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Albert Nobbs Review Critics


Dave White Profile

A timid trans tragedy. Read full review


Grae Drake Profile

You'll love, him. Read full review

Other Critics provided by

Critics scores range from 0 to 100, with higher scores indicating more favorable reviews.

  • 3.0

    out of 100

    Mixed or average reviews
    based on a weighted average of all
    critic review scores.

  • 30

    out of 100

    Wall Street Journal John Anderson

    As an experiment in Academy Award psychology, Albert Nobbs is fascinating. As drama? It is, forgive us, a drag.

    Read Full Review

  • 60

    out of 100

    The Hollywood Reporter Todd McCarthy

    Rodrigo Garcia's film only intermittently surmounts the limitations of the central character's parched emotional existence and restricted horizons, and the resolutions to some principal dramatic lines seem rather too easy.

    Read Full Review

  • 63

    out of 100

    USA Today Claudia Puig

    The film never gets to the heart of Nobbs - a woman who lives as a man. She comes across as more of a sad, clownish figure than a flesh-and-blood human, playing her emotions so close to the vest that it's hard to care about this stoic character.

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  • 67

    out of 100

    Entertainment Weekly Lisa Schwarzbaum

    Close's passion for the character she plays - 
a role, she has explained in interviews, that has absorbed her since she first played Nobbs on stage 30 years ago - contains its own intrigue.

    Read Full Review

  • See all Albert Nobbs reviews at

For Families provided by Common Sense Media

Iffy for 16+

Well-acted drama about sexual politics won't grab teens.

What Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that Albert Nobbs is a drama about a 19th-century woman (Glenn Close) who's forced to dress as a man to keep a job. It's a sad story about sexual politics, and there's some violence, notably a fight in which a fatal blow is delivered. Viewers will also see a little blood and some dead bodies, due to an outbreak of typhoid fever. Sexuality is an issue; topless women are shown, and sex is suggested. Language is sparse but includes "f--k" and the Irish equivalent, "fecking." The characters work in a hotel where drinking is prevalent, especially at dinner or parties. One character is a humorously depicted drunk who wakes up to painful hangovers. It's unlikely that kids will want to see this despite Close's excellent performance, but if they're interested, some older teens might be ready for the content.

  • Families can talk about the movie's sexual politics. Why weren't women capable of working during the time in which the movie takes place? How did such thinking come about? Have we moved away from that thinking today?
  • How does the movie portray sex and relationships? Parents, talk to your teens about your own values on these subjects.
  • What has "Albert" sacrificed in order to work as a man? What has s/he gained?

The good stuff
  • message true0

    Messages: The movie takes place in a time when there were few opportunities for single women, so the main character has lived her life as a man in order to work. She's brave and resourceful, but she has also sacrificed much to live this way. In a way, her lifestyle underlines the sexual intolerance of the times.

  • rolemodels true1

    Role models: The main character is brave in some ways; she has chosen a dangerous path to survive. But she also lives a lie and has sacrificed much of her own life to survive. Because of her station in life, she's often kind to others.

What to watch for
  • violence false2

    Violence: A character receives a fatal blow to the head during a violent fight, and blood is shown. Some general arguing and hitting. A character has a gruesome-looking black eye. Verbal stories of violence and rape, though nothing is shown. People get sick and die from typhoid fever.

  • sex false4

    Sex: Two women's breasts are shown. Oral sex is suggested. Couples are seen lying in bed and kissing. A girl is pregnant. Also partial male nudity, kissing, and innuendo.

  • language false4

    Language: "F--k" is used once, and its Irish equivalent, "fecking," is heard at least twice. Other words include "bloody hell," "oh my God" (as an exclamation), "bastard," and "bitch."

  • consumerism false0

    Consumerism: Not an issue

  • drugsalcoholtobacco false2

    Drinking, drugs and smoking: The main character works at a waiter at a fancy hotel, where customers often drink with dinner or at parties. The house doctor drinks to excess and is shown to have a hangover. A young man takes a huge swig from an expensive bottle of whisky. Extras are seen smoking cigarettes, and the main character dreams of opening a tobacco shop (though she doesn't smoke).