The U.S. vs. John Lennon - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

The U.S. vs. John Lennon Reviews

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Top Critic
Sam Adams
Los Angeles Times
September 15, 2006
There's little sign of the honest ambivalence that made Lennon a great artist, if a questionable spokesman.
Full Review | Original Score: 2/5
Top Critic
James Berardinelli
September 26, 2006
Those hoping for something hard-hitting won't find it here. This is strictly on the level of what one might uncover during a VH1 special.
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/4
Chris Hewitt (St. Paul)
St. Paul Pioneer Press
September 28, 2006
You wonder if the film might actually have been worthwhile without the random stuff it includes. I mean, for instance, imagine there's no Geraldo Rivera. It isn't hard to do.
| Original Score: 1/4
Top Critic
Christy Lemire
Associated Press
September 23, 2006
It feels as if [Ono's] cooperation resulted in a softened perspective on the musician-turned- activist-turned-icon.
| Original Score: C+
Top Critic
David Jenkins
Time Out
October 28, 2006
The film paints with swaggeringly broad strokes, the basic thesis being Lennon = good, government = bad.
Willie Waffle
September 28, 2006
a great retro ride for those who miss those trippy days, but not much of an educational experience.
Full Review | Original Score: 2/4
Laura Clifford
Reeling Reviews
September 30, 2006
...all pro and no con, a terrific piece of entertainment for fans of Lennon but a poor examination of its titular subject and its current day ramifications.
Full Review | Original Score: C
Top Critic
A.O. Scott
New York Times
September 14, 2006
Makes the case that, in just about every way that counted, Lennon was a better person than Richard M. Nixon.
| Original Score: 2.5/5
Top Critic
Phil Gallo
August 31, 2006
The storyline follows the Ono-approved bio that posits Lennon as saint, excising his dark periods and their years apart, which could have enhanced the portrait.
Tony Medley
September 12, 2006
...the near canonization of Lennon as a secular saint without requiring any miracles,...a propagandistic diatribe made by ideologues...boring (and I'm a Beatlemaniac!).
Full Review | Original Score: 3/10
Damon Wise
Empire Magazine
November 29, 2006
What promises to be a provocative account of the late Beatle's involvement with the American underground delivers precious little in this Yoko-approved documentary.
Full Review | Original Score: 2/5
Top Critic
Lisa Rose
Newark Star-Ledger
September 15, 2006
Imagine a naive, simplistic documentary about the most complex, cynical member of the Beatles.
| Original Score: 2/4
Top Critic
J. R. Jones
Chicago Reader
September 29, 2006
His life has been raked over by so many books, movies, magazine articles, and TV shows that The U.S. vs. John Lennon barely justifies its own existence.
Full Review | Original Score: 1/4
Ed Gonzalez
Slant Magazine
September 6, 2006
Explicitly, the film is pure fluff, a competently detailed catalog of Lennon's political ambitions told in the visual shorthand of the VH1 rock-doc.
Full Review | Original Score: 2/4
December 30, 2006
If anything this film proves that song can have more impact than a little toe tapping and tub-thumping.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/5
Jeffrey Chen
Window to the Movies
September 14, 2006
As a big John Lennon fan, I was looking forward to seeing this documentary, but was disappointed by its relative simplicity in scope and presentation.
Full Review | Original Score: 6/10
Top Critic
Nathan Rabin
AV Club
September 22, 2006
...the film feels like an unintentional parody of liberal documentaries that transform complex topics into elaborate cinematic peace signs.
Full Review | Original Score: D-
Ray Greene
Boxoffice Magazine
September 1, 2006
In this Che Guevara t-shirt of a film, the same cliche 'them and us' shadow play that MTV and VH1 stage in everything they produce about the American 1960s is extended so excruciatingly that the era seems to occur year by year in real time.
Full Review | Original Score: 1.5/5
Top Critic
Rick Groen
Globe and Mail
September 29, 2006
The aim may be laudable, but nothing gets hit except some awfully tired targets. And fatigue doesn't resonate.
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/4
Top Critic
Bruce Westbrook
Houston Chronicle
September 29, 2006
The film's first half has zero to do with its title, and its second half digs up familiar turf.
Full Review | Original Score: 2/4
David Edwards
Daily Mirror (UK)
January 2, 2007
Philip French
Observer (UK)
December 30, 2006
Peter Bradshaw
January 27, 2007
Peter Keough
Boston Phoenix
April 23, 2009
Top Critic

St. Louis Post-Dispatch
September 30, 2006

Baltimore Sun
September 30, 2006

Irish Times
January 5, 2007
Top Critic

Atlanta Journal-Constitution
May 12, 2007

Sydney Morning Herald
June 9, 2007
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