Elling - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

Elling Reviews

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Chris Hewitt (St. Paul)
St. Paul Pioneer Press
June 27, 2002
There is one surefire way to get a nomination for a best-foreign-film Oscar: Make a movie about whimsical folk who learn a nonchallenging, life-affirming lesson while walking around a foreign city with stunning architecture.
| Original Score: 2/4
Dennis Schwartz
Ozus' World Movie Reviews
February 5, 2003
The pleasing acting jobs by the two protagonists makes all this sugar easier to swallow, but not enough to find this film anything more than a mere diversion.
Full Review | Original Score: C+
Top Critic
Michael Atkinson
Village Voice
May 28, 2002
That neither protagonist has a distinguishable condition hardly matters because both are just actory concoctions, defined by childlike dimness and a handful of quirks.
Phil Hall
Film Threat
December 8, 2002
Tedious Norwegian offering which somehow snagged an Oscar nomination.
| Original Score: 2/5
Chuck Rudolph
Matinee Magazine
May 16, 2002
Suffers from a case of too-easy digestion.
Full Review | Original Score: C+
Steve Rhodes
Internet Reviews
June 30, 2002
Tthe tone of this tedious movie never works, being neither funny nor moving. I never laughed, and, although I know I was supposed to, I never cared about Elling and his supposed afflictions.
Full Review | Original Score: 2/4
Wade Major
Boxoffice Magazine
June 2, 2002
Forages for audience sympathy like a temperamental child begging for attention, giving audiences no reason to truly care for its decrepit freaks beyond the promise of a reprieve from their incessant whining.
Full Review | Original Score: .5/5
Marjorie Baumgarten
Austin Chronicle
September 1, 2002
Rather than real figures, Elling and Kjell Bjarne become symbolic characters whose actions are supposed to relate something about the naf's encounter with the world.
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/5
Jeff Vice
Deseret News, Salt Lake City
September 20, 2002
The film's brand of humor seems a bit too broad, and the quirks of its main characters aren't really all that endearing, instead coming off as irritating and tiresome.
Full Review | Original Score: 2/4
Top Critic
Roger Ebert
Chicago Sun-Times
September 13, 2002
It is refreshingly undogmatic about its characters.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
Top Critic
James Berardinelli
June 4, 2002
An enjoyable experience.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
Eric D. Snider
September 21, 2002
Full Review | Original Score: B+
Jeffrey M. Anderson
Combustible Celluloid
July 1, 2002
The movie ultimately relies a bit too heavily on grandstanding, emotional, Rocky-like moments ... but it's such a warm and charming package that you'll feel too happy to argue much.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
Christopher Null
November 17, 2002
immanently worthy of its Best Foreign Film Oscar nomination
| Original Score: 4/5
Frederic and Mary Ann Brussat
Spirituality and Practice
May 31, 2002
This Norwegian comedy celebrates an unusual friendship and the uncanny ways two eccentrics come into their own despite the great odds against their doing so.
Arthur Lazere
June 19, 2002
unpretentious, charming, quirky, original
Jeanne Aufmuth
Palo Alto Weekly
June 26, 2002
The subtle strength of "Elling" is that it never loses touch with the reality of the grim situation.
| Original Score: 4/4
Sean Axmaker
Seattle Post-Intelligencer
July 5, 2002
...hits every cliche we've come to expect, including the assumption that "crazy" people are innocent, childlike and inherently funny.
Full Review | Original Score: B
Top Critic
Stephen Holden
New York Times
May 29, 2002
Believes so fervently in humanity that it feels almost anachronistic, and it is too cute by half. But arriving at a particularly dark moment in history, it offers flickering reminders of the ties that bind us.
| Original Score: 3.5/5
Top Critic
Lisa Schwarzbaum
Entertainment Weekly
June 13, 2002
Charms because of its natural, non-magical attitude toward humanity.
Full Review | Original Score: B+
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