The Central Park Five Reviews

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Joseph Jon Lanthier
Slant Magazine
November 16, 2012
Though relentlessly and admirably logical, the movie constantly glosses over the buried human element.
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/4
Sarah Boslaugh
PopMatters
December 1, 2012
... a respectable but often tedious film that adds little to what is already well known about this episode
Full Review | Original Score: 5/10
Top Critic
Lou Lumenick
New York Post
November 21, 2012
"The Central Park Five" ultimately fails to make its case that five teenagers were sent to jail for a crime they didn't commit solely because of institutional racism.
Full Review | Original Score: 2/4
Robert Denerstein
Movie Habit
March 28, 2013
When hysteria trumps innocence
Chris Chang
Film Comment Magazine
June 17, 2013
The film, in some ways a primer on the perennial intractability of racial prejudice, clearly intends to be some sort of vindication of its five central figures. It succeeds in the first respect but falls wide of the mark in the second.
Al Alexander
The Patriot Ledger
May 13, 2013
The filmmakers do a tremendous job of setting the mood and mind-set of New Yorkers in the spring of 1989, when violent crime was rampant and the Big Apple was rotting to the core.
Full Review | Original Score: A-
Sara Smith
Kansas City Star
April 16, 2013
The Central Park Five takes one of the most sensational crimes of the late 20th century and strips the circus that followed down to its roots. The horrific attack in the woods on that April night 24 years ago was just the beginning.
Top Critic
Casey Burchby
Village Voice
November 20, 2012
The central power of the film comes from hearing the accused finally telling their own stories.
Sam Fragoso
Fan The Fire
September 18, 2012
There's no grand epiphany or blinding revelation, just cogent storytelling framing a provocative and devastating incident in American history.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/5
Shannon M. Houston
Paste Magazine
January 4, 2013
The Central Park Five is such a moving piece of work, it is difficult to watch at times.
Full Review | Original Score: 8.3/10
Simon Gallagher
Film School Rejects
May 28, 2012
The Central Park Five story is enormously engaging, and the presentation, and in particular the editing of this doc are both very accomplished.
Full Review | Original Score: A-
Devin Faraci
Birth.Movies.Death.
November 20, 2012
A powerful, moving, infuriating experience. Everyone should see this movie.
September 20, 2012
The real story is about how terrible our society is in relation to the terrible problems of the judicial system, not the latter in and of itself.
Top Critic
Roger Ebert
Chicago Sun-Times
December 6, 2012
Involves a detailed reconstruction of how the story broke, was developed and was dramatized by lurid tabloid headlines.
Full Review | Original Score: 3.5/4
Top Critic
Lisa Kennedy
Denver Post
December 21, 2012
The doc is rife with smart or wrenching or shameful moments. The fresh interviews with the accused, now men, are invaluable.
Top Critic
Michael Phillips
Chicago Tribune
December 6, 2012
An unusually good documentary about an outlandish miscarriage of justice.
Full Review | Original Score: 3.5/4
Top Critic
Joe Morgenstern
Wall Street Journal
November 29, 2012
Watching "The Central Park Five" is a deeply affecting experience.
Kelly Vance
East Bay Express
December 20, 2012
Puts the crime and the times in sharp perspective.
Clay Cane
BET.com
December 7, 2012
Not only gripping and heartbreaking, but terrifying.
Full Review | Original Score: A
Kirk Honeycutt
honeycuttshollywood.com
November 3, 2012
What the film does best is explain the psychology behind police and prosecurtorial attachment to a false story.
Full Review | Original Score: 7
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