White Heat Reviews

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Top Critic

TIME Magazine
April 27, 2009
Brilliantly directed by Raoul Walsh, an old master of cinema hoodlumism, it returns a more subtle James Cagney to the kind of thug role that made him famous.
Top Critic
Variety Staff
Variety
April 27, 2009
Cagney has an excellent supporting cast.
David Parkinson
Empire Magazine
April 27, 2009
Magnificent examination of the criminal mind and Cagney's finest moment.
Full Review | Original Score: 5/5
Top Critic
Dave Kehr
Chicago Reader
April 27, 2009
Raoul Walsh's heroes had a knack for going too far, but none went further than James Cagney in this roaring 1949 gangster piece.
Robert Roten
Laramie Movie Scope
October 9, 2008
Cagney supercharges the entire film with frenetic energy.
Full Review | Original Score: B+
Mark Bourne
DVDJournal.com
April 5, 2006
Its archetypal influence on later films like Goodfellas and the Al Pacino Scarface is striking, even if we can never again experience how new and bold it was back in its day....
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Time Out
January 26, 2006
Despite chronology (deranged by the censor's influence on the studios), this is really the fitting climax of the '30s gangster movie.
Pablo Villaca
Cinema em Cena
November 22, 2005
Cagney, intenso como de hábito, cria um personagem que, apesar de sua óbvia instabilidade psicológica e de sua crueldade patológica, conquista o espectador com sua carência emocional.
| Original Score: 5/5
Emanuel Levy
EmanuelLevy.Com
August 14, 2005
Raoul Walsh's Freudian film is one of the fastest and toughest crime-gangster films ever made, boasting a bravura performance from James Cagney as a misogynist mama boy ("top of the world, Ma").
Full Review | Original Score: A
Michael E. Grost
Classic Film and Television
May 28, 2005
Film noir masterpiece, with brilliant direction and visual style
Jeffrey M. Anderson
Combustible Celluloid
March 21, 2005
Cagney gives an utterly ferocious performance, arguably his finest, as Cody Jarrett, a psychotic gangster with an unholy mother fixation.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/4
John J. Puccio
Movie Metropolis
February 24, 2005
White Heat is vigorous and uncompromising. Cagney is all kinetic energy and raw nerve.
Full Review | Original Score: 8/10
Christopher Null
Filmcritic.com
February 5, 2005
If you're looking for Cagney's best gangster role ever, you got it right here, on the top of the world.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/5
Eric Henderson
Slant Magazine
February 4, 2005
White Heat's ultimate message: love's a *****...even crypto-incestuous love.
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/4
Rob Vaux
Flipside Movie Emporium
April 23, 2004
Cagney's finest hour and one of the best gangster pictures ever made.
| Original Score: 5/5
Dennis Schwartz
Ozus' World Movie Reviews
June 13, 2003
A very entertaining classic gangster film from the 1940s.
Full Review | Original Score: B-

Film4
May 24, 2003
There's a freewheeling brutality about the picture.
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Bosley Crowther
New York Times
May 20, 2003
The simple fact is that Mr. Cagney has made his return to a gangster role in one of the most explosive pictures that he or anyone has ever played.
Full Review | Original Score: 5/5
Ken Hanke
Mountain Xpress (Asheville, NC)
April 2, 2003
Powerful late-in-the-day gangster film.
| Original Score: 4/5
Dan Lybarger
Nitrate Online
March 28, 2003
Cagney's scariest performance anchors a gripping and somewhat kinky thriller.
| Original Score: 5/5
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