Metascore
48

Mixed or average reviews - based on 29 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 8 out of 29
  2. Negative: 4 out of 29
Watch On
  1. Reviewed by: Steve Davis
    Nov 27, 2013
    30
    By the time the chorus of churchgoers end the film with a spirited rendition of Stevie Wonder’s rousing “As” following a demonstration of the healing power of forgiveness, you’re ready for a closing number. Hallelujah.
  2. Reviewed by: Ignatiy Vishnevetsky
    Nov 27, 2013
    25
    Black Nativity is a cut-rate musical melodrama that grafts overreaching references to black culture onto a facile family-values narrative.
  3. Reviewed by: Marc Mohan
    Nov 25, 2013
    25
    Directed as if it were an after-school special, with listless performances and musical numbers (Mary J. Blige shows up as a platinum-wigged congregant), Black Nativity is as simple and condescending as Hughes' work was complex and demanding.
  4. Reviewed by: Tim Robey
    Dec 5, 2013
    20
    It’s a misguided enterprise all round, and while it’s perfectly possible to applaud everything the film wants to say, you find yourself cringing at the ways it’s saying it.
User Score
5.9

Mixed or average reviews- based on 7 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 1 out of 2
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 2
  3. Negative: 1 out of 2
  1. Dec 9, 2013
    3
    This was low B grade movie. There were stellar performances from Vondie Curtis Hall, Tyrese Gibson, Luke James, Grace Gibson and Mary J.This was low B grade movie. There were stellar performances from Vondie Curtis Hall, Tyrese Gibson, Luke James, Grace Gibson and Mary J. Blige. Otherwise the sentimentality at times became so cloying and contrived. Jennifer Hudson made merely cameo appearances in the movie and howled violently through all her singing lines. Some guys down in the front row began to openly mock her which caused other movie goers to let out a few chuckles they had been holding in. The kids I took with me were enjoying it so I stayed for the whole movie but wanted to leave. I was curious how they would weave Langston Hughes's Black Nativity story into the movie itself but it was barely spoken about except for a brief showing mid movie. Overall I got the impression that this movie was merely a vehicle for Jacob Latimore who sang his parts very well. I found it hard to empathise with his character though. I kept hoping that he'd get caught, shot or arrested so that we could finally get past his dredged up problems to the Nativity. Full Review »
  2. Nov 27, 2013
    7
    That sentiment pretty much sums up Black Nativity: ungainly in execution, yet still infused with enough passion and reverence for Hughes’That sentiment pretty much sums up Black Nativity: ungainly in execution, yet still infused with enough passion and reverence for Hughes’ original work to be more success than failure. Moviegoers looking for seasonal entertainment that is accessible and family-friendly (without also being treacly and/or bland) this is a Christmas show that you might want to check out. Full Review »