Talk to Me - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

Talk to Me Reviews

Top Critic
Cliff Doerksen
Time Out
November 18, 2011
Full Review | Original Score: 3/5
Top Critic
Bob Mondello
NPR.org
October 18, 2008
In its wrenching shift from farce to tragedy, and its evocation of the bridge offered by friendship, Talk to Me tells it, and keeps on tellin' it, much as 'Petey' Greene would have.
Top Critic
Jonathan Crocker
Time Out
November 22, 2007
Thanks to its two leads, the film remains vivid, honest and deeply felt.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/6
Top Critic
Claudia Puig
USA Today
September 1, 2007
Speaks powerfully to audiences with its potent blend of extraordinary performances and engaging soundtrack.
| Original Score: 3/4
Top Critic
Bruce Newman
San Jose Mercury News
August 3, 2007
The movie's occasional narrative shortcomings are offset by the performances, which are uniformly fine.
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/4
Top Critic
Joanne Kaufman
Wall Street Journal
July 27, 2007
Its dialogue, equal parts uptight honky and jumping jive seems, particularly in the early stretches, to have been generated by a computer.
Top Critic
Rob Salem
Toronto Star
July 27, 2007
The characters are brought to vivid life with remarkably compelling performances by two of the screen's most versatile actors: Don Cheadle as the freewheeling Greene; and Chiwetel Ejiofor as Hughes, the aggressively ambitious executive.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
Top Critic
Moira MacDonald
Seattle Times
July 27, 2007
As Lemmons effortlessly makes her film both a colorful tour of the turbulent '60s and a delicately paced character study, the men emerge as two halves of a whole; often in disagreement, always brothers.
Full Review | Original Score: 3.5/4
Top Critic
Roger Moore
Orlando Sentinel
July 27, 2007
Cheadle gives a performance of contained cool and bluff bravado, suggesting barely a hint of the rage you would expect from a man just out of a nine-year prison sentence.
| Original Score: 4/5
Top Critic
Liam Lacey
Globe and Mail
July 27, 2007
The problem is, the last section of the movie doesn't follow the career path of Greene: It traces the blander character of Hughes.
| Original Score: 2.5/4
Top Critic
Tom Long
Detroit News
July 27, 2007
[A] well-acted film about making the move from the street to the mainstream.
| Original Score: B-
Top Critic
Terry Lawson
Detroit Free Press
July 27, 2007
he mood shifts awkwardly from broad comedy to melodrama and social commentary.
| Original Score: 2/4
Top Critic
Lisa Kennedy
Denver Post
July 27, 2007
Lemmons, her extraordinary cast and gifted crew deliver laughing, crying and plenty of signifying.
Full Review | Original Score: 3.5/4
Top Critic
Richard Nilsen
Arizona Republic
July 26, 2007
Don Cheadle has elevated yet another film: Talk to Me is better than it intends to be. But thank Ejiofor as well.
| Original Score: 4/5
Top Critic

