Critic Reviews



Based on 27 critic reviews provided by Metacritic.com
Gripping, hair-raising documentary.
One of the best films of the year.
The documentary equivalent of a page-turner.
A mesmerizing psychological thriller bulging with twists, turns, nasty insinuations and shocking revelations that might have leapt from the pages of a Patricia Highsmith novel, The Imposter is all the more astonishing because it actually happened.
Despite a bunch of fourth-wall-breaking re-enactments, the look is consistent with most TV true-crime stories. But the way Layton parcels out information makes this story as strange and fascinating as anyone could desire.
This is a train wreck you think you see coming, but no matter how prepared you are the nature and extent of the damage will overwhelm you.
A movie that offers hard speculation and harder truths. You won't be able to get it out of your head.
What's most fascinating are the movie's larger questions about why some people tell impossible lies -- and why others believe them.
The most fascinating aspect of The Imposter, though, is why the missing boy's family believed his story.
The utterly bizarre story made national news when it broke, has since provided much magazine fodder, and popped up only two years ago adapted into a dramatic feature. Now it receives the documentary treatment and, in the devilishly manipulative hands of director Bart Layton, what a treatment it is - the weirdness just gets weirder.
The film shrewdly opts not to proffer its own hypothesis about the true reasons behind the Gibson family buying Frédéric Bourdin's story.
As a thriller, The Imposter is gripping. As a documentary, it provokes confusion and annoyance.

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