Critic Reviews

76

Metascore

Based on 41 critic reviews provided by Metacritic.com
100
Precise, lucid and thrillingly disciplined, this story of boundary-testing in the early days of psychoanalysis is brought to vivid life by the outstanding lead performances of Keira Knightley, Viggo Mortensen and Michael Fassbender.
100
Mostly, though, A Dangerous Method is a suave chamber piece: a series of glimpses of two 20th-century intellectual titans, in friendship and separation, and the story of a remarkable woman who history had swallowed up, brought into the light again.
91
Intelligent conversation about the interplay of erotic and destructive urges takes place over cups of tea in fine bone china. Yet the movie is a radically modern story about sex.
88
The actors give it their all, especially Knightley, whose jaw- jutting, heavily accented and unfairly criticized portrayal gives the film its fighting spirit.
80
Represents a big growth spurt in Mr. Cronenberg's career. Its measured pace, along with a style that is sometimes austere (though sometimes anything but) repays close attention with excellent acting and a wealth of absorbing information.
80
In short, Cronenberg has made an elegant film, with spanking. There's some mildly kinky sex in A Dangerous Method, but Cronenberg makes it neither exploitive nor so tasteful that it loses its charge.
75
There's an icy chill, a detachment, to A Dangerous Method, too. Of course, there are no talking cockroaches (Naked Lunch), no naked steambath knife fights (Eastern Promises), and that may have something to do with why this all feels so un-Cronenbergian.
70
It's fascinating to see the exceptionally charismatic Fassbender squeeze himself into the role of the aristocratic, restrained Jung, and it's just as enjoyable to see Mortensen bring an unexpected virility to his sybaritic, cigar-chomping Freud.
70
The clinical style doesn't play to the director's strengths. A Dangerous Method didn't have to be another "Naked Lunch," but Freud plus Jung plus Cronenburg should have equaled something a little more dissonant and troubling.
63
A Dangerous Method has plenty to say about sex, but it lacks much fire for it.
60
A Dangerous Method concerns itself primarily with sex, but what's most shocking is how conservative it turns out to be.
50
Instead we get Knightley, who juts her chin, quakes, shakes and bugs her eyes, but nothing about her pain calls out to us, because nothing in it seems real.

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