Metascore
81

Universal acclaim - based on 23 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 21 out of 23
  2. Negative: 0 out of 23
  1. It's not for all tastes; it requires some patience. The more your own job involves absurd, time-consuming bits of minutiae, the more familiar (and amusing) it'll seem.
  2. 100
    The usual emphasis in a detective film is upended so that procedure, thrillingly, is more important than action. In its own way, this is one of the most intense cop movies you'll see.
  3. A simultaneously realistic and absurdist examination of police work.
  4. Yet another outstanding little movie in the exciting Romanian New Wave.
  5. 100
    Police, Adjective is a deadly serious as well as dryly humorous analysis of bureaucratic procedure and, particularly, the tyranny of language. Images may record reality, but words define it.
  6. Reviewed by: Jay Weissberg
    100
    Porumboiu is one of the few helmers working today who so completely understands both the power of language and the power of visuals.
  7. This cunning and provocative Romanian film requires patience, but its rewards are many: It's hard to imagine how a scene in which a police captain barks an order to bring him a dictionary can be loaded with suspense, but, really, it is.
  8. Although it's sly and sardonic, Police, Adjective is as rigorous as a tea ceremony -- or a Stalinist re-education camp.
  9. 83
    A clever, exceedingly wonky procedural about a undercover cop (Dragos Bucur) who quietly refuses to do what he's told.
  10. This intermittently terrific cerebral thriller does, indeed, hinge on the proper use of dictionary definitions, but the film is really about the oppressive blahness of small-town, postcommunist Romania. In such surroundings, parsing definitions can almost stand for high drama.

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