America's Heart and Soul - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

America's Heart and Soul Reviews

Top Critic
Elizabeth Weitzman
New York Daily News
August 13, 2004
Even if [Schwartzberg's] choices feel somewhat clichéd, there's no doubting the spirit of his subjects, who seem genuinely proud to share their thoughts and feelings for a few, too brief moments.
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/4
Top Critic
Robert Denerstein
Denver Rocky Mountain News
July 20, 2004
| Original Score: B
Top Critic
Richard Roeper
Ebert & Roeper
July 12, 2004
An inspirational and emotionally effective feel-good film.
Top Critic
Gregory Kirschling
Entertainment Weekly
July 7, 2004
Less evocative and honest in all its 88 minutes than, say, just one of the throwaway establishing shots of Angela Arenivar's dusty Texas-panhandle hometown in last year's Spellbound, a true American movie with a lot more heart and soul.
Full Review | Original Score: B-
Top Critic
Desson Thomson
Washington Post
July 2, 2004
Even though, at times, Schwartzberg's documentary exalts the American way of life with the mythical reverence of a Leni Riefenstahl, the experience is undeniably stirring.
Top Critic
Ann Hornaday
Washington Post
July 2, 2004
Harbors some indelibly arresting images and characters whose stories, even at their most superficial, manage to be authentically inspiring.
Top Critic
Claudia Puig
USA Today
July 2, 2004
Though America's Heart & Soul doesn't break new ground, its apolitical tone and diverse cast may be a tonic for those tired of our country's divisive climate.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
Top Critic
Tom Keogh
Seattle Times
July 2, 2004
A pleasing visual treat.
| Original Score: 3/4
Top Critic
Carla Meyer
San Francisco Chronicle
July 2, 2004
The kind of film that might play on a loop at a county fair's Americana exhibit.
Full Review | Original Score: 2/4
Top Critic
Jay Boyar
Orlando Sentinel
July 2, 2004
Disheartening & Soulless is really a better title for this empty exercise in boosterism.
| Original Score: 2/5
Top Critic
Stephen Whitty
Newark Star-Ledger
July 2, 2004
America's Heart & Soul is as one-sided as Fahrenheit 9/11 -- just minus Moore's occasional humor and constant passion.
Top Critic
Jonathan Foreman
New York Post
July 2, 2004
Watching this film from veteran commercial director and cinematographer Louis Schwartzberg is like being subjected to an endless ad for Coke or insurance.
| Original Score: 2/4
Top Critic
Connie Ogle
Miami Herald
July 2, 2004
This film might work OK as a holiday TV special, but anyone who spends eight bucks on it is bound to end up cranky and disappointed.
Full Review | Original Score: 1.5/4
Top Critic
Eric Harrison
Houston Chronicle
July 2, 2004
Though none of these vignettes are long and some last only seconds, the movie felt endless.
| Original Score: C-
Top Critic
Tom Long
Detroit News
July 2, 2004
Depth, complexity, questions, expanse of feeling -- these are things that make America great. How terrible that a film called America's Heart and Soul missed both those elements.
| Original Score: D
Top Critic
John Monaghan
Detroit Free Press
July 2, 2004
Essentially a feature-length TV commercial featuring glossy images of people at work and at play.
Full Review | Original Score: 1/4
Top Critic
Michael Booth
Denver Post
July 2, 2004
It's pretty darn good and more than a little inspiring.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
Top Critic
Roger Ebert
Chicago Sun-Times
July 2, 2004
Four stars to the subjects of this movie, and two stars to the way they have been boiled down into cute pictures and sound bites.
Full Review | Original Score: 2/4
Top Critic
Wesley Morris
Boston Globe
July 2, 2004
The movie is rigged to hit so many folks' personal high notes that it seems a little shrill.
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/4
Top Critic
Kevin Thomas
Los Angeles Times
July 1, 2004
Schwartzberg has captured a sense of the country's grandeur and in doing so has created a splendid backdrop for the approximately 30 Americans plus various organizations he focuses on.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/5
Top Critic
Dave Kehr
New York Times
July 1, 2004
A lot of this activity looks like a way to escape contemporary America rather than celebrate it.
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/5
Top Critic
David Germain
Associated Press
July 1, 2004
Beneath its glossy surface, this unabashedly feel-good movie is full of substance.
| Original Score: 3/4
Top Critic
Steven Rea
Philadelphia Inquirer
July 1, 2004
A pumped-up, plotless montage of extraordinary landscapes, colorful wildlife, and interesting people performing feats of derring-do.
| Original Score: 2.5/4
Top Critic
Jan Stuart
Newsday
July 1, 2004
Schwartzberg hears America singing, and the cacophony of sugary, inspirational sentiments would make Walt Whitman vomit in his grave.
| Original Score: 1.5/4
Top Critic
Jane Sumner
Dallas Morning News
July 1, 2004
A visual treat with the sweep and canvas of an IMAX film, the movie, all shot before Sept. 11, 2001, explodes like a chrysanthemum fireworks shell with red, white and blue stars.
Full Review | Original Score: B-
Top Critic
Kathy Cano Murillo
Arizona Republic
July 1, 2004
The snapshots can be heartwarming, but the film would be better suited for a Hallmark Channel special or, better, a Disneyland theme-park attraction.
| Original Score: 2.5/5
Top Critic
Jeff Strickler
Minneapolis Star Tribune
July 1, 2004
Forget about Prozac; you can't watch more than a few minutes of this without having your spirits lifted.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/4
Top Critic
Ronnie Scheib
Variety
June 30, 2004
Will appeal primarily to those who like their armchair adventures picture-postcard pristine and sprinkled with touches of proud self-sufficiency.
Top Critic
Jon Strickland
L.A. Weekly
June 30, 2004
Louis Schwartzberg both surprises and frustrates with this schizophrenic feature debut.
Top Critic
Laura Sinagra
Village Voice
June 29, 2004
As platitudinous subjects jaw off and amber grain duly waves, ersatz cowboys, car decorators, salsa dancers, and steel workers praise tradition and values with Coke-ad fervor.
Top Critic
Kirk Honeycutt
Hollywood Reporter
June 29, 2004
The film would make a better fit on television or at one of Disney's theme parks.