Warner Bros. Pictures | Release Date: February 26, 1993 CRITIC SCORE DISTRIBUTION
56
METASCORE
Mixed or average reviews based on 21 Critics
Positive:
11
Mixed:
6
Negative:
4
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100
A few times every year, Hollywood makes a mistake, violates formula and actually makes a great picture. Falling Down is one of the great mistakes of 1993, a film too good and too original to win any Oscars but one bound to be remembered in years to come as a true and ironic statement about life in our time. [26 Feb 1993, p.D1]
70
The filmmakers aren't out to make a crisp action fantasy like the vigilante movies of the 1970s. Their disaffected man has no specific enemy or at least not one that he acknowledges; modern life is his enemy. This realization hits him one day and he begins to act on it, spontaneously. He's an existential vigilante. [25 Feb 1993, p.A12]
70
It's hard to know how to respond to Falling Down: deplore its crudeness or admire its shrewdness. But it is occasionally the movies' job to plunge into the national psyche, root around in its chaotic darkness and return to the surface with some arresting fantasy that helps bring our uglier imaginings into focus. In that sense, this often vulgar and exploitative movie has some value. [1 March 1993, p63]
50
Slickly directed by Joel Schumacher, who sees that each and every button in this unabashedly manipulative film is pushed hard, Falling Down could have been deeply disturbing if it weren't so cartoony, so determined to glibly escape the moral consequences of the vicarious white-rampage fantasies to which it caters. [26 Feb 1993, p.25]
50
The film probably should have been a comedy. It would be a lot more cathartic - and a lot more entertaining - to laugh at the grim modern world of Falling Down than it is to have a heavy-handed filmmaker rub our faces in the hopelessness of it all. [26 Feb 1993, p.14]
42
It's a distasteful jumble that stirs up the worst instincts of its audience by heaping abuse on Bill, encouraging us to identify with him, then prodding us to enjoy his bursts of venom and violence. [1 Mar 1993]
38
Falling Down is an intellectually sloppy, rebellious working-man adventure film that is little more than a set piece for Michael Douglas playing out a revenge-of-the-nerds fantasy. [26 Feb 1993, p.C]
30
Falling Down encourages a gloating sense that we the long-suffering victims are finally getting our splendid revenge. The ultimate hollowness of that kind of triumph reflects the shallowness of a film all too eager to serve it up. [26 Feb 1993, p.1]
25
FALLING Down is a nasty bit of business, a two-faced manipulator that condones what it pretends to condemn. Cluttered and often downright silly, it's not much of a movie, but it is a fascinating sign of the times - a litmus test for every prejudice and fear harboured by the white middle class in ailing, urban America. [26 Feb 1993, p.C6]
12
Hopped-up Falling Down is a technically proficient grabber that exploits white-male angst while adeptly juggling two stories filmed in contrasting styles. Slick, maybe facile, and with a nasty streak, it is nonetheless 1993's first consistently engrossing movie. [26 Feb 1993, p.1D]