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Barney's Version (15)

The critical consensus

The story’s central theme – memory and perspective – has been much more insightfully investigated by Charlie Kaufman in both Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind and Synecdoche, New York.

**(*)(*)(*)Paul Gallagher, The List, 18/01/2011

While perhaps a touch overlong and with plot strands that don't hang together as well as they might, this is remains a triumph, illuminated by a terrific leading man turn from Paul Giamatti.

****(*)Liz Beardsworth, Empire Online, 24/01/2011

If there's a reason to see Barney's Version, it's Giamatti, who does noble missionary work on behalf of boozy, womanising paunchy misanthropes. Barney may sound aggravating, but I've read the book and, believe me, he's nicer in this film.

***(*)(*)Siobhan Synnot, The Scotsman, 25/01/2011

The life of a guy who constantly screws up could be a downer. But Barney’s Version is a heart-toasting pleasure thanks not least to a trio of engrossing performances.

****(*)Philip Kemp, Total Film, 26/01/2011

This is a US Calvary, its emotional-crucifixion tales charging toward us with flashing brass and waving sabres.

***(*)(*)Nigel Andrews, Financial Times, 26/01/2011

This a refreshingly idiosyncratic drama, rambling and self-absorbed, but also smart and literate.

****(*)Sukhdev Sandhu, The Telegraph, 27/01/2011

However much you want to like it there's something crucial missing, and it's as straightforward and complex as this: a believable impression of lived experience.

***(*)(*)Anthony Quinn, The Independent, 28/01/2011

Fine acting can't redeem plodding tale.

***(*)(*)Chris Tookey, Daily Mail, 28/01/2011

It's all as warm and fuzzy as the smoke from Barney's cigars, and just as much of an acquired taste.

***(*)(*)Peter Bradshaw, The Guardian, 27/01/2011

Every scene will make you smile.

Paul Greenwood, Evening Times, 27/01/2011

Giamatti was ready for a part that showed what a versatile performer he can be, and Barney is that role. You may not always like Barney the character, but you will always be interested in him.

***(*)(*)Alison Rowat, The Herald, 27/01/2011

Feels rather like its antihero: inadequate.

**(*)(*)(*)Alistair Harkness, The Scotsman, 29/01/2011

Having spent an hour showing us that he's a walking disaster it's disappointing to be told that we should get out our hankies, because he's actually a misunderstood saint.

Nicholas Barber, The Independent on Sunday, 30/01/2011

It's an immensely engaging picture about a flawed mensch.

Philip French, The Observer, 30/01/2011

Features about Barney's Version (15)

Interview: Paul Giamatti, actor--'It's a bummer to have people think you're a psychopath...'

Stephen Applebaum, The Scotsman, 19/01/2011

Paul Giamatti: not just a funny face

David Gritten, The Telegraph, 19/01/2011

Rosamund Pike: 'I seek adventure all the time'

John Patterson, The Guardian, 20/01/2011

Rosamund Pike laughs in the face of romantic disappointment

The Herald, 24/01/2011

Did Barney need another version?

Chris Michael, The Guardian, 27/01/2011

Where and when?

General release. Check local listings for show times.

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