Lee Daniels' The Butler - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

Lee Daniels' The Butler Reviews

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September 5, 2018
It's a pedestrian script, with tons of exposition, tons of signalling, and jarring vernacular oddities... The Butler does not serve its own subject matter well.
August 30, 2018
It's a course correction for the over-the-top Daniels, but history and The Butler may have been better served by the passion of his extreme tendencies.
August 26, 2018
This is a tough line to walk, being both upfront with your message and managing subtle critiques, but luckily for viewers Daniels manages to find the right balance and deliver a winning movie.
Full Review | Original Score: 3.5/4
August 20, 2018
What's impressive and effective is a look at a recent history through the eyes of a humble man just happy to provide for his family.
March 5, 2018
The overwhelming feeling is that Allen's story was not good enough for the makers of this shiny, overproduced biopic, so they have Forrest Gumpified everything beyond belief.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/5
January 26, 2018
With Oscar winner Forest Whitaker fully embracing the project and an impressive ensemble cast that brings to life America's dark racist past, Lee Daniels' The Butler is significant.
Full Review | Original Score: B
December 3, 2017
The film paints a disturbing and expansive portrait of the civil rights movement-from Jim Crow's "separate but equal" charade and demonstrations, to forced desegregation and the eventual victory of an African American in the White House.
Full Review | Original Score: 7.5/10
November 29, 2017
The Butler has some wonderful moments that are powerful and moving, but its scope will ultimately (and unfortunately) polarize its audience.
September 8, 2017
Daniels does a good job of portraying the period in a warm, moving and righteous manner.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/5
September 6, 2017
While the film fictionalizes many aspects of Allen's true story (even changing his name to Cecil Gaines) for dramatic effect, it stays true its sentiment.
Full Review | Original Score: B+
June 28, 2017
The movie may be celebrity overload, but we're willing to deal -- because the message is just that powerful.
March 21, 2017
Brilliant. Historic. Compelling.
June 29, 2016
The Butler's final notes have too strongly followed through on traditional, slightly staid dramatics to have it both ways.
Full Review | Original Score: B-
June 8, 2016
Is anyone else in America making films like Lee Daniels? For my money, he deserves his name above the title.
April 15, 2016
The breadth of the subject matter tirelessly works against director Lee Daniels and company, leading to some inevitably goofy casting choices and unfortunate make-up work.
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/5
April 28, 2015
The excitement comes from watching the director's rude energy chafe up against the constraints of a traditional Oscar-bait biopic.
October 10, 2014
The Butler is often impressively acted, beautifully shot and clearly designed to try to pick up a heartfelt award or two. But, as a film, it's too fragmented to carry its own weight on its shoulders and is over- burdened by a starry cast.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/5
September 18, 2014
The Butler tells an obviously important and inspiring story, but the actual movie is laughable.
Full Review | Original Score: 2/4
June 27, 2014
A large-scale, middle-of-the-road work that is entertaining and moving in the way that many other movies about the struggle for race equality have been.
March 22, 2014
The Butler is as worthy and earnest as its hero... but some scenes have a gut-wrenching impact that makes the struggle to overcome bigotry and oppression heartrendingly real.
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