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Daniel Day-Lewis and Michael Fassbender: Why They Hold the Highest Metacritic Actor Scores

Carey Mulligan and Tilda Swinton have the highest average scores among actresses, according to a recent study of Metacritic data.

Michael Fassbender and Daniel Day-Lewis


Nobody picks movies like Daniel Day-Lewis. The three-time Oscar winner has never acted in a film earning a negative aggregate score on Metacritic, giving him an average individual score of 73, higher than any other actor today. Day-Lewis’s highest rated films on the site are “There Will Be Blood” (92) and “Lincoln” (86). Second on the list of highest average scores is Michael Fassbender, at 69, and John C. Reilly, at 66.

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How are these scores calculated? A recent study by Vox analyzed Metacritic data to rate actors based on the reviews of their films. (Metacritic scores films from 0-100, with higher scores indicating better overall reviews. To earn a “generally favorable” rating, films must have an average score of 61 or greater, while “universal acclaim” requires a score of 81 or higher).

Vox noted that the method it used for its study is far from a perfect science, as the reviews come from critics, not the general public, and the strength of a movie’s review shouldn’t be taken as an assessment of an actor’s individual talent.

Carey Mulligan currently holds the highest score among actresses, at 70. Her top rated films are “Inside Llewyn Davis” (92) and “An Education” (85). Tilda Swinton and Marion Cotillard both have an average score of 68, but more of Swinton’s films have earned the “universal acclaim” or “generally favorable” distinction than have Cotillard’s, earning Swinton the #2 spot on the list.

So who has appeared in the worst-reviewed films, according to Metacritic? Rob Schneider holds the lowest score at 30, followed by Adam Sandler at 36 and Ashton Kutcher at 37. For actresses, Jennifer Love Hewitt is at the bottom of the list with a score of 32, followed by Jessica Alba at 38 and Katherine Heigl 39.

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For more on how Metacritic rates movies, television shows, music and games, click here.

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