Generally unfavorable reviews - based on 13 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 0 out of 13
  2. Negative: 8 out of 13
  1. Reviewed by: Mike D'Angelo
    Mar 20, 2014
    All of the actors, including Franco, do excellent work, given the limitations imposed upon them by a scenario that doesn’t make a whole lot of sense. Were he a struggling up-and-comer rather than a movie star, the perception of an ambitious misfire like this one would probably be quite different. It’s not a good movie, but it deserves better than mockery.
  2. Reviewed by: Sheila O'Malley
    Mar 21, 2014
    Despite some game acting (and one truly superb moment from David Strathairn), Maladies remains on too low a boil to communicate any sense of stakes for the various characters. It seems to be trying to say something about creativity, and living one's life on one's own terms, but it's a muddle.
  3. Reviewed by: Chris Klimek
    Mar 20, 2014
    A ponderous, self-important character study swimming with red herrings.
  4. Reviewed by: Jenni Miller
    Mar 19, 2014
    Maladies is at least watchable, though just barely.
  5. Reviewed by: Andrew Pulver
    Jan 21, 2014
    This is basically a studied and serious film, but there's a feyness to its tone, and a lethargy to its pacing that make it difficult to warm to, even if the principal actors give it their all.
  6. Reviewed by: Wes Greene
    Mar 17, 2014
    It borders on parody as it tries to portray its hero as martyrdom-bound genius, which makes the film feel as if it was made by Franco's vain, art-fetishizing character from "This Is the End."
  7. Reviewed by: Jessica Kiang
    Mar 19, 2014
    It only ever connects in the small moments that fall through the cracks of the supposed formal and thematic experimentation—when the fine actors are allowed to walk and talk like real human beings, rather than a collection of tropes.
  8. Reviewed by: Gary Goldstein
    Mar 20, 2014
    [A] tedious cinematic exercise.
  9. Reviewed by: Inkoo Kang
    Mar 18, 2014
    The social construction of illness is certainly a worthy topic, but Carter situates his characters far from any semblance of a plot and even further from his heart.
  10. Reviewed by: Guy Lodge
    Jan 21, 2014
    It’s hard for the audience to invest in a protagonist this solipsistic.
  11. Reviewed by: David Rooney
    Jan 21, 2014
    There’s scant emotional, aesthetic or intellectual gratification in this grainy, flat-looking portrait of the artist as a young nut job.
  12. Reviewed by: Ella Taylor
    Mar 21, 2014
    Along with the rest of the movie's fine cast, Franco presumably believes he is in the presence of art. Me, I know a fire hose when I see one.
  13. Reviewed by: Rex Reed
    Mar 19, 2014
    Overrated, overexposed and overindulgent, James Franco is all over the place, like cow chips in the abandoned pasture of a derelict farm.