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Catfish (2010)

tomatometer

81

Average Rating: 7.1/10
Reviews Counted: 144
Fresh: 116 | Rotten: 28

Catfish may tread the line between real-life drama and crass exploitation a little too unsteadily for some viewers' tastes, but its timely premise and tightly wound mystery make for a gripping documentary.

78

Average Rating: 6.9/10
Critic Reviews: 32
Fresh: 25 | Rotten: 7

Catfish may tread the line between real-life drama and crass exploitation a little too unsteadily for some viewers' tastes, but its timely premise and tightly wound mystery make for a gripping documentary.

audience

70

liked it
Average Rating: 3.5/5
User Ratings: 24,839

My Rating

Movie Info

In late 2007, filmmakers Ariel Schulman and Henry Joost sensed a story unfolding as they began to film the life of Ariel's brother, Nev. They had no idea that their project would lead to the most exhilarating and unsettling months of their lives. A reality thriller that is a shocking product of our times, Catfish is a riveting story of love, deception and grace within a labyrinth of online intrigue.-- (C) Official Site

Jan 4, 2011

$3.2M

Universal Pictures/Rogue - Official Site External Icon

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Cast

Latest News on Catfish

April 30, 2014:
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She'll battle viruses for "Catfish" directors Henry Joost and Ariel Schulman.
May 7, 2012:
Catfish Directors Join The Monkey Wrench Gang
Henry Joost and Ariel Schulman are attached to adapt Edward Abbey's 1975 novel about a quartet of...

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All Critics (145) | Top Critics (33) | Fresh (116) | Rotten (28) | DVD (3)

If you begin with the premise that all films, docs and dramas, are constructs of one sort or another and it's the how and why that's important, you'll have fun pulling this apart.

December 21, 2010 Full Review Source: Time Out
Time Out
Top Critic IconTop Critic

It must be said that the filmmakers, who profess to be as surprised as we are about how things play out, are being disingenuous at best and underhanded at worst.

October 1, 2010 Full Review Source: Christian Science Monitor
Christian Science Monitor
Top Critic IconTop Critic

And you thought MySpace was scary.

September 30, 2010 Full Review Source: Minneapolis Star Tribune
Minneapolis Star Tribune
Top Critic IconTop Critic

The film tells a devastating story that couldn't be more relevant to our times, who we are in real life versus the way we present ourselves online.

September 24, 2010 Full Review Source: Detroit News
Detroit News
Top Critic IconTop Critic

At the end of this exquisitely poignant film, it's clear we humans are going to need a refreshed emotional skill set if we're to make sense of the real relationships we forge in our virtual worlds.

September 24, 2010 Full Review Source: Denver Post
Denver Post
Top Critic IconTop Critic

There are some creepy chuckles to be had from this allegedly true account.

September 24, 2010 Full Review Source: Chicago Reader
Chicago Reader
Top Critic IconTop Critic

definitely eerie and scary, though not in the traditional sense

December 9, 2013 Full Review Source: 7M Pictures
7M Pictures

In a classic case of filmmakers prioritizing their own pitch over the actual goods, Ariel Schulman and Henry Joost put Schulman's toothy-grinned brother Nev front and center as he investigates his fishy long-distance Facebook crush.

November 12, 2013 Full Review Source: Film Comment Magazine
Film Comment Magazine

A film in which we spend an hour with these three dopes from Soho should have dispensed with each of them and just focused on this fascinating, lonely, quietly powerful woman from Michigan.

June 22, 2013 Full Review Source: Deadspin
Deadspin

Fascinating, if far-fetched film of a real life game of online Liar's Poker exposing the perils of Internet romance.

January 19, 2013 Full Review Source: Movie Nation
Movie Nation

Catfish is a unique documentary - like Capturing The Friedmans, it starts as one thing and mutates into a completely different, terrifying animal halfway through.

September 28, 2012 Full Review Source: TheShiznit.co.uk
TheShiznit.co.uk

Socially interesting and emotionally affecting, but also highly irritating.

July 12, 2012 Full Review Source: Cinemania

It's gripping, heartfelt and occasionally laugh-out-loud funny, only let down by a directionless ending.

July 14, 2011 Full Review Source: Digital Spy
Digital Spy

Catfish certainly feels real enough to leave you with a stunned feeling at its finale and a nagging suspicion that the world is an even stranger place than you imagined.

June 21, 2011 Full Review Source: The Standard
The Standard

I was utterly enthralled from the first frame to the last.

