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Barton Fink Review

Other Critics provided by

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

  • 4.0

    out of 100

    Generally favorable reviews
    based on a weighted average of all
    critic review scores.

  • 100

    out of 100

    The New York Times

    An unqualified winner. Here is a fine dark comedy of flamboyant style and immense though seemingly effortless techniqe...It's an exhilarating original. [21 Aug 1991]

  • 60

    out of 100

    Wall Street Journal Julie Salamon

    But even as the film's weaknesses make themselves more and more apparent, so does Mr. Turturro's virtuosity. [15 Aug 1991, p.A10(E)]

  • 75

    out of 100

    Entertainment Weekly Owen Gleiberman

    Barton Fink has an atmosphere of languid comic anxiety (it's like a cross between "Eraserhead" and "Angel Heart"), and it's fun to watch, if only because you have no idea what's coming next.

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  • 88

    out of 100

    USA Today Mike Clark

    Though less than the sum of its brilliant parts, the Coens' latest will still be must viewing in 32 years. [21 Aug 1991]

  • 88

    out of 100

    Chicago Sun-Times Roger Ebert

    A black comedy in the tradition of David Lynch, Luis Bunuel and the Coens assured piece of comic filmmaking.

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  • See all Barton Fink reviews at

For Families provided by Common Sense Media

Iffy for 16+

Bizarre Hollywood dream factory. Teens only.

What Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that this movie isn't for kids.Young teens may also find this film very disturbing -- it includes very graphic violence and unclear definitions of right and wrong. The police do not act responsibly.

  • Families can talk about the violence in this film. How does it make them feel? This movie also begs questions about the place of art in Hollywood. What do the viewers think about the film's construction of Hollywood? Is film art or commerce? This film also presents an excellent opportunity to discuss film style. The Coen brothers' style contrasts to that of classical Hollywood cinema in various ways. How does it differ in terms of narrative? Character development? Aesthetics?

The good stuff
  • message true0

    Messages: Not an issue

What to watch for
  • violence false5

    Violence: Onscreen violence consists of a very bloody murder, gruesome gunplay, and minor fistfights. Implied off-screen violence is highly disturbing, with discussions of murder and dismemberment.

  • sex false3

    Sex: One tame sex scene.

  • language false3

    Language: Some cursing.

  • consumerism false0

    Consumerism: Not an issue

  • drugsalcoholtobacco false3

    Drinking, drugs and smoking: One character is an alcoholic.