Critic Reviews



Based on 23 critic reviews provided by Metacritic.com
The story in itself is first-rate. However, it’s the very measured handling that makes it distinctive.
As beige as an old PC, but beneath the surface the blood pumps bright scarlet. An intelligent and emotionally charged spy drama.
An expertly calibrated drama confirming Marsh’s status as one of Britain’s most formidable filmmakers.
Like the political turmoil which inspired it, Shadow Dancer is fueled by the fire to do the right thing and the sacrifice that must follow, and for 100 minutes, it’s a crackerjack ordeal to behold.
Shadow Dancer is admittedly slow to gather force and momentum over its 101-minute running time, though by the third act, the deliberately paced drama has exerted a hypnotic grip.
With a conclusion that arrives as an open-ended gut punch, you're not just left lingering with unanswered questions, but the sensation that James Marsh has delivered something truly special.
Slant Magazine
James Marsh carries forward the mood and menace of the opening into the balance of the work, perfectly matching his aesthetic strategies to the story's shifting moral terrain.
Marsh's movie is calm, level, downbeat. The tension is subtle – perhaps subtler than it really should be.
Not everything from Ireland travels as well as the whiskey. Like mud-thick porridge, Shadow Dancer, another dreary, confusing conspiracy thriller about the Irish “troubles,” is one of them.
There’s slow-burning, and then there’s simply slow; the difference between the two has never been so apparent.

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