User Score

Universal acclaim- based on 95 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 86 out of 95
  2. Negative: 5 out of 95

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  1. Oct 15, 2011
    "Man On Wire" is a documentary filled with joy and tension. It makes you feel as you are the characters and in the situation they are experiencing. The film's light pace also doesn't disappoint other movie geeks who expect fast ones. A amusing documentary in general that you might want to see.
  2. Apr 14, 2012
    It's about a man's pursuit of his dream to walk on a tight rope between the World Trade Center towers. The story and characters are compelling enough on their own. But Marsh matches visuals to music in a way that makes this story more a work of art than a retelling. This movie owned me the first time I saw it. And I watch it again from time to time to remind myself how to dream.
  3. Apr 14, 2014
    This documentary about the amazing process in how a very compelling man managed to tight rope walk from one World Trade Center building to the other decades after the event is my favorite documentary of the entire decade from 2000 to 2009. The whole sequence of events is fascinating, and every character, not just the main one, is interesting to watch. A must see.
  4. Apr 23, 2011
    This movie is all about what art is : When somebody says something is impossible - let us begin with it. The artistic creativity of an artist is always a balancing act over the rules in human society.
  5. Mar 19, 2013
    8.5/10 Despite a couple of flaws, relatively speaking a great film.

    Miss: While not a long movie, it could have been trimmed up a bit. It's an undeniably beautiful story, but I did find it a bit self-indulgent at times.

    Hit: Everything else about the film is very good, and I would recommend it to anyone. It's pretty amazing how much vintage footage is used in the film documenting
    everything from the construction of the twin towers to Phillipe practicing his tightrope skills and interacting with his friends. Everyone involved with the events being told gives are able to give some fascinating first-hand accounts. I enjoyed watching this film because it is an intimate look into the mind of someone who is very different than the average person. Phillipe had life-long goals and relentlessly pursued them, doing things that most of us could never imagine doing ourselves. This is a film I will remember for quite some time. Expand
  6. Oct 27, 2011
    'Man On Wire' is and interesting story about an interesting man who is doing interesting stuff. I watched the documentry on the television and was pulled in to the film and actually couldn't turn the television off, I kind of couldn't walk over to the remote, I was just so concentrated, I was just staring at the television. A epic in documentry history.
  7. Aug 15, 2012
    From UK director James Marsh, this Academy award BEST DOCUMENTARY FEATURE winner is a distinguishing of its own kind, it marvellously mends the interview with a re-enactment of the electrifying tightrope routine performed in World Trade Centre
  8. Aug 1, 2012
    I look at the movie's poster and instantly notice a man whose life is dependent upon that thin, almost invisible wire. That man is Philippe Petit, and on August 7, 1974, he was arrested for trespassing. More specifically, he walked, knelt, and danced on a wire he and his friends connected between the Twin Towers. I have a curiosity for extraordinary human feats and a phobia for heights, and the sight of Mr. Petit on that wire was one of the most beautiful and freighting things I have ever seen.
    I think that it's obvious that he succeeded since you cannot arrest a dead man. We all know that what he did was truly remarkable but what confounds many is his reason in doing it. Before I saw "Man on Wire", I stared at the poster, wondering what type of individual would do this, to risk a life so much that a wrong step could end it. Crazy was the word I thought of that would describe it the best, and then I watched the movie.

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  9. Jwv
    Feb 3, 2014
    Great documentary with a delicious directness

    A great documentary that left me thinking about my own life and dreams. Not only the content and larger-than-life feat performed in the movie are its strong points, but also the directness and authenticity of the interviews with the people involved in the stunt. The strength in this is that it doesn't make the documentary something far-off,
    distant and unrealistic idealistic, but rather something very close.

    In my opinion, the scenes should have been rearranged. It would have been better to work chronologically toward one climax instead of flashing back and forward in time. This killed the tension. The whole should more closely reflect the natural accumulation of tension Philippe and his companions experienced when coming closer to their performance, not only making it a climax for Philippe, but for the viewer too.

Universal acclaim - based on 31 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 31 out of 31
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 31
  3. Negative: 0 out of 31
  1. Reviewed by: Margot Gerber
    Pre the events of 9/11, the film might have simply been an entertaining, high risk tale of a death-defying feat related in both interviews, archival footage and photos and Marsh's usual meticulous and creative re-enactment vignettes. Post 9/11 you find yourself marveling that a man in far away France became smitten with the twin towers long before they became the target of terrorist attacks.
  2. The most miraculous thing about Man on Wire is not the physical feat itself, 1,350 feet above the ground, but that as you watch it, the era gone, the World Trade Center gone, the movie feels as if it's in the present tense. That nutty existentialist acrobat pulled it off. For an instant, he froze time.
  3. Reviewed by: Robert Koehler
    One of the most wildly entertaining docs of recent years.