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The Commitments

The Commitments (1991)

tomatometer

73

Average Rating: 6.4/10
Critic Reviews: 11
Fresh: 8 | Rotten: 3

No consensus yet.

audience

90

liked it
Average Rating: 3.7/5
User Ratings: 27,835

My Rating

Movie Info

"The Irish are the blacks of Europe, Dubliners are the blacks of Ireland, and the North Siders are the blacks of Dublin ... so say it loud -- I'm black and I'm proud!" Or so Jimmy Rabbitte (Robert Arkins) tells his slightly puzzled friends as he tries to assemble a rhythm & blues show band in a working class community in Dublin in Alan Parker's film The Commitments. Jimmy is a would-be music business wheeler and dealer, and he's decided what Dublin needs is a top-shelf soul band. However,

Nov 2, 1999

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All Critics (41) | Top Critics (11) | Fresh (35) | Rotten (5) | DVD (22)

The film offers no message, no solutions, only a great time at the movies.

August 20, 2008 Full Review Source: TIME Magazine
TIME Magazine
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Director Alan Parker's story of a band of young Dubliners playing American '60s soul is fresh, well-executed and original.

March 10, 2008 Full Review Source: Variety
Variety
Top Critic IconTop Critic

This is probably Alan Parker's best film, in part because it's one of his most modest.

March 10, 2008 Full Review Source: Chicago Reader
Chicago Reader
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Foul-mouthed, fast-talking and very funny, this is Parker's best to date.

June 24, 2006 Full Review Source: Time Out
Time Out
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Mr. Parker is capable of whipping a series of quick, well-edited snippets into a happy collage of musical high spirits.

May 20, 2003
New York Times
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Parker keeps going for the glitz. He may have shot The Commitments in Ireland, but his soul never left Hollywood.

May 12, 2001 | Comments (3)
Rolling Stone
Top Critic IconTop Critic

It's a relaxed, colorful creation, remaining true to rascally human behaviors while respecting the unifying power of music. Downright irresistible.

August 16, 2011 Full Review Source: BrianOrndorf.com
BrianOrndorf.com

Does a remarkable job of balancing a feel of lower-class life with the sheer exuberance the music brings.

June 6, 2008 Full Review Source: Combustible Celluloid
Combustible Celluloid

This typically slick but largely enjoyable Alan Parker offering is the story of the rise and demise of a young Irish soul band.

March 10, 2008 Full Review Source: TV Guide's Movie Guide
TV Guide's Movie Guide

Sharply written and executed with real verve, this is an enduring and enjoyable comedy-drama that showcases some great performances both on and off-stage.

March 10, 2008 Full Review Source: Film4
Film4

High-energy fun

October 7, 2005
Kalamazoo Gazette

Based on Doyle's first novel, Alan Parker's movie offers a fresh, captivating portrait of a new band whose goal is to bring 1960s soul music to working-class Dublin.

June 30, 2005 Full Review Source: EmanuelLevy.Com
EmanuelLevy.Com

Has the raw power of a documentary and a driving musical soundtrack.

March 11, 2005
Reel.com

Pure pleasure on every level.

March 22, 2004 Full Review Source: Creative Loafing
Creative Loafing

Groundwork for The Full Monty school of condescending films about noble blue-collar western Europeans who like their beer dark and their unemployment light.

March 14, 2004 Full Review Source: Film Freak Central | Comments (3)
Film Freak Central

If it's light on meaning, it's strong at presenting the visceral pleasures of music, which can be extremely difficult to do

February 22, 2004 Full Review Source: Filmcritic.com
Filmcritic.com

Alan Parker -- stick to music-related projects! You're great at them!

February 4, 2004
New Times

A surprisingly blissful combo of Brit humor and Soul music.

August 10, 2003
eFilmCritic.com

A full-steam-ahead cinematic triumph propelled by the raw energy of a talented cast and the vibrancy of a dozen soul classics.

July 18, 2003 Full Review Source: Spirituality and Practice
Spirituality and Practice

Although parts of the story are dramatic, overall it is an ironic comedy, and a very funny one at that, as the band manager tries to keep this group of conflicting personalities from flying apart.

March 23, 2003 Full Review Source: Laramie Movie Scope
Laramie Movie Scope

Brash and joyous, the kind of musical we need more of.

January 11, 2003
Flipside Movie Emporium

Audience Reviews for The Commitments

A story documenting the rise and fall of the band The Commitments. With enjoyable vocals and those well known songs, this film makes for an easy watching tongue in cheek piece.

In a seperate issue, I can't help thinking this discredits the film ONCE ever so slightly I had thought their performances were really good, I hadn't known Glen Hansard had already appeared in this film.
July 21, 2011
76Majikat

Super Reviewer

In the tradition of Waking Ned Devine and The Full Monty, this is a delightful, optimistic ensemble piece from across the pond. While there are few conflicts in between the characters, the main conflict that drives the film forward is understated - people wanting to succeed in an world that doesn't assent.
There is little in the way of comedy, "littler" in the way of drama, and too many musical sequences for my taste, but it's hard to fault the movie for any of these things. Suffice to say that I mildly enjoyed the experience of watching this film, and there's little to complain about.
October 31, 2010
hunterjt13
Jim Hunter

Super Reviewer

'Riot Sally riot'
September 25, 2009
SirPant

Super Reviewer

A group of teenagers in Dublin from a rock band. The soundtrack is fab.
January 1, 2008
thmtsang
Candy Rose

Super Reviewer

Movies Like The Commitments

    1. Failed Drug Buyer: I saw the queue down the street, I thought you was selling drugs...
    – Submitted by Patrick M (20 months ago)
    1. Jimmy Rabbitte: The Irish are the blacks of Europe, Dubliners are the blacks of Ireland, and the North Siders are the blacks of Dublin ... so say it loud -- I'm black and I'm proud!
    – Submitted by Shannon W (2 years ago)
    1. Jimmy Rabbitte: He says God sent him
    2. Mr. Rabbitte: On a fucking Suzuki?
    – Submitted by D H (3 years ago)
View all quotes (3)

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Foreign Titles

  • Die Commitments (DE)
  • Les Commitments (FR)
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