Country Strong Reviews

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Neil Pond
American Profile
September 9, 2011
This canned corn falls far short of the inspiring story of triumph and tragedy it wants viewers to buy.
Full Review | Original Score: 2/5
Joshua Starnes
ComingSoon.net
January 7, 2011
It takes a while for Country Strong to make up its mind what it wants to be about, and it takes even longer for it to figure out how to get there as the conclusion drags on and on, searching for a point.
Full Review | Original Score: 5/10
Jason Goodyer
Little White Lies
March 24, 2011
As predictable and soulless as an over-produced country power ballad.
Full Review | Original Score: 2/5
David Sexton
This is London
March 25, 2011
No saving grace here.
Full Review | Original Score: 2/5
Glenn Heath Jr.
Slant Magazine
January 10, 2011
Remember when country music meant something to narrative filmmaking, when a tortured, soulful song put to film could document the doubts and dimensions of an entire generation?
Full Review | Original Score: 0/4
Annlee Ellingson
Moving Pictures Magazine
January 11, 2011
For a script that promotes artistry over stardom, love over fame, Country Strong falls back on cinematic tropes that saddle the film with an unfortunate predictability.
Roger Moore
Movie Nation
January 23, 2013
A little like modern country music - odd moments of sincerity, heart and authenticity peek through the plastic, the hype and the manufactured hokum.
Full Review | Original Score: 1.5/4
Corey Hall
Metro Times (Detroit, MI)
January 7, 2011
The actors all grit teeth, chew mouthfuls of mushy cornpone and attempt to make something of this, despite a cheese-ball script and pretty perfunctory direction, both by Shana Feste.
Full Review | Original Score: C+
Top Critic
Roger Ebert
Chicago Sun-Times
January 6, 2011
"Country Strong" is one of the best movies of 1957, and I mean that sincerely as a compliment.
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/4
December 22, 2010
There are some lovely songs, and a handful of great ideas, just dying to bust out of Country Strong, but the cream gravy that coats every corner of this chicken-fried Valley of the Dolls smothers almost everything it can.
Top Critic
Michael Phillips
Chicago Tribune
January 6, 2011
The movie's well-acted. Almost everything else about "Country Strong" is weak.
Full Review | Original Score: 2/4
Top Critic
Joe Morgenstern
Wall Street Journal
January 6, 2011
"Country Strong" comes to spontaneous life from time to time, despite maudlin devices and manipulative set pieces.
William Goss
Cinematical
January 7, 2011
It almost works as a decent if familiar story of comebacks and setbacks -- but then one bottle goes crashing against the wall and the emotional investment all but flies out the window.
Terry Staunton
Radio Times
March 24, 2011
Writer/director Shana Feste is clearly indebted to the Oscar-winning Crazy Heart and Robert Altman's epic Nashville, but the script all too often stumbles into mediocre soap-opera territory.
Full Review | Original Score: 2/5
Brett Michel
Boston Phoenix
January 12, 2011
A bizarre cut that finds Kelly and Beau riding a freight train just adds to the sensation that we're witnessing a film career off its rails.
Full Review | Original Score: 0.5/4
Kimberly Gadette
Indie Movies Online
January 8, 2011
It's a relief when Paltrow's character bursts into song. That's the only time when she's not pitching fits to beat the band ... making the band, and the audience, extremely grateful.
Full Review | Original Score: 2/10
Top Critic
Kevin C. Johnson
St. Louis Post-Dispatch
January 7, 2011
Doesn't come close to matching any of the legion of films set in the country music world, from "Coal Miner's Daughter" to "Walk the Line" to "Crazy Heart."
Top Critic
Amy Biancolli
Houston Chronicle
January 7, 2011
Country Strong has a bit more to recommend it -- the music most of all -- but it's still a tough slog through emotional swamplands.
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/4
Top Critic
Kirk Honeycutt
Hollywood Reporter
December 22, 2010
Themes and cliches plucked from countless country lyrics fuel a thoroughly unconvincing show business story about a larger-than-life, crash-and-burn star and her unruly entourage of self-serving personalities.
Tim Grierson
Screen International
December 22, 2010
A country music drama with a big heart but not enough focus, Country Strong tackles fame, artistic expression, addiction and love, although none of them deeply enough.

Sight and Sound
June 18, 2012
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