Metascore
77

Generally favorable reviews - based on 34 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 27 out of 34
  2. Negative: 1 out of 34
  1. 100
    The kind of film I instinctively respond to. Leave logic at the door. Do not expect subdued taste and restraint, but instead a kind of operatic ecstasy.
  2. The kind of brilliantly weirdo picture that, by all rights, shouldn't have gotten made at all but this time, miraculously, was.
  3. 100
    Hands-down the best movie of the year.
  4. 100
    Part poem, part jungle blossom, all brilliance.
  5. 90
    One of the best movies of the year--startling, innovative, hugely funny and powerfully, courageously moving.
  6. Reviewed by: Ernest Hardy
    90
    What leaves you breathless, though, is the knockout acting by the cast.
  7. Reviewed by: David Ansen
    90
    At its best, Magnolia towers over most Hollywood films this year.
  8. Reviewed by: David Edelstein
    90
    Anderson must have needed that bonkers third-hour climax because there was nowhere to go short of spontaneous combustion.
  9. A quantum leap in ambition from "Hard Eight" and "Boogie Nights" and is, to my mind, much more interesting.
  10. Reviewed by: Mike Clark
    88
    The most imperfect of the year's best movies, Magnolia's flaws are easily forgiven because they are the result of go-for-broke ambition.
  11. 85
    An exhilarating and at times operatic film.
  12. Anderson's big, showy flower of a movie unfurls brilliantly, each plot petal a thing of exquisite design. Then it ripens. Then it disintegrates, leaving a mess of color and a faint whiff of rot.
  13. 83
    If you thought "Boogie Nights" blew it in its final third, you ain't seen nothing yet.
  14. Like Spielberg, even if the content is questionable or the performance is missing, his scenes always manage to be visually thrilling.
User Score
8.1

Universal acclaim- based on 187 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 49 out of 65
  2. Negative: 13 out of 65
  1. Oct 7, 2012
    10
    Every so often a movie that you have heard a lot about but never seen blows your mind. Magnolia is one of those movies for me. Immediately after viewing this film I knew that it would be on my mind for weeks and that it would become one of my top 10 films. Every character in this movie is interesting on multiple levels. Every scene in this movie is thoughtful and poignant. The scenes that opponents of this film have problems with, the frogs and the musical interlude, work for me in every way. Both these scenes do seem out of place in this story, but for me that is what makes them amazing. They come from nowhere, but interlock these characters in a visceral, interesting way. There is so much to unravel in a film this large, with multiple plot lines and characters running both separate from each other and together at various times. You could probably write a book trying to accurately review this movie. I look forward to watching this movie again and again over the years, and trying to unravel all the characters and premises in my mind. Full Review »
  2. Feb 19, 2012
    7
    Interesting interwoven tale of numerous lives although the Tom Cruise character dominates the movie. A superbly acted and directed movie which everybody should see. Full Review »
  3. Oct 7, 2010
    9
    A rare success with this film is that it is a Tom Cruise film I like. But to be honest,it's not really about him it's how the cinematography is so interwoven you can't remember where you went last and where you are going to go next. To think of a story like this takes time and dedication and to keep you hanging on for 3 Hours isn't a bad feat either. Full Review »