Mixed or average reviews - based on 15 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 8 out of 15
  2. Negative: 0 out of 15
  1. Reviewed by: Mark Jenkins
    The movie poignantly demonstrates that, 41 years after Stonewall, there are still places in this country where gay people cannot simply be themselves.
  2. 70
    8 is most coherent as a chilling confirmation of both the mind-warping power of an institution like the Mormon Church and the extent to which politics is, above all, a marketing game.
  3. 75
    A hard-hitting exposé of a shameful episode.
  4. It's marred by loaded language and a propagandistic tone that undercuts rather than promotes its purposes.
  5. 50
    A deeply felt, and numbingly partisan, documentary about how the Mormon Church both bankrolled and masterminded passage of the initiative.
  6. Cowan, a gay Mormon himself, deftly melds facts with emotions, alternating between a history of the church's anti-gay drive and interviews with those directly affected by it.
  7. The interviews throughout are the best part of the movie - the least heavy-handed, yet most effective, element. There is a message here of the necessity for tolerance, but 8: The Mormon Proposition would have been better had its makers presented it in a more consistent, artful fashion.
  8. There’s little of the Church’s perspective in this doc, but you can’t really fault the filmmakers--Mormon leaders refused several overtures to participate. Read more:
  9. Filmmaker Reed Cowan (himself gay and raised Mormon) documents the church's considerable financial influence on Prop 8's passage. Then he expands his sad and furious homegrown film to record the misery of gay Mormons sometimes driven to suicide over being rejected by their church and families.
  10. As an exposé, there could hardly be a stronger case for ensuring and strengthening the separation of church and state -- or a stronger message to gay people as to the magnitude of the challenge to win equal rights.
  11. Reviewed by: Peter Debruge
    For sympathetic outsiders, on the other hand, it covers a lot of ground in a short space, not always in the most organized way, but on enough fronts to spark an informed dialogue.
  12. 50
    The flaws pale against what's illustrated, which is not just how Prop. 8 passed, but the sordid, cynical workings of our political machine.
  13. The highly emotional documentary is narrated by Dustin Lance Black, the screenwriter for “Milk,” who, like Mr. Cowan, is gay and grew up in a Mormon household.
  14. 40
    A chaotic sequence midway through shows Mormon and gay-rights protesters shouting abuse at each other in San Francisco, and that's pretty much what the whole movie feels like.
  15. If the impact of co-director/writer Reed Cowan's film is undercut by its sometimes sloppy execution, it nonetheless provides a disturbing portrait of the increasing overlap between church and state.
User Score

Generally favorable reviews- based on 29 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 4 out of 6
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 6
  3. Negative: 2 out of 6
  1. Dec 26, 2010
    The message is a worthwhile one, but I'm not sure it needed a feature-length doc to tell it. There are some compelling stories of those affected by the church's actions, but they are muddled by text and figures that get a little tiresome. I was ultimately disappointed, but it is worth seeing, especially for those involved in the cause. Full Review »
  2. Aug 12, 2010
    I find it amusing that there are some that try and fling feces at this documentary because it 'vilifies' the Mormon Church. However, upon watching this documentary, they vilified themselves. These are their emails, their records, their audio, their web ads, their television ads. This was a relatively rough and unrefined documentary, but the mechanics aside, it was informative and serves as a sharp wake-up call to all Americans of what bad religion, far too much money, and fanaticism can do to our politics and our freedoms. This is one of the things the Founding Fathers tried to prevent by keeping Church and State separate. It is only through issues like Prop 8 and this documentary that we are forcibly reminded of the need to disentangle the two as was meant to be originally. Full Review »