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Bird 1988

Critics score:
78 / 100

Reviews provided by RottenTomatoes

Janet Maslin, New York Times: Bird is less moving as a character study than it is as a tribute and as a labor of love. The portrait it offers, though hazy at times, is one Charlie Parker's admirers will recognize. Read more

Jonathan Rosenbaum, Chicago Reader: Read more

Roger Ebert, Chicago Sun-Times: Whitaker occupies this world as a large, friendly, sometimes taciturn man who tries to harm nobody and who cannot understand why the world would not let him play his music. Neither can we. Read more

Time Out: At last American cinema has done black music proud. Unforgettable. Read more

Variety Staff, Variety: Sensitively acted, beautifully planned visually and dynamite musically, this is a dramatic telling of the troubled life of a revolutionary artist. Read more

Hal Hinson, Washington Post: Even though, thematically, the movie won't come clear, Eastwood has succeeded so thoroughly in communicating his love of his subject, and there's such vitality in the performances, that we walk out elated, juiced on the actors and the music. Read more

Desson Thomson, Washington Post: Whitaker sweats, vomits, blows and wails as the Bird (so named for hanging around jazz clubs like a yardbird), laying in some minor-key grace to Parker's self-destruction along the way. But he never lets you into his darkest fears. Read more