Compliance - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

Compliance Reviews

February 26, 2013
A riveting, horrifying film, shot through with beautifully observed moments of unwelcome truth.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/5
January 8, 2013
Compliance is one of the toughest sits of the movie year 2012. But it's an uncompromising and, in its way, honorable drama built upon a prank call that goes on and on, getting worse and worse for the people on the other end of the line.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
September 23, 2012
The point of Compliance, which caused walkouts and shouting matches when it premiered at the Sundance Film Festival, is how we are programmed to do things that go against our natural instincts as long as we believe we have the law on our side.
Read More | Original Score: 1/4
September 22, 2012
There's the adage that life is nasty, brutish and short. It's even worse when you're half-naked and locked in a supply room with your boss.
| Original Score: 5/5
September 6, 2012
This is one insistent film, more evocative of human behavior than movies that take fewer risks ever could be.
Full Review | Original Score: 4.5/5
August 31, 2012
Like a John Hughes movie hijacked by Roman Polanski, this troubling indie effort lays bare the sadomasochism of the American workplace.
August 30, 2012
A disturbing, fact-based look at the ways in which people can be bullied into bowing to the demands of authority figures.
Full Review | Original Score: 3.5/4
August 30, 2012
Zobel, a second-time feature filmmaker, has put together a skillful, sympathetic but unsparing re-enactment of a small-scale atrocity, and his cast plays it out with natural, understated performances.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
August 30, 2012
Zobel's masterful direction and screenplay heighten the distress of authority figures possessing unseen persuasion over naive employees, exposing a disturbing and haunting look at what some workers are willing to do in order to follow orders.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/4
August 30, 2012
This is a well-made film, with plausible performances by all the leads, especially Ann Dowd. We feel we know people like this.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
August 24, 2012
Fails its first test, which is that the audience believe every word of it.
Full Review | Original Score: 2/4
August 23, 2012
We feel like gutless witnesses to a crime.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
August 23, 2012
That the thriller is based on real incidents only magnifies its effect.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/5
August 23, 2012
One watches in horrified fascination, and a greater horror comes when one realizes that, placed in the same kind of situation, one might react in the same way.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/4
August 23, 2012
A harrowing, gut-wrenching fable about power and authority that shows that even the most well-adjusted, ordinary person could be tempted to degrade and dehumanize their neighbor.
Full Review | Original Score: 3.5/4
August 23, 2012
Too condescending to be trusted, too manipulative to be believed, too turgid to be enjoyed, too shameless to be endured and, before and after everything else, too inept to make its misanthropic case.
August 23, 2012
There is a level of stupidity displayed by the people in this movie that beggars belief. Their behavior is to stupidity as the Death Star is to a doughnut.
Full Review | Original Score: 0.5/4
August 20, 2012
Compliance ends up being about certain things that it would rather not be about.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/5
August 20, 2012
Ultimately what is fascinating about Compliance is its suggestion of the near-universality, and ultimate mundanity, of the totalitarian reflex.
August 17, 2012
It's a deeply moral movie about the failure of morality, as grueling to watch as it is necessary.
August 17, 2012
Watching Compliance recently, I also began to squirm and talk back, but not because I disliked the movie, which I think is brilliant.
August 17, 2012
It's a highly political work about how some people can be made to do vile things just for the wispiest promise that the powers above will go a little bit easier on them.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/4
August 16, 2012
Snapshots of greasy fries and slimy grills pump up the unsavory atmosphere, while Heather McIntosh's ominous, cello-driven score plucks our nerves and stirs our stomachs.
Read More | Original Score: 4/5
August 16, 2012
A wickedly compelling thriller, a skin-crawling, stranger-than-fiction examination of the darkest power of authority.
Full Review | Original Score: 6.5/10
August 16, 2012
Compliance is torture to sit through. It's also indispensable filmmaking. This fact-based movie is going to present you with questions that will haunt you long after you leave the theater.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
August 16, 2012
[It] has a sharp psychological point and a can't-look-away quality even as it turns horrifically dark.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/5
August 16, 2012
Disturbing and unlikely as it may be, this stuff actually happened, and pretty much as Craig Zobel relates it.
Full Review | Original Score: 3.5/4
August 15, 2012
...a movie that feeds on collective emotions -- anger, denial and, most of all, fear -- but also triggers explosives along the faultlines of class.
August 14, 2012
The movie's frightening momentum can't be denied; indeed, it's the whole point.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/5
August 14, 2012
A fairly deliberate and effective piece of provocation.
August 10, 2012
Zobel has created a tale that will leave audiences angry if not downright nauseated by journey's end.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
August 8, 2012
Zobel shoots his queasy little psych test with I'm-just-the-messenger documentary neutrality, challenging as he goes: Do you want to look away now? How about now? Will you walk out?
Full Review | Original Score: A-
August 8, 2012
Compliance is a fascinating and deeply unsettling version of true events, but it goes past that, with art and honesty.
Full Review | Original Score: 4.5/5
August 3, 2012
Compliance develops an intriguing premise intelligently, inquisitively and uncomfortably.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
June 21, 2012
Among the highlights [of BAMcinemaFest]... Provocative!
January 25, 2012
It's not just about some woefully misguided fast-food employees: it's about the scared, intimidated and unquestioning follower in all of us.
Full Review | Original Score: B+
January 25, 2012
The cast here is so terrific that they turn a movie that takes place almost entirely in one dingy room into rich theater...
Full Review | Original Score: B
January 24, 2012
In taut, gripping and deeply disturbing fashion, writer-director Craig Zobel measures the depths to which rational individuals will sink to obey a self-anointed authority figure in Compliance.
January 23, 2012
Likely to spur discussions about workplace safety, employee rights and broader awareness of sexual predation, Compliance is also a suspenseful psychological drama for viewers prepared to tolerate its extremes.