Metascore
90

Universal acclaim - based on 31 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 31 out of 31
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 31
  3. Negative: 0 out of 31
  1. It's a mad cycle of arrogance and despair, and Bloody Sunday etches it onto your nervous system.
  2. 100
    By re-imagining a pivotal, terrible 24 hours, Greengrass has made a must-see film that is timely - and timeless.
  3. A bracing, unblinking work that serves as a painful elegy and sobering cautionary tale.
  4. A great achievement: tense and passionate, a film that one feels not just emotionally but also physically.
  5. 88
    One view of what happened that day, a very effective one. And as an act of filmmaking, it is superb: A sense of immediate and present reality permeates every scene.
  6. Surges forward with barely a respite. It's like watching a propane factory burn, waiting for the tanks inside to explode, and when they do, we're right in the middle of it.
  7. 88
    An astonishing re-creation of the Londonderry massacre of January 1972.
  8. 88
    The film is conducted in a delirious cinema-verite style; most of what you see has a brutal, you-are-there immediacy. You're not merely watching history, you're engulfed by it.
  9. 91
    It's raw, visceral stuff that precious few movies are capable of equaling.
  10. There's no denying the skill and flair with which director Paul Greengrass has restaged this unhappy event, creating an uncanny sense of immediacy and allowing us to be a fly on the wall at a seminal '70s tragedy.
  11. The most visceral and cumulatively powerful account of civil war since Gillo Pontecorvo's "The Battle of Algiers."
  12. Reviewed by: David Ansen
    100
    Brings history to life with an uncanny sense of realism.
  13. Reviewed by: Scott Foundas
    100
    A stunning work, revisiting controversial events with journalistic objectivity and a meticulous eye for detail.
  14. 100
    An extraordinary film ... that's impossible to dismiss or leave unmoved.
  15. 90
    A scrupulously even-handed account, free of ideological or tribal partisanship, based on eyewitness accounts by survivors and the anonymous "Paras" themselves.
  16. 90
    Bloody Sunday doesn't surrender its grip on the viewer even after the action shifts from the streets of Bogside to a local hospital where the weeping masses are still under the guns of the war-painted British soldiers.
  17. Amazingly, almost every note of every performance in Bloody Sunday rings true.
  18. Once positions hardened, tragedy was all but inevitable, and Bloody Sunday" does the spirit of that awful day full and unforgettable justice.
  19. 90
    The level of accomplishment in the filmmaking is overwhelming.
  20. Reviewed by: Patrick Z. McGavin
    90
    The movie's searing conclusion left me numb and overwhelmed.
  21. 88
    Greengrass and his tremendously smart and emotionally agile lead actor, James Nesbitt, paint their portrait of a good politician without illusion or sentimentality.
  22. 100
    For the viewer, the miracle of Bloody Sunday is that firm moral judgment can exist side by side with a wild and bitter exhilaration in the sheer physicality of violence. [7 Oct 2002, p. 108]
User Score
8.5

Universal acclaim- based on 35 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 14 out of 17
  2. Negative: 1 out of 17
  1. Oct 19, 2014
    9
    This is by far the best real-life-tragedy-turned-into-film I have ever seen. With a stunningly realistic scenery and acting I totally forgot I was watching a movie. Full Review »
  2. Nov 28, 2012
    8
    Paul Greengrass's richly affecting docudrama not only delivers a strong aesthetic and some truly lifelike performances, but it shines the proverbial spotlight upon some unquestionably important subject matter. Full Review »
  3. Aug 26, 2010
    8
    Paul Greengrass captures the infamous "Bloody Sunday" massacre of 1972 with intimate close-ups and documentary-style filmmaking, giving a sense of weight and urgency to every scene. However, the lightning-fast dialogue and broad array of characters and scenarios sometimes make the movie more confusing than engaging. Full Review »