Before Night Falls - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

Before Night Falls Reviews

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Top Critic
Jay Boyar
Orlando Sentinel
March 12, 2001
Clearly this is Bardem's show. And Bardem walks away with it.
Mike Giuliano
Orlando Weekly
March 12, 2001
Some of Schnabel's out-there tactics work, and some don't, but when he scores, he scores big time.
JoBlo
JoBlo's Movie Emporium
March 6, 2001
It seemed to exude more energy into its pretenses than the actual story.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/10
Cynthia Fuchs
Philadelphia City Paper
March 2, 2001
Achieves a kind of visual poetry, rhapsodic and turbulent.
Top Critic
Michael O'Sullivan
Washington Post
February 23, 2001
It's a struggle not just to make art but to exist, which is itself an art. And to that goal, the cast members, led by the astonishing Bardem, allow themselves to be devoured by the roles they are playing.
Top Critic
Rita Kempley
Washington Post
February 23, 2001
Though Schnabel's first picture, Basquiat, was notable for its excess and self-indulgence, the filmmaker shows restraint and maturity in this moving depiction of Arenas's life and loves.
Top Critic
Rene Rodriguez
Miami Herald
February 23, 2001
Soulful, deeply moving.
Top Critic

Houston Chronicle
February 23, 2001
Consistently intriguing and surprisingly entertaining.
Top Critic
Steven Rosen
Denver Post
February 23, 2001
The best American movie since American Beauty.
Lawrence Toppman
Charlotte Observer
February 23, 2001
Oscar-nominated Javier Bardem gives one of the year's best performances as Arenas.
Brian Webster
Apollo Guide
February 21, 2001
Although it's sometimes slow-paced and mostly unassuming, Before Night Falls is the sort of movie that can change one's view of the world.
| Original Score: 82/100
Top Critic
Steve Murray
Atlanta Journal-Constitution
February 17, 2001
A visually arresting, well-acted biopic that would be better in Spanish.
| Original Score: B+
Jack Garner
Rochester Democrat and Chronicle
February 16, 2001
It's memorably etched in the viewer's mind through Bardem's complex portrait of a besieged but unbowed man.
Full Review | Original Score: 9/10
Jeff Vice
Deseret News, Salt Lake City
February 16, 2001
[Bardem's] riveting performance as Arenas helps compensate for the filmmaking and storytelling deficits.
Robert W. Butler
Kansas City Star
February 12, 2001
Bardem is so compelling in the central role that Before Night Falls emerges as a testimony to the human spirit.
Top Critic
Susan Stark
Detroit News
February 9, 2001
The main reason to see Before Night Falls is Bardem, one of the few modern actors with real animal appeal and the guts to show it.
| Original Score: 3/4
David Keyes
Cinemaphile.org
February 7, 2001
A trip to the bookstore to pick up Arenas' memoirs might be a better decision than seeking out this miscalculated character drama.
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/4
Top Critic
Richard Corliss
TIME Magazine
February 7, 2001
Bardem hasn't the charisma to bring variety to Arenas or his plight.
Top Critic
David Rooney
Variety
February 7, 2001
Schnabel has fashioned a dense, emotionally satisfying portrait of a man, a time and a place.
John A. Nesbit
Old School Reviews
February 7, 2001
innovative film
Full Review | Original Score: B-
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