Nancy Drew

Metascore
53

Mixed or average reviews - based on 31 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 14 out of 31
  2. Negative: 6 out of 31
Watch On
  1. 83
    Bright semi-adult entertainment.
  2. 83
    Parents who want smart, harmless movies that don't condescend for their school-age kids -- a rare thing these days -- should be grateful for Nancy Drew.
  3. Reviewed by: Ken Fox
    75
    The movie's refusal to treat young girls like silly tramps-in-training is almost radical: It's just good, clean fun and actually offers children of a certain age a role model even adults can feel good about.
  4. A very clever update of the 16-year-old heroine, managing to make her seem both as square as the Bobbsey Twins and as contemporary as MySpace.
  5. What's not to like about a girl detective who is a good citizen and better student, a leader rather than a follower, a resourceful seamstress who won't cut her clothes to fit this year's fashions?
  6. 70
    Manages to navigate the era of cellphones and Mean Girls with retro nostalgia and wholesomeness, making it a rare girl-powered outing for tweens in an otherwise guy-centric summer.
  7. Hopefully, the girls who see Nancy Drew this summer will take their cues from the smart, engaged, intellectually curious character Roberts so charmingly portrays.
  8. The postmodernist evocations of the past (roughly the 50s through the 80s) are a charming mishmash, delivered with wit and style.
  9. 70
    Fleming's movie is, at the very least, a tribute to Nancy Drew's longevity -- and a valentine to all of us who, even as we strive to live in the present, just like old things.
  10. It's one of the few tween movies that isn't in your face; its limpness becomes appealing.
  11. Reviewed by: Stina Chyn
    70
    Overall, I found myself not hating the film. There's just one thing that troubles me about the way Nancy Drew is depicted. She is determined, a perfectionist, uber-organized, and efficient. Those qualities can be associated to geekdom, but they’re also symptoms of someone with a propensity for disordered eating or obsessive-compulsive disorder. Hmmm.
  12. 67
    Once the rote mystery elements take over, the film devolves into a second-rate whodunit for kids, but even then, Roberts' irrepressible cheeriness and curiosity in the face of danger proves too adorable to resist.
  13. Nice. The film itself is more nice than good, but nice isn't the worst trait.
  14. 63
    A well-written and in many ways pleasing update of a character who has endured in print for 78 years. Too bad it's sadly slow-paced.
  15. The culprit, I'd say, is the uninteresting casting of Miss Roberts in the title role. She's a pleasant enough performer, but her made-for-teen-TV acting style, a perky blandness, doesn't supply a clue as to the appeal of Nancy Drew after all these years.
  16. The culture-clash procedural, which brings the small-town teen to big bad Hollywood, feels more perfunctory than inspired.
  17. 50
    This tweener goddess--a virtual Batcave of handy accessories packed in her shoulder bag--may prove too annoying for general audiences, particularly as Roberts plays her comically straight.
  18. 50
    An effective translation of the source material, but that's not necessarily a good thing.
  19. The teen parties and sidekick silliness are time filler, and not very good filler either -- why even Bruce Willis shows up in a scene that has nothing to do with the story.
  20. Reviewed by: Scott Bowles
    50
    Nancy Drew is 16, dresses like she's 12 and acts like she's about 45. And therein lies the problem with this adaptation of the beloved book series. The movie can't quite decide how old it wants to be -- or who it's for.
  21. The mystery of Nancy Drew' is how a movie can get so many things right -- particularly the inspired casting of Emma Roberts as the spunky teenage sleuth -- yet ultimately disappoint.
  22. Reviewed by: Ty Burr
    50
    The movie's fodder for tweener girls with indiscriminate Nick TV addictions, but there's just enough wit on display to make you realize it could have been worse.
  23. Emma Roberts is squeaky-clean to a fault and so is the movie.
  24. 40
    As it is, Nancy Drew stands as an example of how to take a foolproof, time-tested formula -- a young detective using smarts and determination to solve a case -- and mess it up with superficial cleverness and pandering hackwork. How this happened is hardly a mystery; botched adaptations are as common as BlackBerries in Hollywood. But it is nonetheless something of a crime.
  25. Reviewed by: Kim Newman
    40
    That this is just about passable as a divorced parent’s weekend treat is down to Roberts’ charm and the timeless appeal of Nancy herself.
  26. Call it Nancy Drew and the Case of the Confused Adaptation.
  27. 38
    No rose-colored memories can improve this tedious interpretation of the famous girl detective's adventures. Nancy Drew falls somewhere between "The Haunted Mansion" and the live-action "Scooby Doo" movies in terms of quality but is more irritating than either.
  28. It's marginally possible that Nancy Drew is spoofing high school adventure movies, and I almost hope so. Otherwise, it's unwatchable on every level.
  29. Reviewed by: Chris Willard
    38
    At the end of the movie, the only mystery left unsolved is where your time and money have gone.
  30. Reviewed by: Lael Loewenstein
    30
    Purportedly an attempt to modernize the young detective's adventures for a new generation of tweens, the pic instead serves up stale mystery-movie cliches and overcooked red herrings in a thoroughly wooden adaptation.
  31. It's not really a matter of Nancy's retro look and grounding in the fundamentals of sleuthing that separates the women from the girls but, rather, this film's lack of gaiety and surprise that makes it dud for old and new generations of the books' fans.
User Score
6.5

