Generally favorable reviews - based on 14 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 10 out of 14
  2. Negative: 0 out of 14
  1. Reviewed by: Michael Blowen
    After an hour of biting charm, Something Wild turns into something else. In a twist that turns the movie into a silly story of violence, Demme surrenders his style to a stupid plot. [7 Nov 1986]
  2. Reviewed by: Pat Graham
    Jonathan Demme's picaresque joyride across the American landscape is still arguably the best thing he's ever done.
  3. 88
    Something Wild is quite a movie. Demme is a master of finding the bizarre in the ordinary.
  4. 100
    It has wit, originality, color, warmth and formal intelligence. It tempers its escapist dash with a touch of darkness, and for all of its playfulness, never departs from a fundamental seriousness.... Something Wild is superbly unpredictable. [7 Nov 1986]
  5. Demme finds haunting overtones in the somewhat old-hat situations of E. Max Frye's first screenplay. Something Wild also has three first-class performances: by Daniels, who seems to have resources that his earlier roles never touched; by electrifying newcomer Ray Liotta, and by Griffith as the maddening, mysterious Lulu. [6 Nov 1986]
  6. One of the year's most fascinating flicks.... Brilliant performances by Jeff Daniels, Melanie Griffith and a newcomer named Ray Liotta give sparkle, and shadows, to Something Wild. [7 Nov 1986]
  7. Demme not only gives the script's nuttiness its due, he adds to it by filling the frame in virtually every scene with silliness - a motorcycle- riding dog, a harpsichordist, a man wearing a T-shirt that reads, "I don't love you since you ate my dog." [7 Nov 1986]
  8. Something Wild is often "Something Wrong."
  9. Reviewed by: Richard Corliss
    The film causes no tremors, only a hemi-Demme-semiquaver.
  10. Reviewed by: Staff (Not Credited)
    With a screenplay from first-time screenwriter E. Max Frye and superior performances from his principal cast, Demme has created a unique and likable film.
  11. Reviewed by: Staff (Not Credited)
    Conceptually and stylistically compelling under Jonathan Demme's sometimes striking direction.
  12. Besides engineering top-notch performances from his actors, Mr. Demme also put together a soundtrack that enhances the movie's marvelous, quirky rhythms. He keeps you hooked into this unpredictable, pleasurable picture right through the closing credits. [6 Nov 1986]
  13. Reviewed by: Paul Attanasio
    But for the first time in a long while, this is a movie that lets Demme be Demme, and the result is a film that's more than enjoyable. It's a blast.
  14. 60
    Despite the quirky trappings, Something Wild is often as tame as its star couple.

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