Barney's Version - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

Barney's Version Reviews

March 18, 2011
The movie, much like your own life, is best enjoyed when you don't know exactly what happens next.
February 17, 2011
Sometimes, when a movie emerges from a book, a crucial ingredient gets left out along the way. In the case of "Barney's Version," it's the wit.
Read More | Original Score: 2.5/4
February 11, 2011
"Barney's Version" has episodes instead of plot, outbursts instead of wit and alibis instead of growth. But it also has a star we'd be willing to watch in "Barney's Version 2.0."
February 11, 2011
Highly entertaining and arguably the most satisfying Richler screen adaptation to date.
February 11, 2011
This has the overstuffed feel of a sprawling, life-spanning story that's been wrestled down to feature length.
February 11, 2011
The parts are greater than the whole in "Barney's Version," a rambling look at a shambling man's adventures in love.
Full Review | Original Score: B-
February 11, 2011
Paul Giamatti can do spunky (Cinderella Man) and stately (John Adams), but he's at his best turning potentially loathsome men into sympathetic characters that command your attention.
Full Review | Original Score: B+
February 3, 2011
That rumpled grumpus Paul Giamatti seizes the title role in Barney's Version, summoning irresistibility and irritability to create a character as endearing as he is galling.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
February 3, 2011
'Barney's Version'' is a smart, well-acted two hours at the art house, full of witty observations and fellow feeling. But, really, it has no business being a movie.
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/4
February 2, 2011
The fact that we can stand to watch Barney without walking out is testament to Richler's story, Michael Konyves' screenplay and Lewis' direction.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/5
January 28, 2011
Yes, it's well acted and frequently touching. But it's the thoughtful, tasteful indie-film version. It's not exactly Barney's version.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
January 27, 2011
The biggest shock of recognition comes from looking at Giamatti's deeply flawed Barney and spotting a bit of ourselves gazing back.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
January 27, 2011
In Barney's Version, Paul Giamatti does what he does best: He plays a guy who is deeply flawed, occasionally heroic, perfectly normal and utterly fascinating.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
January 26, 2011
There's enough Richler-derived scope and sophistication to provide grown-up appeal, and Dustin Hoffman kicks in some memorable scene-stealing as Giamatti's embarrassingly no-nonsense old dad.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/5
January 20, 2011
We care about him from the opening moments until the end of this fairly long movie because we believe that his needs are enormous and that his passions and his loves are real.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
January 20, 2011
A master acting class, courtesy of Paul Giamatti and Dustin Hoffman.
Full Review | Original Score: 4.5/5
January 20, 2011
I wish I responded to this shrewdly acted, rather dutiful picture the way I did to the tumultuous Richler adaptation I saw and loved as a 13-year-old, "The Apprenticeship of Duddy Kravitz," starring a vibrant young Richard Dreyfuss.
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/4
January 20, 2011
There is a lot of truth in "Barney's Version." It is a mercy that Barney cannot see most of it.
Full Review | Original Score: 3.5/4
January 14, 2011
The script doesn't need to convince us that the prickly and incorrigible Barney Panofsky is, in the end, someone worth caring about. Paul Giamatti's performance already did.
January 14, 2011
It's an impossible task trying to squeeze Mordecai Richler's sprawling novel about an SOB into one little movie. But they lucked out with first-rate actors.
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/4
January 13, 2011
Barney's Version is worth seeing for Giamatti's boisterous yet nuanced portrayal and the energetic but wry performance from Hoffman.
January 13, 2011
What the filmmakers have done so artfully is strip the story down to the bare essentials of the most significant loves of Barney's life and how his behavior, both good and bad, never stops rippling across that universe.
Full Review | Original Score: 3.5/5
January 13, 2011
Barney's Version could use some editing and shaping, to be sure, but its core characters -- and core performances -- are sharp and clear even against its fuzzy, unfocused plot.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/5
January 13, 2011
It's intriguing, but almost always frustrating.
Full Review | Original Score: B-
January 12, 2011
Paul Giamatti, dialing down his trembly-voiced neurotic energy to good effect, gives a holy hell of a performance...
Full Review | Original Score: B+
January 12, 2011
Barney's Version misses every opportunity for raucous picaresque fun that the book throws its way, while squandering a wealth of transatlantic performing talent led by Paul Giamatti.
December 24, 2010
What really sells it as a story is star Paul Giamatti's boisterous, wide-ranging and seductive performance.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
December 23, 2010
One of the most successful adaptations yet of a Richler novel. And with Guy Dufaux's sun-dappled lensing, it's also one of the most beautiful.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
December 10, 2010
An overstuffed odyssey that, while disappointing on many levels, has standout performances by Paul Giamatti as low-rent Montreal TV producer and philanderer Barney Panofsky, and, in a supporting role, Dustin Hoffman as his incorrigible father.
Full Review | Original Score: B
December 3, 2010
But the filmmakers have been, if anything, too dutiful, too careful, and the movie that results from their conscientious, devoted labor illustrates the terrible, paradoxical trap into which well-intentioned literary adaptations so often fall.
Read More | Original Score: 2.5/5
December 3, 2010
Giamatti is an ideal casting choice, but even this talented actor can't sell a lovable-jerk story that forgot to put in the lovable.
Full Review | Original Score: 1.5/4
December 3, 2010
There isn't a moment in "Barney's Version" that doesn't feel like a labor of love.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/5
December 1, 2010
[Giamatti] makes this mess of a human being seem oddly gallant instead of grotesque.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/5