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The Reluctant Fundamentalist Reviews

Page 1 of 5
Curtis Woloschuk
Willamette Week

As Nair's film forgoes provocation for pandering, it assumes a tragic air, albeit not for the reasons she intended.

Full Review Source: Willamette Week | Original Score: C

May 22, 2013
Greg Evans
Bloomberg News

The heavy-handedness -- the strip-search begins with the loud thwack of rubber gloves -- reduces Hamid's characters to talking points.

Full Review Source: Bloomberg News

April 26, 2013
Meredith Slifkin
Film Comment Magazine

The film seems to dance around the idea of being really critical of America-of analogizing American "exceptionalism" with Islamic fundamentalism-and instead resolves itself with an ending more befitting of a beauty pageant contestant's speech.

Full Review Source: Film Comment Magazine

June 14, 2013
Abhimanyu Das
Slant Magazine

The laziest sort of political cinema, full of straw men and finger-pointing, wrapped up in an awards-friendly bow by its beautiful cinematography and a manipulative world music-y score.

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

April 15, 2013
Barbara VanDenburgh
Arizona Republic
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It most disappoints as a thriller, the flashbacks and voiceovers and romantic entanglements so dominating the proceedings you forget that someone is bound and gagged in real time.

Full Review Source: Arizona Republic | Original Score: 2.5/5

May 9, 2013
Shaun Munro
What Culture

Mira Nair again reminds us of her frustrating inconsistency as a filmmaker, enlisting a fine cast and strong technicals - Declan Quinn's sumptuous cinematography is particularly enchanting - but failing to cover the, ahem, fundamentals first.

Full Review Source: What Culture | Original Score: 2.5/5

October 29, 2012
Simon Miraudo
Quickflix

A notable cast - and noble intentions - can't elevate what is a very ordinary film.

Full Review Source: Quickflix | Original Score: 2.5/5

May 29, 2013
Matthew Toomey
ABC Radio Brisbane

It highlights the up-and-down nature of the film - some parts are compelling while other parts are unconvincing.

Full Review Source: ABC Radio Brisbane | Original Score: B-

May 22, 2013
Sam Adams
AV Club
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When Nair tries to take in the larger picture, her focus goes slack, and all that's left is a blur.

Full Review Source: AV Club | Original Score: B-

April 25, 2013
Philip Martin
Arkansas Democrat-Gazette

Despite some promising moments, it never quite coheres into a convincing story. It's worth seeing... but it ultimately feels like a missed opportunity - like a pedant groping for a profundity beyond his moral ken.

Full Review Source: Arkansas Democrat-Gazette | Original Score: 84/100

August 16, 2013
Ella Taylor
NPR
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The Reluctant Fundamentalist collapses in a heap of wool-gathering humanism that feels warm to the touch, yet fatally hedges its political bets.

Full Review Source: NPR

April 25, 2013
Alonso Duralde
TheWrap
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All the elements are there to tell a sharp, strong story, but director Mira Nair and screenwriter William Wheeler take the events of the day and simplify them into a blunt force object where subtlety and wit are replaced by sermonizing and melodramatics.

Full Review Source: TheWrap

April 25, 2013
Joe Morgenstern
Wall Street Journal
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The movie's failures are all the more unfortunate because they detract from its central and conspicuous success, the performance of Riz Ahmed in the title role.

Full Review Source: Wall Street Journal

April 25, 2013
Mike Scott
Times-Picayune

A lurching, stuttering drama, one whose intentions are far better than its sense of storytelling rhythm.

Full Review Source: Times-Picayune | Original Score: 2/5

May 17, 2013
Robert Everett-Green
Globe and Mail
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It's a timely narrative subject, but its treatment in The Reluctant Fundamentalist is fundamentally flawed.

Full Review Source: Globe and Mail | Original Score: 2/4

May 17, 2013
Chris Hewitt (St. Paul)
St. Paul Pioneer Press

"The Reluctant Fundamentalist" often feels as if it's going nowhere. By the time it reaches its ambiguous conclusion, at least it should have helped us understand where Changez is coming from, but it doesn't.

Full Review Source: St. Paul Pioneer Press | Original Score: 2/4

May 2, 2013
Robbie Collin
Daily Telegraph

You leave the cinema with your teeth clenched, muttering: "at least it meant well".

Full Review Source: Daily Telegraph | Original Score: 2/5

May 10, 2013
Christian Toto
Big Hollywood

Come for the barrage of clunky plot devices but stay for the morally repugnant comparison between religious radical killers and capitalists.

Full Review Source: Big Hollywood | Original Score: 1.5/4

May 3, 2013
Manohla Dargis
New York Times
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By literalizing the idea of American military aggression and all that it implies Ms. Nair doesn't just invest Mr. Hamid's story with Hollywood-style beats, she also completely drains it of ambiguity.

Full Review Source: New York Times | Original Score: 2/5

April 25, 2013
Prairie Miller
NewsBlaze

A film unfortunately characterized by as much cake-and-eat-it ambivalence as those commitment challenged lovebirds. And with an ideological resolution wavering between two extremes, and in the end neither of them.

Full Review Source: NewsBlaze

May 4, 2013
Page 1 of 5
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