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Dave (1993)

tomatometer

94

Average Rating: 7.6/10
Reviews Counted: 54
Fresh: 51 | Rotten: 3

Ivan Reitman's refreshingly earnest political comedy benefits from an understated, charming script and a breezy performance by Kevin Kline.

94

Average Rating: 7.8/10
Critic Reviews: 18
Fresh: 17 | Rotten: 1

Ivan Reitman's refreshingly earnest political comedy benefits from an understated, charming script and a breezy performance by Kevin Kline.

audience

71

liked it
Average Rating: 3.1/5
User Ratings: 41,983

My Rating

Movie Info

The ghost of Frank Capra must have smiled when he saw Dave, an amusing and effective update of one of Capra's favorite themes -- the scrupulously honest little guy who becomes a force for good against a corrupt system. Dave Kovic (Kevin Kline) runs an employment agency and seems to genuinely enjoy finding work for people who need it. He also bears a striking resemblance to the president of the United States, Bill Mitchell (also played by Kline) and occasionally gets work as a Bill Mitchell

PG-13,

Comedy, Romance

Gary Ross

Apr 28, 1998

Warner Bros.

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All Critics (54) | Top Critics (18) | Fresh (51) | Rotten (3) | DVD (2)

A genial, expertly played political comedy proves that the spirit of Mr. Smith still lives.

August 2, 2013 Full Review Source: TIME Magazine
TIME Magazine
Top Critic IconTop Critic

It's impossible to say whether Dave will play as wonderfully over the decades as it does right now, but this smooth-as-silk comedy could not be more timely, or connect more hopefully with our current national consciousness.

August 2, 2013 Full Review Source: Seattle Times
Seattle Times
Top Critic IconTop Critic

While it's sloppy and draggy in parts, Kevin Kline, in the title role, delivers an ingratiating comedic performance.

August 2, 2013 Full Review Source: Philadelphia Inquirer
Philadelphia Inquirer
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Kline is so polished and resourceful that he can glide his way through even the creakiest bits and make them seem fresh.

August 2, 2013 Full Review Source: Orlando Sentinel
Orlando Sentinel
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Though replete with amusing situations and clever lines, its strongest suit is the delicately pitched comic performances of its actors, most especially star Kevin Kline.

August 2, 2013 Full Review Source: Los Angeles Times
Los Angeles Times
Top Critic IconTop Critic

After the promisingly nasty beginning, the filmmakers settle into a sort of campaign mode, lulling and flattering the audience with a fairy-tale vision of the common man's victory over the Washington establishment.

August 2, 2013 Full Review Source: New Yorker
New Yorker
Top Critic IconTop Critic

[A] delightful, gentle satire on the Washington political scene.

August 2, 2013 Full Review Source: Radio Times
Radio Times

Dave isn't too careful about filling plot holes. It does a pretty fair job, however, of making jokes at the expense of the D.C. political scene.

August 2, 2013 Full Review Source: Philadelphia Daily News
Philadelphia Daily News

As Kline begins to take his presidential duties seriously, the comedy seeps out, a listless civic-mindedness drifts in like fog off the Potomac.

August 2, 2013 Full Review Source: People Magazine
People Magazine

Despite the familiar echoes, the film works more often than it should. Without the charming Kevin Kline in two roles, plot problems would yawn like sinkholes.

August 2, 2013 Full Review Source: South Florida Sun-Sentinel
South Florida Sun-Sentinel

Despite its predictability this is one of director Reitman's best films, a gentle satire which provides Kline with one of his most likeable characters.

August 2, 2013 Full Review Source: Film4
Film4

Kline gives a tremendously likable performance as the ersatz president, and Sigourney Weaver brings charm and elegance to the role of First Lady who's as ignorant of the switcheroo as the rest of the country.

August 2, 2013 Full Review Source: Christian Science Monitor
Christian Science Monitor

Reitman keeps coming up with bouncy new directions to take the somewhat predictable material, greatly helped by Kline's bounce.

August 2, 2013 Full Review Source: Baltimore Sun
Baltimore Sun

...an affable, good-natured comedy, thanks to its stars and director, who never push it too far beyond gentle political and social satire and light romance.

September 17, 2012 Full Review Source: Movie Metropolis
Movie Metropolis

Pleasant comedy for older kids and up.

January 2, 2011 Full Review Source: Common Sense Media
Common Sense Media

Although its politics may be shaky, this comedy still works thank to the charm of Kline and an excellent supporting cast.

February 2, 2009 Full Review Source: Empire Magazine
Empire Magazine

The result is the funniest, savviest political comedy to come our way in some time.

February 2, 2009 Full Review Source: TV Guide's Movie Guide
TV Guide's Movie Guide

Audience Reviews for Dave

Frank Capra would be proud. Ivan Reitman's second best film.
November 20, 2011
Graham Jones

Super Reviewer

There's something quite magical about 1993. Not only do I count it as one of the best years of my life, but it's one that also brought us some of the greatest movies I've ever seen. Personal favourites of mine like Jurassic Park and Groundhog Day. Among all those cinematic triumphs, there was also another, more anonymous story. One that sort of fell in the shadow of previously mentioned titans (and that I hadn't really heard of until recently). I'm referring, of course, to Dave. Now, I could speak volumes of what makes this into such a wonderful viewing experience. But as I'm trying to keep my reviews in digestable portions, let me just say the following: Kevin Kline at his career-best, Sigourney Weaver as a lovely first lady. Funny, romantic, touching and inspiring. And these are just a few of the things that I loved about it. An underrated, heartwarming and flawlessly directed comedy, that starts off great and then gets better for every minute thereafter.
August 6, 2011
CloudStrife84
Mike S

Super Reviewer

Nothing bad.
May 11, 2011
Lucas Martins

Super Reviewer

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Foreign Titles

  • Dave (1993) (DE)
  • Dave (1993) (UK)
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