User Score
7.5

Generally favorable reviews- based on 293 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Negative: 40 out of 293

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  1. Dec 9, 2013
    4
    I agree with DirkV. I too am a big fan of much of their work, and when they successfully combine their unique visual flair, humour and a good story they are peerless. This just left me cold. Like another overrated film of theirs, O Brother..., this had virtually no substance whatsoever.
  2. Dec 29, 2013
    4
    This is a highly disappointing film. The critical acclaim made me rush with excitement to see this new Cohen Brothers offering. But it is just plain dull. Yes, it's production, casting and music are exceptional. But it does not at all entertain the audience. I kept waiting for Llewyn Davis to do something that would make me care, that would move me, but he didn't. And in fact, not many of the other characters did much for me either. A lot of effort went into making a beautiful but boring movie. Expand
  3. Dec 9, 2013
    3
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. nothing happens in this movie. love the coen bros., but this falls toward the bottom of their filmography. i could forgive the story if the individual scenes were entertaining, but they weren't. just put the trailer on, pause it on the main guys face, and look at it for an hour and half. that's pretty much it. Expand
  4. Dec 27, 2013
    4
    It's guaranteed that the Coens will leave no detail behind in their settings which is why everyone will give their films a chance and why critics will have their reviews written before seeing the movie. Inside Llewyn Davis is no different from the scarves, to the office chairs, the lovely echo in the empty hall as Llewyn goes a cappella, to the silver in the quarters making a ring as they're dropped on the table, everything of the period is cared for. But in this movie you will find no trace of characters developing their relationships with one another. The ambient light on skin, as beautiful as it may be at times, stays stagnant for two hours. All of the characters' minds were made up before your butt hits the theater seat. Expand
  5. Dec 21, 2013
    2
    There is nothing Inside Llewyn Davis. it's a beautifully produced fraud. The movie goes nowhere. Nothing happens. The Coens have written a movie about an era, rather than a story with a beginning, middle, and end. I cannot believe the reviews it has received. I wanted to love this movie. It is very unsatisfying. The audience I saw it with, was looking at each other, as if to say, "Is that all there is? When is the story going to begin?" Don't waste your money. Expand
  6. Dec 26, 2013
    3
    I understand that the movie's intention is to be dreary, bleak, and so on, but it comes off as boring, overlong, and with no satisfying conclusion. The music was a mixed bag with more bad than good. Some characters felt worthless.
  7. Dec 25, 2013
    1
    This film was supposedly "inspired" by the hilarious book "The Mayor Of MacDougal Street" by Dave Van Ronk, the larger-than-life Greenwich Village folk legend. Somehow, against all odds, the Coen Bros managed to create a dull, plodding, joyless, pointless film. The only good that can come from this movie is the spotlight shining on the late great Dave Van Ronk and re-introducing his work to the world.

    If you go see this film keep in mind that that Coens got everything wrong the folk scene was energetic, fun, lively, bursting with life, and the best of the singer/songwriters were very supportive of each other. It was Dave Van Ronk who first said: "Never root against your competitor if what they are doing is good music. When music of quality sells it's good for all of us." He also said, "Honesty can be the cruelest game of all. Not only can someone hurt you and hurt you to the bone they can feel self righteous about it at the same time." And this: "Never make the mistake of thinking someone you don't like, likes you." (You have to think about that for a second).

    You'd never imagine anything like that coming out of the mouth of Llewyn Davis.

    You can probably guess that I knew Van Ronk, and like many of my compatriots, am baffled how such a bleak film sprang from such brilliantly witty source material. They should have thought twice about using Dave Van Ronk's name to give this film a sort of street cred. There's too many of us out here who see how false this film rings, and because of our love and reverence for the man, feel compelled to speak up on his behalf.
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  8. Dec 30, 2013
    0
    Music good. Characters believable. Plot line almost invisible. Deathly boring. I sat there expecting something to actually happen. It didn't. It started out boring and became, well, depressing. Don't waste money on this one.
  9. Dec 21, 2013
    4
    I'm surprised so many people were able to convince themselves that they enjoyed the movie. You really get little more than you get from watching the trailer. It looks and sounds nice, and seems to be an interesting glimpse into the period, but nothing really happens. Felt like an overextended short film. The kind that just gives you a glimpse into someone's life, without really taking the character through the paces normally required for a feature film. Expand
  10. Dec 26, 2013
    4
    Inside Llewyn Davis is saved from total boredom and disaster by one decent song and a few good laughs. The movie is so slow and at the same time didn't make me care about the pathetic main character who insists on continually screwing his life up.
