Amistad - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

Amistad Reviews

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June 14, 2001
The whole historical untouchability of a Very Important Film & the incredibly dry nature of the facts was what made this production a lose-lose proposition for Spielberg.
Full Review| Original Score: 4
April 17, 2001
Brief moments of visceral fire allow glimpses into the rousing movie this could have been.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/5
James Kendrick
Q Network Film Desk
February 27, 2001
Spielberg's considerable talent is not quite enough to unearth it
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/4
Robert Roten
Laramie Movie Scope
January 1, 2001
Steven Spielberg shows the same kind of fire and passion he did in directing Schindler's List as the horror of slavery is laid bare in the crucible of the courtroom.
Full Review | Original Score: A
Top Critic
Janet Maslin
New York Times
January 1, 2000
The best parts of Amistad are those that simply bring their pride, fear and outrage to life.
Top Critic
James Berardinelli
ReelViews
January 1, 2000
Thematically rich, impeccably crafted, and intellectually stimulating, the only area where this movie falls a little short is in its emotional impact.
Full Review | Original Score: 3.5/4
Top Critic
Charles Taylor
Salon.com
January 1, 2000
Amistad is prestige filmmaking bereft of inspiration -- sometimes even of the nuts and bolts of craft.
Top Critic
Roger Ebert
Chicago Sun-Times
January 1, 2000
What is most valuable about Amistad is the way it provides faces and names for its African characters, whom the movies so often make into faceless victims.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4

E! Online
January 1, 2000
Spielberg nearly capsizes the story with his customary emotional overkil...Still, the story of Cinque...and the rest of the Africans trying to get home is powerful.
Full Review | Original Score: B-
MaryAnn Johanson
Flick Filosopher
January 1, 2000
This is as stark and unsentimental -- in other words, the most unSpielbergian -- a film as I've seen in a long time.
Dan Jardine
Apollo Guide
January 1, 2000
Amistad is a good, but not great film.
| Original Score: 83/100
Cynthia Fuchs
Philadelphia City Paper
January 1, 2000
While the Africans [in Amistad] are tremendously sympathetic, the film maintains a distance from them, granting emotional access instead to the well-intentioned white guys.
Jack Garner
Rochester Democrat and Chronicle
January 1, 2000
Steven Spielberg's Amistad is a potent, finely crafted drama that explores -- better than any film to date -- the injustices and horror of slavery and the seeds of American civil rights legislation.
Full Review | Original Score: 10/10
Madeleine Williams
Cinematter
January 1, 2000
Although not the grandiose epic it strives to be, Amistad is still a good film, with solid, but not superb, acting, and competent, but not transcendent, direction.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
Rob Gonsalves
eFilmCritic.com
January 1, 2000
Dry and dawdling, haphazardly structured, and grindingly obvious.
Full Review | Original Score: 2/5
Andrew L. Urban
Urban Cinefile
January 1, 2000
Spielberg errs on the side of right and moral decency, and as a cinematic essay on a subject of universal validity plus eternal currency, it deserves -- and justifies -- genuine praise both as entertainment and as history lesson.
Marty Mapes
Movie Habit
January 1, 2000
[Spielberg's] cold calculation doesn't work well with the hot injustice of slavery. Amistad would have been a better film from someone less thoughtful and more emotional...
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/4
Harvey S. Karten
Compuserve
January 1, 2000
Amistad is a picture you will not want to forego.
Russell Smith
Austin Chronicle
January 1, 2000
However imperfectly, [Speilberg] has crafted another eloquent reminder that although goodness lives with a perpetual sense of weariness in its battle with the self-renewing power of evil, it can never retreat, never sleep.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/5
Steve Rhodes
Internet Reviews
January 1, 2000
Amistad is an excellent story, poorly told.
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/4
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