Generally favorable reviews - based on 27 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 18 out of 27
  2. Negative: 2 out of 27
  1. A breed apart from anything coming off the Hollywood assembly line or, for that matter, from the saccharine romances Britain has lately produced.
  2. The first Irish creation I've seen in ages to pull off the high-difficulty feat of trafficking in grit, drollery, and emotion without turning to blarney as a crutch.
  3. So full of pep you can't help surrendering to its creative energy.
  4. 88
    That it succeeds is some kind of miracle; there's enough material here for three bad films, and somehow it becomes one good one.
  5. Stupid camera shenanigans aside, theater veteran Crowley deftly directs his large, stellar cast, and playwright-cum-screenwriter Mark O'Rowe serves up a wild knot of character arcs pitched somewhere among the neighborhoods of Ken Loach, Mike Leigh and Danny Boyle.
  6. Very, very funny, thanks to a lively first script by Mark O'Rowe, who has a good ear for earthy dialogue and a sense of life's absurd little synchronicities.
  7. 80
    John Crowley’s film is high on its own briskness, and its glances at Irish backstreet life land it securely in the terrain that was mapped out by Stephen Frears’s “The Snapper” and “The Van.” [5 April 2004, p. 89]
  8. 80
    Irish playwright Mark O'Rowe, who wrote the script, has an admirable sense of dramatic proportion that suits his intertwining stories; theater director John Crowley, making his film debut, has a sure hand with his actors; and an excellent cast enlivens this web of romantic and criminal intrigue, set in a gray suburb of Dublin. R.
  9. 75
    If Intermission isn't profound, it's got boisterous humor and energy, with U2's rollicking "Out of Control" leading the charge. Given the grimness of many Irish tales, Intermission represents less of a pause than a burst into a fresh direction.
  10. Here, love and violence are random, everyone's a fool for love, and tomfoolery often has a shocking twist. And every action has an equal and opposite reaction.
  11. Reviewed by: Ty Burr
    Could fairly be described as a Robert Altman ensemble movie without the flab, or "Magnolia" with a mean streak and bigger laughs.
  12. Reviewed by: Glenn Kenny
    It’s tempting to summarize this Irish picture as a working-class version of "Love Actually," and indeed, the hardscrabble lives of most of its amorously unfulfilled characters go a long way in making it a whole lot less emetic than Richard Curtis’s hugfest.
  13. Intermission is like a creme brulee, invigoratingly grainy when you bite into it but sweet and soft underneath. Director John Crowley and writer Mark O'Rowe infuse this Irish crime drama with such adrenaline that you don't realize how lightweight it is until after it's over.
  14. 70
    The film's uniformly excellent performances are a delight, and fans of Irish actor Farrell (whose pitch-perfect American accent has served him well in Hollywood) can hear both his natural inflections and his singing voice.
  15. Reviewed by: Derek Elley
    Borderline grungy but highly entertaining comedy-drama.
  16. Reviewed by: Karen Karbo
    A sort of low-down, dirty-faced Irish cousin of "Love Actually," the glossy smarm replaced by a jittery raunchiness.
  17. 63
    "Love, Actually" meets "Trainspotting" in Intermission, an edgy Irish romantic comedy that deftly juggles a dozen interconnected story lines.
  18. It's surprising that so much material, so many moods, and such an interesting cast end up making such a small, unmemorable splash.
  19. A black comedy that some viewers may take as an assault. The disconnect between the realism of its violence and the near-slapstick tone of some of its comedy is too much to be framed within one movie.
  20. It's a bright, busy imitation of independent moviemaking. But it's hardly an independent film. Hopefully, next time out, director Crowley, a promising storyteller, will find his own story to tell.
  21. 50
    Beyond that surface grit, Intermission is still a fairly saccharine collage of self-redemptive gestures and happy endings that, true to its title, only fitfully compels.
  22. 50
    Like many stylish, whipcrack American and British indies made in the wake of Quentin Tarantino and "Trainspotting," the film gets off on the same anything-can-happen storytelling brio, which at least keeps things lively. But without any resonant characters or ideas, it's all empty calories.
  23. In manipulating its many disparate characters to bump into each other and set plot lines in motion, Intermission walks a fine line between clever and contrived, with the scale tipping more often toward contrived.
  24. 40
    Like a loud and intermittently charismatic drunk at a dreary dive bar, Intermission grabs your attention, but in no time you're looking for the nearest exit.
  25. Turns out to be a tedious and under-inspired comedy.
  26. Unfortunately, this latest effort is so mean-spirited and nasty that you wish Farrell hadn't bothered.
User Score

Generally favorable reviews- based on 14 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 5 out of 8
  2. Negative: 1 out of 8
  1. Jun 7, 2013
    What started off as an interesting anything-can-happen film ended up as a contrived story with no surprises. Excellent acting and music with some funny references, as they say in the U.S., but not enough to carry a very thin story. The saddest is that there is not one likable person in the whole movie from an annoying quadriplegic who hangs in the local pub to a repressed housewife whose husband has left her for a younger woman and all characters in between I was hard pressed to care about any of them. Full Review »
  2. PatC.
    May 1, 2006
    Profile of the segment of Irish society unable to construct sentences without using four-letter words. That tends to limit the characters' ability to articulate their negativity, makes them one-dimensional, and leads to other problems that renders the film nearly unwatchable, in spite of a compelling opening scene. Full Review »