(1989)

Critic Reviews

70

Metascore

Based on 16 critic reviews provided by Metacritic.com
100
Chicago Tribune
Moore documents both the doomed effort to turn Flint into a tourist center and the sorry leadership of the United Auto Workers, born in Flint, which appears co-opted by management. The film uses humor to make the point that in the rush to make money in the '80s we have forgotten the common man. [12 Jan 1990, p.A]
100
The Seattle Times
Roger & Me is always shamelessly entertaining and often hilarious. It is also, at heart, just as serious as any conventional documentary about this subject. It's an American tragedy and a cautionary tale, presented with the blazing bias of a humorist's fine rage. [12 Jan 1990, p.20]
88
USA Today
Though Roger & Me's editing plays somewhat fast and loose with the juxtaposition of real-life events, it qualifies as an event itself. For once, have-nots get to lambaste haves in a documentary likely to be seen. [20 Dec 1989, p.5D]
80
Roger & Me is a pointedly hilarious documentary about a subject that isn't remotely funny, the indifference of corporate America to the lives of its workers. First-time filmmaker Michael Moore shows a city ruined, not by lack of drive and hard work, but by simple corporate greed. He uses humor to keep the viewer involved in what could easily have been an unbearably depressing film.
80
Washington Post
In Roger & Me, Moore's brand of slapstick reportage strikes the perfect balance between irony and sincerity; it's slyly deadpan and committed, democratic and kingly all at once. In the end, though, he winds up giving ironic credence to the swells at the Great Gatsby party who advise the laid-off workers to get out there and do something. He's shown what one man with a camera crew and a vision can do.
80
An affecting, impressive debut from a filmmaker with an innate taste for modern America's clashes of conscience. An important document.
75
San Francisco Chronicle
There's a zippety-doo-dah bounce and brashness to Roger & Me, but it's not the definitive word on what ailed Flint, Mich., when assembly lines stopped rolling. [12 Jan 1990, p.E3]
70
Roger & Me is a terrific movie, but if it were a great one, those images would reverberate with the shareholders' meetings and the AutoWorlds and the Gatsby parties.
60
For all his legitimate laments and pithy documentary moments, Moore gloats too much over his treasure. Where Moore makes his mark is basically where he shuts up and, like a good documentarian ought to, lets the subjects do the talking.
50
It's very funny, and at times exhilaratingly so. But when real life tragedy is used as a basis for movie comedy, some consideration of responsibility has to enter the equation.

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