Metascore
67

Generally favorable reviews - based on 20 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 13 out of 20
  2. Negative: 0 out of 20
  1. 50
    All of the materials are in place for a film that might have pleased Orwell. But somehow they never come together.
  2. 75
    Taken as a whole, Shallow Grave is a reasonably enjoyable (for those captivated by this sort of thing) black comedy/noir thriller that justifies at least a portion of the praise being heaped upon it from overseas.
  3. Director Danny Boyle and screenwriter John Hodge (who is a physician!) keep the action spurting forward, but their approach is oblique. We seem to be catching the odds and ends of scenes; it's as if the filmmakers wanted to make a movie in which all the expected high points were skimped.
  4. This pitch-black comedy is less lurid than its title, but director Danny Boyle ultimately fritters away his psychologically rich story in a horror-flick finale.
  5. This is a fairly accomplished first feature -perky, visually inventive, and unusually nast
  6. Just sit back, plug in, and enjoy the shocks - so adroitly administered, so sweetly sensational. [24 Feb 1995]
  7. 58
    McGregor is a real charmer, a young Malcolm McDowell with a Scottish lilt; Brain Tufano's photography manages to be both rich and stark at once; Hodge's script has some genuinely arch lines. [03 Mar 1995]
  8. There's something in Shallow Grave that is admirable, beyond its obvious display of youthful talent. [24 Feb 1995]
  9. Reviewed by: Jay Carr
    75
    Black comedy and film noir are around one another smartly and wickedly in Danny Boyle's Shallow Grave, a tense, twisty Scottish-made thriller that's going to break out of Glasgow in a big way. [24 Feb 1995]
  10. In his big-screen directing debut, British film maker Danny Boyle demonstrates wit, intelligence and economy of style.
  11. Reviewed by: Derek Elley
    90
    Shallow Grave, a tar-black comedy that zings along on a wave of visual and scripting inventiveness.
  12. A sky-high level of misanthropy overwhelms his film in ways that prove more sour than droll, despite the presence of skillful actors and a bizarrely enveloping plot.
  13. 50
    Boyle's characters, too, are young and fresh and promisingly rude - especially McGregor's Alex - but they become less and less interesting as the movie progresses.
  14. This clever thriller has the juiced-up, hyperactive feel of a rock video. [07 Mar 1995]
  15. Danny Boyle's glittering, deadpan, nihilistic little thriller.
  16. Reviewed by: Ethan Alter
    88
    Danny Boyle's effective psychological thriller.
  17. 100
    This, the debut feature from acclaimed TV director Danny Boyle, is the best British thriller for years, a chilling and claustrophobic heart-stopper centring on a moral dilemma destined to fuel many a dinner party conversation.
  18. Reviewed by: Scott Rosenberg
    63
    Smart and unsentimental as it is, Shallow Grave is more than a little forbidding.
  19. Reviewed by: Adrienne Martini
    78
    Boyle, MacDonald, and Hodge honed this wonderful coupling of music, visuals, and clever words, as well as a strange affection for toy babies, in their first film.
  20. Reviewed by: Desson Howe
    50
    This is exactly the kind of weird, sardonic texture the movie is aiming for - and unfortunately, most of it occurs in the first half of the story.
User Score
8.6

Universal acclaim- based on 36 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 4 out of 5
  2. Negative: 0 out of 5
  1. Jul 14, 2014
    10
    Shallow Grave is a very well shot and acted movie from British director Danny Boyle. The cast is great
    with Ewen Mcgregor from Trainspotting.
    Shallow Grave is a very well shot and acted movie from British director Danny Boyle. The cast is great
    with Ewen Mcgregor from Trainspotting. The plot is very clever and the movie has a nice Hitchcockian
    feel to it. The story is unpredictable and it will become one of your favourite movies.
    Full Review »
  2. Apr 30, 2011
    10
    A slick, clever, well shot thriller. Almost everything about this film works, and works well. Danny Boyle, trés bien! The greatA slick, clever, well shot thriller. Almost everything about this film works, and works well. Danny Boyle, trés bien! The great sweeping shot that reveals just who was the quickest, is pure genius. Just great Full Review »
  3. Mar 27, 2014
    7
    First serious movie by Danny Boyle. The actors are good, though the story is mostly predictable. The overall feel is like in other UKFirst serious movie by Danny Boyle. The actors are good, though the story is mostly predictable. The overall feel is like in other UK criminal-related movies. It was interesting to see the famous director's first full-length movie, but it was not as good as I expected. Full Review »