Ishtar Reviews

March 19, 2019
It is a smart, generous, genuinely funny affair. Sometimes, like the camel who almost ambles away with the picture, it's longish in the tooth, but it is based on an extremely astute vision of life.
March 19, 2019
Reasonably genial and diverting.
March 19, 2019
Ishtar is a good movie, but you can't help but wonder if, lurking somewhere in those cans of outtakes, there isn't a great movie, too.
March 19, 2019
This Elaine May comedy was the most underappreciated commercial movie of 1987. It isn't quite as good as May's previous features, but it's still a very funny work by one of this country's greatest comic talents.
March 19, 2019
Though far from a masterpiece, the movie is often hilarious in a sly, seemingly improvisational way.
June 8, 2017
It's a film that resists categorization, staking a claim on a weird, absurdist territory of its own. For that, in the maddeningly generic landscape of '80s multiplexes, it was crucified. Now it's celebrated. And rightfully so.
November 8, 2016
This big, overblown comedy starring Dustin Hoffman and Warren Beatty is thoroughly likable despite all the hype.
April 4, 2016
..an undeniably messy movie that you nonetheless want to treasure just for its oddball existence.
October 25, 2014
Maybe [it's] actually okay; maybe parts of it [are] even great.
August 24, 2013
The 1980s saw the release of so many truly atrocious films (Xanadu, Stroker Ace, Bolero, Shanghai Surprise, etc.) that it's absurd "Ishtar" became shorthand for the worst of the worst and continues to be blasted by folks who haven't even seen it.
August 9, 2013
Besides droll supporting work from an excellent Charles Grodin, Ishtar also gets a lot of mileage out of its terrible and terribly funny songs.
August 6, 2013
If Ishtar has a personal stamp, it's not in what it has to say about Reagan-era militarism, but in what it has to say about collaboration, and how well-meaning people can goose each other to greatness-and folly.
September 3, 2008
Desert sequences provide some of the film's high points as Beatty and Hoffman finally develop some genuine rapport under adverse conditions.
June 12, 2005
January 8, 2005
Better then you've heard. Paul William's songs are genius.
May 20, 2003
The worst of it is painless; the best is funny, sly, cheerful and, here and there, even genuinely inspired.
August 14, 2002
better than it's given credit for
July 26, 2002
Now come one, this movie was not bad.
July 26, 2002
January 1, 2000
Ishtar is an unabashed vamp for a pair of household names, and as such it works, often hilariously.