Critic Reviews



Based on 40 critic reviews provided by
Chicago Tribune
Elegant, cheerfully cynical fun of the kind we used to get regularly from Billy Wilder, Howard Hawks and other masters of the classic Hollywood screwball comedy -- all those '30s-'40s movies about rich people sloshed, or acting crazy and running romantically amok.
New York Post
Hilariously overblown, "Cruelty" fairly pops at the seams with the beloved eccentricity of Joel and Ethan Coen, from the fiendishly ludicrous scenarios and casually tossed off visual gags to the razor-sharp repartee.
Takes the traditional romantic comedy and tweaks it by way of "The War of the Roses." Rarely has strife between the sexes been so ruthless, so civilized, and so funny.
Wall Street Journal
None of this would work, of course, without stylish performances in the leads and Mr. Clooney and Ms. Zeta-Jones do themselves and their dubious characters proud.
Near the end of this smart, speedy romantic farce, the comic engine hits a wall and sputters. Until then, this Coen brothers film -- easily their silliest -- is fueled by a screwball fizz that keeps the laughs popping.
Too slick but amusing marital farce.
Not brilliantly funny nor incisively clever, Intolerable Cruelty is still moderately satirical and laugh-out-loud enjoyable.
Philadelphia Inquirer
There are laughs here aplenty, and sexy, goofy, off-the-cuff charm.
New York Daily News
If Intolerable Cruelty isn't a convincing love story, it's a hugely entertaining one, with comic relief -- in the form of Cedric the Entertainer as a voyeuristic private eye and Tom Aldredge as a decaying law-firm boss issuing directives while hooked up to life-support -- piled on top of the comedy.
Entertainment Weekly
With Intolerable Cruelty, though, something scares me: I cannot detect a heartbeat of feeling, no matter how close I press a stethoscope against the star machinery of George Clooney and Catherine Zeta-Jones.
The Hollywood Reporter
The Coen brothers had a golden opportunity to make a darkly humorous, deliciously clever battle of the sexes, and they let it slip through their fingers. Instead, the duo... settled for a broad farce that is long on manic, cartoonish behavior and short on intelligence and wit.

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