Generally favorable reviews - based on 41 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 35 out of 41
  2. Negative: 1 out of 41
  1. The biggest little movie of the year - and one of the best ever about the news media.
  2. 100
    Vividly re- creates TV news icon Edward R. Murrow's historic face-off with Sen. Joseph McCarthy in devastatingly low-key detail -- is the right movie at the right time.
  3. Reviewed by: Mike Clark
    The only things missing from making this showdown worthy of a Western is Murrow's sheriff's badge, a dusty street and maybe a spittoon for McCarthy's infamous invectives.
  4. 100
    The other key character is McCarthy himself, and Clooney uses a masterstroke: He employs actual news footage of McCarthy, who therefore plays himself.
  5. It'll preach mainly to the choir - lazy thinkers won't attend, despite George Clooney's attachment as director and actor - but maybe it'll wake a few sleepers.
  6. 100
    You go to Good Night, and Good Luck expecting inspiration, and you get it. It's also unexpectedly subtle, tense, and challenging, complex both in its take on its subject and in its craftsmanship. So the movie brings you to your feet - and, at times, to tears.
  7. A riveting movie that's as entertaining as it is socially and politically important.
  8. Reviewed by: David Ansen
    It's a passionate, serious, impeccably crafted movie tackling a subject Clooney cares about deeply: the duty of journalism to speak truth to power. It also happens to be the most compelling American movie of the year so far.
  9. A paragon of subtlety. Yet this message is exactly what we carry out of the theater, and it lingers on with a powerful resonance.
  10. Couldn't be more unlikely, more unfashionable -- or more compelling.
  11. He [Clooney] has found a cogent subject, an urgent set of ideas and a formally inventive, absolutely convincing way to make them live on screen.
  12. 90
    This is an elegant and stirring entertainment about the hard-drinking, hard-smoking reporters of "See It Now," the show that Murrow and the producer Fred Friendly put together every week.
  13. Langella is terrific in a small but critical role as CBS president William Paley, although the one essential problem with the film is that it never clearly delineates the jobs fulfilled by the cluster of other newsroom employees that are always huddled about.
  14. 88
    In ninety-three tight, terrifically exciting minutes, Clooney makes integrity look mighty sexy.
  15. Reviewed by: Ken Fox
    That the film should have the look and feel of a classic teleplay by, say, Rod Serling, is probably no accident -- the style is one more reminder of just how regrettably short of Murrow's vision we've fallen.
  16. Reviewed by: Ty Burr
    A puzzle: a hermetically sealed period piece so intensely relevant to our current state of affairs that it takes your breath away.
  17. 88
    Like other actors who successfully create a cinematic doppelganger of a real person, Strathairn gets under the character's skin.
  18. Reviewed by: Glenn Kenny
    David Strathairn, playing Murrow, follows his writers' lead beautifully, delivering a performance that's all understatement on the surface and searing fire underneath.
  19. Good Night, and Good Luck has a small-scale time-capsule fascination, yet its hermeticism is really a form of moral caution -- a way of keeping the issues neat, the liberal idealism untainted.
  20. A solid achievement, but those in the press who have been trumpeting its greatness may be going in for a bit of self-congratulation. The movie plays very well to the choir.
  21. 83
    An unusual and absorbing, if somewhat preachy film.
User Score

Generally favorable reviews- based on 151 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 54 out of 75
  2. Negative: 11 out of 75
  1. Feb 22, 2012
    "Good Night, and Good Luck" isn't really a masterpiece as the critics claim, but it has it's sophisticated entertainment values thanks to the wonderful direction / performance of George Clooney and his crew. Full Review »
  2. Feb 7, 2014
    The acting is great, but this film is classic director George Clooney for me. It is a very interesting subject matter that moves at a snail's pace and all interest in the story is lost, ultimately winding up being a quite boring film. I wanted to like it, but I simply cannot.

    However, I felt as though the black and white worked well, as I said before, the acting was really well done, and I really liked the blending of the real newscasts with the events going on in the screening room.
    Full Review »
  3. Jun 7, 2013
    Good film. Great cast. George Clooney directs the heck out of this film; I liked his subtle approach of the material, but I also feel like that held the film back a bit. Also, it's a little short. Full Review »