Detroit

Critics Consensus

Detroit delivers a gut-wrenching -- and essential -- dramatization of a tragic chapter from America's past that draws distressing parallels to the present.

82%

TOMATOMETER

Total Count: 297

79%

Audience Score

User Ratings: 17,833

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Movie Info

From the Academy Award winning director of THE HURT LOCKER and ZERO DARK THIRTY, DETROIT tells the gripping story of one of the darkest moments during the civil unrest that rocked Detroit in the summer of '67.

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Critic Reviews for Detroit

All Critics (297) | Top Critics (51) | Fresh (245) | Rotten (52)

  • It's not an easy film to watch but Bigelow's control over every aspect ensures it's utterly convincing.

    November 8, 2017 | Rating: 4/5 | Full Review…
  • Detroit becomes a kind of neo-Gothic horror story.

    August 25, 2017 | Rating: 4/5 | Full Review…
  • Detroit comes out of its corner slugging and barely stops. By the end the viewer has a swollen eye, ringing ears and a conviction that the referee should have stopped the fight.

    August 24, 2017 | Rating: 4/5 | Full Review…
  • Each actor inhabits their role with a precision and mettle that means even in the depths of confusion, the complex group dynamics are easy to read.

    August 24, 2017 | Rating: 4/5 | Full Review…
  • In its own polemical way, it is very powerful filmmaking but, as storytelling, it is one-dimensional. There is too much "docu" here and not enough drama.

    August 23, 2017 | Rating: 3/5 | Full Review…
  • Fascinating but deeply flawed.

    August 22, 2017 | Rating: 3/5 | Full Review…

Audience Reviews for Detroit

  • Jun 01, 2018
    Director Bigelow again proves to be a master of the realistic depiction of recent historic events with this drama about the Detroit riots of 1967 and racist police brutality that night. While the film takes its time to set the scene and introduce the characters, it's interesting right from the start. Once the situation at the motel gets dire, camera work, editing and the outstanding acting take you right there, taking no prisoners in those incredibly uncomfortable and enthralling 90 minutes. The aftermath will make you just angry, but it's important nonetheless. Just like the realization that this film's events feels oddly current, even though they aren't.
    Jens S Super Reviewer
  • Mar 11, 2018
    From director Kathryn Bigelow comes the provocative historical drama Detroit. While it purports to be about the 1967 Detroit riots, its real focus is on the Algiers Motel shooting in which three racist police officers interrogated a group of motel occupants and killed three black men after tracing sniper fire back to the motel. Starring John Boyega, Will Poulter, Anthony Mackie, and John Krasinski, the film has a solid cast that delivers some strong performances. The storytelling, however, is a little weak as it jumps around a lot without explaining much about the riots. It also takes a decidedly one-sided view, thought there is some effort given to show how frightening and confusing it was for the officers who were thrust into the situation. The costumes and sets are exceptionally well-done, and give a real feel for the time period. Remarkably engaging and controversial, Detroit is an extraordinarily evocative look at police brutality and race relations in the 1960s.
    Dann M Super Reviewer
  • Dec 19, 2017
    Technically proficient, it's tense, and appropriately angry. That said something is lacking. I think perhaps the movie is a bit too long and unfocused to be as great as it could have been.
    Alec B Super Reviewer
  • Dec 05, 2017
    Using a nervous handheld camera and intercutting what we see with real archive footage to create the same documentary-like feel of her previous films The Hurt Locker and Zero Dark Thirty, Bigelow exposes with gripping realism a revolting chapter in American History.
    Carlos M Super Reviewer

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