Critics Consensus

A biopic that lacks the luster of its subject, Notorious is generic rise-and-fall fare that still functions as a primer for those less familiar with the work and life of the hip hop icon.



Reviews Counted: 144

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Audience Score

User Ratings: 97,062


All Critics | Top Critics
Average Rating: N/A
Reviews Count: 0
Fresh: 0
Rotten: 0


Average Rating: 3.5/5

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Movie Info

"Notorious" centers on the life of murdered rapper Notorious B.I.G, from his beginnings as a Brooklyn crack dealer to East Coast hip-hop sensation.

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Critic Reviews for Notorious

All Critics (144) | Top Critics (47)

  • The inclusion of real-life footage and re-enacted YouTube clips is an interesting idea, but with each awkward stab at a new shooting style, Tillman Jr moves closer towards disgracing his subject with yet another hack job.

    Feb 19, 2009
  • Now in blows the myth of the myth: a brashly entertaining biopic.

    Feb 13, 2009 | Rating: 3/5 | Full Review…

    Xan Brooks

    Top Critic
  • As mainstream hip hop becomes ever more predictable, so do the biopics about its stars.

    Feb 12, 2009 | Rating: 2/6 | Full Review…
  • This is an MTV-friendly, slick and styled production that tells one version of a very murky story and does it with plenty of energy but little imagination.

    Feb 12, 2009 | Rating: 2/5 | Full Review…

    Wendy Ide

    Times (UK)
    Top Critic
  • A fitfully fascinating rise-and-demise yarn that will probably leave hip-hop fans underwhelmed while also alienating middlebrow audiences hoping for an inspirational night out.

    Feb 12, 2009 | Rating: 3/5 | Full Review…
  • Even if we miss the thinking that went into the creation of Wallace's B.I.G.-ger-than-life alter ego, the movie's performances are exultant.

    Jan 20, 2009 | Full Review…

Audience Reviews for Notorious

Biopics are difficult to make and typically flawed, rushing through stages of the person's life and focusing on pointless incidents at times. Notorious falls victim to this but for the most part it was pretty good. The casting in terms of resemblance to the portrayed characters is solid, except for 2pac. The quality of the acting at times is inconsistent but mostly above average. The good's and bad's of rap biopics are fun to watch.

Lenny Muggsy
Lenny Muggsy

Super Reviewer


Along the lines of 8 mile. this movie tells a story while it connects you with the main character. Even tho you know whats going to happen to him in the begining I still was interested in his like and what would happen to him...The music what very good, altho im not reall a fan of hardcore rap. I can see the appeal of it. I just have to be in the right mood to see it. This movie has some very strong performances as well.

Morgan Salem
Morgan Salem

Super Reviewer

I don't care too much for rap, but a good biop is always fun. B.I.G. seemed like a pretty big douche, but it made for an interesting story.

Curtis Lilly
Curtis Lilly

Super Reviewer

I really liked it! I remember being 12 or 13 at the time of the deaths of Biggie and Tupac, I just didn't really know what went down, but watching this clarifies a few things for me. It was interesting watching him grow up and doing what he did to get to where he got to; also the relationships he had with Lil' Kim, Tupac, and Faith. What I really think though is that there should be a Tupac movie out about his life story.

Nani Vang
Nani Vang

Super Reviewer

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