Terrence Rafferty Movie Reviews & Previews - Rotten Tomatoes

Terrence Rafferty

Terrence Rafferty
Terrence Rafferty's reviews only count toward the Tomatometer when published at the following Tomatometer-approved publication(s): The Nation, Sight and Sound, New Yorker

Movie Reviews Only

Rating T-Meter Title | Year Review
84% Casualties of War (1989) Casualties of War is the strongest, the simplest and the most painful of all the Vietnam movies because it isn't about how terrible it is not to understand what's going on around us -- it's about the agony of seeing terrible things too clearly.‐ Sight and Sound
Read More | Posted Jan 11, 2020
93% Do the Right Thing (1989) [You] need to see it for yourself. It's a very unusual movie experience -- two hours of bombardment with New York-style stimuli.‐ New Yorker
Read More | Posted Sep 6, 2018
17% Wild Wild West (1999) The movie is exhausting, utterly without feeling, and pointless -- though Smith looks great in his Western outfit.‐ New Yorker
Read More | Posted Jun 17, 2014
57% The Doors (1991) For a while, the obviousness and flat-out vulgarity are sort of entertaining, and it might be possible to enjoy the movie as a camp classic if you could ignore the mean-spiritedness that keeps breaking through.‐ New Yorker
Read More | Posted Jun 17, 2014
81% My Own Private Idaho (1991) Van Sant takes a lot of chances, and, visually, the movie is so imaginative, so fiercely alive, that it carries us along. But when the over-all design of the picture becomes clear, we feel cheated rather than enlightened.‐ New Yorker
Read More | Posted Jun 2, 2014
39% Days of Thunder (1990) Like the previous Simpson-Bruckheimer pictures, it's designed to give audiences an overdose of the thrill of victory; it wants us to jump out of our seats, pumping our fists in the air and roaring for the hero to pulverize his opponents.‐ New Yorker
Read More | Posted May 20, 2014
79% Singles (1992) This is romantic comedy of the wispiest kind, but the picture is generous, graceful, and consistently funny.‐ New Yorker
Read More | Posted May 19, 2014
57% The Naked Gun 2 1/2: The Smell of Fear (1991) Nielsen combines B-movie earnestness, exuberant mugging, and a trouper's slightly desperate cheerfulness: he turns this rather alarming character into a sweet, ebullient lunatic -- albeit one who's hell on innocent bystanders.‐ New Yorker
Read More | Posted May 6, 2014
58% Disclosure (1994) The presence of Douglas, who has made a career of being pursued by beautiful, dangerous women, turns this sexual-harassment thriller into instant camp.‐ New Yorker
Read More | Posted Apr 25, 2014
58% Legends of the Fall (1994) At first, the picture plays like East of Eden with a bonus brother; it gets sillier as it goes.‐ New Yorker
Read More | Posted Apr 2, 2014
76% White Men Can't Jump (1992) Harrelson's performance is rich, subtle, and delicately funny. And Snipes is just amazing: everything he does seems to leap off the screen.‐ New Yorker
Read More | Posted Apr 2, 2014
94% In the Name of the Father (1993) The picture turns into a kind of stylized morality play about the right and the wrong ways for Irishmen to respond to distorted portraits of their character, and it's terrifically effective.‐ New Yorker
Read More | Posted Feb 28, 2014
96% The Silence of the Lambs (1991) Jonathan Demme's thriller is artful pulp -- tabloid material treated with intelligence and care and a weird kind of sensitivity.‐ New Yorker
Read More | Posted Aug 12, 2013
87% Henry: Portrait of a Serial Killer (1986) Sure, it's compelling; the nature of the material guarantees that. But it doesn't seem to be telling us much more than that the world is a scary place and murder is ugly. We knew those things. This is tabloid chic.‐ New Yorker
Read More | Posted Aug 12, 2013
95% Dave (1993) After the promisingly nasty beginning, the filmmakers settle into a sort of campaign mode, lulling and flattering the audience with a fairy-tale vision of the common man's victory over the Washington establishment.‐ New Yorker
Read More | Posted Aug 2, 2013
87% Presumed Innocent (1990) A ponderous adaptation of Scott Turow's cunningly plotted mystery novel.‐ New Yorker
Read More | Posted Jul 31, 2013
93% The Lion King (1994) Between traumas, the movie serves up soothingly banal musical numbers (composed by Elton John and Tim Rice) and silly, rambunctious comedy.‐ New Yorker
Read More | Posted Jul 31, 2013
84% Thelma & Louise (1991) The feminist justification that the script provides for the heroines' behavior doesn't make their actions any less preposterous. But you can recognize the crudeness of the movie's narrative devices and still have an awfully good time.‐ New Yorker
