East of Eden Reviews

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Philip Kemp
Total Film
April 14, 2014
Catches fire in the clashes between Dean (as the bad brother) and Raymond Massey as his stiff-necked dad.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/5
Matt Brunson
Creative Loafing
November 6, 2013
After testing various performers (including a newcomer named Paul Newman), Kazan went with the unknown Dean, a move that immediately yielded dividends.
Full Review | Original Score: 3.5/4
Walter Chaw
Film Freak Central
May 11, 2011
a reaction to our plutocracy's values and a further case for Dean as the sainted figure of rebellion that would fuel the generational schism of the '60s.
Full Review | Original Score: 3.5/4
Sean Axmaker
Turner Classic Movies Online
January 29, 2009
East of Eden is set in 1917 but [James] Dean feels completely modern and contemporary, a boy not quite comfortable in his body.
Steve Crum
Video-Reviewmaster.com
March 20, 2008
Fine James Dean vehicle, one of few that put him into immortality.
| Original Score: 5/5
Dennis Schwartz
Ozus' World Movie Reviews
December 2, 2007
Kazan had the bad sense to leave out the best parts from the lengthy book.
Full Review | Original Score: C+
Top Critic
Dave Kehr
Chicago Reader
November 1, 2007
John Steinbeck's painful biblical allegory -- Genesis replayed in Monterey, California, circa 1917 -- is more palatable on the screen, thanks to the down-to-earth performances of James Dean as Cal/Cain and Richard Davalos as Aron/Abel.
Lori Hoffman
Atlantic City Weekly
February 17, 2006
James Dean's finest performance
| Original Score: 5/5
Top Critic
Geoff Andrew
Time Out
January 26, 2006
It's a film of great performances, atmospheric photography, and a sure sense of period and place.
Top Critic
Kenneth Turan
Los Angeles Times
December 6, 2005
Not only one of Kazan's richest films and Dean's first significant role, it is also arguably the actor's best performance.
Full Review | Original Score: 5/5
Brad Laidman
Film Threat
December 6, 2005
What could be a better way to spend two hours?
Full Review | Original Score: 4.5/5
Emanuel Levy
EmanuelLevy.Com
July 18, 2005
Kazan's Biblical allegory has not held up well, but Dean's performance, for which he was Oscar-nominated posthumously, proves why he became a star after his very first film
Full Review | Original Score: A-
Philip Martin
Arkansas Democrat-Gazette
July 17, 2005
... can be seen as one of the earliest examples of the enshrinement of the unregenerate, semi-nihilistic "attitude" that informed and in part created "rock 'n' roll."
Full Review | Original Score: B
John A. Nesbit
Old School Reviews
June 29, 2005
the real reason that this film has any legs at all (and the ONLY reason that Warner Brothers has released the DVD) rests with James Dean
Full Review | Original Score: C+

Empire Magazine
June 22, 2005
A classic of its time.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/5
John J. Puccio
Movie Metropolis
May 30, 2005
Dean's performance continues to resonant, still evoking today the same anger, anguish, and confusion of growing up that it did half a century ago.
Full Review | Original Score: 8/10
Dan Callahan
Slant Magazine
May 23, 2005
If you turn the sound down on East of Eden (and, by all means, do), you'll see why Dean is a legend.
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/4
Nick Schager
Lessons of Darkness
May 3, 2005
A showcase for Dean's searing, gargantuan, force-of-nature performance.
Full Review | Original Score: B+
Don Willmott
Filmcritic.com
April 21, 2005
as exciting a drama as you're ever likely to see, and ultimately it's the unforgettable Dean that makes it so
Full Review | Original Score: 4.5/5

TV Guide's Movie Guide
July 30, 2003
Overwrought, often splendid Kazan version of the Steinbeck novel. The movie's chief distinction is the amazing debut of rebellious, romantic James Dean.
Full Review | Original Score: 4.5/5
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