The Last Rites of Joe May


Generally favorable reviews - based on 13 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 9 out of 13
  2. Negative: 0 out of 13
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  1. Reviewed by: J.R. Jones
    Nov 23, 2011
    This male weepie is ridden with cliches (Farina's character tends to a pigeon coop on his roof, for God's sake) and climaxes with a predictable act of self-abnegation.
  2. Reviewed by: Roger Ebert
    Nov 22, 2011
    The film, written and directed by Joe Maggio, only has this handful of characters and looks at them carefully. The dialogue is right, the conflicts are simple and sincere, the hopes are touching.
  3. Reviewed by: Lou Lumenick
    Nov 4, 2011
    Veteran character actor Dennis Farina gives one of the best performances of the year in a rare lead part as an aging, down-on-his luck small-time hood in The Last Rites of Joe May.
  4. Reviewed by: Joe Neumaier
    Nov 4, 2011
    Unfortunately, director Joe Maggio's film, despite showing real promise and an ear for threats delivered with a smile, runs out of gas.
  5. Reviewed by: John Anderson
    Nov 3, 2011
    The truth is, Mr. Farina would be considered Oscar material if "Joe May" were a bigger film. As it is, he'll have to settle for being great.
  6. Reviewed by: Manohla Dargis
    Nov 3, 2011
    Mr. Maggio's strengths here are his people (not their stories), a sense of intimacy and textured place rather than the generic hoops he forces the characters to jump through.
  7. Reviewed by: Scott Tobias
    Nov 2, 2011
    The Last Rites Of Joe May succeeds in some of the smaller details and the soulful performances.
  8. Reviewed by: Nick Pinkerton
    Nov 1, 2011
    Farina is un-self-conscious and true enough to alchemize cliché.
  9. Reviewed by: David Fear
    Nov 1, 2011
    The more the veteran actor strives to give Joe a final dose of funereal dignity, the more the film around him seems intent on deep-sixing its MVP.
  10. Reviewed by: John DeFore
    Nov 1, 2011
    Dennis Farina gets the enviable opportunity to humanize the kind of character he has sometimes exaggerated comically in glossier films.
  11. Reviewed by: John Anderson
    Nov 1, 2011
    Despite all this boilerplate gangster-with-a-heart-of-gold stuff, there's an emotional payoff to "Joe May" that feels solid and right.
  12. Reviewed by: Eric Kohn
    Oct 31, 2011
    Dennis Farina's washed-up hustler in The Last Rites of Joe May is designed in the in the mold of a classic movie star tough guy, but the veteran character actor's performance also serves to disassemble it.
  13. Reviewed by: Glenn Heath Jr.
    Oct 31, 2011
    Watching Dennis Farina dominate every scene is a joy, and thankfully the actor makes the most of this opportunity.

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