Critic Reviews



Based on 19 critic reviews provided by
This movie is knowledgeable about the city and the people who make accommodations with it.
One of the most refreshing things about this movie is the manner in which it combines genres in unexpected ways.
Starting with its romantic and inappropriate title, this is an old-fashioned melodrama, the same movie about police corruption and a cultural crisis of morality that Lumet has been making since the 70s, starting with "Serpico".
But Night Falls on Manhattan is also oddly listless. It doesn't often live up to the doomy eloquence of its title.
It's good to know that the widely liked but underused Andy Garcia has here a juicy dramatic role he can get his chops into.
While the predictable lesson -- that justice isn't cut and dry -- clogs the film's gears by the last reel, at least the first half of the movie has some lively story telling.
That said, what must be added is that, disappointingly, Night Falls on Manhattan doesn't quite add up.
The problem -- as anyone who gets home from the movie in time to catch even a portion of "NYPD Blue" can tell you -- is that the genre that Lumet invented has buried him alive.
Director Sidney Lumet takes another shot at New York City police corruption in his new film, but despite some solid performances, Night Falls on Manhattan fails to deliver the passion of such Lumet classics as "Serpico" and "Prince of the City."
The seriousness and simplicity with which he approaches his subject in Night Falls on Manhattan are refreshing even if the vivacity of the thing never really has a chance to develop.

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