Open City - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

Open City Reviews

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Virginia Graham
The Spectator
December 14, 2015
Written in desperate circumstances during the occupation and filmed soon after the liberation, it has all too skilfully trapped in the camera lens the atmosphere as well as a picture of those hideous times.
Top Critic
Kenneth Turan
Los Angeles Times
February 19, 2015
A world cinema landmark, but that dusty, respectful word does not do justice to a film that has not lost its power to surprise and even shock.
Top Critic
Michael Phillips
Chicago Tribune
October 31, 2014
Today it doesn't feel like a documentary at all. It's a street opera, caught on camera during wartime, a story performed by a mixed cast of amazing professionals and earnest non-professionals.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/4
Oleg Ivanov
Slant Magazine
September 8, 2014
Roberto Rossellini's film owes part of its emotional power to its mixture of politico-religious symbolism and quotidian humor.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/4
Mark Kermode
Observer (UK)
March 9, 2014
Ubaldo Arata's visceral cinematography blends the grit of a documentary with the heart and soul of a drama (Fellini collaborated on the screenplay) as the people of Rome wrestle with the constraints, compromises and collusions of life during wartime.
Full Review | Original Score: 5/5

TV Guide
March 7, 2014
An innovative fusion of documentary and melodrama.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/4
Geoffrey Macnab
Independent (UK)
March 7, 2014
Aldo Fabrizi excels as the courageous priest and there are few films that have a finale as heartbreaking.
Full Review | Original Score: 5/5
Peter Bradshaw
March 6, 2014
The torture and execution scenes are harrowing and moving.
Full Review | Original Score: 5/5
Matthew Thrift
Little White Lies
March 6, 2014
Roberto Rossellini's benchmark 1945 work of abrasive political realism presents a crumbling Rome that's been ravaged by war.
Full Review | Original Score: 5/5
Robbie Collin
Daily Telegraph (UK)
March 6, 2014
[Rossellini's] towering melodrama set during the Nazi occupation of the Italian capital, in the grinding endgame of the Second World War.
Full Review | Original Score: 5/5
Philip Kemp
Total Film
March 3, 2014
Made on a tiny budget with a largely non-professional cast and filmed on the streets where similar events had just occurred, the rawness of the movie give it an immediacy that still hits home.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/5
Fernando F. Croce
April 8, 2012
A galvanic document of human and filmic regeneration
Top Critic
Variety Staff
July 6, 2010
This much of the film is standard hero and villain stuff. But what makes picture good is the story of other characters involved in the tragedy.
James Kendrick
Q Network Film Desk
February 5, 2010
its rough, newsreel-like aesthetic gives the story's undeniably melodramatic tensions and clear-cut depictions of good and evil a sense of gritty reality and true gravity
Full Review | Original Score: 4/4
Sean Axmaker
January 27, 2010
Roberto Rossellini had been a journeyman director working within Mussolini's Italian film industry when he redefined his career and all but inaugurated the neo-realist movement...
Christopher Long
Movie Metropolis
January 17, 2010
(T)hese moments are so powerful that its easy to understand the effusive rhetoric the film has inspired.
Full Review | Original Score: 9/10
Jim Schembri
Sydney Morning Herald
September 29, 2006
Sixty years on, it packs a punch.
Ken Hanke
Mountain Xpress (Asheville, NC)
September 27, 2006
The true "realism" comes from within the film and from the sense of artists banded together to make something because they had something to say.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/5
Emanuel Levy
July 12, 2006
Announcing the arrival of a new, revolutionary paradigm, Italian neorealism, Rossellini's masterpiece shows the tension between his realistic docu-style and use of some melodramatic devices, but flaws are overcome by unified vision and political fervor
Full Review | Original Score: A-
Phil Villarreal
Arizona Daily Star
June 9, 2006
Tthe lasting impact of Rossellini's work is incalculable.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/4
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