Harriet Reviews

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November 9, 2019
The by-the-numbers telling doesn't do justice to the power and scale of her accomplishments, though Cynthia Erivo (Widows, Bad Times at the El Royale) does good work in the title role
November 7, 2019
It's not a bad-looking movie, it's a professionally-done film, but it doesn't stand out from anything else...
November 7, 2019
So much of it is designed to be crowd-pleasing, not go to deep. And that's sad, because here you have a figure where you can go real deep...too much of a TV movie.
November 7, 2019
In Harriet, Millennial hindsight and historical revision come off as pompous and patronizing.
November 7, 2019
Harriet is a formulaic biopic that doesn't take any creatively clever leaps to ensure this biopic deserves to be associated with the historical significance of Harriet Tubman.
November 4, 2019
"Harriet" lacks a sense of urgency nor does it rise to a level where it's more than just a fine piece of casual movie-going. In some circles, that'll be okay, but I think Harriet Tubman deserves better than average storytelling.
November 3, 2019
"Harriet" often feels in awe of its subject, like it's staring at her through museum glass. There's a better, bolder story to be told from Tubman's life. "Harriet" is a start, but it never catches fire.
November 3, 2019
Harriet never feels like a fully formed human being with all the doubts and desires that come with that distinction.
November 2, 2019
There are moments that absolutely rivet. Many others, not so much.
November 2, 2019
Sadly, Harriet is destined to fall under the same category as other inadequate biopics like Cesar Chavez or Hyde Park on the Hudson. Simply put: They're all films that can't live up to their subjects' extraordinary lives.
November 2, 2019
Cut out the theatrical and dramatically flat third act and you've got something.
November 1, 2019
[Cynthia Erivo] is really great, but the film is an unfortunately really safe, by-the-numbers biopic.
November 1, 2019
Harriet is so consumed with reverence for the patron saint of Black History Month that it neglects to make her, or any of the supporting characters around her, a real person.
November 1, 2019
Perhaps as filmmakers delve deeper into the many, many untold stories of Tubman's era, we'll get a film (or two) that does the woman and her incredible life story justice.
November 1, 2019
Despite being anchored by a terrific performance from Cynthia Erivo, Harriet lacks the focus and the narrative drive to do her story justice.
November 1, 2019
Try as it might to present her as a kind of pistol-toting Dirty Harriet, this clunky biopic -- directed and co-scripted by Kasi Lemmons -- doesn't come close to doing her justice.
November 1, 2019
The gospel songs are gorgeously performed and cleverly deployed, but the rest of the soundtrack makes an absolute mess of the film's mood: swoopy where it should be driven, wistful where it should be achingly tense.
November 1, 2019
"Harriet" plays more as the kind of movie that would be shown to a high school class studying the pre-Civil War era.
November 1, 2019
[T]here were multitudes to this woman and her accomplishments. We're left with only a piece of them.
October 31, 2019
With its orthodox aesthetics (balanced frames) and structure (voiceovers and flashbacks) and its sentimental score (by the usually reliable Terence Blanchard), it might as well be a TV movie of the week from 30 years ago.
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