  11. Dec 10, 2013
    2
    Somebody made this movie? I'm a movie buff... and while I was in Hollywood at the Cineramadome complex to see the Mandela movie... I noticed that this movie was sold out and it was playing in the main Dome area. So as the lamb that I am.. I followed the crowd. Boy... were we disappointed!! I say we because the whole crowd was left in the dark... literally. The plot was pointless.. the songs became annoying.. and worse part... the ending was abyssmal. The movie cuts to darkness and the movie ends abruptly at a point in the movie where you might thing it was gonna pick up. Nope it ended. Dont waste your money... time.. or the memory of such garbage. If misery and hard fortune was the aim of this movie... it was accomplished... but at our expense. Literally.... our money and our time... Please tell other people to avoid this sorry excuse for a movie Expand
  12. Dec 18, 2013
    2
    The Cohen Brothers were unable to make me care about their pathetic main character who insists on continually screwing his life up. That would be fine if there were a point to it, but that is also absent. No redemption, just a downward spiral where the main character goes down the drain like the story does. Great acting and signing and songs thanks, T Bone Burnett! A sadly disappointing nothing of a movie. Expand
  13. Dec 27, 2013
    0
    An execrable pile of offensive nonsense. A total jerk and animal abuse. Possibly the Coen's worst; subverting their main character at every opportunity, without a shred of redemption, this horrendous pastiche shrinks to a pinpoint of depressing nastiness. Not even remotely a convincing recreation of life in the Village c. 1960. Awful awful awful.
  14. Dec 30, 2013
    3
    The critics love Inside Llewyn Davis. A few even proclaim that Joel and Ethan Coen are the greatest filmmakers in America. But look past all those 100 pt. scores and notice the choice of words they use to describe this film. Words like small, painful, heavy, melancholy, bleak, deeply felt and exquisitely crafted. Few, if any, of them describe this movie as clever, interesting or entertaining. That’s because it isn’t.
    Here’s more of what this movie isn’t. It isn’t funny. The night I saw this movie, the theater was sold out. No one laughed, not even once. Also, the songs aren’t that great. Unlike O’ Brother, Where Art Thou?, you’re not going to be singing any of these songs to yourself as you walk out the door, and you’re not likely to hear them on the radio, or anywhere else, ever again. (Sorry T-Bone.) Worst of all, the story isn’t very interesting or entertaining. It’s about a folk singer struggling to make it as a musician. He takes himself very seriously, and he thinks he’s better than everyone else. He makes a lot of bad decisions and pretty much alienates everyone around him. It turns out he’s not that good a song writer, and he gets beat up for being a jerk. Then the movie ends. (No one applauded. Everyone was too busy scratching their head and saying “Huh?”) No Country for Old Men was something of a head scratcher too, but at least it was interesting. My first reaction to this firm was, “Huh?” followed by “Wow, that was totally pointless.” (If you’ve seen Fruitvale Station then you know what I’m talking about.)
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  15. Dec 31, 2013
    0
    As a big fan of the Cohen brothers prior work, I have to say that this movie was simply terrible. The fact that the critics are praising this film ad nauseam just shows that they should be ignored and that the system is rigged. As you watch the film, you feel yourself waiting anxiously for something to actually happen. Instead, absolutely nothing happens. The central character is disconnected and not believable as a 60s folk singer. There's no discernible plot. The cast feels over dramatic. The movie goes nowhere. I'm fortunate that I'm a voting member of a Hollywood guild so that I can transfer my whining here into a No Vote! By far the worst film I've seen this year. Ask yourself this....if this didn't have the Cohen brothers Hollywood machine behind it, would the critics have lauded this film even remotely as much? I think we all know the answer to that. Expand
  16. Apr 20, 2014
    0
    Did I miss something? Did I watch another "Inside Llewyn Davis" movie? This movie, goes NOWHERE!
    a lot of pointless dialog, drags on and on. The actors and music were good, but that doesn't make a good movie.
