Metascore
81

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

User Score
8.7

Universal acclaim- based on 45 Ratings

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  • Starring: ,
  • Summary: The restored and re-edited director's cut of the Coen Brothers' 1984 crime thriller stars Hedaya as a jealous bar owner who hires a nefarious detective (Walsh) to kill his young wife (McDormand).
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 19 out of 22
  2. Negative: 0 out of 22
  1. 100
    If you are squeamish, here is the film to make you squeam.
  2. 100
    Savor their technique and the sizzling performances of Frances McDormand as an adulterous wife, Dan Hedaya as her vengeful husband and M. Emmet Walsh as a private detective from hell.
  3. All in all, Blood Simple looks better than ever.
  4. Reviewed by: Chris Barton
    80
    Don't miss this opportunity to see a film that many believe started the renaissance of indie films as it was intended to be shown.
  5. Reviewed by: Editor
    80
    The Coens' concern isn't emotional intensity but bravura camera moves and chic lighting of cinematographer Barry Sonnenfeld.
  6. Clever as it is, Blood Simple is derivative and self-consciously stylized.
  7. Revelatory and disappointing.

See all 22 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 11 out of 11
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 11
  3. Negative: 0 out of 11
  1. Jul 11, 2014
    8
    Blood Simple, the first Coen brothers film, is a more serious, slow, somber movie whose nuances are the most interesting part of it. The brothers didn't have their signature style yet, so the movie doesn't feel like a Coen brothers film, but it's worth watching if you want to see where Joel and Ethan made their start. Expand
  2. BillC
    Aug 29, 2009
    7
    A movie that doesn't follow a set pattern and you never know what is next. Bravo!
  3. Jul 8, 2014
    6
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. Blood Simple: 6 out of 10: Some movies are victims of their own success. Alien is a great film but it seems a little slow nowadays and the plot while very fresh in 1979 has been done to death. (I still love it mind you but if I saw it for the first time this year I would probably wonder what the big deal is) The surprise is gone. I bring that up because at its time Blood Simple was a critics darling. A breath of very fresh air in our nations multiplexes. Not anymore.

    This kind of noir has been done to death since the Coen brothers revived it twenty plus years ago and Blood Simple through no fault of its own suffers as a result. The plot of the jealous husband and double crosses has had so many spins of the same record (1/2 of them seemingly starring Tim Matheson) that the original simply doesn't have the freshness or power it undoubtedly had back in '84.

    The movie has great strengths still however. Seeing Frances McDormand looking this cute reminds me of see Lucille Ball or Bette Davis in one of their first films when they were sex objects. And while John Getz gets swallowed up in his straight role Dan Hedaya (Cheers) on the other hand plays sleazy so well I forget I have seen it so many times since.

    Overall very well done if slightly slow paced and certainly worth a view just too familiar to encourage a repeat viewing.
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See all 11 User Reviews

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