Critic Consensus: Nightingale serves up a breathtaking solo performance by David Oyelowo in a film served well by its modest cinematic style.
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Critic Reviews for Nightingale
In HBO's Nightingale, David Oyelowo gives the best performance of his career as Peter Snowden, a man quickly and violently descending into madness.
An audacious one-man show-a series of deluded, sometimes charming, often tragic, occasionally frightening monologues delivered by a troubled veteran clearly in the midst of a dissociative crisis.
The film is phenomenally acted, but rarely makes much use of the power of cinema, instead using a device associated more with theater-the one-set location, with a one-man cast.
The careful layering of the experiences and emotions that influence Peter's choices, along with expert massaging of the tension that exists from the start, make Nightingale a sad but satisfying film.
"Nightingale" is overshot to appear more cinematic and underwritten to avoid pomposity, and that's okay. Both decisions are just that: choices to serve the character. Peter would be pleased with how his little film turned out.
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