About Schmidt - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

About Schmidt Reviews

Top Critic
Peter Rainer
New York Magazine/Vulture
January 16, 2003
These filmmakers have a feeling for the isolation of blasted lives, but they also can't resist putting them down.
Top Critic
Robert Denerstein
Denver Rocky Mountain News
January 10, 2003
| Original Score: B
Top Critic
Stanley Kauffmann
The New Republic
January 8, 2003
A poignant marker in the career of a major artist.
Top Critic
Jay Boyar
Orlando Sentinel
January 3, 2003
A thought-provoking and often-funny drama about isolation.
| Original Score: 4/5
Top Critic
Rene Rodriguez
Miami Herald
January 3, 2003
A cuttingly funny, moving portrayal of a man searching for meaning in his unremarkable, unmemorable life.
| Original Score: 4/4
Top Critic
Bill Muller
Arizona Republic
January 3, 2003
Each deft stroke of Payne's pen is matched by a Nicholson flourish, transforming the film into a moving, bittersweet ballet.
| Original Score: 5/5
Top Critic
Desson Thomson
Washington Post
December 20, 2002
Nicholson ... produces the most understated -- and one of the most powerful -- performances of his career.
Top Critic
Stephen Hunter
Washington Post
December 20, 2002
The pleasures of About Schmidt are what might be called Midwestern pleasures: a sly sense of humor, sturdiness, self-discipline, solidarity.
Top Critic
Peter Howell
Toronto Star
December 20, 2002
A road trip of self-discovery, by turns hilarious and poignant, for a man unexpectedly at odds with the tiny world he has so laboriously made.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/5
Top Critic
Moira MacDonald
Seattle Times
December 20, 2002
To see a master actor rejoicing in his craft -- and a character both simpler and more complex than most of the people we ever meet on screen -- About Schmidt is a worthy, artful journey.
| Original Score: 3/4
Top Critic
Mick LaSalle
San Francisco Chronicle
December 20, 2002
A seriously good movie, a challenge to viewers, a rebuke of the way many Americans live their lives.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/4
Top Critic
Eric Harrison
Houston Chronicle
December 20, 2002
The film aims to be funny, uplifting and moving, sometimes all at once. The extent to which it succeeds is impressive.
| Original Score: B+
Top Critic
Liam Lacey
Globe and Mail
December 20, 2002
The movie isn't just about Schmidt as a personality, it's a portrait of his world, and Payne and co-writer Taylor show a rare compassion for the superficially comfortable.
| Original Score: 3.5/4
Top Critic
Susan Stark
Detroit News
December 20, 2002
By turns hilarious and poignant, Schmidt is about nothing special and everything important.
| Original Score: 4/4
Top Critic
Terry Lawson
Detroit Free Press
December 20, 2002
There is a casual courage and dignity, and no small amount of obliviousness, in Nicholson's Schmidt that will remind many younger people of their parents, and many older people of their brothers and friends -- and themselves.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/4
Top Critic
Steven Rosen
Denver Post
December 20, 2002
About Schmidt winds up being about us all.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/4
Top Critic
Roger Ebert
Chicago Sun-Times
December 20, 2002
That Jack Nicholson makes this man so watchable is a tribute not only to his craft, but to his legend.
Full Review | Original Score: 3.5/4
Top Critic
Ty Burr
Boston Globe
December 20, 2002
A brutally dry satire of Middle American numbness.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
Top Critic
Eleanor Ringel Gillespie
Atlanta Journal-Constitution
December 19, 2002
This is Christmas Future for a lot of baby boomers.
| Original Score: B+
Top Critic
Philip Wuntch
Dallas Morning News
December 19, 2002
Schmidt's ponderings will touch every demographic. Like all our lives, his is hilarious and tragic, filled with probing thoughts and whimsical nonsense.
Full Review | Original Score: A
Top Critic
Steven Rea
Philadelphia Inquirer
December 19, 2002
A quiet, heart-rending masterpiece, one with an actor's turn that people will remember, and rediscover, eons into the future.
