User Score
8.3

Universal acclaim- based on 199 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Negative: 12 out of 199

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  1. Dec 21, 2014
    0
    Now, if you want to see a movie that takes horrific cruelty and wraps it up in quirky comedy wrapping paper from Wal-Mart, grab a copy of Being John Malkovich. But don't watch it. Instead, burn it. Burn them all. Because Malkovich takes the torture-wrapped-in-comedy genre to such a far degree that just thinking about it makes me sick. I no longer like seeing John Malkovich, Cameron Diaz,Now, if you want to see a movie that takes horrific cruelty and wraps it up in quirky comedy wrapping paper from Wal-Mart, grab a copy of Being John Malkovich. But don't watch it. Instead, burn it. Burn them all. Because Malkovich takes the torture-wrapped-in-comedy genre to such a far degree that just thinking about it makes me sick. I no longer like seeing John Malkovich, Cameron Diaz, Catherine Keener, or John Cusack on screen in anything. I'm not exaggerating here, just seeing one of them makes me shudder. This movie is such a perversion of film and the human mind that I want my memory erased after watching it.
    I want to forget how this movie made me feel. I'm not holding back. Here's everything I haven't successfully repressed:
    John Cusack is a creepy and depressed guy who lives with his creepy and depressed wife. Their entire existence and atmosphere in the film is miserable. Everything about it is uneasy. Cusack is a puppeteer, and in the film's opening, he makes two puppets bang while a young girl is watching him perform on the street. The film's best part occurs when the girl's father punches him in the face and destroys his display. Oscar for Best Supporting Actor goes to Suckerpunch Guy. I f**king mean it. Give that guy a career.
    So Cusack joins this creepy company, and there's a door leading into John Malkovich's brain, where you can see through his eyes for 15 minutes. After 15 minutes, you magically appear on the turnpike just outside of New York, conveniently a few miles away. Why? Who cares!? The film is quirky! It doesn't need logic, or thematic elements, or quality in general.
    Cusack and his creepy and depressing coworker sell 15 minute excursions into Malkovich's head for a while, until they realize that they can control him if they focus hard enough. So they start doing that, and they replace Malkovich's conscience (John Malkovich plays John Malkovich, a flat character who is... creepy and depressed. Great.), and in the end, Malkovich must consciously sit by as this dirty creep controls his mind and perverts his body, destroying his soul. No one is happy. Nothing good happens. Nothing intelligent happens. Malkovich just gets **** on, Cusack locks his wife in a cage. It's creepy and depressing. It's disgustingly cruel, and it insults us by pretending it's all a joke.
    "Come on guys, we'll laugh about this someday." said Spike Jonze as devil's horns emerged from his forehead. Hey, you hear that? Sounds like the cries of the damned to me.
    If Jonze's 2013 romance film Her hadn't been such a masterpiece, I'd probably hate him. He redeemed himself for this one, so I can let him off with a warning. Every director ever: making films like these is like putting the Boogie Nights disc in What About Bob's box. Stop selling these as comedies. Please, god, stop. This really must be the most unbearable film I've ever watched. Jesus, take the wheel. My cinema hurts.
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  2. Aug 10, 2012
    4
    Best part of the entire movie is when puppeteer Schwartz (John Cusack) is punched by a father conveying his disappointment in the perversion of a puppet show, which are typically enjoyed by children. The Puppeteer
  3. Aug 2, 2011
    1
    Absolutely awful in every way, shape and form. No likable characters, a scatterbrained story, and just mean-spirited. Avoid at all costs. Please, for your own sake, avoid this movie!
Metascore
90

Universal acclaim - based on 36 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 36 out of 36
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 36
  3. Negative: 0 out of 36
  1. Gloriously inventive, delightfully nutty comic treasure is unlike anything you've ever seen. It's lunatic.
  2. Reviewed by: David Ansen
    90
    I don't know how a movie this original got made today, but thank God for wonderful aberrations.
  3. 100
    If we're allowed just a couple of truly singular discoveries in twelve months, it's a good year; when one of them is a film as exhilarating as Spike Jonze's feature debut, it's a banner year.