Metascore
82

Universal acclaim - based on 22 Critics What's this?

User Score
6.3

Generally favorable reviews- based on 11 Ratings

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Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 22 out of 22
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 22
  3. Negative: 0 out of 22
  1. Reviewed by: David Lewis
    Sep 25, 2014
    100
    It’s right up there with the best rock documentaries. That is, if you can call it a documentary.
  2. Reviewed by: Stephanie Zacharek
    Sep 16, 2014
    100
    20,000 Days on Earth is meticulously crafted but nonetheless feels casual and heartfelt. It's revelatory, and wonderful, to watch Cave walking (or driving) around, being a real person — if the movie is somewhat staged, it's never stagey.
  3. Reviewed by: Andrew O'Hehir
    Sep 19, 2014
    90
    For the most part, 20,000 Days on Earth – the approximate amount of time Cave has been alive on this planet – is an imagistic and impressionistic work, a Nick Cave-esque tone poem driven by moments of visual and thematic juxtaposition you either have to reject or accept.
  4. Reviewed by: Rob Nelson
    Mar 12, 2014
    80
    An aptly intense and innovative study of pioneering rock poet Nick Cave, 20,000 Days on Earth playfully disguises itself as fiction while more than fulfilling the requirements of a biographical documentary.
  5. Reviewed by: Patrick Smith
    Sep 18, 2014
    80
    There is a beguiling, melancholic quality to the film, mirroring Cave’s personality.
  6. Reviewed by: Steven Rea
    Sep 26, 2014
    75
    It's a wondrous mix of the momentous and mundane, the profound and the perverse, with Cave blues-talking his way through the goofy juxtapositions, the darkness, and the light.
  7. Reviewed by: John Semley
    Mar 12, 2014
    63
    While the film is seemingly accessible as a portrait of an artist who seems particularly attuned to his own creative process, and particularly adept at describing this attunement, it's unlikely that many who aren't already whole-hog Bad Seeds fans would be able to stomach much of Cave's self-styled pomposity.

See all 22 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 0 out of 1
  2. Negative: 0 out of 1
  1. Sep 26, 2014
    4
    I'm finding it bizarre, with the release of this film, that it's a foregone conclusion, if you like Nick Cave, you'll love this documentary. I understand the universal drooling from critics, even here, tracing to their endless pursuit of what's-hot-and-what's-not, but there are plenty others who actually listen to Nick Cave's music intensely and often, finding this documentary weirdly conventional, over-produced, sterile, and violative of any biographical trace of punk from the balladeer's past. From the ten-point lighting kit at the mock psychotherapy session, to the jib floating the camera around those armchairs, to the awkward conversations that were conceptually improvised but fundamentally staged, this film is the equivalent of a corporate video for an annual shareholder's meeting, or a broadcast network reality television show egging for market share. Will someone else speak up too, please? Nick Cave is one of the great multi-disciplinary artists of our time, and his extraordinary talents are scurrying around the festival circuit for this film at the expense of what he could be creating quietly at home: a new album, a new screenplay, a new film score, a new novel. Expand

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