Top Critic
Glenn Lovell
San Jose Mercury News
December 19, 2002
Nicholson's cranky father of the bride is as touching as he is exasperating, and the delightfully oddball About Schmidt is just about perfect.
| Original Score: 4/4
Top Critic
Michael Wilmington
Chicago Tribune
December 19, 2002
This is a superb film and one of Nicholson's great performances, tamped down but magnetic.
| Original Score: 4/4
Top Critic
Richard Schickel
TIME Magazine
December 16, 2002
Payne also understands what it has taken me most of a lifetime to comprehend: that the Schmidts of this world are not to be easily dismissed.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/4
Top Critic
Mike Clark
USA Today
December 13, 2002
Flamboyant in some movies and artfully restrained in others, 65-year-old Jack Nicholson could be looking at his 12th Oscar nomination by proving that he's now, more than ever, choosing his roles with the precision of the insurance actuary.
Full Review | Original Score: 3.5/4
Top Critic
Gene Seymour
Newsday
December 13, 2002
Even while playing in a minor key with low-to-moderate tone colors, Jack Nicholson can knock your socks off.
| Original Score: 3.5/4
Top Critic
Manohla Dargis
Los Angeles Times
December 13, 2002
Perfectly pitched between comedy and tragedy, hope and despair, About Schmidt instead comes far closer than many movies to expressing the way many of us live -- someplace between consuming self-absorption and insistently demanding otherness.
| Original Score: 4/5
Top Critic
December 13, 2002
About Schmidt is undoubtedly one of the finest films of the year. If you're not deeply touched by this movie, check your pulse.
Top Critic
December 13, 2002
Payne's movie is flat, depressed, and at times -- given this director's talent -- disappointingly curdled.
Top Critic
Charles Taylor
Salon.com
December 13, 2002
Despite Jack Nicholson's competence, this comedy about a Midwestern retiree never goes beyond mocking its characters and flattering its audience.
Top Critic
J. Hoberman
Village Voice
December 10, 2002
An impressively bleak comedy with intimations of social satire.
Top Critic
James Berardinelli
ReelViews
December 10, 2002
On balance, I recommend the movie both for Nicholson's performance and for the opportunity to spend some time with the kind of man that we often meet in real life, but rarely see on screen.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
Top Critic
David Ansen
Newsweek
December 9, 2002
This road movie gives you emotional whiplash, and you'll be glad you went along for the ride.
Top Critic
Richard Roeper
Ebert & Roeper
December 9, 2002
It's an astonishing piece of acting and a really interesting film.
Top Critic
Lisa Schwarzbaum
Entertainment Weekly
December 7, 2002
One of the best films of the year.
Full Review | Original Score: A
Top Critic
Peter Travers
Rolling Stone
November 20, 2002
Nicholson's acting sets a new gold standard, making Schmidt a movie you won't forget.
| Original Score: 4/4
Top Critic
Andrew Sarris
New York Observer
October 2, 2002
Both as satire and as drama, About Schmidt turns out to be a fascinating setback.
Top Critic
Jami Bernard
New York Daily News
September 30, 2002
One of the best, most understated performances of [Jack Nicholson's] career.
| Original Score: 4/4
Top Critic
Lou Lumenick
New York Post
September 27, 2002
A must-see for Nicholson's mesmerizing performance, which would probably hold interest even if the sound were turned off.
| Original Score: 3/4
Top Critic
Stephen Holden
New York Times
September 26, 2002
Lays out an expansive, impressively even-handed vision of life in contemporary Middle America.
| Original Score: 4/5
Top Critic
Michael Rechtshaffen
Hollywood Reporter
May 23, 2002
It's a commanding Jack Nicholson lead performance that puts it into a sublime league of its own.
Top Critic
Todd McCarthy
Variety
May 22, 2002
Nicholson has provided an open window into this man, one like so many in that he had youthful ambitions to accomplish more than he actually did ...