Get On Up Reviews

Page 1 of 2
August 30, 2019
If it weren't for the magnetic, utterly watchable central performance from a prolific Chadwick Boseman, Get On Up would be a miserly, unapologetically sterilized biopic.
March 12, 2019
Whenever producers weakly say they couldn't find good Black actresses for roles that usually end up going to white women, I can't help thinking of all the talented Black women going to waste in films like this one.
October 30, 2017
Get On Up struggles, at times, to surprise us.
August 17, 2016
The narrative is unsatisfying as it leaves lots of unanswered questions.
February 20, 2015
The film's relative lack of any actual drama in the narrative is ultimately the result of a biographical approach too dedicated to flattery.
December 5, 2014
An utter failure to understand Brown's legacy as well as a misbegotten use of flashbacks like a time-machine gone haywire.
November 21, 2014
There's more drama in one track from Live at the Apollo than 139 long minutes of this.
November 20, 2014
The music gives you some big, sugar-rush moments, but it's a disappointing response to one of pop culture's most brilliant and complicated figures.
August 8, 2014
Get On Up comes off like a checklist guide of how not to make a quality biopic.
August 3, 2014
Chadwick Boseman delivers a precise impersonation of Brown's gravelly voice and eccentric moves, and even lends emotional weight to the few scenes that deserve it. However, his role feels more like a series of bullet points than an organic character.
August 1, 2014
Though "Get On Up" never congeals into a satisfactory whole, its fragmentary portrait of the singer at the height of his fame - intercut with his troubled single-parent childhood - effectively shows his invasive power in popular culture.
August 1, 2014
We get a lot of what happened to James Brown without a lot of who he was, or even really why he mattered.
August 1, 2014
Alas, the film gets as much wrong as it gets right.
August 1, 2014
More often, the film skates along the surface of Brown's contradictory character. Now if it skated like Brown's dance moves glided onstage, that really would have been something.
August 1, 2014
The storytelling is mostly linear, with some confusing back-and-forth in the chronology, and it's a long slog. The Brown who emerges from this film has a monstrous ego to go with his monster talent.
August 1, 2014
The jumbled "Get On Up" can't touch the star it purports to represent.
August 1, 2014
The movie does a good job convincing us of Brown's genius, but it does little to put anything at stake.
August 1, 2014
Entertaining but Brown's life is glossed over to the point that he's barely more three dimensional than he was in the old Eddie Murphy SNL sketches.
August 1, 2014
It just wants to play some of the big hits you love while ticking off a checklist of standard biopic milestones.
August 1, 2014
Boseman is at times mesmerizing, living up to the gargantuan task of playing the American soul legend. If only the movie were as good as he is.
Page 1 of 2