Behind the Candelabra isn't a smear job, but it's not a revelation, either.
Candelabra shines a light on things that might have occurred, but it never quite illuminates them.
While everything looks splendid, the film engages less the longer it goes on. True story or no, the final act treads very familiar territory.
| Original Score: 3/5
The story as told is just too depressing, too empty and, most of all, too dead and gone.
Soderbergh is clearly captivated, as are we all, by the rot underlying the glitz, but even with Douglas' nuanced performance, the film simplifies too many things.
| Original Score: 2.5/5
Even though the film's tagline is "Too much of a good thing is wonderful," for Soderbergh, it winds up being just pretty good.
Half the fun of Behind the Candelabra is watching these two Hollywood heavyweights deftly tackle roles that could have been career-enders not that long ago.
| Original Score: 3.5/4
Soderbergh takes something as hoary as a celebrity biopic and turns it into a magnificent opus composed of bold overtures and brassy melodies - all punctuated by the saddest of codas.
| Original Score: A-
The story is told less as a cause-and-effect narrative than as a collection of incidents that add up to something with a crushing emotional weight.
Douglas is simply brilliant here. It's far more than an impression - he simply disappears into the role of the troubled showman.
| Original Score: 5/5
Fun, entertaining and well-judged, Behind The Candelabra is absolutely fabulous. If this is the last we hear from Steven Soderbergh he's went out on a high.
| Original Score: 4.5/5
Steven Soderbergh's final film Behind the Candelabra is a spectacular portrait of the relationship between the famed pianist Liberace and his lover Scott Thorson.
| Original Score: 9/10
It's rare that I hate an HBO movie, but it's been a long time since I loved one. Until now.
| Original Score: A
Terrific performances make it a movie worth seeing.
The stunning and quite intimate performances by Michael Douglas and Matt Damon are award-worthy.
An absorbing production that is morbidly fascinating from start to finish.
No one saves face in director Steven Soderbergh's ghoulishly entertaining, opulently produced Behind the Candelabra, HBO's grandest, gaudiest and most fascinating movie in quite a long while.
The glitter and kitsch, and jaw-dropping performances by Michael Douglas as the middle-age Liberace and Matt Damon as his much younger boy-toy Scott Thorson, make this a wild ride without compare.
The film feels like an epic biopic, with so much detail, humour and emotion crammed in.
Douglas is truly arresting as Liberace; complex yet childishly simple. He flounces around in fur and rhinestones, but behind all that - and the candelabra on his piano - he is clearly lonely and, in a way, a stranger to himself.
| Original Score: 4/5