May 16, 2011 Full Review Source: Flicks.co.nz
Flicks.co.nz

Worth seeing.

April 5, 2011 Full Review Source: HitFix
HitFix

Something here really smells just like the word used in the title.

April 4, 2011 Full Review Source: Movies.com
Movies.com

Whether its real or not is irrelevant. Catfish is an amazing, tense, charming, soulful, utterly surprising portrait about technology & psychology

March 1, 2011 Full Review Source: Triple J | Comments (2)
Triple J

I applaud the makers of Catfish for the way in which they've made and marketed their movie. They're selling it as something different... and that's a big reason why I liked it.

January 27, 2011 Full Review Source: ABC Radio Brisbane
ABC Radio Brisbane

The true, almost nightmarish beauty of Catfish is the all too crystal clear mirror it holds up to its audience.

January 24, 2011 Full Review Source: Concrete Playground
Concrete Playground

If Inception had you jokingly wonder what is real and what is fake, Catfish will have you frantically scrambling around for totems to spin just to double check the veracity of the existence of yourself and the people around you.

January 23, 2011 Full Review Source: Quickflix
Quickflix

Starting like any amateur video of a family member, Catfish is so poorly shot we could be excused for thinking that it was made to look as amateur as possible to enhance its street cred as a 'real find'

January 22, 2011 Full Review Source: Urban Cinefile
Urban Cinefile

The trouble is the filmmakers seem to be stylists and opportunists; Catfish has the slick gloss of hipster media magazine journalism. Its deeper questions are never probed.

January 20, 2011 Full Review Source: sbs.com.au
sbs.com.au

It's a stunning dismantling of Facebook and the society of the spectacle (thanks, Debord) that goes along with it.

January 20, 2011 Full Review Source: The Vine
The Vine

Catfish reveals in the most surprising of ways why a social network created by a lonely teenage introvert is, in a word, fishy.

January 13, 2011 Full Review Source: Moviedex
Moviedex

The core story might be legitimate, but too much of the film is so blatantly staged that it is impossible to imagine this is a genuine record of life unfolding.

January 4, 2011 Full Review Source: EDGE Boston
EDGE Boston

Audience Reviews for Catfish

[img]http://images.rottentomatoes.com/images/user/icons/icon14.gif[/img]
December 2, 2013
Directors Cat
Directors Cat

Super Reviewer

The social networking zeitgeist is certainly upon us. It has shaped a generation in their reliance on smartphones and the internet and contributed to a new global means of communication. It has brought us closer but sometimes a bit too close. It has opened up new dangers and has shaped us into voyeurs. This documentary is proof enough in showing this. It also shows how easily people can be manipulated.
Filmmakers Rel Schulman and Henry Joost find themselves in the midst of a film project, tracing an online romance between Rel's brother Nev and a female artist on Facebook. Everything doesn't add up though as the women's real identity becomes in question and her stories don't seem to make sense. Is she really who she says she is?...
After a slow beginning, we are soon informed of where this documented drama is heading and the path it takes becomes dark and intriguing. Prime candidate for mockery, Nev Schulman, is a good sport. He very rarely shy's away from what is ultimately a major piss take of his trust in people. But what it also does, is remind ourselves (or those who use social networking sites) that everything is not as it seems when interacting with faceless names. For those who haven't seen it, I won't give too much away, but it shows the frailties in Internet use, as well as, the frailties in ourselves. The revelation of the strange events is quite awakening but is everything we told even true in itself? Some people took this documentary quite literally. I, however, had to wonder whether it was a double cross. I believed it to a point but there were so many chance happenings that were caught conveniently on camera that it couldn't all have been purely documented.
Questions remain as too how authentic the film actually is but as a social commentary it's message still stands. Despite some inconstancies it remains cleverly constructed.
May 23, 2012
MrMarakai

Super Reviewer

I'm not really sure what to say about this. Such an amazing documentary/film. I had no idea that it was actually real (and I'm still not sure if it even is or not, it all seems too convenient). There is so much that could be said about this film and I'm sure everyone will have a different opinion. It just goes to show that there is some pretty crazy people out there and it's difficult to trust those you meet online. However I don't feel like it answers many of the questions that were brought up about why this woman felt compelled to do what she did and there were many things missed out. Why didn't they show Angela's expression when she first opened the door? That was pretty much the money shot but they missed out. I guess all I can say is watch it and form your own opinion, I don't even know what mine is yet.
April 11, 2012
StarCrossedVoyager

Super Reviewer

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