Read More | Posted Jul 30, 2013
97% Babe (1995) [It's] a comedy of animal manners that is much funnier and much cannier than any recent movie about human relationships: a lovely, stubbornly idiosyncratic fable of aspiration and survival.‐ New Yorker
Read More | Posted Jul 30, 2013
95% Apollo 13 (1995) The film, despite its raggedness, is stirring. In the end, this failed mission seems like the most impressive achievement of the entire space program: a triumph not of planning but of inspired improvisation.‐ New Yorker
Read More | Posted Jul 30, 2013
96% In the Line of Fire (1993) The movie has a clear, simple thriller logic that's far more satisfying than the static variations-on-a-massacre construction of Eastwood's Dirty Harry pictures and spaghetti Westerns.‐ New Yorker
Read More | Posted Jul 30, 2013
96% What's Love Got To Do With It? (1993) Fishburne's astonishing portrayal of Ike is what holds the movie together. The actor builds, in precise increments, a devastating portrait of a macho control freak; he even finds a kind of ghastly humor in the character's madness.‐ New Yorker
Read More | Posted Jul 29, 2013
93% Terminator 2: Judgment Day (1991) The picture is full of spectacular action sequences and dazzling special effects, but the narrative doesn't have the snap of the original's: it's lumbering and monotonous, and it carries a heavy-handed anti-nuke message.‐ New Yorker
Read More | Posted Jul 29, 2013
81% Seven (Se7en) (1995) Unfortunately, the movie's clammy design, glum cinematography, and lugubrious pace try to persuade us that what we're watching isn't an ingenious, silly piece of pulp but a serious meditation on the nature of evil.‐ New Yorker
Read More | Posted Jul 24, 2013
91% Reservoir Dogs (1992) The film, for all its mayhem and fury, is too distant to be truly disturbing; it treats everything with an impatient, born-too-late shrug.‐ New Yorker
Read More | Posted Jun 26, 2013
73% Ghost (1990) It sounds like a horror movie, but it's a romantic fairy tale. The scariest thing about it is its shamelessness.‐ New Yorker
Read More | Posted Jun 25, 2013
86% Safe (1995) Moore, in a nearly unplayable role, is amazingly vivid and touching; this is a heartbreaking portrait of a woman in full, panicked retreat from life.‐ New Yorker
Read More | Posted Jun 24, 2013
91% Full Metal Jacket (1987) No amount of stylistic analysis, however, is likely to explain why a man would devote more than three years of his life to making a war movie in which violent death isn't meant to move us. Does Kubrick really think we're not callous enough about war?‐ The Nation
Read More | Posted Jun 21, 2013
82% The Crow (1994) Alex Proyas's pulp revenge fantasy, based on a comic-book saga by James O'Barr, is dark, moody, and seductively overwrought; it's an amazingly pure expression of morbid adolescent romanticism.‐ New Yorker
Read More | Posted Apr 10, 2013
79% Batman Returns (1992) As in the first movie, Burton gives the material a luxurious masked-ball quality and a sly contemporary wit without violating the myth's low, cheesy comic-book origins.‐ New Yorker
Read More | Posted Apr 10, 2013
91% Jurassic Park (1993) For all the ingenuity of the movie's engineering, Jurassic Park doesn't have the imagination -- or the courage -- to take us any place we haven't been a thousand times before. It's just a creature feature on amphetamines.‐ New Yorker
Read More | Posted Apr 1, 2013
65% Reality Bites (1993) When the movie is over, you don't feel as if you had shared the experience of a new generation; you feel puzzled and vaguely crummy, as if you had just read a solemn news-magazine cover story about it.‐ New Yorker
Read More | Posted Mar 27, 2013
53% Basic Instinct (1992) A vicious, grindingly manipulative urban mystery that uses a thick atmosphere of S&M kinkiness to distract the audience from the story's thinness and inanity.‐ New Yorker
Read More | Posted Mar 25, 2013
64% Dreams (1990) There's greatness in the film's first hour.‐ New Yorker
Read More | Posted Mar 4, 2013
97% Schindler's List (1993) Few American movies since the silent era have had anything approaching this picture's narrative boldness, visual audacity, and emotional directness.‐ New Yorker
Read More | Posted Feb 22, 2013
88% Platoon (1986) Vietnam seems to have made [Stone] a better filmmaker -- his next movies should tell us whether, in the best war-movie tradition, it's also made a man out of him. ‐ The Nation
Read More | Posted Jan 14, 2013