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Crooklyn (1994)



Average Rating: 6.2/10
Critic Reviews: 9
Fresh: 7 | Rotten: 2

No consensus yet.



liked it
Average Rating: 4/5
User Ratings: 11,117

My Rating

Movie Info

Spike Lee and his siblings Cinque Lee and Joie Lee co-wrote this nostalgic but unglamorized look at a family growing up in Brooklyn in the 1970s, inspired by their own childhood. Woody Carmichael (Delroy Lindo) is a jazz musician whose career is in a slump; he once made a good living as a session musician, but he has moved away from it to devote himself to more serious music, a choice that has not worked out well from a financial standpoint. His wife Carolyn (Alfre Woodard) works as a school



Cinqué Lee, Joie Lee, Spike Lee

Feb 23, 1999

MCA Universal Home Video

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All Critics (27) | Top Critics (10) | Fresh (19) | Rotten (6) | DVD (1)

Lee is a great self-promoter. After all his press releases and all his interviews, we are given films that are sketchy, unfelt and distancing -- incidents in Lee's career, the only drama that really interests him.

September 23, 2008 Full Review Source: TIME Magazine
TIME Magazine
Top Critic IconTop Critic

The key problem is that the film is simply a ragged series of anecdotal sketches.

June 24, 2006 Full Review Source: Time Out
Time Out
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It's the first Spike Lee film with the potential to be turned into a television show. More important, it's the first one to display real warmth of heart.

May 20, 2003 Full Review Source: New York Times | Comment (1)
New York Times
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This remarkable movie will haunt you for a good long time.

May 12, 2001
Rolling Stone
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Modulating from heavy to light, from angry to lyrical, and so on, the movie's an enjoyable, emotional symphony.

January 1, 2000 Full Review Source: Washington Post
Washington Post
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Lee is as talented as any director is capturing an era, and some of the early scenes perfectly recall the mood of the time. The pop soundtrack may be a little too obvious, but it gets the job done.

January 1, 2000 Full Review Source: ReelViews
Top Critic IconTop Critic

While Lee fails to impose sufficient structure on his material, expertly drawn performances help vividly to evoke the family and street life of an era untroubled by crack or drive-by shootings.

September 23, 2008 Full Review Source: TV Guide's Movie Guide
TV Guide's Movie Guide

It's not Lee's most challenging work, but it's certainly amongst his most charming.

September 23, 2008 Full Review Source: Film4

A sub-par vision of Brooklyn with some bright spots

November 29, 2007
Cinema Crazed

An affectionate look at youthful adventures.

December 14, 2006
Nolan's Pop Culture Review

Loosely based on Spike Lee's growing up in Brooklyn in the 1970s, the casual, warm, apolitical (for Lee) script took a life of its own during the development process.

June 6, 2006 Full Review Source: EmanuelLevy.Com

One of Lee's more modest but admirable pieces.

February 24, 2004
Lawrence Journal-World

Um dos melhores trabalhos de Spike Lee, este filme foi solenemente ignorado pela Academia - uma mancha que o Oscar carregará para sempre em seu histórico.

February 11, 2004
Cinema em Cena

Standard Spike Lee fare, which means it comes with its high and low points.

December 22, 2003

Uneven Lee film -- and the reel printed in uncorrected 'scope is a really bad idea.

October 1, 2003
Mountain Xpress (Asheville, NC)

An idiosyncratic domestic drama written and directed by Spike Lee

July 20, 2003 Full Review Source: Spirituality and Practice
Spirituality and Practice

An ambitious failure from Spike Lee.

August 5, 2002 | Comment (1)
Aisle Seat

One of Spike's most underrated and insightful.

July 26, 2002

As a director...Lee's standard bag of gimmicks reaches a most unpleasant zenith here.

January 1, 2000 Full Review Source: Deseret News, Salt Lake City
Deseret News, Salt Lake City

A winning work whose charms far outweigh any pitfalls.

January 1, 2000 Full Review Source: Austin Chronicle
Austin Chronicle

Audience Reviews for Crooklyn

Carolyn: Wendell, PLEASE close your mouth when you chew!
Wendell: Why can't you let me eat in peace for once?
Carolyn: Because you disturbing the peace! You eat like a pig and chew like a cow!

Although not as famous as some of Spike Lees other films like Malcolm X or Do The Right Thing, it still has his signature all over it. Nobody makes an urban movie like Spike Lee. In Crooklyn he gives us a great mix of comedy and family drama, although more drama then comedy. Alfre Woodard and Delroy Lindo give great performances as the parents of 4 sons and a daughter. Based somewhat on Spike Lee's own life; it is a fantastic look at a tough but struggling family.
June 27, 2011
Melvin White

Super Reviewer

While I commend Spike Lee for trying to make a coming of age story for an African American audience and white audience alike, it does nothing to change the typical hollywood formula. That would be fine if he was going for something like that, but his counterculture attitude suggests otherwise. You can see he was trying to be subtle with his messages, but that's never been a strong suit of his. Even the way it is filmed is bland and uninteresting. The characters are flat and often one noted, giving you no sense of connection or respect for them. It's basically a failed attempt at making a powerful film.
April 28, 2010

Super Reviewer

A sweet and sentimental look at childhood in 1970's New York City.

The 'kinder gentler' side of Spike Lee.

A real high-point for his career and a great example of his range as a film maker.
March 24, 2008
Robert C

Super Reviewer

So many of Spike Lee's movies really speak to me despite his experimental musings. For me Crooklyn is personal and nostalgic. So much of this movie reminds me of my youth even tho the dynamics of the family and neighbourhood are relatively dis-similar to my own growing up. Spike creates a mood and recreates scenerios synonymous with urban childhood in the 70's and early 80's. I always call my cousins after watching it. Great feel good soundtrack.
June 28, 2008
Jasen LaBorde

Super Reviewer

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