The Reluctant Fundamentalist - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

The Reluctant Fundamentalist Reviews

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May 22, 2013
As Nair's film forgoes provocation for pandering, it assumes a tragic air, albeit not for the reasons she intended.
Full Review | Original Score: C
April 26, 2013
The heavy-handedness -- the strip-search begins with the loud thwack of rubber gloves -- reduces Hamid's characters to talking points.
June 14, 2013
The film seems to dance around the idea of being really critical of America-of analogizing American "exceptionalism" with Islamic fundamentalism-and instead resolves itself with an ending more befitting of a beauty pageant contestant's speech.
April 15, 2013
The laziest sort of political cinema, full of straw men and finger-pointing, wrapped up in an awards-friendly bow by its beautiful cinematography and a manipulative world music-y score.
Full Review | Original Score: 2/4
May 9, 2013
It most disappoints as a thriller, the flashbacks and voiceovers and romantic entanglements so dominating the proceedings you forget that someone is bound and gagged in real time.
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/5
October 29, 2012
Mira Nair again reminds us of her frustrating inconsistency as a filmmaker, enlisting a fine cast and strong technicals - Declan Quinn's sumptuous cinematography is particularly enchanting - but failing to cover the, ahem, fundamentals first.
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/5
May 29, 2013
A notable cast - and noble intentions - can't elevate what is a very ordinary film.
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/5
May 22, 2013
It highlights the up-and-down nature of the film - some parts are compelling while other parts are unconvincing.
Full Review | Original Score: B-
Top Critic
April 25, 2013
When Nair tries to take in the larger picture, her focus goes slack, and all that's left is a blur.
Full Review | Original Score: B-
August 16, 2013
Despite some promising moments, it never quite coheres into a convincing story. It's worth seeing... but it ultimately feels like a missed opportunity - like a pedant groping for a profundity beyond his moral ken.
Full Review | Original Score: 84/100
Top Critic
April 25, 2013
The Reluctant Fundamentalist collapses in a heap of wool-gathering humanism that feels warm to the touch, yet fatally hedges its political bets.
April 25, 2013
All the elements are there to tell a sharp, strong story, but director Mira Nair and screenwriter William Wheeler take the events of the day and simplify them into a blunt force object where subtlety and wit are replaced by sermonizing and melodramatics.
April 25, 2013
The movie's failures are all the more unfortunate because they detract from its central and conspicuous success, the performance of Riz Ahmed in the title role.
May 17, 2013
A lurching, stuttering drama, one whose intentions are far better than its sense of storytelling rhythm.
Read More | Original Score: 2/5
May 17, 2013
It's a timely narrative subject, but its treatment in The Reluctant Fundamentalist is fundamentally flawed.
Full Review | Original Score: 2/4
May 2, 2013
"The Reluctant Fundamentalist" often feels as if it's going nowhere. By the time it reaches its ambiguous conclusion, at least it should have helped us understand where Changez is coming from, but it doesn't.
Read More | Original Score: 2/4
May 10, 2013
You leave the cinema with your teeth clenched, muttering: "at least it meant well".
Full Review | Original Score: 2/5
May 3, 2013
Come for the barrage of clunky plot devices but stay for the morally repugnant comparison between religious radical killers and capitalists.
Full Review | Original Score: 1.5/4
April 25, 2013
By literalizing the idea of American military aggression and all that it implies Ms. Nair doesn't just invest Mr. Hamid's story with Hollywood-style beats, she also completely drains it of ambiguity.
Read More | Original Score: 2/5
May 4, 2013
A film unfortunately characterized by as much cake-and-eat-it ambivalence as those commitment challenged lovebirds. And with an ideological resolution wavering between two extremes, and in the end neither of them.
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