Generally favorable reviews- based on 30 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 7 out of 13
  2. Negative: 4 out of 13
  1. Apr 10, 2015
    10
    HOLY. **** This is cinema gold. Honestly how the **** didn't this win an oscar? Emma is at the top of her career and her performance as theHOLY. **** This is cinema gold. Honestly how the **** didn't this win an oscar? Emma is at the top of her career and her performance as the devious gal was stellar. Barbara Barbara was a complete gem and added so much depth and humanity to the real estate world, I want to be a real estate agent now! Poor ned tho, what a boi. Those effects when that manhole blew up was absolutely fantastic I literally grabbed my father beside me and held him close, I felt that heat from the flames. I really shipped nancy and the fat kid, but that cockblock ned had to ruin it. Overall this movie was amazing and I think that it had so many good quotes. I loved the realism of Deliah Dreycott and I thought she was a real person. I just HAD TO BUY some penny loafers because they are so in right now. I also felt really sad when Deliah's daughter got evicted because I recently had to evict my little dog from my house from eating my nutella. I also changed schools to the one they filmed at because I want to sit at that lunch table every day and eat perfectly sliced sandwiches and sit with **** who eat cupcakes. When she was about to fall of the building after sweet talking the mass murderers into not wrecking her up, I thought she was a true hero. Her father is a total dick however and totally ruined the mood, with his whiny opinions about emmas sex life, and crashing her party. LET HER GET THE DICK! All in all, what a fantastic amazing cool sweet awesome life changing movie which changed my life for ever. I have legally changed my name to Drew Nancy, not exactly her name, just to honor her, as I can never be as cool and swaggy as she was when she hopped on neds dick. Best movie i have ever seen in my life, and the only one to give me sweet fantasys and dreams of being a super sleuth. NO MORE SLEUTHING NANCY ( ͡° ͜ʖ ͡°) Full Review »
  2. kayleighms
    Mar 28, 2008
    8
    Car chases, gunfire, bombs, and more kidnapping attempts abound, but seem out of place even in Los Angeles. Nancy is not intimidated by any Car chases, gunfire, bombs, and more kidnapping attempts abound, but seem out of place even in Los Angeles. Nancy is not intimidated by any of the threats Full Review »
  3. JayH.
    Mar 4, 2008
    6
    Emma Roberts is beginning to develop into a good actress and is well cast. The movie is more enjoyable than I would have expected. Good Emma Roberts is beginning to develop into a good actress and is well cast. The movie is more enjoyable than I would have expected. Good mystery, it's always entertaining and it draws you into the story. Full Review »