  17. Jan 8, 2014
    3
    The music in this movie is terrific and the performances were really good all around. Sadly, this movie lacks any kind of plot. It is a pure atmosphere kind of movie with comedic elements to lighten the mood. And the mood is in dire need of being lightened, because this movie is depressing. Everything out titular protagonist touches turns, to quote another character in the movie: "to ****
    I do not like this sort of movie. It was really hard to care for anything in this movie, because everything that happened was pointless and ended in nothing but disappointment.
    I like movies that do more than just flop all over the place with things happening without anything ever being achieved.
    Some ideas in this movie sound good on paper, but make for nothing but boredom in practise.
    if you enjoy movies driven by atmosphere and a rather realistic portrayal of a character's life being mildly but tenaciously awful, do give this movie a watch. Otherwise, steer clear.
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  18. Jan 2, 2014
    4
    I found this movie to be a waste of money and time. I would not recommend this movie to younger ages at all unless they need a nap. I have really liked Coens especially in their movie "The Big Lebowski" but this was just awful. The only reason why I didn't give it a flat 0 is because the ending made me think and I usually enjoy that. Overall, I would see this if you like folk music or you are a Coen brothers fan boy. Expand
  19. Dec 28, 2013
    1
    Save your money and time, really!!! I am a great fan of the Coen's other movies but this one has no sympathetic characters, is so slow as to make a speed freak drowsy, has no particular plot, and to boot the music was neither interesting or added anything to the movie. I wanted my money back but the theater only gave me a free coke.
  20. Dec 31, 2013
    0
    Disappointing. I've come to look forward to Coen bros movies. (well, uhm, not anymore after this one... and yeah, come to think of it, Barton Fink). It is well acted and the music is ok, but the story, characters, setting, circumstances are all so dreadful that I had to resist walking out at least twice. The Bros served up a stinker with this one... all the hype, ads and cheerful critics can't persuade me that this is a gold nugget. By all means, if you enjoy being hoodwinked by the opinions of the critics, go for it. If you really want to see an entertaining and marvelous bit of tape, see the 1hour 40 minute musical number that was done in conjunction with this film. Expand
  21. Jan 10, 2014
    1
    Save your money. In fact, the Coen Brothers should give me a refund or come to my house and listen to me sing old folk songs for 2 hours. Okay, a couple of sad songs are fine but too much of a sad thing is a bad thing. If the purpose of the film was to drive the audience into the ground with unconnected sequences and with only a cat to give a moment of meaning -- then you will like the film. Good cat, bad movie. Expand
  22. Jan 14, 2014
    1
    Egads. Has anyone who was alive during the musical culture of the early 1960s seen this movie and reviewed it positively? It is stultifying. Llewyn is like the walking dead, surly-faced, untalented, and really boring. His so-called audition in Chicago is ridiculous, as if the writer/musician "inside" him skipped town. All the songs (with the exception of the one performed by Justin Timberlake in the Columbia Records studio) are the same monotonous tempo as if all the metronomes in the world were set at 15 beats per minute. Could we have seen any other facial expression on the guy except for the permanent look of pain and suffering? I was in the Village during the Beatnik era and remember it so differently. Did the Coen Brothers talk to anyone who was there? Dave Van Ronk's book about his life and times was allegedly an inspiration, but did they actually read it? This did not approximate the Mayor of MacDougal Street energy and spirit, but rather the drab life of an Accountant of MacDougal Street. A huge disappointment after hearing all the hype. Llewyn Davis proves himself a small, petty, uncaring (never once did he stroke those poor cats) man. The only satisfying moment in the film for me was the end, when he gets his comeuppance. Expand
  23. Feb 9, 2014
    3
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. To quote another user (axgrinder), whose review is so good it needs to be repeated, in full: "The critics love Inside Llewyn Davis. A few even proclaim that Joel and Ethan Coen are the greatest filmmakers in America. But look past all those 100 pt. scores and notice the choice of words they use to describe this film. Words like small, painful, heavy, melancholy, bleak, deeply felt and exquisitely crafted. Few, if any, of them describe this movie as clever, interesting or entertaining. That’s because it isn’t.
