Life Is Beautiful Image

Mixed or average reviews - based on 32 Critics What's this?

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Universal acclaim- based on 126 Ratings

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  • Starring: ,
  • Summary: From one of the world's most acclaimed comic filmmakers comes an unexpected and unforgettable fable about the power of laughter to move the human heart and the power of the imagination to bolster the human spirit. (Miramax Films)
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 21 out of 32
  2. Negative: 5 out of 32
  1. A deeply moving blend of cold terror and rapturous hilarity. Lovingly crafted by Italy's top comedian and most popular filmmaker, it's that rare comedy that takes on a daring and ambitious subject and proves worthy of it.
  2. 88
    Finds the right notes to negotiate its delicate subject matter.
  3. Reviewed by: M. V. Moorhead
    If, like Benigni, you were born after World War II, it reassures us that he hasn't forgotten the innate seriousness of his subject matter, and that despite its grimness, he still thinks life is beautiful.
  4. Reviewed by: John Hartl
    The story moves beyond the limitations of its setting, transforming itself into an affecting parable about the lengths to which parents will go to protect their children from trauma, cruelty and knowledge of evil.
  5. Starts out as sentimental whimsy and ends as sentimental kitsch.
  6. Benigni sets out to do the impossible.
  7. Reviewed by: David Edelstein
    Benigni's movie made me want to throw up.

See all 32 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 46 out of 48
  2. Negative: 1 out of 48
  1. Mar 1, 2011
    This was the sweetest, funniest and most human story that could have ever come out of the Holocaust. I am in no way the sub-title type and yet it had no negative effect, it may have even been positive because I liked hearing the Italian language. Expand
  2. May 20, 2013
    Esta película es como indica el titulo,''Bella''.Merecidamente es actualmente la película italiana con mas éxito desde la época dorada de Federico Fellini con su ''La Dulce Vida''.Una obra maestra de todos los tiempos que llegara a todos los corazones que la visionen. Expand
  3. Nov 28, 2011
    Incredibly acted, funny as hell, incredibly beautiful picture. Much, much better than Shakespeare in Love. Deserved Best Picture. Didn't deserve Best Supporting Actress, but deserved Best Picture, Best Actor, Best Foreign Language Film, and Best Director. it only won 2 of them. Expand
  4. Jan 11, 2011
    I'm in my 60's. My daughter her 20's. We listed our favorite all-time films. Life is Beautiful was in both of our top 10 lists. Great film with one of the great scenes of all times. If you've seen this film you know which scene I'm talking about. We decided to watch it again soon. The best of film making. Expand
  5. Apr 29, 2013
    With an award winning film with a whole different perspective on what the Holocaust looked like, Roberto Benigni brings out the best in him even in the darkest hours of human history. A fresh and different look at the Holocaust captivates the audience and I in a way that isn’t determined by eye-candy or flashy action scenes. Life is Beautiful is one for the masses to definitely watch.
    Taking place in Italy, Guido, a happy-go-lucky kind of man is happily traveling across Italy, and bumps into his future wife, Dora. As time goes on they get closer and eventually have a son. Once Germany starts its warpath however, Guido and his family’s life takes a dark turn as the Nazi’s begin to round up Jews and enemies alike. Guido and his family struggle through hardship and strife as they try to survive the hellish world of the Holocaust. However, the movie isn’t as serious and dark as one would think a Holocaust film would be. Roberto Benigni’s comical character comes into play throughout the whole movie, not disappointing any audience wishing to see his funny side.
    The comedy of the movie was splendidly executed at the right times without much overextension or too much visible effort. Guido’s entertaining personality is both a treat to the audience and to the movie itself, with Guido providing perfect synergy with the rest of the cast. With the cast and characters, the development of some characters were slow as they didn’t have much screen time in the movie, such as Dora, but in the end, the movie gives a good feel of all the characters’ personalities.
    The real shining star of this movie was the relationship between main characters, Guido and his son Joshua. In the worst times of their life, Guido somehow manages to persuade his infant boy that they’re actually playing a game, with the reward being a military standard tank. Knowing that the Holocaust will heavily affect Joshua if he gets out of their situation, Guido entertains his son with his lighthearted humor and with the promise of the tank, while keeping his son’s life and mentality intact. This unbreakable bond between father and son showcases how well Roberto used his character to work with Joshua, allowing the directing, writing and acting to really shine out.
    While how the movie actually plays out and presents the predicaments of each character may seem a bit far-fetched, it still is an unforgettable movie. A man that risks everything for his family in the worst of times and somehow making some comic relief is a hard piece of chemistry to get right, yet Roberto pulled it off nearly flawlessly. Life is Beautiful does indeed show that life truly can be beautiful like the film itself was.
  6. May 2, 2013
    In the tragic, but comic movie called “Life is Beautiful” directed by Roberto Benigni shows the life that people lived when the holocaust was happening. The movie takes a tragic event that happened in our history and twists it to seem comical and happy but shows what they had to go through and what they did to elderly people and children. I didn’t expect some things that happened to happen. I thought that when the guard took Guido and we heard the gun shot that he had stolen the gun from the guard and shot him. The movie take twists and turns to throw viewers off and think something else is going to happen. This movie makes the holocaust seem like it is not all bad and it lightens it up a bit when thinking about the holocaust and what they put them through. It shows that even something as tragic as the holocaust can still be portrayed as a comic and happy story. It takes all the bad out of what happened and brings out the good and hopefully puts in the back of your mind that it happened but we can make sure that nothing like this will ever happen again. In the end of the movie, it shows that with all the events Joshua had to go though, from hiding from Nazi’s to knowing his father was killed, he still can have a happy ending to a movie. After reading the book “Maus” and watching this movie, they have similarities that the characters go though. “Maus” shows more tragedy then the movie and it is more straight forward with what happened then the movie is. It’s makes it more difficult to read because it shows a lot more tragedy then the movie does. They both are showing the same story but in different ways so we can see how different people lived during the holocaust. Overall, The movie made something so tragic into a comedy and helped people understand that even though this event was very tragic on our history we can still get something good out of it. Expand
  7. Jan 20, 2014
    i watched this movie not knowing what it's about, Honestly i just read the title and decided to watch it,
    and i had few laughs at the first
    hour, and i was convinced that this is a comedy movie with small events, kinda dumb comedy like Chaplin movies, and it wasn't until the last half hour of the movie that i realized that this movie about the holocaust and i was completely shocked by the fact that the movie just took a different path and i started to get mad because there was no signs of this happening, i might missed the word "Jews" on the book store door but that was it.
    and the terrible part is that they didn't even take the events that's been going on seriously,
    i do realize it's about the love between a father and his son, but the movie doesn't get any serious and start addressing things at all, and i was completely shocked by the fact that the main character just got killed and the movie didn't even show a little remorse for it, i felt so stupid.

See all 48 User Reviews