Edward Norton directs and stars in this film based on Jonathan Lethem’s novel.

The Mirror: ** “Ed Norton is irritating as a Tourette’s-suffering New York cop in this over-the-top and impossible to enjoy detective-noir thriller reeking of Oscar desperation.”

The Telegraph: ***** “The best film noirs aren’t merely mysteries, but excavations – long, dark digs that break open the bone vaults of the past to find the roots of a present unease. Edward Norton’s Motherless Brooklyn is just such a film.”

inews: *** “His artistic licence does get Norton a little unstuck: the leaning towards Chinatown is too blatant; and even though film noir is designed to baffle, too many scenes are dead ends. As a director, he doesn’t pace an overlong film as well he might. Nevertheless, it is impeccably acted (not least by its multitasking star), gorgeously produced and thoroughly engaging.”

The Independent: ** “But while Motherless Brooklyn may look and sound convincing, its characters too easily slip too into stiff and unconvincing archetypes. A community activist (Gugu Mbatha-Raw) ends up the damsel-in-distress.”

Empire: *** “There’s quite a bit to admire in Motherless Brooklyn, but mostly in detail work — the hats, the cars, the join-the-dots conspiracy theory — but it doesn’t really catch fire as either a private-eye mystery or a study in Tourette syndrome savantry.”

The Guardian: *** “It’s a heavy meal to digest, but it is a strong, vehement film with a real sense of time and place.”

The Metro: *** “Overall it’s a film that ends up in the middle. For every ‘a-ha’ moment there’s an eye-rolling line – every detail, a slip-up – and for every good intention, there’s equal amounts of ego-driven choices.”

Evening Standard: *** “Norton produced, Norton directed, Norton wrote the screenplay and Norton stars. This might actually have been a film fit to put beside Chinatown, as Norton so plainly hopes, had he handed over at least one of these roles, directed another actor, or as star submitted himself to another director.As it is, his passionate commitment to the story has resulted in the very definition of a vanity project.”

Motherless Brooklyn is out now in cinemas.


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