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67% The Hundred-Foot Journey $2.4M

Coming Soon

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—— Two Night Stand Sep 26
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Discuss Last Night's Shows

91% Doctor Who: Season 8
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90% Outlander: Season 1

The Providence Effect Reviews

Page 1 of 1
Michael Phillips
Chicago Tribune
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Adams is well worth a movie, and this one's engaging as far as it goes. But for the film to be truer to the school's reputation, it would have had to dig a little deeper.

Full Review Source: Chicago Tribune | Original Score: 2.5/4

October 1, 2009
John P. McCarthy
Boxoffice Magazine

Providence-St. Mel's achievements are truly laudable, but its inspirational lessons get watered down by the uncritical approach taken by director/producer Rollin Binzer.

Full Review Source: Boxoffice Magazine | Original Score: 2/5

September 24, 2009
Sonny Bunch
Washington Times

The Providence Effect comes off as more a gauzy 90-minute infomercial for the school than a real examination of its methods and strategies for success.

Full Review Source: Washington Times | Original Score: 2/4

September 25, 2009
Avi Offer
NYC Movie Guru

Marginally compelling and well-edited while deficient when it comes to insight and provocativeness. You'll find a lot of potatoes here, but not enough meat.

Full Review Source: NYC Movie Guru | Original Score: 5.5/10

September 26, 2009
Jeannette Catsoulis
New York Times
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More an infomercial than a movie, The Providence Effect is, at best, a well-earned tribute to one manā(TM)s unwavering vision.

Full Review Source: New York Times | Original Score: 2.5/5

September 25, 2009
Peter Hartlaub
San Francisco Chronicle
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The subjects seem to be guiding the director through the movie, which offers no objectivity and avoids obvious questions. It's among the best films in history within its genre, but that genre is infomercial.

Full Review Source: San Francisco Chronicle | Original Score: 2/4

October 16, 2009
V.A. Musetto
New York Post
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Adams and the school's students and teachers deserve an A-plus, although the film rates a much lower grade. It unfolds lifelessly, as Binzer parades a contingent of talking heads before the camera in what could pass for an infomercial.

Full Review Source: New York Post | Original Score: 1.5/4

September 25, 2009

Slant Magazine

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

September 25, 2009
Roger Ebert
Chicago Sun-Times
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The Providence Effect is impressive, although not quite the film it could have been.

Full Review Source: Chicago Sun-Times | Original Score: 3/4

September 24, 2009
Fr. Chris Carpenter
Movie Dearest

Objective viewers may criticize the filmmakers' tendency to view their subject through rose-colored glasses. Still, the subject is fascinating.

Full Review Source: Movie Dearest | Original Score: B+

October 2, 2009
S. James Snyder
Time Out New York
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Swooning but shallow, this doc plays like a promotional commercial for Providence St. Mel, a private school on Chicago's impoverished West Side that sends 100 percent of its graduates on to college.

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

September 23, 2009
Kam Williams

A moving bio-pic about an unsung hero with a winning education formula which ought to be replicated in inner cities all across the country.

Full Review Source: NewsBlaze | Original Score: 4/4

February 24, 2010
Matt Pais

Shows the effect of teachers who care and students groomed to believe in themselves. It's also remarkably reassuring to see education at work and believe, yes, it can be done.

Full Review Source: | Original Score: 3.5/5

September 24, 2009
Andrea Gronvall
Chicago Reader
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This uplifting documentary breaks no new ground stylistically, but the story it tells is urgent and compelling.

Full Review Source: Chicago Reader

October 2, 2009
Ernest Hardy
Village Voice
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The film never completely shakes the feel of being more an advertisement than a documentary, but once it settles into a concrete illustration of Adams's philosophy, it becomes riveting.

Full Review Source: Village Voice

September 23, 2009
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