    Here’s more of what this movie isn’t. It isn’t funny. The night I saw this movie, the theater was sold out. No one laughed, not even once. Also, the songs aren’t that great. Unlike O’ Brother, Where Art Thou?, you’re not going to be singing any of these songs to yourself as you walk out the door, and you’re not likely to hear them on the radio, or anywhere else, ever again. (Sorry T-Bone.) Worst of all, the story isn’t very interesting or entertaining. It’s about a folk singer struggling to make it as a musician. He takes himself very seriously, and he thinks he’s better than everyone else. He makes a lot of bad decisions and pretty much alienates everyone around him. It turns out he’s not that good a song writer, and he gets beat up for being a jerk. Then the movie ends. (No one applauded. Everyone was too busy scratching their head and saying “Huh?”) No Country for Old Men was something of a head scratcher too, but at least it was interesting. My first reaction to this firm was, “Huh?” followed by “Wow, that was totally pointless.” (If you’ve seen Fruitvale Station then you know what I’m talking about.)"
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  24. Mar 13, 2014
    0
    We simply did not get this. Maybe you need drugs to appreciate it. First and foremost, the folk music era (which was during high school for us) was very short lived...for a good reason. Rap music has been around longer. And frankly, I thought the original music and screenplay from A Mighty Wind, a spoof on this era, was far superior. At the end, I thought I had watched a French film; it was just made by Americans. You know the kind. People you never really can connect with don't say much and nothing ever happens and there is an ending that is purposefully enigmatic. All in all nothing happened to anybody. This guy was very hard to like; he's a loser who's only shred of accountability is trying to care for his friend's cat. I also didn't like the shrewish ex girlfriend or whatever she was to him. HIs deceased partner in music...what was that all about? The trip from NY to Chicago and back in the wind and snow was for what purpose? I guess to allow John Goodman a chance to give a brief quirky inexplicable cameo. What did it show us about Llewyn except more of what a pathetic boring loser this guy is. Good grief! And the music definitely evoked all the memories of how puerile most folk music was. If you want to watch a meaningful comment on that brief period, don't miss A Mighty Wind. It exposes all the phony, quasi-intellectual sappiness in the most hilarious scathing way. An utter delight. Expand
  25. Mar 18, 2014
    3
    First of all let me say I am a HUGE Coen brothers AND Justin Timberlake fan, so I was really looking forward to this movie. I must be either 1)not artsy enough, 2)not educated enough (even though I have a masters degree) 3)not a fan of folk music, or 4)all of the above. This movie took me on a meaningless journey to nowhere. I searched for metaphorical references, like the cat representing his heart, or other meaningful notations, and heck, I just wanted to be entertained at all. I honestly didn't understand this movie, and I think the critics say they liked it because it is just plain weird and that's what they seem to like. Justin Timberlake was underutilized and John Goodman was useless...as were several characters in the movie. Follow me around for a week and I promise you will be so much more entertained watching me make dinner at night, feed the dog, take a walk, sleep, work and do laundry. Expand
  26. Jul 4, 2014
    1
    Big coen brothers fan and truly this is not up to the par with their other films. The character's journey is not very interesting, the arc, the tempo, it's feels like a bad version of groundhog day, but you are living in the depressed mind of an individual. There is literally no story here
  27. Feb 16, 2014
    4
    I could not bear this film from the first moment. Here is someone you don't know or care about singing. The camera stays on him. He keeps singing. You wait. He keeps singing. The cat part by the way seemed false, absolutely false, starting from: if this is a building with an elevator attendant, there is a super on premises and a doorman. Get them to let the cat into the apartment. Then end the film. Beautifully shot however. Expand
  28. Jan 7, 2014
    1
    The most idiotic, pointless, boring waste of time in a movie theater I experienced in a long time. There was not one scene worth watching or anything about this film that is worth remembering. I have seen Lawrence of Arabia many time, all 4 hours of it ,and it seemed much shorter than this pathetic bore. I do not know how anyone could write anything positive about this film.
  29. Jan 1, 2014
    2
    Admittedly, I felt like walking out of this film it gets so boring. I also did get teary eyed at one of the songs. Maybe this version tested well in Tuscon or whatever but It felt like The Coen Brothers ran out of material for a film. I also think they chickened out" on the music. ( google "dave van ronk" third one down. Finally, the script needed work, developing the characters and adding back story.
    Cary Mulligan and Oscar Issacs do heroic work, as does the rest of the cast
    but they can't save this film.
    This infield pop-up, missed by colliding critics gives them a single on errors.
