'The Island President' Critic Reviews

100%
MovieWeb:   0 reviews
98%
Rotten Tomatoes:   49 reviews
  • New York Times (Top Critic)
    Full Review » 3 years ago
  • A.O. Scott New York Times (Top Critic)
    60
    The hope that infuses this movie makes it all the more upsetting to walk out of the theater and contemplate a looming disaster that the world's leaders seem unable to prevent.
    Full Review » 3 years ago
  • Peter Bradshaw Guardian [UK] (Top Critic)
    80
    Ex-Maldives president Mohamed Nasheed comes across in this documentary as a kind of climate-change Prospero.
    Full Review » 3 years ago
  • Ann Hornaday Washington Post (Top Critic)
    75
    Shenk expertly weaves Nasheed's extraordinary personal story together with the Maldives' breathtaking natural beauty and a Capra-esque tale of dogged idealism and political courage to create wonderfully vivid cinematic portraiture.
    Full Review » 3 years ago
  • Melissa Anderson Village Voice (Top Critic)
    Shenk's film is close enough to his subject to catch the leader who rails against carbon-dioxide emissions puffing on cigarettes in parking lots.
    Full Review » 3 years ago
  • Joe Morgenstern Wall Street Journal (Top Critic)
    "The Island President" personalizes the threat of global warming, and nationalizes it too, by focusing on Mohamed Nasheed, the former president of the Maldives.
    Full Review » 3 years ago
  • Colin Covert Minneapolis Star Tribune (Top Critic)
    75
    [An] engaging, gorgeously photographed documentary.
    Full Review » 3 years ago
  • Tom Long Detroit News (Top Critic)
    75
    Nasheed is indeed inspirational, a cool-headed but passionate and courageous guy. You end up wishing a lot more leaders were like this guy.
    Full Review » 3 years ago
  • V.A. Musetto New York Post (Top Critic)
    75
    Viewers get an eye-opening look at behind-the-scenes wrangling.
    Full Review » 3 years ago
  • Peter Howell Toronto Star (Top Critic)
    63
    The Island President is an important portrait of a determined man standing fast in a place where the ground is literally shifting beneath his feet.
    Full Review » 2 years ago
  • John DeFore Hollywood Reporter (Top Critic)
    A portrait of defiant optimism as a last-chance means of survival, Jon Shenk's The Island President offers not only a Mandela-like tale of political heroism but a much-needed perspective on climate change.
    Full Review » 3 years ago
  • Kenneth Turan Los Angeles Times (Top Critic)
    80
    "The Island President"is heartening and unsettling by turns.
    Full Review » 3 years ago
  • Nathan Southern TV Guide's Movie Guide
    88
    One only hopes that the documentary will help advance Nasheed's mission and inspire others to join arms out of shared ecological concern.
    Full Review » 2 years ago
  • Radheyan Simonpillai NOW Toronto
    60
    A fascinating look at an extraordinary personality.
    Full Review » 2 years ago
  • Rob Thomas Capital Times (Madison, WI)
    75
    The haunting "How to Disappear Completely" plays over the closing credits. If Nasheed isn't able to wake up the world to his country's plight, in a few decades, that could be the new Maldives national anthem.
    Full Review » 2 years ago
  • Louise Gray Daily Telegraph
    If you are in a fight, you want this man on your side. He is charismatic, brave and most of all entirely believes in what he is what he is doing. I'm not sure he know the meaning of the word compromise.
    Full Review » 2 years ago
  • John Hartl Seattle Times
    75
    Climate-change documentaries are almost always disturbing, but "The Island President" communicates a special urgency.
    Full Review » 3 years ago
  • Jeff Meyers Metro Times (Detroit, MI)
    59
    As an insight into the cynical nature of world politics, The Island President is wonky but fascinating stuff ... But as a testament to mankind's willingness to change... it's deeply dispiriting.
    Full Review » 3 years ago
  • Chris Hewitt (St. Paul) St. Paul Pioneer Press
    88
    The film clearly sides with Nasheed's David as he battles Goliath-like businesses and governments, but it never loses sight of the fact that his efforts to preserve the fragile beauty of the sinking Maldives may already be doomed.
    Full Review » 3 years ago
  • Alison Gang San Diego Union-Tribune
    88
    Shenk's tight storytelling makes for a gripping film that delivers the ugly, at times ennobling, truth.
    Full Review » 3 years ago
  • Brent Simon Shockya.com
    59
    A socially engaged documentary with more heart than head, this slice of boosterism focusing on the exiled Maldives president achieves unexpected ancillary connection as a ground-floor look at a grand clash of political and governmental wills.
    Full Review » 3 years ago
  • Scotsman
    60
    An absorbing portrait of a man trying to turn a tide of indifference.
    Full Review » 3 years ago
  • Peter Rainer Christian Science Monitor
    75
    What makes Nasheed's whirligig tactics so urgent is that, unlike most other countries participating in the summit, his own nation is actually in danger of being annihilated by climate change.
    Full Review » 3 years ago
  • Sarah Sluis Film Journal International
    Primary meets environmental documentary. A must-see now that political strife has forced the film's subject, President Mohamed Nasheed, to resign.
    Full Review » 3 years ago
  • Rob Hunter Film School Rejects
    67
    Nasheed is a fascinating man with grand ideas that stand in direct contrast to his appearance.
    Full Review » 3 years ago
AVG. RATING 3.5 GREAT
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