Generally favorable reviews - based on 35 Critics What's this?

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Generally favorable reviews- based on 106 Ratings

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  • Starring: , ,
  • Summary: I'm Not There is a film that dramatizes the life and music of Bob Dylan as a series of shifting personae, each performed by a different actor—poet, prophet, outlaw, fake, star of electricity, rock and roll, martyr born-again Christian—seven identities braided together, seven organs pumping through one life story, as dense and vibrant as the era it inspired. (The Weinstein Company) Expand
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 28 out of 35
  2. Negative: 1 out of 35
  1. Reviewed by: Ty Burr
    The strangest thing about Todd Haynes's new movie isn't that he cast six actors to play the various faces and phases of Bob Dylan. It's that he needed only six.
  2. 91
    This film insists on being taken on its own terms -- the sort of demand, in other words, that defines the best art.
  3. Reviewed by: David Gates
    Brilliantly strange, often funny and ultimately heartbreaking film.
  4. 80
    A fascinating experiment that, if the viewer is willing to surrender to Haynes's sometimes hermetic meditations on Dylan's life, heartily rewards the investment.
  5. Reviewed by: Ken Fox
    In the end it remains an academic exercise, though a dazzlingly ambitious one that’s well worth seeing.
  6. What emerges is a speculative, critical essay about the 60s, weighted down in spots by political correctness and a conflicted desire to mock Dylan's denseness while catering to his hardcore fans, but otherwise lively, fluid, and watchable.
  7. Anyone can make a bad movie, but it takes a good filmmaker to make one as bad as I'm Not There.

See all 35 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 33 out of 60
  2. Negative: 19 out of 60
  1. Aug 27, 2010
    If there was was ever a film that could embody Bob Dylan, this is it, and that being said it is no means a biography. Rather than trying to encapsulate Dylan's life in any serial fashion, Todd Haynes opts to intersperse the different incarnations of the singer in both his music and personal life, imbuing surrealism and pure fiction to explain the chaos of his life. That being said, I wouldn't recommend this movie to people who aren't familiar with Bob Dylan or the musical movements of the 1960s-1970s; references like Pete Seeger trying to chop the electric cables with an axe at the Newport Folk Festival or tongue-in-cheek humor such as Dylan shouting at Jesus on the cross to "bring back your old stuff" would definitely go over most people's heads without any background. Expand
  2. May 9, 2012
    First things first; this is most definitely an 'art movie' and yes, it's pretty long. However if you have the ability to maintain your attention, this an enjoyable watch. It's pretty for one thing. And really very smart. I can't say I understood every detail. But the approach to the biography is well done. Bob Dylan is complex character (aren't we all?) who has had an extraordinary life. So we see a fragmented reality, each character an stand-in for different sides of the whole person, the truth residing somewhere within. The clue is in the title. A great soundtrack too ('natch') Collapse
  3. Oct 16, 2010
    A brilliant and original idea for a biopic. The 6 different arms of Dylans personality have their part to play, especially Cate Blanchett who proves herself to be a diverse and complete actress. How she manages to capture that druggy and care free spirit of the 60's like nobody else before her. Richard Gere dissapointed me slightly and was the least memorable of the 6 but Marcus Carl Franklin was a complete shock as 'Woody Guthrie' who is pursuing his dream to become a singer. Todd Haynes did a great job to get the rights to Dylans music let alone produce a movie as innovative as this. Expand
  4. May 21, 2013
    It's got plenty of standout performances, such as like Cate Blanchett's utterly uncanny turn as "Jude Quinn," but "I'm Not There" is way too ambitious interpretive, oblique, and abstract to be construed as a coherent biography. Expand
  5. Feb 22, 2012
    Let me preface my review by saying I'm a huge Bob Dylan fan. Love his music. Love his book. Love his style. He is iconic. I don't feel like this movie really captured Bob's spirit. I was really bored by it to be honest. It was creative, and I thought that Cate Blanchett totally knocked the ball out of the park, but it was just a drag to watch. They should have made a movie where Cate Blanchett played Bob for its entirety. The soundtrack is great, and I give the film points for Blanchett's stunning performance. The other actors weren't necessarily bad, they just didn't really speak to me as a Dylan fan . . . Expand
  6. Sep 3, 2010
    The many faces & phases of Bob Dylan.
    It's painfully pretentious, gruellingly long & quite disjointed.
    It's saving graces, however, are great
    performances by Heath Ledger & Cate Blanchett & of course the fantastic music.
    The film though just didn't work for me at all.

See all 60 User Reviews