(1991)

Critic Reviews

46

Metascore

Based on 17 critic reviews provided by Metacritic.com
88
Miami Herald
The design of the film is breathtaking at times, veering from the jagged hyperbole of German expressionism to the drolleries of English comedy at its most daft, if not most broad. [7 Feb. 1992, p.G5]
78
Humor is a key ingredient in Kafka, though it definitely leans toward the wry and quirky. The movie loses some of its clarity and narrative force in mid-story however, though it never abandons its original visual style and focus.
75
Orlando Sentinel
If, finally, Kafka doesn't add up to enough, it at least demonstrates that Soderbergh has a visual facility to go along with the narrative talent he showed in "sex, lies, and videotape." [21 Feb. 1992, p.17]
75
Portland Oregonian
The slightly overdone feeling of the photography, the archly evocative acting and Cliff Martinez's music also impart a sly sense of the absurd. Kafka recalls the old joke that reminds us that even paranoids have enemies. [12 Feb. 1992, p.C07]
50
Kafka, as subject or character, simply doesn't fit into the world of this film. Soderbergh does demonstrate again here that he's a gifted director, however unwise in his choice of project.
50
Chicago Tribune
Steven Soderbergh's Kafka is a surprisingly cold, gray and flavorless follow-up to "sex, lies and videotape." [7 Feb. 1992]
50
San Francisco Chronicle
It sounds promising, but it doesn't work. You get the feeling that Soderbergh, so early in his directing career, has exceeded his reach -- that the com- plicated logistics of making a film on location in eastern Europe, compounded with the challenge of bringing to life such a fundamentally lonely and passive figure, had stymied him. [17 Jan. 1992, p.D1]
38
Boston Globe
Despite its good looks and expertly turned performances, it trivializes Kafka and his work. The simplistic optimism behind it is more terrifying than anything we actually see on screen. Sitting through Kafka is like watching somebody staff a suicide hotline by telling callers to just lighten up. [21 Feb. 1992, p.28]
33
The movie is MTV Kafka: Instead of dialogue, character, behavior, it has a look and a mood. And that's all it has.
30
Newsweek
Trying for a tone somewhere between an art film, an absurdist comedy, a horror movie and an old Saturday-matinee serial, he's made a handsome, cripplingly self-conscious thriller that's devoid of any real thrills. [3 Feb. 1992, p.65]

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