'Inside Man' Critic Reviews

94%
MovieWeb:   4 reviews
86%
Rotten Tomatoes:   201 reviews
  • Julian Roman MovieWeb (Top Critic)
    80
    Thrillers are rarely so well conceived; Inside Man is a must-see.
    Full Review » 8 years ago
  • Lisa Schwarzbaum Entertainment Weekly (Top Critic)
    84
    Inside Man is a hybrid of studio action pic and Spike Lee joint. Or else it's a cross between a 2006 Spike Lee joint and a 1970s-style movie indictment of urban unease.
    Full Review » 9 years ago
  • Manohla Dargis New York Times (Top Critic)
    80
    Inside Man, directed by Spike Lee, works because it takes a familiar setup a Wall Street bank heist that mutates into a hostage crisis and twists it ever so slightly.
    Full Review » 9 years ago
  • Peter Bradshaw Guardian [UK] (Top Critic)
    20
    Supremely annoying and nonsensical.
    Full Review » 8 years ago
  • Claudia Puig USA Today (Top Critic)
    88
    Exceptionally well written with clever twists and witty dialogue by first-time screenwriter Russell Gewirtz, Inside Man is adroitly executed by director Spike Lee.
    Full Review » 9 years ago
  • Stephen Hunter Washington Post (Top Critic)
    A deft, tense, pure thriller, the movie has great star turns and is brilliantly directed, but it began as an extremely well-crated screenplay by Russell Gewirtz.
    Full Review » 9 years ago
  • Wesley Morris Boston Globe (Top Critic)
    88
    The basic story is elemental, but because Lee and Gewirtz invest it with grit, comedy, and a ton of New York ethnic personality, it's fresh anyway.
    Full Review » 9 years ago
  • J. Hoberman Village Voice (Top Critic)
    This enjoyable exercise in popcorn pyrotechnics demonstrates that Lee can be relied on to attack the cliches set before him with gusto.
    Full Review » 9 years ago
  • Jami Bernard New York Daily News (Top Critic)
    75
    Lee takes the usual potshots at this stewpot of race, power and politics. Only here it's effective as part of the story, as opposed to when it's wielded like a tire iron in the context of a polemic.
    Full Review » 9 years ago
  • Amy Biancolli Houston Chronicle (Top Critic)
    63
    Inside Man may be a genre flick, but its direction is certifiably Lee -- sprinkled with trademark themes and visual cues, including his specialty, the strapped-to-a-factory-belt dolly shot.
    Full Review » 9 years ago
  • Philip Wuntch Dallas Morning News (Top Critic)
    84
    Viewers may be surprised at the smoothness with which the frequently bombastic Spike Lee navigates the mainstream.
    Full Review » 9 years ago
  • Lisa Kennedy Denver Post (Top Critic)
    88
    At just over two hours, Inside Man earns every minute of our tense curiosity.
    Full Review » 9 years ago
  • David Edelstein New York Magazine (Top Critic)
    The normally subversive Spike Lee takes a rare genial tack.
    Full Review » 9 years ago
  • Anthony Lane New Yorker (Top Critic)
    The more it sags as a thriller, the more it jabs and jangles as a study of racial abrasion.
    Full Review » 9 years ago
  • Roger Ebert Chicago Sun-Times (Top Critic)
    63
    Here is a thriller that's curiously reluctant to get to the payoff, and when it does, we see why: We can't accept the motive and method of the bank robbery, we can't believe in one character and can't understand another.
    Full Review » 9 years ago
  • Michael Phillips Chicago Tribune (Top Critic)
    63
    This one's a Spike-for-hire affair, a case of a flashy director juicing up a first-time screenwriter's efforts.
    Full Review » 9 years ago
  • J. R. Jones Chicago Reader (Top Critic)
    [A] wily thriller, which revitalizes a familiar premise by turning it inside out.
    Full Review » 6 years ago
  • Steven Rea Philadelphia Inquirer (Top Critic)
    75
    Intercutting post-robbery interrogation scenes with the action at hand, makes Inside Man a substantial and satisfying affair.
    Full Review » 9 years ago
  • Colin Covert Minneapolis Star Tribune (Top Critic)
    75
    Inside Man marries some ingenious caper ideas to Lee's superb feel for ethnic politics.
    Full Review » 9 years ago
  • Tom Long Detroit News (Top Critic)
    67
    Inside Man brings Lee back into the mainstream while still letting him have some fun, and he passes that fun on to the audience.
    Full Review » 9 years ago
  • Randy Cordova Arizona Republic (Top Critic)
    90
    The film grabs you from the beginning and never lets go.
    Full Review » 9 years ago
  • Andrew Sarris New York Observer (Top Critic)
    I gloried in the sheer spectacle of Jodie Foster as Madeline White, an exquisitely groomed, fearlessly feline fixer striding on her high heels and her high horse into one supposedly perilous situation after another.
    Full Review » 8 years ago
  • Rex Reed New York Observer (Top Critic)
    In the age of low-budget independent grab-a-flicks, this high-powered waste of time proves what superior talents have to do now to collect an occasional big-studio Hollywood paycheck.
    Full Review » 9 years ago
  • Todd McCarthy Variety (Top Critic)
    A flashy cast, clever script and vibrant showcasing of New York City as the ultimate melting pot are strong plusses for Spike Lee's most mainstream studio venture.
    Full Review » 9 years ago
  • Lou Lumenick New York Post (Top Critic)
    75
    Inside Man, a crackling, twisty thriller about a bank heist that shows he [Spike Lee] can make an expensive, mainstream movie that's every bit as well-crafted as the personal, arty films to which he has devoted most of his career.
    Full Review » 9 years ago