Universal acclaim - based on 20 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 19 out of 20
  2. Negative: 0 out of 20
  1. Still packs a wallop. It's also a movie with no easy passage to its dark heart.
  2. A visually dazzling mood piece.
  3. Reviewed by: G. Allen Johnson
    A rare chance to see a major cinematic work on the big screen.
  4. Reviewed by: Staff (Not credited)
    Visually stunning adventure. (Review of Original Release)
  5. Reviewed by: Ty Burr
    What's most shocking about The Passenger 30 years later? Seeing Jack Nicholson at the lean, sardonic height of his youthful powers? Finding a Michelangelo Antonioni movie with an actual plot?
  6. Reviewed by: Phil Hall
    Whereas "Cuckoo’s Nest" is a brilliantly over-the-top accomplishment, The Passenger is more brilliant with the most effortless underplaying one can ever hope to witness on screen.
  7. The film's final seven-minute shot is one of the great denouements in film history.
  8. Antonioni's moviemaking panache and distinctive narrative rhythm rarely have seemed so enticing and satisfying.
  9. Reviewed by: Don Drucker
    A masterpiece, one of Michelangelo Antonioni's finest works. (Review of Original Release)
  10. The Passenger isn't finally the masterpiece some have made it out to be, but it retains a singular intrigue: It's the first, and probably the last, thriller ever made about depression.
  11. No other performer (Jack Nicholson) in an Antonioni film, except Jeanne Moreau in "La Notte," has so gracefully submitted to Mr. Antonioni and survived intact. (Review of Original Release)
  12. Reviewed by: Staff (Not credited)
    Nicholson plays the character with personal flair, as penetrating as Antonioni's handling of the film. (Review of Original Release)
  13. 88
    The script, co-written by Antonioni and Peter Wollen, focuses on a TV journalist (a superb Jack Nicholson).
  14. 88
    Intended as a thriller of sorts, although Antonioni is, as always, too deeply involved in the angst of his characters to bother much with the story. (Review of Original Release)
  15. 83
    It's refreshing that something once considered terribly new and modern can still feel contemporary three decades later.
  16. Reviewed by: David Parkinson
    A bleak and moving drama with reflective performance from Jack Nicolson.
  17. 80
    In casting Jack Nicholson as the jaded Anglo-American journalist who abandons his previous life during a trip to Africa and adopts a dangerous new identity, Antonioni was working with a more powerful and charismatic actor than he has before or since. The result is something like a glamorous thriller or a disaster film in slow motion.
  18. 80
    The Passenger is a relic of that moment in international co-production when famous European auteurs hitched their wagons to hip and eager Hollywood stars.
  19. A fascinating reflection of the era when it was made; but a starker indictment still of what film culture has become. In 1975, The Passenger was a night at the movies.
  20. It reminds one of "The Constant Gardener," another globetrotting thriller bereft of thrills that looks more important in retrospect than on the screen. Certainly, one man's trash is another man's masterpiece, and more power to the viewer who can stick with this deadpan travelogue and make it to the ending that actually satisfies.

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