Generally favorable reviews - based on 41 Critics What's this?

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Generally favorable reviews- based on 97 Ratings

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  • Starring: ,
  • Summary: As the entire nation watches the presidential campaign hurtle towards Election Day, one soldier races to uncover the conspiracy behind it -- a conspiracy that seeks to destroy democracy itself. (Paramount Pictures)
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 36 out of 41
  2. Negative: 0 out of 41
  1. Reviewed by: Glenn Kenny
    Demme here shows off both the mastery of suspense that made "The Silence of the Lambs" a classic, and the humane understanding and appreciation of character that not just deepens but energizes this film.
  2. A political thriller that manages to be at once silly and clever, buoyantly satirical and sneakily disturbing, but he (Demme) has recovered some of the lightness and sureness of touch that had faded from his movies after "The Silence of the Lambs."
  3. The performance of the movie is Liev Schreiber as Shaw, a man howlingly uncomfortable in his own skin.
  4. Reviewed by: Staff (Not Credited)
    Part patrician WASP, part Lady Macbeth and revealing more than a little of Hilary Clinton steel, Streep crackles with neurotic energy and barely checked sexuality, sublimated into an addiction to power and an unhealthy devotion to her son.
  5. Denzel Washington is stellar, and so is Tak Fujimoto's cinematography, which is as edgy and antsy as the story it tells.
  6. Reviewed by: David Edelstein
    Beautifully made and unsurpassingly creepy, it's the rare remake with something contemporary to add.
  7. If you don't care about the first version, or what director Jonathan Demme's name once meant, the cast does an OK job with Daniel Pyne and Dean Georgaris's routine thriller script.

See all 41 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 34 out of 59
  2. Negative: 19 out of 59
  1. Sep 30, 2014
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  2. Blowhouse
    Oct 10, 2005
    Well-made political thriller. A good adaptation that adds a lot to the franchise.
  3. JimM
    Dec 6, 2005
    The reviewers who call this the "worst movie of 2004" must work for the devious Manchurian Global Corp. as portrayed in the film. Overall, Manchurian Candidate is an interesting political thriller and is competently filmed, but lacks the emotional connectedness required to call it "memorable." Draws many parallels to actual events and subterfuge in current geopolitics and the enormous power wielded by many corporations (Halliburton, Enron?). Streeps performance is the highlight -- positively chilling! Expand
  4. Nov 28, 2012
    Jonathan Demme's reimagining of the classic political thriller proves to be a harrowing, powerfully acted, and solidly written piece of cinema.
  5. Jul 21, 2014
    The remake of The Manchurian Candidate is one of the few Denzel Washington films I've never seen. To be honest, the story just didn't interest me that much, but it started streaming this month, so I gave it a shot. As expected, it's a someone complex story, that at times was difficult to understand, however an all-star cast manages to pull it together at the end. The story begins in Iraq during the Gulf War, when a U.S. Army platoon goes missing for three days. Even they were unaware of what happened to them, until one of the men starts having nightmares, and bodies start turning up. Denzel Washington plays the commanding officer, who takes it upon himself to investigate the strange deaths of his men, almost a decade later. As always, Washington is at the top of his game, giving off that infectious intensity, that keeps you on the edge of your seat through every step of the investigation. Washington is paired with Liev Schreiber who is one guy that has always just rubbed me the wrong way. It's not that he's a bad actor, there is just something about him and the characters he plays that is inherently unlikeable. He wasn't bad in this film, but being a similarly intense actor, meant that the chemistry with Washington was almost non-existent. The story is complicated and in the beginning of the film, it's going to be somewhat hard to watch. As the film proceeds and the elements become more clear, the film gets easier to watch, and the ending really pulls everything together. The Manchurian Candidate is one of those films that you think is going to be a bust, some people may even turn it off, but those who stick with it will see that it just gets better and better until a surprise ending brings it all together. If I were the writer of this film, I would have made the beginning of the film more intense and less confusing. The truth is the most important parts of a film are the beginning and the end, and without a strong opening, a lot of people will be turned off to the film and have the wrong attitude throughout. If you manage to stick with it, The Manchurian Candidate is great, but it does take a while to get there. Expand
  6. Apr 5, 2012
    Of course it is a good movie! I liked all the performances (Denzel Washington's was my less favourite but still fine), especially Meryl Streep's , but she never disappoints us! This film has flaws, but 98% of the movies enjoy this one...! Entertaining for sure! This is one of the very few times when I agree with most of the critic, for a t this point, I don't care about the critics'views anymore, well.... I never did for they are often too full of themselves, and I find most of them have a cheap taste! So I rather trust in normal users, who rank movies because what they feel, not what they pretend they are ('The harsh critic') to build themselves a good reputation...but this time, I have to say the critics have greatly surprised me! Good on them! Expand
  7. TomV
    Jul 4, 2009
    This movie wasn't very good!

See all 59 User Reviews

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