Metascore
88

Universal acclaim - based on 10 Critics

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

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Critic Reviews

  1. 100
    The acting and the best dialogue passages have an impact that has not dimmed; it is still possible to feel the power of the film and of Brando and Kazan, who changed American movie acting forever.
  2. Reviewed by: Ty Burr
    100
    The chance to watch a four-star classic the way it was meant to be seen -- fresh print, big screen -- is so rare as to be worth the trip.
  3. 100
    As unspoiled in its key elements as the day it was made, "On the Waterfront" is indisputably one of the great American films, its power undiminished. Even more today than half a century ago, it demands to be seen.
  4. A draining experience from beginning to end, relentless in its portrayal of inhumanity.
  5. 88
    On the Waterfront may have baggage, but that doesn't prevent it from being one of the great American productions of the mid-20th century.
  6. It's hard to deny that Marlon Brando's performance as a dock worker and ex-fighter who finally decides to rat on his gangster brother (Rod Steiger) is pretty terrific.
  7. Moviemaking of a rare and high order. (Review of Original Release)
  8. 80
    Under Elia Kazan's direction, Marlon Brando puts on a spectacular show, giving a fascinating, multi-faceted performance.
  9. 80
    Like many cult films, it is also less than the sum of its parts.
  10. Brando made one of his most indelible impressions in this relentlessly dramatic, ever-controversial tale of loyalty and betrayal in the world of working-class unions.
User Score
9.0

Universal acclaim- based on 105 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 9 out of 10
  2. Negative: 0 out of 10
  1. MartB.
    Jun 18, 2006
    9
    They don't make 'em like this anymore.
  2. Dec 27, 2015
    10
    best marlon brando's performance after vito corleonebest marlon brando's performance after vito corleone
                                                                                                
    and won 8 academy awards
    Full Review »
  3. Jul 5, 2015
    10
    a awesome film about American patriotism against corruption and organized crime, its a film most people don't make anymore, no holds barred.a awesome film about American patriotism against corruption and organized crime, its a film most people don't make anymore, no holds barred.

    Marlon Brando stars in a spectacular performance that even outshines his iconic performance as Vito Corleone, as Terry Malloy an ex-boxer and part time loser who is convinced by his superiors to testify against the murderous mafia who are using the harbors for illegal drug trade.

    featuring masterful direction from Elia Kazan, and Brando's tough and emotional star power, in the famous scene where he successfully stands up against his own brother Charlie (Rod Steiger) "I Could Have been a Contender" its a movie men in america of all ages young or old must see to make them more of a winner again than a loser.

    undeniably its the greatest American film classic of the early 20th century and winner of 8 academy awards!
    Full Review »