Critic Reviews



Based on 10 critic reviews provided by
With Mark Ruffalo and Ethan Hawke registering personal bests in the performance category as well as playing magnificently and ultraconvincingly off each other, What Doesn't Kill You, a true story that is powerful and completely riveting from beginning to end.
A tough, authentic street drama born, bred, and shot in the no-spin zone of working-class South Boston.
The overfamiliarity of What Doesn't Kill You is redeemed by a full-scale performance from Mark Ruffalo.
It tells a good story well, and in the process quietly says a little something about what it means to look at the American dream from the bottom up.
Like "The Departed" and "Gone Baby Gone," What Doesn't Kill You is an engrossing, gritty, sharply written and well-acted drama set on the mean streets of South Boston.
The A.V. Club
Goodman doesn't allow even a hint of postmodernism or self-consciousness to creep into What Doesn't Kill You, and though the movie's various heists and shootouts are gripping, they aren't especially kinetic or stylish.
Ruffalo's feral vulnerability gives the familiar form a jolt.
It is worth seeking out for a brutally honest, achingly realistic, and emotionally compelling look at the other side of petty crime – the slow, painful path to legitimacy.
This is a rare case of a movie that improves dramatically as it goes along.
Village Voice
Goodman's movie tends to limp along.

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