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Notorious Reviews

Page 1 of 8
James Berardinelli
ReelViews
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Full Review Source: ReelViews | Original Score: 2.5/4

January 16, 2009
Lisa Kennedy
Denver Post
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Notorious, directed by George Tillman Jr. with a sentimental touch, seems torn.

Full Review Source: Denver Post | Original Score: 2/4

January 16, 2009
Pete Hammond
Hollywood.com

No fire in this tale about one of rap music's most notorious shooting stars.

Full Review Source: Hollywood.com | Original Score: 2/5

January 16, 2009

What's most annoying about Notorious is that whatever bad thing that Biggie ever does gets paved over by the end of the film.

Full Review Source: MSNBC | Original Score: 3/5

January 14, 2009
Donald Munro
Fresno Bee

A mostly laudatory account of a young musician's life and career that is calculated to put Wallace in a positive light.

Full Review Source: Fresno Bee | Original Score: B-

January 16, 2009
Sonny Bunch
Washington Times

Though it never quite devolves into pure hagiography, the film's central tale of crack dealer made good is sometimes a little too hokey for its own good.

Full Review Source: Washington Times | Original Score: 2.5/4

August 30, 2009
Des Partridge
Daily Telegraph (Australia)

While the script provides ample illustrations of Wallace's tough life, there is not enough focus on what set the recording star apart from his peers or why he became so incredibly popular so quickly.

Full Review Source: Daily Telegraph (Australia) | Original Score: 2.5/5

March 13, 2009
Robert Levin
Critic's Notebook

[An] intermittently entertaining but thoroughly conventional Biggie biopic.

Full Review Source: Critic's Notebook | Original Score: 2.5/4

March 13, 2009
Henry Barnes
Little White Lies

The inclusion of real-life footage and re-enacted YouTube clips is an interesting idea, but with each awkward stab at a new shooting style, Tillman Jr moves closer towards disgracing his subject with yet another hack job.

February 19, 2009
Robbie Collin
News of the World

It's bang-average biopic fodder but fans will enjoy the attention to detail and hearing Biggie tracks on a cinema soundsystem.

Full Review Source: News of the World | Original Score: 2/5

February 12, 2009
Chris Richards
Washington Post
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Feels like Biggie's Wikipedia page reformatted for the big screen.

Full Review Source: Washington Post

January 15, 2009
Philip Wilding
Empire Magazine

A hip hop hagiography that plays like a straight-to-TV movie.

Full Review Source: Empire Magazine | Original Score: 2/5

February 12, 2009
Michael Smith
Tulsa World

I never bought into the chase-your-dream theme. The dream that Biggie sought was not anything that Martin Luther King would have taken pride in.

Full Review Source: Tulsa World | Original Score: 2/4

January 20, 2009
Katey Rich
CinemaBlend.com

The untold side of the story haunts the frames of this standard-issue biopic.

Full Review Source: CinemaBlend.com | Original Score: 2.5/5

January 14, 2009
Nick Schager
Slant Magazine

If there's something praiseworthy about Notorious, it's that it pulls off the remarkable, ignominious feat of making its deceased subject less likeable than one remembers.

Full Review Source: Slant Magazine | Original Score: 1/4

January 12, 2009
Jeff Bayer
The Scorecard Review

Biggie lived a HUGE life in only 24 years, but this film has two hours and never sells me. Isn't selling what Sean 'Puffy' Combs is supposed to be an expert at?

Full Review Source: The Scorecard Review | Original Score: 5/10

January 18, 2009
Tom Huddlestone
Time Out
Top Critic IconTop Critic

As mainstream hip hop becomes ever more predictable, so do the biopics about its stars.

Full Review Source: Time Out | Original Score: 2/6

February 12, 2009
Mark Demetrius
FILMINK (Australia)

Notorious is a pretty standard biopic, and is probably largely compromised. If you've never seen Nick Broomfield's excellent 2002 doco Biggie And Tupac, you'd be better served hunting that down instead.

Full Review Source: FILMINK (Australia)

March 13, 2009
Andrew L. Urban
Urban Cinefile

There is little here to attract anyone but the core fan-base.

Full Review Source: Urban Cinefile

March 6, 2009
Sean Gandert
Paste Magazine

Notorious sticks pretty well to the actual events of Biggie's life, at least the famous ones, but it has little to say about the man that's not available on his Wikipedia entry.

Full Review Source: Paste Magazine | Original Score: 41/100

January 16, 2009
Brent Simon
Shared Darkness
May 15, 2012
Mark Kermode
BBC Radio Five Live
April 4, 2011
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