• PG, 1 hr. 49 min.
  • Drama
  • Directed By:
    Steven Zaillian
    In Theaters:
    Aug 14, 1993 Wide
    On DVD:
    Jul 11, 2000
  • Paramount Home Video

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Searching for Bobby Fischer Reviews

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Scott G. Mignola
Common Sense Media

Excellent story about sportsmanship.

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

January 2, 2011
Variety Staff
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Pomeranc is wonderfully real and wide-eyed as Josh, with a raspy voice and slight lisp recalling Linus from the Peanuts cartoons.

Full Review Source: Variety

March 26, 2009
Michael Booth
Denver Post
Top Critic IconTop Critic

The mystery of Fischer's talent and torment adds depth to Searching for Bobby Fischer, about a young New York chess prodigy who doesn't want his genius to ruin his life.

Full Review Source: Denver Post

February 8, 2008
Rob Gonsalves

An intelligently crafted celebration of introspection and decency.

Full Review Source: eFilmCritic.com | Original Score: 5/5

April 9, 2007
Derek Adams
Time Out
Top Critic IconTop Critic

True, James Horner's score seems to have strayed in from a fists-in-the-air crowd-pleaser, but it's the one weak link in an accomplished, unexpectedly winning movie.

Full Review Source: Time Out

June 24, 2006
Janet Maslin
New York Times
Top Critic IconTop Critic

What Bobby Fischer took away, dashing the hopes and the innocence of his acolytes when he spurned chess, may never truly be recaptured. But some of it has found its way to the screen.

Full Review Source: New York Times | Original Score: 4/4

August 30, 2004
Nell Minow
Movie Mom at Yahoo! Movies

Perfectly realized, exquisitely acted.

| Original Score: 5/5

July 20, 2003
Dan Lybarger
Nitrate Online

A thoughtful and absorbing family drama.

| Original Score: 4/5

May 29, 2003
Rob Vaux
Flipside Movie Emporium

It takes a lot to make the story of chess-playing little boys as absorbing as this one.

| Original Score: 4/5

December 30, 2002
Frederic and Mary Ann Brussat
Spirituality and Practice

Revolves around chess but really focuses on those precious values that make life worth living.

Full Review Source: Spirituality and Practice

August 21, 2002
James Kendrick
Q Network Film Desk

The film's simple message is that no one thing should ever dominate anyone's life, no matter how good he or she is at it.

| Original Score: 4/4

October 9, 2001
Brian Webster
Apollo Guide

A thoughtful, meaning-filled movie that's deliberate in pace, low-key in style, but important in what it has to say and ultimately satisfying in its careful execution.

Full Review Source: Apollo Guide | Original Score: 81/100

July 25, 2001
Roger Ebert
Chicago Sun-Times
Top Critic IconTop Critic

If we can operate at the genius level in a given field, does that mean we must -- even if the cost is the sort of endless purgatory a Bobby Fischer has inhabited? It's an interesting question, and this movie doesn't avoid it.

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

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

As the boy with a cute little lisp, who emerges from his toy room to mastermind his kings, queens and bishops to tactical victory, Pomeranc imbues the movie with irresistible naivete.

Full Review Source: Washington Post

January 1, 2000
Rita Kempley
Washington Post
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Searching for Bobby Fischer does for chess what The Karate Kid did for martial arts, albeit with considerably more complexity and class.

Full Review Source: Washington Post

January 1, 2000
Steve Rhodes
Internet Reviews

Even if you know nothing about the game of chess, I still recommend it to you.

Full Review Source: Internet Reviews | Original Score: 3/4

January 1, 2000
John A. Nesbit
Old School Reviews

Searching for Bobby Fischer approaches Josh's fears and self-doubt very effectively and does so with a lot of heart.

Full Review Source: Old School Reviews | Original Score: B

January 1, 2000
Marjorie Baumgarten
Austin Chronicle

The script is so very rich, and different viewers will be able to latch onto different thematic and personally meaningful aspects without sacrificing the overall blend.

Full Review Source: Austin Chronicle | Original Score: 4/5

January 1, 2000
Chris Hicks
Deseret News, Salt Lake City

Without a child who could carry off the central role with the necessary emotion and chess-playing ability, the film would probably fall flat. Fortunately, Zaillian found young Max Pomeranc...

Full Review Source: Deseret News, Salt Lake City | Original Score: 3.5/4

January 1, 2000
Noel Murray
Nashville Scene

Lively and captivating.

Full Review Source: Nashville Scene

January 1, 2000
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