• PG-13, 2 hr. 5 min.
  • Drama
  • Directed By:
    Jonathan Demme
    In Theaters:
    Dec 22, 1993 Wide
    On DVD:
    Sep 9, 1997
  • Sony Pictures Home Entertainment

Opening

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—— The Class Of '92 Jul 08

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Philadelphia Reviews

Page 1 of 3
Peter Canavese
Groucho Reviews

What remains most striking about Philadelphia may be the...conspicuous emphasis on intense close-ups. They force an inescapable emotional intimacy in relation to issues the mainstream, at least at the time, would rather have looked away from. [Blu-ray]

Full Review Source: Groucho Reviews | Original Score: 2.5/4

May 29, 2013
Heather Boerner
Common Sense Media

Moving, Oscared '90s drama fostered AIDS empathy.

Full Review Source: Common Sense Media | Original Score: 5/5

December 18, 2010
Todd McCarthy
Variety
Top Critic IconTop Critic

[An] extremely well-made message picture about tolerance, justice and discrimination is pitched at mainstream audiences, befitting its position as the first major Hollywood film to directly tackle the disease.

Full Review Source: Variety

October 10, 2008
Geoff Andrew
Time Out
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Safe and apolitical it may be, but Philadelphia succeeds as a deeply affecting humanist drama.

Full Review Source: Time Out

June 24, 2006
Emanuel Levy
EmanuelLevy.Com

Wearing its heart on its sleeves, this well-intentioned but soft and compromised AIDS drama may nonetheless perform the same function that Paltoon or Schindler's List have: Change public opinion about an urgent problem.

Full Review Source: EmanuelLevy.Com | Original Score: 3/4

April 21, 2006
Rob Thomas
Capital Times (Madison, WI)

The courtroom stuff is unwieldly, but everything else is brave and moving.

| Original Score: 3/5

October 25, 2005
Rich Cline
Shadows on the Wall

involving but badly cliched

| Original Score: 3/5

August 26, 2005
Keith Uhlich
Slant Magazine

In the guise of piety, Philadelphia panders to a perceived straight-male majority.

Full Review Source: Slant Magazine | Original Score: 2/4

November 6, 2004
Bill Chambers
Film Freak Central

Being under the PC microscope transforms Demme into the bastard offspring of Stanley Kramer and Norman Lear

| Original Score: 2/4

October 25, 2004
Michael Dequina
TheMovieReport.com

Manages to be humorous and moving without being too preachy or heavy-handed.

Full Review Source: TheMovieReport.com

January 5, 2004
Fred Topel
About.com

Excellent performances and the sensitive handling of complicated issues.

| Original Score: 4/5

July 14, 2003
Janet Maslin
New York Times
Top Critic IconTop Critic

"Philadelphia" mostly succeeds in being forceful, impassioned and moving, sometimes even rising to the full range of emotion that its subject warrants. But too often, even at its most assertive, it works in safely predictable ways.

Full Review Source: New York Times | Original Score: 3/5

May 20, 2003
Luke Y. Thompson
New Times

Can't a movie make us feel sympathy for a gay character without having him die and spout opera cliches?

| Original Score: 2/5

December 13, 2002
Rob Vaux
Flipside Movie Emporium

Hollywood's effort to say Something Really Important about AIDS turns out to be a timid, gutless joke.

| Original Score: 2/5

November 1, 2002
Frederic and Mary Ann Brussat
Spirituality and Practice

Conveys the hornet's nest of ignorance, prejudice, half-truths and devastating lies connected with AIDS.

Full Review Source: Spirituality and Practice

August 20, 2002
Ken Hanke
Mountain Xpress (Asheville, NC)

Overrated, but well intended. Intentions are not enough

| Original Score: 2/5

August 14, 2002
George Perry
BBC.com

Arguably, the horror of death from Aids has been sanitized for popular consumption, but nevertheless it is a brave and commendable effort.

Full Review Source: BBC.com | Original Score: 4/5

April 17, 2001
Scott Renshaw
rec.arts.movies.reviews

Phildelphia is a good idea, just not a particularly good film.

Full Review Source: rec.arts.movies.reviews | Original Score: 5/10

January 1, 2000
Desson Thomson
Washington Post
Top Critic IconTop Critic

This AIDS courtroom drama is so pumped full of nitrous oxide, you could get your teeth drilled on it.

Full Review Source: Washington Post

January 1, 2000
Roger Ebert
Chicago Sun-Times
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Philadelphia breaks no new dramatic ground ... And yet Philadelphia is quite a good film, on its own terms.

Full Review Source: Chicago Sun-Times | Original Score: 3.5/4

January 1, 2000
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