'Footnote' Critic Reviews

100%
MovieWeb:   1 reviews
91%
Rotten Tomatoes:   84 reviews
  • Lisa Schwarzbaum Entertainment Weekly (Top Critic)
    92
    Footnote is itself a perfect little piece of Talmud, full of text, commentary, and colorful argument.
    Full Review » 2 years ago
  • A.O. Scott New York Times (Top Critic)
    80
    A piercing satire, a poignant family drama and an investigation of the competing claims of honesty, loyalty, ambition and love.
    Full Review » 2 years ago
  • Stephanie Merry Washington Post (Top Critic)
    75
    It's not easy to make Eliezer a sympathetic character, yet Bar-Aba's demonstration of fleeting vulnerability awakens inevitable, if equally brief, compassion.
    Full Review » 2 years ago
  • Wesley Morris Boston Globe (Top Critic)
    63
    The film was a nominee for this year's foreign-language Oscar, and Cedar has a real grasp of how to create conflict and generate tension.
    Full Review » 2 years ago
  • Karina Longworth Village Voice (Top Critic)
    Something between a comedy of everyday absurdity and a family tragedy pushed into the realm of the hyper-real, Footnote uses its characters' differing relationships to authenticity as the basis for an enigmatic riff on representation.
    Full Review » 2 years ago
  • Elizabeth Weitzman New York Daily News (Top Critic)
    80
    A film this intimate must be finely tuned, and Cedar's screenplay is acutely observant about academia, familial dynamics and life in contemporary Jerusalem.
    Full Review » 2 years ago
  • Joe Morgenstern Wall Street Journal (Top Critic)
    "Footnote" does function as a character study, an exceptionally rich one.
    Full Review » 2 years ago
  • Chris Vognar Dallas Morning News (Top Critic)
    84
    It speaks to anyone who's been on either end of a grudge or family antagonism. And it saves its best for those who have witnessed clusters of the best and brightest descend to the level of grade school kids on the playground.
    Full Review » 2 years ago
  • Lisa Kennedy Denver Post (Top Critic)
    88
    Israeli writer-director Joseph Cedar's tale of two Talmudic scholars set in present-day Jerusalem, while not exactly side-splitting, is quietly riotous. And, yes, the guffaws are bittersweet.
    Full Review » 2 years ago
  • David Denby New Yorker (Top Critic)
    Footnote requires little knowledge of Judaism and its texts. Rather, it's about the complications of love, guilt, and rage.
    Full Review » 2 years ago
  • Richard Brody New Yorker (Top Critic)
    Unfortunately, when Cedar forges his fine-grained observations into a plot, the action turns broad, thin, and overwrought, and his images lose their tensile strength.
    Full Review » 2 years ago
  • Roger Ebert Chicago Sun-Times (Top Critic)
    100
    In fact, it's one of the smartest and most merciless comedies to come along in a while.
    Full Review » 2 years ago
  • Michael Phillips Chicago Tribune (Top Critic)
    88
    I've seen the film twice, gladly, and I can't wait to see what Cedar comes up with next.
    Full Review » 2 years ago
  • J. R. Jones Chicago Reader (Top Critic)
    Writer-director Joseph Cedar's understanding of the many levers of academic politics helps him inject a little steel into the movie; but it's eventually overcome by the mushy father-son drama.
    Full Review » 2 years ago
  • Steven Rea Philadelphia Inquirer (Top Critic)
    Footnote is a film about the nature of truth, about sacrifice, hubris, hypocrisy. It's nothing short of brilliant.
    Full Review » 2 years ago
  • Tom Long Detroit News (Top Critic)
    67
    "Footnote" deals with ambition, isolation, the dangers of too much success and the inevitable gap between generations.
    Full Review » 2 years ago
  • Bill Goodykoontz Arizona Republic (Top Critic)
    90
    Writer and director Cedar does a great job of ratcheting up the tension by filtering the story through a simmering family rivalry.
    Full Review » 2 years ago
  • Jay Weissberg Variety (Top Critic)
    Cedar goes to great lengths -- indeed, too great -- to turn editing and music into the driving force behind the pic's liveliness.
    Full Review » 2 years ago
  • Kyle Smith New York Post (Top Critic)
    75
    The film is more about questions than answers. But sometimes the questions are the point.
    Full Review » 2 years ago
  • Peter Howell Toronto Star (Top Critic)
    100
    Writer/director Joseph Cedar is wise to the comedy of frustration and alert to the tragedy of hubris.
    Full Review » 2 years ago
  • Rick Groen Globe and Mail (Top Critic)
    75
    It's a wryly observed little picture that plays like an anecdote deliberately separated from some larger text that's hinted at yet never fully divulged.
    Full Review » 2 years ago
  • Liam Lacey Globe and Mail (Top Critic)
    75
    A father-son academic rivalry provides fodder for this caustic comedy set in the Talmud Department of the Hebrew University of Jerusalem.
    Full Review » 3 years ago
  • Andrew O'Hehir Salon.com (Top Critic)
    Both actors are tremendous: Bar Aba has the air of a near-boiling teakettle or an unexploded bomb, while Ashkenazi's Uriel looks on with a mixture of bafflement, exhaustion and reluctant affection.
    Full Review » 2 years ago
  • Kenneth Turan Los Angeles Times (Top Critic)
    80
    This is brainy, bravura filmmaking of the highest level, a motion picture that is as difficult to pigeonhole as it is a pleasure to enjoy.
    Full Review » 2 years ago
  • Roger Moore McClatchy-Tribune News Service
    75
    A dry academic tragi-comedy about academic blackballing, scholarship and taking stock of how you've spent, or misspent, your life.
    Full Review » 2 years ago