Dead Again


Generally favorable reviews - based on 19 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 12 out of 19
  2. Negative: 1 out of 19

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Critic Reviews

  1. However unlikely the twists and turns in this mystery, Dead Again moves briskly forward, never weighed down by any sense of seriousness.
  2. Chicago Tribune
    Reviewed by: Dave Kehr
    Emerges as cutty, indistinct and confused, full of shots that don't match and spatial conceptions that would look flat even on TV. The more Branagh strains to appear “cinematic,'' the more he looks like a man of the theater. [23 Aug 1991, Friday, p.B]
  3. USA Today
    Reviewed by: Mike Clark
    It's fun to see somebody revive the amnesia genre - how long has it been? - but the conceit quickly grows irksome. Only Thompson, who manages to be appealing in both of her roles, will likely reap much from this DOA folly. [23 Aug 1991, Life, p.4D]
  4. 50
    Directing with an eye to "Rebecca," Branagh brings more mood than suspense to this apparent hommage to Hitchcock. Still, he raises no goose bumps.
  5. Reviewed by: Angie Errigo
    The ambitious, initially intriguing Dead Again fails so spectacularly it may well become the fetish of a camp cult.
  6. When it's time to wrap up the mystery, the movie leaves too many of the plot's enigmas unresolved, and Branagh's insouciance loses its charm.
User Score

Universal acclaim- based on 45 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 0 out of 2
  2. Negative: 1 out of 2
  1. Jul 18, 2014
    Dead Again: 5 out of 10: On-screen chemistry is a funny thing. Some couples simply have it. Tom Hanks and Meg Ryan make a cute believableDead Again: 5 out of 10: On-screen chemistry is a funny thing. Some couples simply have it. Tom Hanks and Meg Ryan make a cute believable couple; William Powell and Myrna Loy in their fourteen films together are in my mind the silvers screens best pairing.

    On the other hand, Kenneth Branagh and Emma Thompson have no on screen chemistry whatsoever. One might say despite the fact they were married, yet I would argue that too often whatever chemistry causes an off-screen couple to hook-up simply does not translate to the movies. In fact in many cases it seems to create a negative chemistry on screen. (Think Tom Cruise and Nicole Kidman.) Since Dead Again is at its heart a love story, the lack of chemistry is deadly. Branagh and Thompson play two couples. The first, filmed in beautiful black and white, are an angry World War 2 refugee and opera composer and his murdered wife. He goes to the chair for her murder and we flash forward to Branagh as a missing persons detective and Thompson as a crazy mute lady with amnesia. They may be connected to the previous couple and both stories are told alternately throughout the film.

    The film itself (in particular the black and white flashbacks) is gorgeous, yet Branagh as a director plays too many tricks for his own good. He cribs so liberally from Hitchcock that the film threatens to turn into High Anxiety 2 rather than an original work.

    Without the chemistry between the leads we are left with little more than a hundred film school in-jokes and a strange sci-fi mystical story that we simply have no stake in.
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