The History Boys Reviews

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Geoff Berkshire
July 6, 2010
The play's the thing -- the only thing -- here
Full Review | Original Score: 3/5
Cole Smithey
April 15, 2009
In attempting to absolve the perverse actions of a teacher on the basis of his apparent tutoring skills, Alan Bennett has created a dubious work of fiction that is beyond empathy or humor.
Full Review | Original Score: C-
Betsy Bozdech
November 20, 2008
The History Boys is much less about lighting and composition than it is about Bennett's sharp, insightful script.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/5
Dennis Schwartz
Ozus' World Movie Reviews
December 19, 2007
The transfer from stage to film doesn't always go smoothly, as it's hard to shake the film's theater roots.
Full Review | Original Score: C+
September 2, 2007
Movies, unlike plays, tend to be just about a very few things, or they feel rushed and overly sweeping, as this one occasionally did. Plays can linger and chew on their themes and keep the audience engaged much more easily.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/5
Christopher Smith
Bangor Daily News (Maine)
May 1, 2007
With the writing way above board and insights fueling the story forward with heart and bawdy comedy, "The History Boys" is amiably off-center, sure, but it finds its core and leaves its mark.
Full Review | Original Score: B+
Urban Cinefile Critics
Urban Cinefile
April 28, 2007
A hugely enjoyable outing of subtle humour, witty words and a keen insight into human nature and the art of learning.
Beverly Berning
April 23, 2007
[History Boys] is most potently about the love of teaching, and how the best teachers can help give meaning to existence; and if not meaning in the grand sense, at least an appreciation of what it means to be human.
Robert Roten
Laramie Movie Scope
March 16, 2007
What lifts this film above the average is the extremely clever, erudite and witty dialogue.
Full Review | Original Score: B
Philip Martin
Arkansas Democrat-Gazette
March 9, 2007
.. gentle and sweet, ..all the more charming for its faith in its presumptive audience. It's heartening to come across a popular entertainment ...not pitched at the dull normal demographic.
Full Review | Original Score: 85/100
John A. Nesbit
Old School Reviews
January 24, 2007
refreshing--a film that doesn't insult the audience's intelligence
Full Review | Original Score: A-
January 17, 2007
I was sad when school let out. The characters are so rich I wanted to spend more time with them.
Full Review | Original Score: 3.5/5
Mark Pfeiffer
Reel Times: Reflections on Cinema
January 2, 2007
It's too bad that the film loses its way because The History Boys asks some interesting questions about what to learn and how to use it.
Full Review | Original Score: C
Ken Hanke
Mountain Xpress (Asheville, NC)
December 28, 2006
In the world of movies, it's a rare treat to find anything as sophisticated and witty as Alan Bennett's screenplay.
Full Review | Original Score: 5/5
Sean Means
Salt Lake Tribune
December 27, 2006
The final delight of The History Boys is realizing that these charming young actors... will now graduate to new things.
| Original Score: 3/4
Jim Lane
Sacramento News & Review
December 27, 2006
...despite all the earnestness...the characters and their tribulations never engage our sympathy or interest.
Full Review | Original Score: 2/5
Sean O'Connell
Charlotte Weekly
December 26, 2006
The unique duplication of stage cast to screen cast might be the most exciting thing about this conventional classroom exercise.
| Original Score: 2/4
Matt Brunson
Creative Loafing
December 23, 2006
The dialogue in Bennett's script is more riveting than the situational developments.
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/4
Jack Garner
Rochester Democrat and Chronicle
December 22, 2006
Nicholas Hytner (The Madness of King George and The Crucible) adapts Alan Bennett's hit play with the entire stage cast reprising their roles, and leans heavily on Bennett's sharp-witted dialogue and the school performances.
Full Review | Original Score: 7/10
Top Critic
Roger Moore
Orlando Sentinel
December 22, 2006
Taking a production pretty much intact from stage to screen robs it of its surprises. The cast seems to know what's coming, and so do we. There's not a single moment where you sense 'discovery' taking place.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/5
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