One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest Reviews

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Kenneth Robinson
The Spectator
October 15, 2003
If the film is meant to be a serious criticism of mental homes it should be more obviously serious than it is. There are other subjects where comedy cannot say more than straight drama, and this is one of them.
Top Critic
Richard Schickel
TIME Magazine
February 20, 2009
One Flew over the Cuckoo 's Nest is an earnest attempt to make a serious film. But in the end the movie backs away from both the human reality and the cloudy but potent symbolism that Ken Kesey found in the asylum.
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Vincent Canby
New York Times
May 20, 2003
Even granting the artist his license, America is much too big and various to be satisfactorily reduced to the dimensions of one mental ward in a movie like this.
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Kathleen Carroll
New York Daily News
February 23, 2015
Nicholson explodes on the screen in a performance so flawless in timing and character perception that it should send half the stars in Hollywood back to acting school.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/4
Top Critic
Chris Petit
Time Out
February 11, 2006
Set in an insane asylum, the film involves the oppression of the individual, a struggle spearheaded by an ebullient Nicholson, turning in a star performance if ever there was one.
Robert Hatch
The Nation
February 12, 2013
I enjoyed the picture because it is an action romance, worked out in wonderfully inventive detail and presented with mesmeric immediacy by one of the screen's most resourceful directors.
Philip Martin
Arkansas Democrat-Gazette
July 29, 2002
| Original Score: 4/5
Top Critic
Roger Ebert
Chicago Sun-Times
March 25, 2003
Is One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest not a great film because it is manipulative, or is it great because it is so superbly manipulative? I can see it through either filter.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
Top Critic
James Berardinelli
November 4, 2008
Viewed 30 years after its release, One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest remains a very good motion picture, although one that perhaps just misses the pinnacle of greatness where its reputation suggests it resides.
Full Review | Original Score: 3.5/4
Scott Nash
Three Movie Buffs
February 23, 2015
It was Nicholson's first Oscar win and this remains, in many ways, his signature performance.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/4
Phil Villarreal
Arizona Daily Star
November 11, 2005
A rousing, rock-the-boat feel pulses throughout the film, overpowering its weaknesses.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/4
Tom Hutchinson
Radio Times
February 3, 2014
This film is one of the classic movies of the 1970s, thanks in no small measure to the talents of director Milos Forman.
Full Review | Original Score: 5/5
Scott Weinberg
DVD Clinic
October 8, 2002
This superlative 2-disc set ranks among my favorite DVDs of 2002, and I absolutely recommend it as a purchase.
Full Review | Original Score: 5/5
Matthew Pejkovic
Matt's Movie Reviews
July 6, 2010
A great cast, great screenplay and great performance makes One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest an enjoyable and thought provoking movie.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/5
Chris Seibold
January 1, 2000
Along with It Happened One Night and The Silence of the Lambs, these are the only three films to win all four major Oscars (actor, actress, director, picture). It's still the only film to deserve it.
Full Review | Original Score: 5/5
Rob Vaux
Flipside Movie Emporium
August 10, 2002
| Original Score: 5/5
Rebecca Murray
March 5, 2003
| Original Score: 5/5
Cole Smithey
August 5, 2009
The genius of the film is that you never feel you're being preached at, but rather being allowed a fly-on-the-wall view of a systematic crushing of humanity.
Full Review | Original Score: A+
Jeffrey M. Anderson
Combustible Celluloid
September 16, 2010
It's mostly Nicholson that makes the film work, with his fun, but very intelligent, canny turn.
Top Critic
Chris Nashawaty
Entertainment Weekly
September 9, 2010
There's a lot here. But with a classic like Cuckoo's Nest, too much is never enough.
Full Review | Original Score: A
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