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Carmen Jones Reviews

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James Plath
Movie Metropolis

If you're not a fan of opera, you probably won't care much for 'Carmen Jones,' despite some pretty solid acting and scenes that bring postwar America to life.

Full Review Source: Movie Metropolis | Original Score: 7/10

December 17, 2013
Emanuel Levy

Dorothy Dandridge became the very first black woman to receive Best Actress Oscar nomination for Otto Preimger's audacious (for the early 1950s) all-black musical of the famous opera.

Full Review Source: EmanuelLevy.Com | Original Score: B+

July 14, 2010
Michael W. Phillips, Jr.
Goatdog's Movies

A film in which talented, attractive people sing ugly lyrics to beautiful music in other people's beautiful voices amid ugly shot framing and ill-timed cutting.

Full Review Source: Goatdog's Movies | Original Score: 1.5/5

October 1, 2009
Dennis Schwartz
Ozus' World Movie Reviews

Electric performance by Dorothy Dandridge as the sultry whorish Carmen Jones.

Full Review Source: Ozus' World Movie Reviews | Original Score: B

January 27, 2008

TV Guide's Movie Guide

Preminger's heavy-handed adaptation of a Broadway triumph combines gorgeous music with risible lyrics by Oscar Hammerstein II; the project is saved by a terrific cast.

Full Review Source: TV Guide's Movie Guide | Original Score: 3/4

October 23, 2007
Variety Staff
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Otto Preminger has transferred it to the screen with taste and imagination in an opulent production.

Full Review Source: Variety

October 23, 2007
Dave Kehr
Chicago Reader
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Impeccably liberal in its time, the film has not aged gracefully, although Dorothy Dandridge's performance in the lead remains a testimony to a black cinema that might have been.

Full Review Source: Chicago Reader

October 23, 2007
Tom Dawson

The best reason to revisit Carmen Jones lies in Dorothy Dandridge's electrifying performance, which saw her become the first African-American to be nominated for a Best Actress Oscar.

Full Review Source: | Original Score: 3/5

February 10, 2007
Andrew Pulver

Every frame, you feel, is freighted with the tension imposed by the never-appearing white folks. It was, however, laudable in its desire to showcase the talents of African-American performers who were denied opportunities in Hollywood.

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

February 10, 2007
David Parkinson
Empire Magazine

Woefully miscast in places and extremely dubious in its portrayal of African-Americans but does boast an on-form Dorothy Dandridge.

Full Review Source: Empire Magazine | Original Score: 3/5

February 9, 2007
Mark Bourne

Slinking through director Preminger's CinemaScope widescreen in slit skirts and tight blouses, Dandridge is naturally carnal the way summer is naturally warm.

Full Review Source:

April 6, 2006

Time Out
Top Critic IconTop Critic

The somewhat heavy-handed direction and the ultimately two-dimensional characters leave you admiring the workmanship without plucking at the necessary emotional/romantic heart-strings.

Full Review Source: Time Out

February 9, 2006
Ken Hanke
Mountain Xpress (Asheville, NC)

The results are certainly flawed, but rarely less than fascinating.

Full Review Source: Mountain Xpress (Asheville, NC) | Original Score: 3.5/5

March 17, 2005


A truly dreadful film. Preminger can't be faulted for ambition, but for once, his execution is sorely lacking.

Full Review Source: Film4 | Original Score: 2/5

September 18, 2003
Bosley Crowther
New York Times
Top Critic IconTop Critic

A crazy mixed-up film.

Full Review Source: New York Times | Original Score: 2/5

May 20, 2003
Beth Accomando

Worth seeing for Danridge's sultry, sweet performance.

| Original Score: 3/5

March 30, 2003
Bob Bloom
Journal and Courier (Lafayette, IN)

Interesting Preminger experiment. Modernizing with an all-black cast highlighted by Dandridge and Belafonte is first-rate.

| Original Score: 3/5

October 23, 2002
Catherine Cantieri
Apollo Guide

While the embarrassment of talent onscreen is a joy to watch, I can't help be overwhelmed and a little saddened thinking how much of that talent went ignored by Hollywood most of the time.

Full Review Source: Apollo Guide | Original Score: 80/100

July 30, 2002
Jeffrey Westhoff
Northwest Herald (Crystal Lake, IL)

| Original Score: 3/5

July 26, 2002
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