Generally favorable reviews - based on 34 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 30 out of 34
  2. Negative: 0 out of 34
  1. 91
    A Big Sleep with underage bozos, a Maltese Falcon where the stuff that dreams are made of rests in the lockers of a well-worn high school, Brick is a remarkable oddity, audacious and engaging.
  2. 91
    Manages to be visually arresting, packed with geeky allusions to everything from Raymond Chandler to "Blue Velvet."
  3. Reviewed by: Jeremy Mathews
    With brilliant dialogue out of the 1940s and graceful visuals that add depth to the dark comedy, Johnson debuts with a smart, self-assured feature that portrays adolescence like no other film has.
  4. Reviewed by: Ty Burr
    Brick is Bogart goes to high school, in other words, but that thumbnail description doesn't begin to convey the lasting pleasures of Rian Johnson's directorial debut.
  5. Johnson also grabs hold of a fundamental truth and seduces us with it: The schoolyard can be the noirest burg of all.
  6. It's reminiscent of David Lynch, who is a master at mixing the ghastly and the risible. Brick would be better with a bit more Lynch in its soul, but Johnson is his own man, and I look forward to what he comes up with next.
User Score

Generally favorable reviews- based on 133 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 46 out of 62
  2. Negative: 13 out of 62
  1. AndyM.
    Jun 9, 2008
    This movie is best described as a bunch of 25 year-olds, acting like 17 year-olds, acting like 35 year-olds. It's ridiculous. This isn't high school, and it never will be. It tries to be original by placing a 50-years-late, washed-up detective genre into a high school setting, and it comes off as plain absurd. As the Wall Street Journal puts it, "It's original, yet it's not". No high school is filled with smooth talking, drug-running teenagers, who spit 1940's lingo like it's the normal thing to do. If you like detective stories and you just HAVE to have a new angle, despite the complete lack of believability, then this is for you. The movie isn't a bad one, don't get me wrong. The writing and the confined presentation just prevents it from being the amazing movie it desperately wants to be. And I mean desperately. Full Review »
  2. MichaelM.
    May 21, 2006
    This film is what you would get if you gave a bunch of talented 10th grade students unlimited access to the school's audio visual department. But unfortunately, even the most talented 10th graders can't make a watchable commercial film, except maybe a film made for other 10th graders who happen to go to the same school. It seemed that the screenwriter's goal was to pack the dialogue full of as much cool-sounding slang as he could, whether it got in the way of writing a good script or not. This drivel was muttered nearly unintelligably by all the "actors" in this children-trying-to-act-like-grownups mess. How anyone could rate this over a zero is a total mystery to me--I assume it was a gift, so as not to discourage the budding young talent. I had exactly the same feeling about this film as I did about Dogville, except I felt much worse about the latter, because it was made by adults who had no excuse. Come to think of it, if you loved Dogville, you will probably love this film.--please rush out and buy a ticket so I won't feel so bad about wasting my own money. Full Review »
  3. Jun 7, 2013
    This review contains spoilers, click full review link to view. IF you can accept that Brick is a film about a bunch of high schoolers involved in their own drug trade, you'll love the film. If you try to use logic and disregard the seemingly implausible plot than you'll find the film tortuous. I for one loved the film and thought it was unbelievably believable. The kids are great and Rian Johnson directs with confidence and style. Absolutely amazing! Full Review »