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Reality (2013)

tomatometer

79

Average Rating: 7/10
Reviews Counted: 73
Fresh: 58 | Rotten: 15

Part dark satire, part compelling drama, Reality occasionally struggles to communicate its message, but it's never less than entertaining.

89

Average Rating: 7.6/10
Critic Reviews: 18
Fresh: 16 | Rotten: 2

Part dark satire, part compelling drama, Reality occasionally struggles to communicate its message, but it's never less than entertaining.

audience

69

liked it
Average Rating: 3.5/5
User Ratings: 1,132

My Rating

Movie Info

From acclaimed director Matteo Garrone, REALITY is a darkly comic look at Luciano, a charming and affable fishmonger whose unexpected and sudden obsession with being a contestant on the reality show "Big Brother" leads him down a rabbit hole of skewed perceptions and paranoia. So overcome by his dream of being on reality TV, Luciano's own reality begins to spiral out of control, making for one of the most compelling tragicomic character studies since Scorsese's The King of Comedy. (c)

Aug 13, 2013

$55.3k

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All Critics (73) | Top Critics (18) | Fresh (58) | Rotten (15)

The satire here is finespun, and the film's conclusions ambiguous.

April 5, 2013 Full Review Source: Washington Post
Washington Post
Top Critic IconTop Critic

A dark allegorical comedy about the nature of fame, about obsession, about madness - and the point where they converge: on Big Brother, a TV show watched by millions.

April 4, 2013 Full Review Source: Philadelphia Inquirer
Philadelphia Inquirer
Top Critic IconTop Critic

For all its ups and downs and occasional detours into boorishness, it's an original that will surprise if not necessarily delight fans of Garrone's very different crime drama, "Gomorrah."

April 4, 2013 Full Review Source: Seattle Times
Seattle Times
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Matteo Garrone follows his crime epic Gomorrah with a comedy about reality TV, and though it hardly rivals the earlier movie in its social complexity, it still offers the spectacle of a vibrant and vividly realized Neapolitan neighborhood.

March 28, 2013 Full Review Source: Chicago Reader
Chicago Reader
Top Critic IconTop Critic

As cautionary tales go, this one's ripely knowing, and it speaks in a lot more languages than Italian.

March 28, 2013 Full Review Source: Boston Globe
Boston Globe
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Garrone has a feeling for sweep and color, and he makes Luciano a pathetic victim of the unrealities with which TV can beset us.

March 27, 2013 Full Review Source: The New Republic
The New Republic
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Reality is a little too thin to be truly satisfying. However, Garrone's elegant visual palette and Arena's remarkable central performance shift a potentially trite message into a gloriously warm and novel experience.

January 17, 2014 Full Review Source: Quickflix
Quickflix

The story is too slight.

January 16, 2014 Full Review Source: Ozus' World Movie Reviews
Ozus' World Movie Reviews

It's clear that Garrone is lamenting the death of culture. But the movie is more compassionate than screed-y. It's a portrait of the preoccupation with fame in an age in which in fame is cheap.

January 3, 2014 Full Review Source: Grantland
Grantland

This movie shows a bit of the human costs of reality TV, but not the full extent of it.

November 25, 2013 Full Review Source: Laramie Movie Scope
Laramie Movie Scope

Those who found Gomorrah embarrassingly overrated can relax. Despite a first half that's basically a spin-off of the 2008 movie that brought Matteo Garrone international acclaim, Reality turns out to be its veritable refutation.

November 5, 2013 Full Review Source: Film Comment Magazine
Film Comment Magazine

... works on multiple levels and Arena, who worked within a prison release arrangement while serving a life sentence, creates an indelible, sad character.

September 3, 2013 Full Review Source: Reeling Reviews
Reeling Reviews

Italian satire amusingly sends up our obsession with reality TV, but not in a wholly satisfying way.

July 24, 2013 Full Review Source: Flick Filosopher
Flick Filosopher

It is a brutal, frank, painful and highly meticulous look at an ordinary man undergoing a very modern crisis amidst a very simple life.

July 16, 2013 Full Review Source: ABC Radio (Australia)
ABC Radio (Australia)

Captures the 21st-century affliction of learned discontent, where perfectly happy people go in quest of something they think is better. Reality is a thoughtful, intelligent film.

July 13, 2013 Full Review Source: 3AW

Part fairy tale, part religious allegory, and part scathing indictment, but the comedy remains light.

July 13, 2013 Full Review Source: EricDSnider.com
EricDSnider.com

Garrone has confounded expectations with this light, Fellini-esque send-up of reality television and the celebrity it has spawned.

July 7, 2013 Full Review Source: The Sunday Age

A long and meandering satire on FOMO and self-delusion, and a shrewd commentary on the desire for the illusive fame that comes with reality television.

July 5, 2013 Full Review Source: Screenwize
Screenwize

My disappointment comes not just from the fact that the subject matter is soft but from the fact that the film is so thin

June 29, 2013 Full Review Source: Urban Cinefile
Urban Cinefile

The themes involving the confused sense of today's reality hit a note, (but) the film is not funny enough, nor interesting enough to hold our attention for its 116 minute running time

June 29, 2013 Full Review Source: Urban Cinefile
Urban Cinefile

Felliniesque is a term that gets bandied about frequently, but few films actually capture the spirit of the Italian master in his prime. Matteo Garrone's Reality earns its keep without resorting to mere imitation.

May 24, 2013 Full Review Source: Montreal Gazette
Montreal Gazette

As soon as the reality show element comes in, the movie abandons its creativity and goes for broad, anxious comedy that never works.

May 3, 2013 Full Review Source: Combustible Celluloid
Combustible Celluloid

Uma obra inteligente, engraçada e profundamente relevante.

April 25, 2013 Full Review Source: Cinema em Cena
Cinema em Cena

A feast of eye candy and broad comic caterwauling.

April 16, 2013 Full Review Source: East Bay Express
East Bay Express

A chilling dose of filmic reality of how damaging and all consuming celebrity and some people's aspirations of it can be ...

April 15, 2013 Full Review Source: Real.com

signifies the moral bankruptcy and delirium of Silvio Berlusconi's government-as-game-show regime

April 14, 2013 Full Review Source: Film Racket
Film Racket

Audience Reviews for Reality

A fishmonger from Naples loses his grip on reality as he waits to hear back from his audition for the Italian version of the "Big Brother" TV show. Slow but rich, with layers of satire and allegory and great long tracking shots of glorious Naples.
September 10, 2013
366weirdmovies
Greg S

Super Reviewer

Garrone uses many elegant long shots and an evoking soundtrack to tell this fascinating, dream-like character study about a common fishmonger who gradually grows obsessed with the idea of being famous - leading him to mix his yearnings with reality.
October 7, 2012
blacksheepboy

Super Reviewer

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Foreign Titles

  • Reality (DE)
  • Reality (UK)
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