Metascore
76

Generally favorable reviews - based on 14 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 10 out of 14
  2. Negative: 0 out of 14
  1. 100
    This is, first of all, an electrifying and poignant love story....And it is also one hell of a thriller.
  2. Reviewed by: Ian Nathan
    100
    Arguably Harrison Ford’s finest performance, and one of the strongest thrillers to emerge from the heady gloss of the ‘80s, this is director Peter Weir at his most adept.
  3. Reviewed by: Staff (Not Credited)
    100
    Sure-footed thriller, beautifully photographed, with Ford's best performance thus far.
  4. 88
    Witness states its position about clashing cultures with eloquence.
  5. Witness is satisfying on so many levels it stands with "Cabaret" and "The Godfather II" as an example of how a director in love with his medium can redeem its mainstream cliches. [07 Feb 1985]
  6. Reviewed by: Jay Carr
    88
    Beyond its fresh twists on the cop and romance genres, Witness is, above all, an anti-consumption film. [08 Feb 1985]
  7. 88
    Witness" is both exciting and thoughtful.... And just as important to moviegoers, Witness is a genuinely gripping thriller. [08 Feb 1985]
  8. 70
    Peter Weir, the standard-bearer of the Australian Tradition of Quality, is on hand to smother all the contrivances in his solemn, academic style, and the result is a moderately effective, highly affected thriller.
  9. It's not really awful, but it's not much fun. It's pretty to look at and it contains a number of good performances, but there is something exhausting about its neat balancing of opposing manners and values.
  10. Reviewed by: Richard Schickel
    70
    Witness, which is one of the most originally conceived and gracefully made suspense dramas of recent years, to work into edgy juxtaposition the representatives of two subcultures that are ordinarily mutually exclusive.
  11. Reviewed by: Staff (Not Credited)
    60
    Witness is at times a gentle, affecting story of star-crossed lovers limited within the fascinating Amish community. Too often, however, this fragile romance is crushed by a thoroughly absurd shoot-em-up, like ketchup poured over a delicate Pennsylvania Dutch dinner.
  12. Although it, too, is gorgeous to look at, this skeletal thriller is as direct and spare as its Mennonites. [08 Feb 1985]
  13. Along with some creaky plot mechanics in the last third of the story, this reduces the film to ordinary dimensions - a sharp but no longer resonant show.
  14. Reviewed by: Judy Stone
    50
    The new movie eloquently dramatizes the unusual cultural conflicts between contemporary, violent urban life and an archaic rural community with pacifist convictions. [08 Feb 1985]
User Score
8.5

Universal acclaim- based on 30 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 3 out of 4
  2. Negative: 0 out of 4
  1. Jan 10, 2015
    10
    A subtle romance and thriller , it works perfectly on both levels . It also focus on cultural differences and how it affect or interfere ourA subtle romance and thriller , it works perfectly on both levels . It also focus on cultural differences and how it affect or interfere our decisions . The director handles all these levels very well . The acting of Ford who at his best dramatic heroic non-fiction role of his career and Kelly McGillis plays a simple , natural and kind of ethereal woman . It is unusual , devoid of cliches and simply great. Full Review »
  2. Sep 2, 2014
    5
    This wasn't what I expected. Much more romantic drama than action and suspense. It's an odd combination that I felt squeaked like bad breaksThis wasn't what I expected. Much more romantic drama than action and suspense. It's an odd combination that I felt squeaked like bad breaks at some points but the story is not without its charm. You can't help but feel concern for the little boy and the predicament of this Amish family. Harrison Ford brought his A game though. There was a good gradual feel that he delivered that created the tension between him and Rachel. You actually wanted them to get together because they actually had a genuine connection that grew and developed. But it was a Tarzan type romance. They were from two worlds and it really showed. Maybe if what I was expecting to happen wasn't squashed so bad I'd rate this better but still overall it didn't mesh so great with me. Solid for its time and worth a try though. Full Review »
  3. Jan 25, 2014
    7
    Witness is not your average action movie drama; this film takes the viewer deep into the heart of Amish country. Although, it does offer someWitness is not your average action movie drama; this film takes the viewer deep into the heart of Amish country. Although, it does offer some insight on the Amish way of life and how one man can uproot it all. Harrison Ford is very good in his role, and Danny Glover is perfect as the crooked cop. Full Review »