• Release Date: Jun 9, 2004

Generally favorable reviews - based on 18 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 16 out of 18
  2. Negative: 0 out of 18

Critic Reviews

  1. 88
    Throughout, Mrs. Marcos comes across as an elitist, insulated against real life by wealth and power -- yet one who truly believes she is misunderstood and has done nothing wrong.
  2. 80
    Eminently successful at portraying the former first lady's flaws because it allows her to describe them herself.
  3. Diaz has said that she hopes the film asks the right questions. But it seems, in this case, that the questions are leading - and rightly so. Marcos is given all the tape she needs to hang herself.
  4. When a filmmaker can get Imelda Marcos, once one of the 10 richest women in the world, to pull out a Sharpie and draw a Pac-Man, she's alright by me.
  5. Fascinating and impressively balanced documentary.
  6. She emerges as an energetic, narcissistic, and totally self-deluded woman.
  7. Reviewed by: Ty Burr
    Imelda is at its most acridly useful when comparing the former first lady's recollections with others' less sanguine memories.
  8. Captures a complex and contradictory world figure. Imelda is by turns humorous, insightful and infuriating.
  9. As a personality study Imelda is a devastating portrait of how power begets self-delusion. It must be said, however, that through it all Mrs. Marcos exudes considerable charm and even a flickering sense of humor.
  10. 70
    For the fascinating character study Imelda, Ramona S. Diaz was given a month's access to the former first lady, who supplies so many bizarre equivocations that it's hard to tell whether her actions were malicious or merely delusional.
  11. 70
    When she's not babbling about the weird symbological system that rules her personal cosmos Imelda is an entertaining storyteller, vividly describing a life that became a national embarrassment and a camp legend.
  12. 70
    Engrossing documentary.
  13. But even though Marcos, in this film, provides enough material for a few hundred giggles and head-shakings, she also shows a pathetically human side.
  14. 70
    Diaz leaves us unsure about whether we should pity or revile Imelda, a woman alternately charmingly childlike, shockingly remote and, ultimately, as she stands over the waxed corpse of her husband, pathetic.
  15. There's no question she's a smart cookie, but as she herself says, "There's a thin line between smart and crazy."

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