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  30. Mar 16, 2014
    1
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. Thoroughly unlikable character; pointless movie. The cat was interesting, and John Goodman's character, slightly, though he wasn't in it for long. Was it worth sitting through just for the final moments when we hear a Bob Dylan song? Nah. Expand
  31. Feb 26, 2014
    3
    I wanted to like this movie, because I'm a big fan of the music genre. But it was just so slow, so boring, and had an ending that just left me completely unfulfilled.
  32. Jan 13, 2014
    4
    Where was the plot line? Where was the twist? Seems to be a new trend of having interesting characters with no real story being told. Am I missing it?
  33. Jan 22, 2014
    3
    Funny at times but just when you think something is going to happen it goes off in a different direction. I didn't get it. Why all the great reviews? Just because it's the Coen brothers? Very disappointing.
  34. Jan 6, 2014
    4
    Worst Coen Bros. movie of the century. When the movie ends, you realize that nothing has happened Davis is the same jerk at the start as he is at the closing credits. I'd rather have spent two hours with John Goodman's jazzman or the shadowy Bob, who appears for a few seconds. On the other hand, I have this urge to rent "The Incredible Journey" and ponder the obscure connections between the two movies. Maybe Llewyn Davis is a cat! Expand
  35. Jan 18, 2014
    1
    This is a dreadful, dreary movie about an uninteresting character --I have trouble believing folks think it has merit. We could find nothing to really hold onto--boring guy with few morals or friends, minimal talent, schlepping from one place to another with little to offer--this is not deserving of further attention.
  36. Mar 3, 2014
    1
    C'mon, this can't be a Cohen Brothers movie. They are great story tellers. They always give us a good story that holds our interest, not a boring tale where we don't care what happens to the principal character. Did Joel and Ethan subcontract this production to some novice producer/writer/director? "Inside Llewyn Davis" is a compilation of substandard folk songs sung by an unlikable, obnoxious, tiresome human being. This movie lost me in the first half hour. Unfortunately, I had to endure the remaining 90 minutes. The brothers were resting on their laurels when they made this one. Expand
  37. Mar 7, 2014
    2
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. I was very disappointed with this movie. It seemed like an easy out at every turn, the message I got basically being: life is sad and perhaps meaningless, it is hard to be an artist, we are doomed to repeat our mistakes. I think the Coen brothers became enamored of the early 60s Greenwich Village bohemian atmosphere, but they then failed to fashion that feeling into a satisfying feature length film and instead hung a fairly brittle premise. Sure, the movie expertly evokes a time and place, and some of the music is beautiful, but there's very little else in this. Characters flit in and out while the protagonist sits at the mercies of fate, seemingly bundling in to one catastrophe after another. He exhibits little to no capacity for change, and fails to be courageous or admirable at pretty much every turn.

    I will admit that the dinner party scene that climaxes with the old lady screaming about the cat scrotum is still making me laugh. That part alone probably makes this a worthwhile watch, and reminds me how great the Coen brothers can be. Otherwise, though, this was a flimsy downer with little to redeem it.
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  38. May 7, 2014
    0
    The movie keeps you waiting for a 'moment' to arrive for the main character Llewyn Davis...there is a solemn suspense that keeps you waiting and hoping that his cycle of bad breaks will end. I was able to appreciate the metaphor/meaning after reading the New Yorker review, but I felt that the movie really fell short...very short of telling the story, a story in any meaningful way.
Metascore
92

Universal acclaim - based on 47 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 47 out of 47
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 47
  3. Negative: 0 out of 47
  1. Reviewed by: Philip Kemp
    Jan 21, 2014
    100
    The Coen brothers on top sardonic form with a winning tale of an incorrigible loser. Hits the right note on every level, from period vibe to performance (human and feline).
  2. Reviewed by: Steve Persall
    Jan 9, 2014
    100
    The Coens fashion an atmospheric descent for Llewyn, a meticulous re-creation of Greenwich Village's folk scene in 1961, around the time Bob Dylan hit town.
  3. Reviewed by: Bill Goodykoontz
    Dec 23, 2013
    90
    This is one of the strangest yet most satisfying movie experiences of the year, one of those films in which you can’t really appreciate what you’ve seen until it’s over. You just have to trust that the trip is worth the trouble. And it is.