(2011)

Critic Reviews

62

Metascore

Based on 38 critic reviews provided by Metacritic.com
100
It's McConaughey who is the real revelation: All Grim Reaper strut and cutthroat stare, he savors each of Letts's vividly ghoulish lines.
83
It won't change the face of cinema history, and it won't win any awards (it's too downright dirty for that), but it's furiously entertaining, and a very strong piece of drama from a director who hasn't much luck in the last thirty-odd years.
80
A likeably unpleasant slice of adults-only Texas noir, which aims at the funnybone as much as the jugular.
80
Friedkin's unflinching trailer-park noir features ugly characters, game performances, degradation and the obscene abuse of a chicken drumstick. Highly recommended, then.
80
McConaughey's fans might be shocked to see him in this role - more likely, they'd skip the opportunity - but they ought to give his performance a shot. The dimpled demon lover proves he can be just as seductive playing Texas's creepiest, craziest cop.
75
Slant Magazine
It thrills in seeing dumb people getting their due in hyper-stylized displays of violence, and yet it never feels contemptuous of them.
70
The family that slays together pays together in Killer Joe, a nasty little Texas noir that transfers Tracy Letts' 1993 play from page to screen with generally gripping results before devolving into an over-the-top splatterfest.
60
Family dysfunction to make Jeremy Kyle blush, but thanks to McConaughey's oily power and Friedkin's unflinching purpose it's a compelling beast.
60
It is up to McConaughey's crooked cop to carry the picture: a sleek, loungingly casual loner whose hunger for violence, like his hunger for fried chicken, is finally and horribly gratified.
50
When this sick, ludicrous cocktail of sex, violence and mayhem was first unveiled a year ago at the Toronto International Film Festival, one wag aptly described it as "the ghost of Tennessee Williams meets the spirit of Quentin Tarantino."

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