Mixed or average reviews - based on 19 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 8 out of 19
  2. Negative: 3 out of 19
  1. In The Hudsucker Proxy, the filmmaking Coen brothers make dark, startling, wittily extravagant sport of the American Dream. The movie is opulent and wry, a bitingly intelligent fable about business and romance. [25 Mar 1994, p.A]
  2. 88
    With its refined wit and glorious vision, The Hudsucker Proxy is certainly deserving of a wide audience.
  3. Reviewed by: Kim Newman
    While not to everyone's tastes, this is without doubt one of the most exhilarating films of 1994.
  4. The Hudsucker Proxy is the Coens' fifth feature in a decade, and you can see their tremendous artistic growth in every frame of the film. Classically composed, beautifully shot by Roger Deakins ("Barton Fink") and co-produced by legendary action-flick producer Joel Silver, Hudsucker has technique and visual invention to spare. [11 Mar 1994, p.C3]
  5. Reviewed by: Staff (Not Credited)
    A lavish parody of/homage to Hollywood big business comedies, The Hudsucker Proxy is gorgeous but lifeless, a very small joke writ very large by the talented but perversely insular Coen brothers.
  6. Hudsucker Proxy works more like a fairy tale in which all implausibilities are acceptable and none of it has to play by real-world rules. But it's a fairy tale without any lessons, a satire without any targets.
  7. Reviewed by: Mike Clark
    Frigid soul or not, it's the most unforgettable supernatural comedy since Brazil. Could be it's time for the Coens to drop the pretense, and embrace sci-fi head on. [11 Mar 1994, p.4D]
  8. The comedy has moments of great humor and terrific visual appeal. It's a solid achievement for Joel Coen, who directed; Ethan Coen, who produced; Sam Raimi, who wrote the screenplay with the brothers. [25 Mar 1994, p.A]
  9. If The Hudsucker Proxy is a triumph, it is a zombie one. Too cold, too elegant, too perfect, more an exhibit in a cinema museum than a flesh-and-blood film, "Proxy's" highly polished surface leaves barely any space for an audience's emotional connection. [11 Mar 1994, p.1]
  10. 50
    The movie is that it's all surface and no substance. Not even the slightest attempt is made to suggest that the film takes its own story seriously. Everything is style. The performances seem deliberately angled as satire.
  11. Reviewed by: Jay Carr
    The movie seems destined to win a place in the nocturnal-cityscape-hell hall of fame. Its externals are brilliant, but The Hudsucker Proxy is virtually nothing but externals. [25 Mar 1994, p.52]
  12. Reviewed by: Geoff Pevere
    The Coen brothers have made the A-list of writer/directors with their big-budget replicants of Hollywood genres, but the wisecracking Hudsucker Proxy is all comic sound and fury signifying nothing All talk, no substance. [11 Mar 1994, p.C3]
  13. For all its technical bravado, The Hudsucker Proxy is an unsettling contradiction, a ''whimsical'' fable made by acerbic control freaks. It's a balloon that won't fly.
  14. Reviewed by: Caryn James
    Stylish and witty though it is, The Hudsucker Proxy has its problems, even for Coen fans. But throughout, there are wonderfully rich touches.
  15. At its best it's a free-form fantasy with glitzy, well-executed effects and assorted metaphysical conceits but little feeling for any of the characters apart from derision (with a few touches of racism here and there).
  16. Reviewed by: Todd McCarthy
    The Hudsucker Proxy is no doubt one of the most inspired and technically stunning pastiches of old Hollywood pictures ever to come out of the New Hollywood. But a pastiche it remains, as nearly everything in the Coen brothers' latest and biggest film seems like a wizardly but artificial synthesis, leaving a hole in the middle where some emotion and humanity should be.
  17. Reviewed by: Richard Schickel
    The Coens have deliberately cut themselves off from their best subject. Try as they will to create a vision of corporate (and urban) hellishness through sheer stylishness, theirs is a truly abstract expressionism, at once heavy, lifeless and dry.
  18. Reviewed by: Joe Brown
    Another ultra-stylized movie-about-movies by the Cannes-winning Coen Brothers, Hudsucker is clever but cold, a heartless mechanical gizmo. The actors rattle around tinnily like shiny marbles inside its cavernous sets and hollow script.
  19. Don't bother to see this film unless you expect to be tested in film class about the Coens' serial dissertation on American cinema. [10 Mar 1994, p.A16]
User Score

Generally favorable reviews- based on 39 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 5 out of 6
  2. Negative: 0 out of 6
  1. Sep 18, 2010
    Simply one of the greatest movies ever made, with an outrageous and uproarious performance by Jennifer Jason Leigh. A homage to the great screwball comedies of the past, but strained through '90's irony. Great dialogue, incredible design and a wonderful score. If you're under 40, you probably won't get it, but if you just use your imagination the way the Coens used theirs, you'll love "Proxy."

    And remember...The Future is Now.
    Full Review »
  2. Aug 25, 2010
    OK All Napoleon Dynamite fans depart... this is NOT a film for you. This film has the most unique, artistic and wonderful cinematography of any movie I have seen. For those of you who don't know the "HULA HOOP" is an actual toy that children played with beginning in the late 50's. This film is a delightful romp pretending to document the invention of the hoop. ENJOY! the brothers made a fine film AGAIN! Full Review »
  3. Mar 16, 2011
    There are a few specific reasons why God graced the earth with the Coen Brothers and Sam Raimi. This is one of them. See this movie and your life will be better for it. (Side note: There is clearly an error somewhere in Metacritic's professional critic calculation algorithm as it only has this at a 53 for some reason.) >>>> My full cinema profile here: Full Review »