Generally favorable reviews - based on 29 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 26 out of 29
  2. Negative: 0 out of 29
  1. The Visitor, is, if anything, more imaginative and touching than his first.
  2. 100
    As a writer-director, McCarthy, like the characters and the places that he suffuses with emotion, has poetry in him - and he knows how to let it out. He has a talent for demarcating those spaces in which characters can become whoever they want to be.
  3. It works on several levels, and stands out as a wistful meditation on the psychological cost of 9/11.
  4. 90
    Eloquent and unassuming, it's a picture that hits home precisely because it doesn't overreach its grasp.
  5. 90
    The curious thing about The Visitor is that even as it goes more or less where you think it will, it still manages to surprise you along the way.
  6. 88
    A heartfelt human drama that sneaks up and floors you.
  7. Jenkins and The Visitor”make lovely music together. It’s a case of a veteran character actor slipping on a leading role like the most comfortable pair of pants in the world.
  8. 88
    Best movie I've seen so far this year? Hands down, it's Tom McCarthy's superb The Visitor, which turns Richard Jenkins, one of the best character actors in the business, into a full-fledged star.
  9. 88
    McCarthy's flawless casting may be the film's greatest strength: Veteran character actor Jenkins and his costars vanish into their characters -- their performances are so subtle and unforced that they don't feel like performances at all.
  10. Reviewed by: Claudia Puig
    It is one of the year's most intriguing dramas, with a quartet of powerful performances.
  11. 88
    This is a film of our times - paranoid, heartbroken, disillusioned - and the rare recent American movie whose characters react the way actual people might.
  12. This audaciously issues-loaded indie drama works, improbably and entirely, on account of the marvelous, often familiar-looking, rarely starring character actor Richard Jenkins and his perfect performance as a stodgy, widowed economics professor.
  13. 83
    Like few of his filmmaking peers, McCarthy understands and respects the power of quiet, and how a whisper can be as explosive as a shout.
User Score

Generally favorable reviews- based on 73 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 30 out of 37
  2. Negative: 4 out of 37
  1. Nov 28, 2012
    An excellently structured, skillfully acted drama that effectively weaves sincere, relevant, and affecting thematic elements throughout its very unique story. Full Review »
  2. Aug 8, 2011
    Richard Jenkins gives the performance of a lifetime in this touching,subtle film.Tom McCarthy's vision is unflinchingly humanistic as well as politically and culturally relevant.It's at times funny,always moving and incredibly absorbing.Highly recommended! Full Review »
  3. Aug 23, 2010
    Ageing widowed professor, goes to New York conference, immigrants living in his flat, makes friends, learns how to drum, male immigrant gets caught, mother turns up.
    Slow-paced but enjoyable film which I did think in parts was like Lost in Translation where not much happens but the characters build up.
    Well acted, nice music & a film with it's heart is in the right place.
    Full Review »