Minneapolis Star Tribune
July 26, 2007
... has a solid sense of time and place and character.
| Original Score: 3/4
Top Critic
Chris Vognar
Dallas Morning News
July 21, 2007
Talk to Me is more than enough fun as a showcase for Mr. Cheadle's wit and spontaneity and as an inside look at the airwaves' transition from warm and fuzzy comforter to the anything-goes entertainment of today.
Full Review | Original Score: B+
Top Critic
Kyle Smith
New York Post
July 20, 2007
The movie also presents '60s turbulence from a black point of view, which is not only bracing but also feels closer to the point of it all.
| Original Score: 2.5/4
Top Critic
David Ansen
Newsweek
July 17, 2007
Brilliant, alcoholic and self-destructive, Greene is the fascinating subject of Kasi Lemmons's funky, R&B-driven biopic -- a vital entertainment that struts confidently between comedy and drama.
Top Critic
Richard Schickel
TIME Magazine
July 17, 2007
A very honest yet curiously affecting experience.
Top Critic
Jack Mathews
New York Daily News
July 14, 2007
About halfway through the movie, it changes direction, becoming less a biographical drama about Petey than a maudlin buddy movie about his relationship with Dewey.
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/4
Top Critic
Keith Phipps
AV Club
July 14, 2007
It's an unfortunately neatly packaged tale about a man who, by all evidence, constantly and consciously resisted easy repackaging.
| Original Score: C+
Top Critic
Ruthe Stein
San Francisco Chronicle
July 14, 2007
Watching it becomes an exercise in frustration when a potentially great movie winds up buried inside a just OK one.
Full Review | Original Score: 2/4
Top Critic
Roger Ebert
Chicago Sun-Times
July 13, 2007
The movie begins with a whirlpool of comedy and manic energy, and then grows, as it must, more serious and introspective.
Full Review | Original Score: 3.5/4
Top Critic
Ty Burr
Boston Globe
July 13, 2007
Smart, conflicted, and immensely entertaining.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
Top Critic
Stephanie Zacharek
Salon.com
July 13, 2007
...a movie that perfectly captures the vibe of a person, a place, a time and a way of being, and even gets, indirectly and without a whiff of sanctimoniousness, to the heart of what being an American ought to mean.
Top Critic
A.O. Scott
New York Times
July 13, 2007
Talk to Me offers uplift without phoniness, history without undue didacticism and a fair number of funny, dirty jokes.
| Original Score: 4/5
Top Critic
Carina Chocano
Los Angeles Times
July 12, 2007
As an intimate portrait of the complex, fruitful and extremely volatile friendship between trailblazing African American men whose daring came to redefine an industry, it's fresh and revelatory.
Full Review | Original Score: 4.5/5
Top Critic
Peter Rainer
Christian Science Monitor
July 12, 2007
Don Cheadle, along with Taraji P. Henson, act up a storm in this biopic about Petey Greene, a 1960s-era deejay who shook up the airwaves with his streetwise rant. Their performances deserve a better film.
| Original Score: C+
Top Critic
J. R. Jones
Chicago Reader
July 12, 2007
I was bummed out by the movie's trite VH1 cartoon of the black power era -- especially coming from Kasi Lemmons, who made her directing debut with the hauntingly ambiguous Eve's Bayou.
Top Critic
Carrie Rickey
Philadelphia Inquirer
July 12, 2007
Don Cheadle -- explosive because you've never before seen this model of actorly restraint -- is a one-man fireworks show in Talk to Me, Kasi Lemmons' rollicking, resonant portrait of the real-life ex-con who improbably became a civic icon.
Full Review | Original Score: 3.5/4
Top Critic
Jan Stuart
Newsday
July 12, 2007
Rescued from hagiography and cliche by tart writing and a spark-plug star performance from Don Cheadle.
| Original Score: 3/4
Top Critic
Michael Phillips
Chicago Tribune
July 12, 2007
Blessedly free of the usual biopic freight and sanctimony, the exuberant new film Talk to Me has a great subject and a great actor working in tandem.
| Original Score: 3.5/4
Top Critic
Ella Taylor
L.A. Weekly
July 12, 2007
Neither Lemmons nor screenwriters Michael Genet and Rick Famuyiwa, however, have much of a feel for character, let alone story.
Top Critic
Stephen Hunter
Washington Post
July 12, 2007
It makes you feel not only the joy people experienced in the wash of Greene's raucous, truth-saying humor, but also his wisdom and calm.
Top Critic
Stephen Garrett
Time Out
July 12, 2007
The writing and direction pull their punches, opting for a 'be cool, y(TM)all' ethos and the hazy glow of tribute instead of the messy reality that Greene himself reveled in lancing.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/6
Top Critic
Owen Gleiberman
Entertainment Weekly
July 11, 2007
A rowdy, richly offbeat biopic.
Full Review | Original Score: A-
Top Critic
Nathan Lee
Village Voice
July 10, 2007
Talk To Me lacks every kind of specificity (historical, psychological, socio-cultural) but redeems itself through the dedication of its Cheadlicious lead.
Top Critic
Michael Rechtshaffen
Hollywood Reporter
June 22, 2007
Again demonstrating why he's one of the most versatile actors around, Don Cheadle gives another prize-worthy performance as Ralph Waldo 'Petey' Greene Jr.
Top Critic
Robert Koehler
Variety
June 22, 2007
Alternates too deliberately between jaunty comedy and serious message-making.