Magic in the Moonlight 2014

Critics score:
52 / 100

Reviews provided by RottenTomatoes

Wesley Morris, Grantland: The movie's opening hour has a fascinating balance of nonsense and depth... If only Allen could keep that introspection and frippery going. Read more

Lou Lumenick, New York Post: For all the Mr. Darcy-ish charm Woody's latest surrogate, Oscar winner Colin Firth, can still summon up, it's hard to believe Allen's current muse, played by Emma Stone, would put up with his insults for 10 minutes. Read more

Rex Reed, New York Observer: A master stroke of enchantment from one of the few legitimate cinematic geniuses of the modern cinema ... Read more

Joe Morgenstern, Wall Street Journal: Ms. Stone is entrancing, whether Sophie is in or out of her trance state, and so is the movie as a whole. Read more

Moira MacDonald, Seattle Times: There's a dashed-off, shorthand quality to it, as if everyone involved is going through the motions. Read more

Scott Foundas, Variety: A high-spirited bauble that goes down easy thanks to fleet comic pacing, a surfeit of ravishing Cote d'Azur vistas and the genuinely reactive chemistry of stars Colin Firth and Emma Stone. Read more

Ben Kenigsberg, AV Club: The comedy is a good 30 or 40 percent less fizzy than it needs to be. Read more

Kerry Lengel, Arizona Republic: It used to be that Woody Allen's failures were more interesting than most filmmakers' successes, but his latest offering is depressing proof that this no longer the case. Read more

Ty Burr, Boston Globe: In "Magic in the Moonlight," the debate is between rationalism and faith - what you can see with your own eyes versus what you're willing to leap into the dark for - but it's given a trite, cursory treatment. Read more

J. R. Jones, Chicago Reader: Woody Allen on autopilot, disappearing into the jazz age again for a blunt, listless thesis film about the limits of rationality. Read more

Michael Phillips, Chicago Tribune: "Magic in the Moonlight" strolls along, muttering familiar axioms about the infernal inconvenience and bedevilment of romantic attraction. Read more

Peter Rainer, Christian Science Monitor: Firth is effective as the insufferable Stanley, who is ripe for his comeuppance from the very first time we see him haranguing his help backstage after a performance in Berlin. Read more

Tom Long, Detroit News: There are virtually no laughs to be had in this movie, though it's dressed up as a romantic comedy. It mostly resembles an overlong lecture on the power of reason and man's need for escape. Read more

Chris Nashawaty, Entertainment Weekly: Breezy and funny and perfectly pleasant ... Read more

Jordan Hoffman, It isn't as showy or obvious as one of Allen's (many) masterpieces, but it is quite good and deserves your time and respect. Read more

Todd McCarthy, Hollywood Reporter: A fugacious bit of whimsy that can only be judged minor Woody Allen. Read more

Betsy Sharkey, Los Angeles Times: As to whether "Moonlight" is magical - it is, but ever, ever so slightly. Read more

Randy Myers, San Jose Mercury News: In the overall Allen pantheon, "Magic in the Moonlight" falls somewhere in the middle. There is enough to recommend it. Read more

Rene Rodriguez, Miami Herald: As Allen tries to fill up 97 minutes with this silly, dull bauble, you'll wish you had some magical powers of your own to make yourself disappear from the theater. Read more

David Thomson, The New Republic: Magic in the Moonlight is awful and unnecessary. There is no magic, no moonlight, no chemistry, and no impediment to 98 minutes seeming like a day and a half. Read more

David Denby, New Yorker: It's an accomplished, stately movie -- unimpassioned but pleasing. Read more

Stephen Whitty, Newark Star-Ledger: A movie which proceeds logically, but not always laughingly, from careful setup to dutiful complications to unsurprising denouement. Read more

Joe Neumaier, New York Daily News: Firth has a grand old time spouting anti-otherworldly pronouncements, stalking through gorgeous estates in full misanthropic crank mode. Read more

A.O. Scott, New York Times: Mr. Allen has had his ups and downs over the years. Rarely, though, has he put a story on screen that manifests so little energy, so little curiosity about its own ideas and situations. Read more

Michael Sragow, Orange County Register: Allen hasn't lost his comic spark -- he's still in the midst of a comic revival. Read more

Steven Rea, Philadelphia Inquirer: For all its visual delights, Magic in the Moonlight, the 44th feature written and directed by the admirably industrious Woody Allen, has to be one of his bigger duds. Read more

James Berardinelli, ReelViews: Just another unmemorable motion picture for which it's difficult to remember the broad brush strokes, not to mention the details, once the house lights have come on. Read more

Richard Roeper, Richard This being a Woody Allen film, there's some pretty sharp dialogue. Read more

Peter Travers, Rolling Stone: Melancholy and doubt may seem like gloomy qualities to blend into an amorous romp. But that shot of gravity is what makes Magic in the Moonlight memorable and distinctively Woody Allen. Read more

Andrew O'Hehir, Can we all stop making excuses for Woody Allen now? Read more

Mick LaSalle, San Francisco Chronicle: With "Magic in the Moonlight," Woody Allen has made a good Woody Allen movie, in all that the phrase implies. Read more

Colin Covert, Minneapolis Star Tribune: You may have memorized jokes from Allen's other films. This one will have you quoting the scenery. Read more

Joe Williams, St. Louis Post-Dispatch: Largely thanks to the intoxicating scenery and the gorgeous natural-light cinematography, "Magic in the Moonlight" does weave its a spell, resurrecting the spirit of sturdier and more inventive movies by the same conjurer. Read more

Liam Lacey, Globe and Mail: The cinematography is radiant, the vintage cars and costumes are elegant, and if the comedy feels laboured, it's all too lightweight to matter. Read more

Peter Howell, Toronto Star: Magical in theme but not effect, Woody Allen's new movie has nothing up its sleeve or on its vaguely engaged mind. Read more

Keith Uhlich, Time Out: It's a simple premise that Allen complicates with an illusionist's expertise. Read more

Claudia Puig, USA Today: A pleasant, but forgettable, trifle. Read more

Alan Scherstuhl, Village Voice: "The heart wants what it wants," Woody Allen has taught us, and apparently what his heart wants these days is not to have to bother with writing second drafts of film scripts. Read more

David Edelstein, New York Magazine/Vulture: It starts off with a flourish and winds up limp, like a rabbit pulled out of a hat that turns out to be dead. Read more

Stephanie Merry, Washington Post: It may not be wholly original or without its flaws, but "Magic in the Moonlight" offers a pleasant vacation from reality, and what more could you want from a summer movie? Read more