(2011)

Critic Reviews

55

Metascore

Based on 14 critic reviews provided by Metacritic.com
83
Santana was cast prior to making her gender transition and had never acted before. Her personal experience brings such legitimacy that she would probably succeed in the role even if she sucked at line reading. Fortunately, she doesn't.
60
Village Voice
Though two late plot developments are borderline-contrived, Green's direction is marked by mature dramatic and aesthetic understatement.
50
Slant Magazine
Of the film's three principals, it's only teenage Michael--more than ably embodied by screen newcomer Harmony Santana--that writer-director Rashaad Ernesto Green seems to have much of a feel for.
50
Green has chosen for his focus to fall on Enrique, in many ways the least interesting character in his story, rather than the son or even the mother who is surprisingly protective and understanding.
50
Variety
Earnest and well cast, but less involving than it should be.
50
Gun Hill Road is worth seeing for the acting. The great character actress Miriam Colon makes a brief but memorable appearance as the strong matriarch of the household, and Ms. Santana, a true transgendered teen who has never acted before, is especially wrenching.
50
A strangely bifurcated film, Gun Hill Road comes to life only when focused on Michael, and Ms. Santana (who was just beginning her own gender transition when she won the role) holds the screen like a pro.
50
Tenderness and good intentions don't necessarily add up to a movie.
40
Boxoffice Magazine
The melodrama is tiresome, overwrought and clichéd.
40
Yet even with the rich, inherently cinematic texture of the urban setting and two excellent native outer-borough actors in Morales and Reyes, Gun Hill Road falters thanks to its paint-by-numbers storytelling.

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