Mixed or average reviews - based on 28 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 9 out of 28
  2. Negative: 4 out of 28

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Critic Reviews

  1. The sad truth is that the film squanders almost all of its inspiration in the first 20 minutes or so.
  2. What a dull, nice movie, wrenched from a wild premise and battered into docility.
  3. 50
    The first half-hour's too slow; the last half-hour's too manic, as if to compensate. But at least it entertains, thanks in large measure to the buddy-pic relationship between Owen Wilson's miniature cowpoke and his Roman pal Steve Coogan.
  4. Reviewed by: Claudia Puig
    Though the premise is clever -- everything comes to life at night in New York City's Natural History Museum -- this movie doesn't make the best comic use of the concept.
  5. 50
    This loud, overlong and thoroughly exhausting fantasy, based on Milan Trenc's slim children's book, purports to introduce youngsters to the wonders of New York City's American Museum of Natural History, but in fact aims squarely at hyperactive kids who can't sit still or stand a moment's silence.
  6. Night at the Museum takes a can't-miss comedy premise and misses by a country mile.
  7. 50
    Strands several generations of performers in a highly derivative script and hackneyed direction.
  8. 50
    With a cast featuring Ben Stiller, Owen Wilson, Robin Williams, and Ricky Gervais, one has a right to expect something amusing from Night at the Museum. Oddly, not only is the movie unfunny, but it rarely tries for laughs.
  9. If the filmmakers had a script half as good as their special effects, Night at the Museum would be a must-see.
  10. 50
    The premise of Night at the Museum is definitely a bit more creative than the standard family films we are used to at this time of year, but the problem is that the film is marred with many gags that are outdated and therefore feel cheap.
  11. This season's answer to "Dr. Seuss' How the Grinch Stole Christmas," it's an overstuffed grab bag in which lumps of coal are glued together with melted candy.
  12. Director Levy struggles to find a uniform pitch that would agreeably blend together the gags, the visual effects and the obligatory heart moments. In its absence, there's a stop-and-start hollowness that confuses noise and chaos for comic energy.
  13. Reviewed by: Justin Chang
    This rambunctious, "Jumanji"-style extravaganza is a gallery of special effects in search of a story; rarely has so much production value yielded so little in terms of audience engagement.
  14. 40
    The bulk of the movie is a series of sight gags and set pieces that wreak much havoc but little else.
  15. Reviewed by: Kim Newman
    This energetically charmless 'family' fantasy lies there dead on screen, occasionally twitching at a funny line.
User Score

Generally favorable reviews- based on 265 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 70 out of 109
  2. Negative: 12 out of 109
  1. Nov 15, 2011
    "Night At the Museum" is way too formulaic, but hey, at least it makes you laugh.
  2. Nov 18, 2011
    It is not as predictable and formulatic as everyone says it is. A great idea is well executed and the result is a fun family film with a lotIt is not as predictable and formulatic as everyone says it is. A great idea is well executed and the result is a fun family film with a lot of good performances. Full Review »
  3. HessaM
    Aug 5, 2007
    Its really amazing film i like bin stiller and his funny films.