is an unfunny, rhythmless one.
  19. The Dancer Upstairs 2002 The Dancer Upstairs is, like its director, sleek, mysterious and intelligent. But until its last-half hour or so, it is also, unfortunately, mind-numbing.
  20. The Dangerous Lives of Altar Boys 2002 Although fairly involving as far as it goes, the film doesn't end up having much that is fresh to say about growing up Catholic or, really, anything.
  21. The Hours 2002 A moving essay about the specter of death, especially suicide.
  22. The Importance of Being Earnest 2002 The ingenuity that Parker displays in freshening the play is almost in a class with that of Wilde himself.
  23. Maid in Manhattan 2002 If you think that Jennifer Lopez has shown poor judgment in planning to marry Ben Affleck, wait till you see Maid in Manhattan.
  24. The Master of Disguise 2002 No amount of nostalgia for Carvey's glory days can disguise the fact that the new film is a lame kiddie flick and that Carvey's considerable talents are wasted in it.
  25. Men in Black II 2002 Although the sequel has all the outward elements of the original, the first film's lovely flakiness is gone, replaced by the forced funniness found in the dullest kiddie flicks.
  26. Morvern Callar 2002 With her broad, thinker's forehead, imp's crooked grin and large, deer-in-the-headlights eyes, Morton at first suggests hidden depths within Morvern. But as the film plays on, the character comes off as increasingly shallow and dull.
  27. Narc 2002 Finesse is certainly at a premium in Narc. What we get is brute force and a whopping load of testosterone.
  28. Paid in Full 2002 It's actually too sincere -- the crime movie equivalent of a chick flick.
  29. Pumpkin 2002 This is the sort of Pumpkin that really deserves to be smashed.
  30. Punch-Drunk Love 2002 Easily one of the best and most exciting movies of the year.
  31. Rabbit-Proof Fence 2002 Noyce trusts the power of the story to move us. He knows that, like the girls themselves, we'll find our way along Rabbit-Proof Fence.
  32. Star Trek - Nemesis 2002 Surprisingly, considering that Baird is a former film editor, the movie is rather choppy.
  33. The Sum of All Fears 2002 Watching this film, we can't shake our fears that we may be witnessing a version of our own previously unthinkable future.
  34. Treasure Planet 2002 Has its moments, but it's pretty far from a treasure.
  35. Along Came a Spider 2001 Along Came a Spider is watchable, but that's about all.
  36. Amelie 2001 Tautou is gloriously alive in the title role.
  37. Hannibal 2001 Meandering, emotionally empty and thoroughly unsavory, it's not so much shocking as shockingly bad.
  38. The Mothman Prophecies 2001 There's not much going on in this movie unless you simply decide to buy into the notion that something inexplicably strange once happened in Point Pleasant.
  39. Not Another Teen Movie 2001 With so many gags coming at us so fast and furiously, some of them are bound to misfire. But, hey, that's OK: There's always another gag around the corner, and chances are it'll be funny.
  40. Novocaine 2001 Plays like the sort of silly shared fantasy that a group of dental students might come up with late one night, after too much coffee and cramming for finals.
  41. The Score 2001 Spends so much time establishing a shadowy, jazzy neo-noir tone that the details of the heist are slighted and much of the excitement drains away.
  42. Shaolin Soccer 2001 May be the funniest out-and-out comedy of the summer. full review
  43. Blow Dry 2000 You find yourself liking many of these people and even sort of rooting for the Cut Above team.
  44. The Emperor's New Groove 2000 I admit I feel a little guilty to be praising a production whose aims are so thoroughly modest, but I laughed all the way through this movie.
  45. Happy Accidents 2000 For a high-flown fantasy, it's surprisingly down-to-Earth.
  46. Malena 2000 Its heart is in the right place.
  47. Our Song 2000 A truly fresh performance can do wonders for a movie, and Our Song has three of them.
  48. Traffic 2000 Don't avoid Traffic. It takes you to the most amazing places.
  49. Vertical Limit 2000 Certainly a movie in which people are forced to test themselves in unpleasant situations. But the people I have in mind are the people in the audience.
  50. With A Friend Like Harry 2000 It's Lopez's understated charm in the role that ultimately makes this film as creepy as it is.
  51. The English Patient 1996 It's the sort of solemn production that is often mentioned as an Academy Award contender.This says less about the quality of the film than it does about its self-consciously lofty tone and its sense of self-importance. full review
  52. Braveheart 1995 Mel Gibson throws his whole heart into a role. No one acts with more conviction, and his errors are honest ones. full review
  53. The Usual Suspects 1995 If the pleasures of The Usual Suspects are the more superficial ones of ingenuity and style, those are abundantly available. The twists and turns of the plot are an awful lot of fun, while the ending is genuinely satisfying and surprising. full review
  54. While You Were Sleeping 1995 It's Bullock's first shot at a role in which she plays second fiddle neither to males nor special effects. And she turns out to be every bit as delightful as anyone might have expected. full review
  55. Nobody's Fool 1994 Nobody's Fool is funny at times and as cuddly as an old teddy bear. But this movie is being taken far too seriously in some circles. full review
  56. A League of Their Own 1992 What does it say about today's Hollywood when the most interesting character in a movie about a women's baseball team turns out to be a man? full review
  57. Return to the Blue Lagoon 1991 Things are pretty much the same for the semi-nude kids in this movie as they were for the semi-nude kids in the first Blue Lagoon. full review
  58. The Silence of the Lambs 1991 Demme comes at Harris' material from another angle: His movie may deal with madness, but his perspective is mercifully sane. full review
  59. Ghost 1990 Ghost is one part horror picture, one part comedy, one part love story, one part murder mystery and four parts entrancing. full review
  60. Bull Durham 1988 Ron Shelton, who wrote and directed the film, displays a knowledge of and affection for the national pastime. You can see it in the knowing detail he brings to even the minor characters. full review
  61. Dirty Dancing 1987 Although the plot is sometimes implausible, the movie's music, dancing and romantic spirit carry a lot of it. In addition, Dirty Dancing has the virtues of a female main character (a bit unusual in a coming-of-age movie) and an interesting setting. full review
  62. Henry: Portrait of a Serial Killer 1986 The film is an honest and disturbing attempt to come to grips with the sort of modern horror that we must -- more urgently every day -- try to understand. full review

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