Mixed or average reviews - based on 39 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 15 out of 39
  2. Negative: 7 out of 39

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Critic Reviews

  1. 60
    Unfortunately, during the inevitable "what every woman wants" breakdown, Zellweger can't muster Doris Day's detached fume.
  2. It's like a "Saturday Night Live" sketch on a $60 million budget.
  3. The New Yorker
    Reviewed by: Anthony Lane
    Both of them (Zellweger and McGregor) are set adrift by the movie's discomforting demands, and only in the closing credits (this really is a top-and-tail movie) do they get to do what people do most fruitfully instead of sex, which is to make a song and dance about it. Who needs love? [26 May 2003, p. 102]
  4. Zellweger is a gifted comedienne and her wonky persona sparks here and there, but the humor is so broad that the film is a poor stage for her subtle comedic skills, and she's not photographed well: her face has to be lit just so or it tends to looks strangely distorted. McGregor is terrible casting.
  5. 50
    What starts as freshly spun cotton candy ends as something pink, sticky and indigestible. You leave the theater wanting to puke it up.
  6. 50
    The fatal flaw of Down With Love... is that in mining what's kitschily amusing about those movies, it also re-creates far too faithfully everything that's unbearable about them.
  7. An irritation, more fizzle than sizzle.
  8. Reviewed by: Howard Karren
    The period sets and costumes and the arch dialogue are exaggerated as if to underline the movie’s satirical intent—but in fact it has none.
  9. Director Peyton Reed gets the film's look and, in moments, its disingenuous innocence, but you have to wonder what he and the screenwriters, Eve Ahlert and Dennis Drake, thought they were parodying. The actors clearly haven't a clue.
  10. Reviewed by: David Rooney
    Stars Zellweger and McGregor are too knowingly nudge-wink in their performances, too much contrived constructs to become real characters, let alone fuel the romantic comedy engine and make an audience care much whether they end up together.
  11. Reviewed by: Richard Corliss
    The new film is conflicted about its subject -- it both derides and adores what it means to parody -- and it's miscast at the top. Still, the Eve Ahlert -- Dennis Drake script has a gentle heart to humanize its sharp sitcom wit.
  12. The film is juvenile when it should be adult, coarse when it ought to be bubbly, and upfront when witty circumspection is indicated. The result feels a bit like a drag show, a camp blend of pitch-perfect mimicry and anachronistic raunch.
  13. Reviewed by: David Edelstein
    The chief casualties are the good actors, who are forced to turn themselves into cartoons.
  14. 40
    You can't set the comedy bar much lower than spoofing the old Rock Hudson-Doris Day romances.
  15. Wall Street Journal
    Reviewed by: Joe Morgenstern
    Jeff Cronenweth did the lovely cinematography. It's the only element that improves on the original material.
  16. Hunter's movies never condescended to the audience; they never winked, never pretended to be a mere Playboy party joke. Which is precisely why Down With Love, which strives to be to "Pillow Talk" what "Far From Heaven" was to "All That Heaven Allows," is such a disaster: It winks so hard it lapses right into a coma.

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