What Did Critics Think of ‘The Interview?’ Hint: They Mostly Agree

Now that The Interview has finally been released, the nation’s top film critics are weighing in with their thoughts on the controversial film.

It seems most are in agreement: the film is not particularly good, but a few standout performances from the non-lead actors, including an appropriately irreverent turn from Randall Park as North Korean leader Kim Jong-un, make the film at least tolerable.

Check out what the top critics are saying about The Interview:

 

Ty Burr, Boston Globe:”Excellent work, ye stalwarts of the state: You’ve taken a movie that would have been forgotten in a week and put it right into the history books.”

 

A.O. Scott, New York Times: “…pretty much what everyone thought it would be before all the trouble started: a goofy, strenuously naughty, hit-and-miss farce, propelled not by any particular political ideas but by the usual spectacle of male sexual, emotional and existential confusion.”

Ben Kenigsberg, AVClub:”…scattered, ceaselessly ass-obsessed comedy”
Betsy Sharkey, Los Angeles Times: “On a purely aesthetic level, ‘The Interview’ delivers its fair share of laughs. But it is not a great movie. And I certainly would not want a single person harmed because he or she wanted to see it.”
G. Allen Johnson, San Francisco Chronicle: “It’s a must-see movie in the context of what has happened, and will spark a discussion of, in comedy, how far is too far?”
Joe Morgenstern, Wall Street Journal: “…watching “The Interview” is torture from almost start to finish.”
Stephanie Zacharek, Village Voice: “Some of the jokes in The Interview work, but the movie — which was written by Dan Sterling, from a story by Sterling, Rogen, and Goldberg — never hits the right rhythm. It’s too lax and loose one minute and wound too tight the next.”
Jake Coyle, Associated Press: “Its greatest charm is that it so happily brings the silliest, most ludicrous of knives (a preening James Franco, lots of butt jokes) to North Korea’s militarized gunfight.”
Joe McGovern, Entertainment Weekly: “And that’s why it’s a pity that the film is bereft of satiric zing, bludgeoning the laughs with a nonstop sledgehammer of bro humor.”
Richard Corliss, TIME: “Have Rogen and Goldberg honed their talents to create, or smoked enough pot to stumble into, a movie that works from start to finish? But as always, they’re just teasing our expectations only to deflate them.”
Joe Neumaier, NY Daily News: “Too bad dictators and terrorists don’t think they’re that funny, because “The Interview” is.”
Rafer Guzman, Newsday: “‘The Interview’ isn’t interested in espousing any higher ideals of democracy, reconciliation or detente. That arrogant, mean-spirited attitude is what keeps “The Interview” from rising to the level of real political satire. That, and the poop jokes.”
Alonso Duralde, TheWrap: “Alas, while “The Interview” never slacks in its mission to tell jokes, it’s such a messy and meandering movie that it never quite lands as a satire of politics or the media or anything else.”
Todd McCarthy, Hollywood Reporter: “As political satire goes, The Interview has the comic batting average of a mediocre-to-average Saturday Night Live sketch, with a few potent laughs erupting from an overall mash of sex, drugs and TV broadcasting jokes that feel rooted in a sense of humor primarily characterized by a frat-boy/altered state/prolonged adolescence mind-set.”
 
Claudia Puig, USA Today: “Maybe that’s why co-star Seth Rogen has offered to smoke pot with audiences — perhaps the story seems funnier in an altered state.”


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