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True Confessions

True Confessions (1981)

tomatometer

40

Average Rating: 8.8/10
Critic Reviews: 5
Fresh: 2 | Rotten: 3

No consensus yet.

audience

54

liked it
Average Rating: 3.3/5
User Ratings: 2,624

My Rating

Movie Info

Adapted by John Gregory Dunne and Joan Didion from Dunne's novel, True Confessions uses the still-unsolved "Black Dahlia" murder as the foundation for a devastating attack on big-city corruption -- in which it appears that many of the perpetrators wear clerical collars. In, 1948 Los Angeles detective Tom Spellacy (Robert Duvall) is assigned to investigate the death of a priest, who apparently suffered a heart attack while being serviced by a prostitute. Meanwhile, Tom's brother, young Catholic

R,

Mystery & Suspense, Drama

John Gregory Dunne

Oct 7, 2014

MGM

Cast

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All Critics (11) | Top Critics (5) | Fresh (8) | Rotten (3) | DVD (4)

Two exciting, dangerous actors have little to do: Duvall spends too much time pacing and waiting; De Niro's big scene has him hanging up his vestments.

March 7, 2011 Full Review Source: TIME Magazine
TIME Magazine
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Given the powerhouse topline casting combo and provocative theme, True Confessions has to be chalked up as something of a disappointment.

March 26, 2009 Full Review Source: Variety
Variety
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Numerous vital characters are dropped and the case-solving stripped of its complexity, with the resulting film over-linear and one-dimensional.

June 24, 2006 Full Review Source: Time Out
Time Out
Top Critic IconTop Critic

True Confessions contains scenes that are just about as good as scenes can be. Then why does the movie leave us disoriented and disappointed, and why does the ending fail dismally?

October 23, 2004 Full Review Source: Chicago Sun-Times
Chicago Sun-Times
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Quite simply it's one of the most entertaining, most intelligent and most thoroughly satisfying commercial American films in a very long time.

August 30, 2004 Full Review Source: New York Times
New York Times
Top Critic IconTop Critic

A fascinating film that exposes the dark underside of the Catholic Church and fixes it firmly in the seedy, corrupt world of film noir.

March 7, 2011 Full Review Source: TV Guide's Movie Guide
TV Guide's Movie Guide

Acting compensates for disappointing ending

February 2, 2007
Old School Reviews

An atmospheric, always-intriguing mystery that works equally well as a perceptive character study. One of the very best films of the 1980s.

October 21, 2005
Fantastica Daily

Robert Duvall puts in a top-drawer performance in this crime drama mixing sleuthing and sacraments, crime and confession - one of the best films of 1981.

January 30, 2002 Full Review Source: Spirituality and Practice
Spirituality and Practice

Audience Reviews for True Confessions

With all the talent in front of the camera there is no way this should be as inert as it is. Visually impressive drama is not terrible but lumbers along to an indifferent conclusion. Watch L.A. Confidental, which presents a simiilar story in a superior manner, instead.
January 5, 2011
jjnxn
jay nixon

Super Reviewer

its a watchable film
April 24, 2009
FiLmCrAzY
Film Crazy

Super Reviewer

Robert De Niro is just as convincing as a priest as he is a gangster or a madman. Thought this was a great character played by Robert Duvell. Enjoyed the story, although it was a little drawn out.

VERDICT: Watch it on tv, don't rush out and rent
June 29, 2008
76Majikat

Super Reviewer

"True Confessions" is one of the slowest films I've seen. And not only is it slow, but it has virtually no climax or plot and the ending just sort of happens. That being said, Robert De Niro and Robert Duvall give some good performances (the latter doing a better job) and there are some scenes that are particularly interesting, not to mention that the production design is impeccable.
January 22, 2012
Stephen Earnest

Super Reviewer

There are no approved quotes yet for this movie.

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