Metascore
44

Mixed or average reviews - based on 31 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 5 out of 31
  2. Negative: 6 out of 31
  1. Reviewed by: R. Kurt Osenlund
    Jan 12, 2012
    75
    Joyful Noise certainly has its demographics covered.
  2. Reviewed by: Owen Gleiberman
    Jan 11, 2012
    67
    The movie's musical numbers are catchy and rollicking and, in their bright sunshiny way, rather soulful.
  3. Reviewed by: Steve Persall
    Jan 11, 2012
    67
    Joyful Noise is a good movie when it lifts up its heart and lets people sing.
  4. Reviewed by: Carrie Rickey
    Jan 12, 2012
    63
    Though one wishes Graff's eye were as developed as his keen ear, he elicits rafter-raising musical performances from Latifah, Palmer, and Jordan that are irresistible fun.
  5. Reviewed by: Rex Reed
    Jan 10, 2012
    63
    Grousing aside, this is a disarmingly sweet movie, enjoyable to the hilt, with music that really stomps.
  6. 60
    A Joyful Noise overcomes. The big numbers are a gospel-pop-funk fusion that made me think, Hmmm, this seems very processed - before I noticed my feet were tapping of their own accord. How can you resist that wah-wah funk guitar?
  7. Reviewed by: Stephanie Zacharek
    Jan 12, 2012
    60
    A well-intentioned, pleasant-enough picture that shoots off in too many directions to ever ignite.
  8. Reviewed by: Keith Uhlich
    Jan 10, 2012
    60
    More stupid movies should leave you with such a blissfully stupid smile.
  9. Reviewed by: Tasha Robinson
    Jan 11, 2012
    58
    Like so many underdog movies, Joyful Noise will go over best with those who show up hugely eager for it to be exactly what it looks like, and to tell them exactly what they want to hear.
  10. Reviewed by: Richard Corliss
    Jan 16, 2012
    50
    The critic in me can authoritatively declare that the film is crap. The fan in me sent his shirt to the dry cleaners for tear removal.
  11. Reviewed by: Peter Travers
    Jan 13, 2012
    50
    Lots of talented young singers decorate the scenery, notably Jeremy Jordan (late of Broadway's failed Bonnie & Clyde but soon-to-open in Newsies)who has vocal and acting chops that shine even in this bucket of Glee Goes Gospel cornpone.
  12. Reviewed by: Stephanie Merry
    Jan 12, 2012
    50
    Despite some mawkish dialogue, there's something to be said for leaving the theater with a smile. Can I get an amen?
  13. Reviewed by: Amy Biancolli
    Jan 12, 2012
    50
    Like most ruckuses, it is frequently loud and not always intelligible.
  14. Reviewed by: Claudia Puig
    Jan 12, 2012
    50
    Joyful Noise seems tailor-made for an audience of churchgoers and "Glee" devotees.
  15. Reviewed by: Joe Morgenstern
    Jan 12, 2012
    50
    Todd Graff's would-be inspirational film lift their voices in song that makes you smile, and squander their voices on dialogue that makes you cringe (but also smile in oddly pleasurable disbelief).
  16. Reviewed by: Ty Burr
    Jan 12, 2012
    50
    Hot gospel singing and earnest family squabbles are all that distinguish Joyful Noise.
  17. Reviewed by: Michael Phillips
    Jan 12, 2012
    50
    The movie's all right, if you can take its rampant artificiality - and I'm not even talking about Parton's face yet.
  18. Reviewed by: Connie Ogle
    Jan 12, 2012
    50
    Joyful Noise is too tone-deaf to put its few blessings to good use.
  19. Reviewed by: Roger Moore
    Jan 11, 2012
    50
    A cheerful, not-quite-off-color crowd-pleaser that rarely breaks formula, it's the big screen equivalent of a sloppy smooch from your over-affectionate aunt over the holidays.
  20. Reviewed by: Todd McCarthy
    Jan 6, 2012
    50
    Staggeringly cornball and squeaky-clean even when flirting with such issues as interracial sexual rivalries.
  21. Reviewed by: Peter Debruge
    Jan 6, 2012
    50
    A routinely plotted competition drama in which Queen Latifah and Dolly Parton (playing her first bigscreen lead in 20 years) vie for control of a small-town Georgia church chorus.
  22. Reviewed by: Stephen Holden
    Jan 12, 2012
    40
    A lower echelon of musical comedy hell (or heaven, if you love the hoariest musical comedy clich├ęs).
  23. Reviewed by: Ben Sachs
    Jan 12, 2012
    40
    It's hard to enjoy the movie's charms when writer-director Todd Graff (Camp, Bandslam) keeps trying to shove them down your throat.
  24. Reviewed by: Randy Cordova
    Jan 12, 2012
    40
    The cornpone wisdom overflows from the screen during Joyful Noise, like maple syrup on your grandmama's flapjacks.
  25. Reviewed by: Melissa Anderson
    Jan 10, 2012
    40
    Speaking of camp, the diva battle teased in the trailer for Joyful Noise between its two stars, Queen Latifah and Dolly Parton, flatlines, as do most of the movie's jokes.
  26. Reviewed by: Kevin C. Johnson
    Jan 14, 2012
    38
    Nothing more than uninspired mushiness.
  27. Reviewed by: Lou Lumenick
    Jan 13, 2012
    38
    Latifah, a formidable actress who's almost always better than her movies, easily dominates this hokey cross between "Glee'' and "Sister Act.''
  28. Reviewed by: Roger Ebert
    Jan 11, 2012
    38
    Joyful Noise is an ungainly assembly of parts that don't fit, and the strange thing is that it makes no particular effort to please its target audience, which would seem to be lovers of gospel choirs.
  29. Reviewed by: Kate Erbland
    Jan 12, 2012
    30
    A well-meaning production that consistently fails to deliver on even the most basic of cinematic expectations, all while covering up stunning ineptitude with bloated song-and-dance numbers.
  30. Reviewed by: Marjorie Baumgarten
    Jan 11, 2012
    30
    The film feels about as genuine and spontaneous as its evident lip-synching.
User Score
6.4

Generally favorable reviews- based on 31 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 10 out of 15
  2. Negative: 2 out of 15
  1. Jan 18, 2012
    10
    I like this movie, my 12-year-old son and 17-year-old daughter. Gospel and contemporary popular music, it appeals to all ages. The film is interesting, not too heavy, but delivered a healthy good news. Dolly has been a long time, I like, I almost forgot how much fun she can. Hope for the whole family can take away the noise from the joy of the message. Who knows the Queen Latifia can sing so wonderful? This is an all-star cast of talented young people, a witty twist, a great, from start to finish optimism.
    You can watch her momomesh.com

    I want to see the movie people can use a good laugh for the suggestions!
    Full Review »
  2. Apr 3, 2014
    9
    " this is the reason why musical movies are sepical . the fact that i watch this Queen Latifah and Dolly Parton are two reason why i came to see this film . Grade A+ Full Review »
  3. Jul 5, 2013
    4
    This review contains spoilers, click full review link to view. Terrible plot. Bad romance. I couldn't take it looking at Dolley Partons fake face.
    And her freakin southern accent. Keke Palmer apparently is a strong christian in the film but makes out with a guy in every scene. Stupid, Dumb, and an idiotic film
    Full Review »