Generally favorable reviews - based on 39 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 30 out of 39
  2. Negative: 0 out of 39
  1. 100
    As a thriller, Munich is efficient, absorbing, effective. As an ethical argument, it is haunting.
  2. 100
    Masterful, atypically political - and flawlessly acted.
  3. 100
    A film of uncommon depth, intelligence, and sensitivity.
  4. Reviewed by: Glenn Kenny
    This lengthy, nuance-filled story about how eye-for-an-eye stuff differs from theory to practice is one of the most considered, thoughtful, and involving movies of its kind.
  5. Reviewed by: Ian Nathan
    This is Spielberg operating at his peak - an exceptionally made, provocative and vital film for our times.
  6. Munich, Steven Spielberg's spectacularly gripping and unsettling new movie, is a grave and haunted film, yet its power lies in its willingness to be a work of brutal excitement.
  7. Reviewed by: David Ansen
    A superbly taut and well-made thriller that jumps from Geneva to Rome, from Paris to Beirut, from Athens to Brooklyn, each lethal assignment staged with a mastery Hitchcock might envy.
  8. Reviewed by: David Edelstein
    Munich is the most potent, the most vital, the best movie of the year.
  9. Some will find the surprise pleasant, others unpleasant. Whatever it is, it's the least commercial, most somberly heartfelt movie ever made by the cinema's most commercially successful filmmaker.
  10. A mesmerizing, richly nuanced inquiry into Israel's revenge of the Munich massacre of its athletes.
  11. 90
    Breaking from the Spielberg oeuvre, Munich isn't a particularly hopeful movie, but it's a fair and morally dignified one.
  12. Munich's even-handed cry for peace is not an act of equivocation but one of bravery. What Munich has to say, and its ability to say it to the widest possible audience, couldn't be more needed than it is right now.
  13. 89
    For those who only recall Bana from his bland showing as Ang Lee's super-thyroidial meltdown monster, his performance here is a revelation.
  14. 88
    Bana is magnificent in the role.
  15. If Munich raises disturbing issues about Jewish-Arab relations, past and present - and how can it not? - it is also an absolutely riveting tale of the hunt and the hunted.
  16. 88
    The thorny heart of Steven Spielberg's sober, fact-based political thriller about Israeli retaliation for the murder of 11 Olympic athletes by Palestinian terrorists is the knowledge that vengeance is a self-perpetuating murder machine that drags successive generations into a mire of tit-for-tat bloodshed.
  17. Reviewed by: Mike Clark
    This is a smart and often tense work whose ultimate merit isn't completely calculable now.
  18. Reviewed by: Ty Burr
    The director can work wonders within his celluloid universe, but when the time comes to hand us back to reality, he stumbles. With this movie, that hurts.
  19. More than anything, Munich is a slammin' entertainment filled with dazzling set pieces and geometric camerawork.
  20. An unlovable movie. It's morally ambiguous, which means there's no real rooting interest. It's episodic, with the same kinds of episodes repeated over and over, so there's little sense of forward motion. It feels philosophically and politically confused, so there's no message to take from it.
  21. Would you feel anxiety or remorse if you pulled the trigger on Osama bin Laden, however satisfying or even necessary it might be? Munich argues that finding him in our rifle sights would leave any of us a different person.
  22. As a piece of filmmaking, Munich is rarely less than gripping. As a political essay, as a brief against despair, it is far less convincing.
  23. 75
    With its protracted storytelling, its fuzzy philosophizing and its less-than-compelling leading man, it's far less gripping than the subject matter deserves.
  24. 70
    Even if it wasn't exactly historically accurate (the film is only "inspired by true events," after all), innocents are killed in the crossfire all the time when these kinds of missions are undertaken, and it's a cop-out for Spielberg to pretend otherwise.
  25. 70
    Munich is both astonishing and frustrating. It's not easy to tell how much of the tone comes directly from Spielberg and how much comes from Kushner, who was called in to polish the script after Roth completed it.
  26. 70
    Munich is at best a muddled prayer for peace whose weakness stems not from its politics but from the misconception of its main character. Avner is not just a fictional character, but an absurdly improbable expression of Spielbergian schmaltz.
  27. Munich is a Spielberg film for better and worse, a vivid, sometimes simplistic thriller in which action speaks louder than ideas.
  28. It's when Spielberg stops trying to think so hard that Munich works best. Though some of the assassination scenes feel a little too choreographed, more "West Side Story" than "Bourne Identity."
  29. 63
    It's a brutal, merciless, somber picture, utterly devoid of the heart-tugging sentimentality that always creeps into even his best films.
  30. The failure of a movie that is so good in so many ways leaves me to wonder if Spielberg is up to this kind of complex, multi-tasking story.
  31. Reviewed by: Todd McCarthy
    Beautifully made pic will spur newsy media coverage and possible consternation on both sides of the Israeli-Palestinian divide, but members of the general public will be glancing at their watches rather than having epiphanies about world peace.
  32. It seems almost disrespectful to weave in a provocative re-creation of the killings -- somehow a massacre of unarmed innocents that shocked the world should be more than just fodder for ginning up the tension at the end of a commercial movie.
  33. 60
    If he had told the story straight, without such hedging, and at half the length, it would have borne far more conviction.
  34. I cannot remember a moment in this new film that compares, simply in directorial originality, to the work in "Schindler's List."
  35. Bouncing about from one flawed movie to another, Steven Spielberg has lost his way of late, and Munich finds him more disoriented than ever.
  36. 50
    The film is sluggish and repetitive, yet it exerts a certain clinical fascination.
  37. Munich may have value as an act of expiation but not as entertainment or art.
  38. 42
    Munich is so broad-stroke it cuts itself at every turn. It's also a thoroughly lifeless movie.
  39. It's too turgid and redundant to have any real impact. As a thriller, it barely thrills; as a lecture, it has nothing new to say.
User Score

Generally favorable reviews- based on 263 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 88 out of 122
  2. Negative: 20 out of 122
  1. Sep 28, 2013
    Munich is an arresting drama thriller about terrorism and the people who do it. The performances on offer here are excellent and the action suitably macabre. The film is a little too long but overall, Munich is excellent stuff. Full Review »
  2. Jun 7, 2013
    Following the murder of eleven Israeli athletes during the Munich Olympics of 1972 a small task force is assigned by Israel's secret service to locate and eliminate all those responsible.

    Being inspired by real events Munich was always going to be a controversial movie but, while it contains tense scenes throughout, it thankfully avoids choosing sides or sensationalizing events. This is more than just a simple case of good guys vs. bad guys and everyones actions can be called into question at some point.

    Every member of the cast really excels at depicting the conflicting emotions and pressures that these sorts of events inflict upon people ensuring that the characters come across as wholly believable meaning that, despite some pacing problems Munich makes for a fairly intriguing watch throughout.
    Full Review »
  3. Jan 2, 2013
    It's a solid movie. Good acting, Action is fine, and it is a bit suspensful at times. However, It never really breaks into that next level of greatest. It's a good movie but not that good. Full Review »