Freaks Reviews

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Top Critic
Variety Staff
March 26, 2009
Freaks is sumptuously produced, admirably directed, and no cost was spared. But Metro failed to realize that even with a different sort of offering the story still is important.
Christopher Null
August 14, 2004
Pretty pioneering for 1932, but modern desensitization to such things (hell, we have Paris Hilton on TV) mutes the freak-out effect almost completely.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/5
Keith H. Brown
Eye for Film
August 16, 2001
Freaks is worth a look for those with interested in the history of exploitation cinema or the trash/punk aesthetic of the likes of John Waters, but others will probably find it unpleasant and heavy going.
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/5
Jonathan Hatfull
June 18, 2015
With strong performances and a surprising tenderness, Freaks more than deserves its towering reputation.
Full Review | Original Score: 5/5
Philip Martin
Arkansas Democrat-Gazette
December 30, 2002
| Original Score: 3/5
Top Critic
Joe Morgenstern
Wall Street Journal
September 28, 2015
[Boasts] some of the most terrifying scenes ever consigned to film.
Alan Jones
Radio Times
August 25, 2004
A deserved cult masterpiece, this tale of the macabre, with its blood-freezing shock ending, is incredible, disturbing and, once seen, never forgotten.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/5
Phil Villarreal
Arizona Daily Star
April 7, 2006
The movie's influences can be found in nearly every conceivable corner of modern film.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/4
Simon Kinnear
Total Film
October 20, 2010
From scandalous Hollywood outcast to influential cult classic, Tod Browning's 1932 dark drama about (and starring) freak-show performers is now truly "one of us".
Full Review | Original Score: 5/5
Scott Weinberg
July 27, 2002
Uniquely horrifying.
| Original Score: 5/5
Top Critic
Tom Huddleston
Time Out
June 8, 2015
One of the most powerful films ever made about the need for humanity and solidarity in the face of cruelty and oppression.
Full Review | Original Score: 5/5
Cole Smithey
December 9, 2011
[VIDEO ESSAY] In spite of the tremendous success he enjoyed with "Dracula" in 1931, Tod Browning's directorial career was effectively ruined after he made "Freaks" the following year.
Full Review | Original Score: A-
Jeffrey M. Anderson
Combustible Celluloid
August 30, 2004
It's a truly amazing film, not so much horrific as it is funny, touching and extraordinary; you'd be hard-pressed to find another film like it.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/4
Felix Vasquez Jr.
Cinema Crazed
October 28, 2013
A masterpiece of the horror mold, and one that warrants a loyal audience.
Staci Layne Wilson
August 12, 2004
Freaks is definitely not a horror film in the traditional sense -- yet, it's appealed to horror fans for decades.
Top Critic
Geoff Andrew
Time Out
January 26, 2006
It has now achieved deserved recognition as a masterpiece.
Jeffrey Westhoff
Northwest Herald (Crystal Lake, IL)
August 9, 2002
| Original Score: 4/5
Bob Bloom
Journal and Courier (Lafayette, IN)
August 13, 2004
Dennis Schwartz
Ozus' World Movie Reviews
January 1, 2000
... Browning made the normal people the grotesque ones, showing how ugly they were because of their intolerance.
Full Review | Original Score: A-
Jeremiah Kipp
Flipside Movie Emporium
October 24, 2001
If anything, the movie is a fable about accepting others as you would want to be accepted yourself. Unfortunately, the studios and general public didn't see it that way.
Full Review | Original Score: A
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