Kinsey

User Score
6.7

Generally favorable reviews- based on 85 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 56 out of 85
  2. Negative: 19 out of 85

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User Reviews

  1. LanieJ
    Jan 18, 2005
    10
    Liam Neeson, Laura Linney, John Lithgow, even Chris O'Donnell give wonderful, charged performances. The timidity, normality and loneliness of such an intimate topic speak volumes. A perfectly done movie.
  2. MarkB.
    Feb 15, 2005
    10
    Religious and social conservatives may, with some justification, argue about the long- and short-term effects of pioneering sex researcher Alfred Kinsey, and they can even question the scientific validity of some of his research methods and results, but they can't deny what a tremendously smart, witty, entertaining and moving film Bill Condon has made about him. As he earlier Religious and social conservatives may, with some justification, argue about the long- and short-term effects of pioneering sex researcher Alfred Kinsey, and they can even question the scientific validity of some of his research methods and results, but they can't deny what a tremendously smart, witty, entertaining and moving film Bill Condon has made about him. As he earlier demonstrated in his brilliant account of the last days of Frankenstein director James Whale, Gods and Monsters, Condon's love and admiration for his subjects and their accomplishments doesn't at all blind him to their very notable human failings, and he's copletely honest about the inevitable strain that Kinsey's curiousity about all aspects of sex, including infidelity, had on he and his team's marriages and interpersonal relationships. It's an even more impressive accomplishment that Kinsey emerges as such a sweet, engaging love story in spite of the fact that he and his wife cheat on each other with both sexes--if their marriage can endure the trials they put it through, it can withstand anything! It helps immeasurably that Liam Neeson perfectly essays Kinsey's social awkwardness and wonkishness in a role that's tailor-made for Neeson's blocky, oversized physical stature (as opposed to Schindler's List, which in part worked around this), and that Laura Linney, here as in p.s., Love, Actually and The Life of David Gale, proves once again that there's no actress currently working who's as good as she is in making plainness so sexy. (One of the movie's many privileged moments is his extremely...uh...utilitarian first gift to her.) Beyond these and other wonderful performances from John Lithgow, Peter Saarsgaard, Chris O'Donnell, Timothy Hutton, Oliver Platt, Veronica Cartwright, Julianne Nicholson and Lynn Redgrave, part of what makes Kinsey such a pleasure to watch is Condon's scrupulous but playful attention to period detail and his light tweaking of genre conventions: about half the time he seems to be deliberately replicating some of those earnest 1930s film biographies such as The Story of Louis Pasteur and The Life of Emile Zola and half the time he appears to be gently parodying them. (Love that 'talking USA map'!) Speaking of film biographies, 2004 has definitely been a very full year for them, with everyone from Ray Charles, Bobby Darin and Cole Porter to Howard Hughes, James M. Barrie, Che Guevara and Jesus Christ getting the treatment; most of those films ranged from good to near-great, and it's in no way intended to denigrate the various excellences of their filmmakers to observe that in a very crowded field, for my money Bill Condon made the best of a very estimable bunch! Expand
  3. BrutusO.
    May 18, 2005
    8
    Pretty good. Liam Neeson's best role for a while, and a surprisingly interesting story given that we are talking about a statistician and his interviewing technique. A good supporting cast, and a few chuckles on the way. One forgets that fifty years ago apparently no-one knew (or admitted to know) anything about sexuality in society at large. If there had been no Kinsey, there would Pretty good. Liam Neeson's best role for a while, and a surprisingly interesting story given that we are talking about a statistician and his interviewing technique. A good supporting cast, and a few chuckles on the way. One forgets that fifty years ago apparently no-one knew (or admitted to know) anything about sexuality in society at large. If there had been no Kinsey, there would have been no Cleo, no Cosmopolitan, no Sex and The City, no gay pride etc. This film reminds us that society has actually got a little less screwed up - if somewhat more sexually explicit. A subject worth documenting. Expand
  4. J.RyanG.
    Jun 17, 2005
    7
    A mostly fine film, it fails only near the end, when it has become too full of information and the audience has become aware that it should be taking notes. If it needed more of anything, it would be John Lithgow's heartbreaking performance.
  5. DermN.
    Dec 23, 2004
    8
    Like the title character, the film may leave viewers feeling dispassionate. Yet the man had a passion for his science and his marriage, which is at the heart of the story. As with many biopics, Kinsey suffers from a lack of a satisfying, definitive climax. Still, the film is engaging and the acting is first-rate.
Metascore
79

Generally favorable reviews - based on 40 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 35 out of 40
  2. Negative: 0 out of 40
  1. Apart from some unexaggerated notations about American puritanism in the 1940s and '50s, this is more a work of exploration than a thesis, and Condon mainly avoids sensationalism.
  2. One of the year's most satisfying films.
  3. It's a new Neeson as Dr. Alfred Kinsey, all spiky-haired and harried, and he's enormously appealing in the role.