Critic Reviews



Based on 34 critic reviews provided by
Chicago Sun-Times
Dying is not this cheerful, but we need to think it is. The Barbarian Invasions is a movie about a man who dies about as pleasantly as it's possible to imagine; the audience sheds happy tears.
Chicago Tribune
A brilliant entertainment, full of bemused skepticism and reckless, prodigal love -- for these people and their vanishing era and lives.
It's a feast of smart, sexy, glorious talk. The Oscar for best foreign film belongs right here.
Philadelphia Inquirer
Where Denys Arcand's delightful 1986 comedy "The Decline of the American Empire" celebrated the good life, his profoundly funny sequel The Barbarian Invasions heartily toasts the good death.
Although the specter of death hovers over the entire film, it is neither a grim nor a depressing experience. Arcand has injected a great deal of wit into the movie, and it meshes perfectly with the anticipated pathos.
Wall Street Journal
The film grows on you too, a later-stage version of "The Big Chill" that starts schematically and ends as a stirring celebration.
The treatment of the subject isn't maudlin, thanks to a witty script and an enormously likable lead character, Remy (Remy Girard), who remains bullheaded and lusty to the finish.
Despite a slight tendency to be overly pleased with itself, this is a smart piece of work that got Arcand's screenplay an award at Cannes.
New York Daily News
A deeply felt celebration of the life force, as embodied in Girard's fierce performance as a man who may not have done all he could, but had an enviably great time on the way.
A honey, but your response to it may depend on where you fall on life's big curve.
Entertainment Weekly
I kept wondering how Arcand could have chosen as his generational representative a man not just flawed in his hedonism but one so fundamentally lacking in tenderness for others.

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