Critic Reviews



Based on 17 critic reviews provided by Metacritic.com
CBGB has more of the original prankish punk spirit than it even recognizes.
Punk may not be dead, but this picture is D.O.A.
As a film, the result is static, like Ang Lee’s similarly muddled “Taking Woodstock.”
The absolute antithesis to the pioneering punk spirit it tries to portray.
In its stylistically flailing stab at authenticity, CBGB ends up merely a mess of caricatures.
The Dissolve
No doubt a decent movie could have been made about the behind-the-scenes life of CBGB, but CBGB isn’t it. It’s as flip about the club as it is about Kristal, the music, and the time and place that shaped it all.
Slant Magazine
As the film moves from one musical performance to another, the result increasingly feels like a series of celebrity impersonations set to a best-of-punk compilation album.
Director Randall Miller (“Bottle Shock”) could do worse than render the early-'70s punk scene as breezy broad comedy. He adopts that tactic and still falters though, deflating any energy or humor possible with his limp direction, sitcom consistency, and unfocused tone.
Time Out
The film strives to cinematically reanimate that shabby underground lair; instead, it proves to be the most bastardized souvenir bauble of all.
Village Voice
CBGB's biggest problem is that it's taken such electrifying source material and done absolutely zilch with it.

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