Metascore
69

Generally favorable reviews - based on 30 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 23 out of 30
  2. Negative: 0 out of 30
  1. Reviewed by: A.O. Scott
    Apr 1, 2014
    90
    The film is a cat-and-mouse game in which each player thinks he’s the cat, making it both thrilling and disconcerting to watch. It is also a nature documentary about behavior at the very top of the imperial food chain and a detective story about the search for a mystery that is hidden in plain sight.
  2. Reviewed by: Godfrey Cheshire
    Apr 4, 2014
    88
    Amounts to a valuable if tremendously damning commentary on our current political culture.
  3. Reviewed by: Mark Feeney
    Apr 3, 2014
    88
    “The Fog of War” (2003), about McNamara, won Morris a best documentary feature Oscar. The Unknown Known takes its title from a favorite phrase of Rumsfeld. It also accurately describes its subject, whose smiling inscrutability makes him consistently fascinating and often maddening.
User Score
6.9

Generally favorable reviews- based on 7 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 1 out of 2
  2. Negative: 0 out of 2
  1. Apr 19, 2014
    5
    The Unknown Known is a documentary about Donald Rumsfeld, the former Secretary of Defense and one of the leading minds behind the Iraq war. Errol Morris does a fantastic job interviewing Rmsfeld. Questions that Morris asks Romsfeld and gives him enough time not only to respond, but also to think about his responses and express how he feels about them. Very often Romsfeld answers a question in a way that he think is smart and elegant then he reacts to his own response with a smug smile but his answers are more nicely worded sentences with no substantial meaning and significance.

    I'm not giving a high score to this movie because it does not reveal anything interesting about Romsfeld's career and the truth behind the war. The movie, however, shows how the course of Romsfeld's carrier could have been different and how it could make a difference in the lives of hundreds of millions of people.
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  2. Apr 15, 2014
    10
    You should watch this movie to understand a great deal more about a generation of elderly white men clinging to power. I haven't had such a satisfying documentary experience since the two Gasland movies. It is fascinating to witness such a powerful figure as Rumsfeld, explain the motives of his actions. The twist and turns of logic this obviously extremely intelligent person takes, to obfuscate and to dodge questions. It seems this ability also works against himself.

    tl:dr - Movie is amazing, why are you not watching it already?
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