Generally favorable reviews - based on 16 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 10 out of 16
  2. Negative: 0 out of 16

Where To Watch

Buy On

Critic Reviews

  1. Chicago Tribune
    Reviewed by: Dave Kehr
    Though much of Naked Lunch is flip, hip and hilariously funny, it never wanders far from a profoundly melancholic undertone - Cronenberg's unshakable sense of loneliness, isolation and anxiety. [10 Jan 1992]
  2. 90
    Stretching himself with each new work, David Cronenberg has come up with a fascinating, demanding, mordantly funny picture.
  3. This David Cronenberg masterpiece (1991) breaks every rule in adapting a literary classic - maybe On Naked Lunch would be a more accurate title - but justifies every transgression with its artistry and audacity.
  4. 80
    There's a synergistic overlap here between Cronenberg's own particular brand of weirdness and Burroughs's; they're both twisted in ways that complement each other nicely.
  5. Ultimately, Naked Lunch is more about the act of writing, while the original is concerned with the phenomenon of addiction. Each does what it does well… but differently.
  6. A treat for Cronenberg fans, though this could hardly be called a gripping, or emotionally involving, story; you're more likely to need a can of bug spray than a hanky.
  7. The Globe and Mail (Toronto)
    Reviewed by: Jay Scott
    Paradoxically cerebral and primal, reasonable and anti-rational, life- affirming and nihilistic, Naked Lunch is a sensual and intellectual feast. It will not be a meal to everyone's taste, but in its bizarre class, there is nothing classier. [10 Jan 1992]
  8. For the most part this is a coolly riveting film and even a darkly entertaining one, at least for audiences with steel nerves, a predisposition toward Mr. Burroughs and a willingness to meet Mr. Cronenberg halfway.
  9. 63
    While I admired it in an abstract way, I felt repelled by the material on a visceral level.
  10. USA Today
    Reviewed by: Mike Clark
    Naked Lunch is so well-acted and so amusingly warped that it's a shoo-in to become a cult movie. [30 Dec 1991]
User Score

Generally favorable reviews- based on 12 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 0 out of 1
  2. Negative: 0 out of 1
  1. JanB.
    Sep 26, 2007
    A surrealistic, frequently boring movie with an incomprehensible plot.