User Score
5.9

Mixed or average reviews- based on 12 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 7 out of 12
  2. Negative: 3 out of 12

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Metascore
52

Mixed or average reviews - based on 16 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 7 out of 16
  2. Negative: 3 out of 16
  1. Reviewed by: Angel Cohn
    40
    For all the bad press Ishtar received, it does have a certain odd charm... The biggest problem is that any attempted subtlety is swamped by May's bid to turn the film into an epic adventure story.
  2. Reviewed by: David Rooney
    70
    Enter Charles Grodin, who upstages all involved via his savagely comical portrayal of a CIA agent.
  3. 12
    A truly dreadful film, a lifeless, massive, lumbering exercise in failed comedy. Elaine May, the director, has mounted a multimillion-dollar expedition in search of a plot so thin that it hardly could support a five-minute TV sketch.