Barton Fink
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The title character, played by John Turturro, is a Broadway playwright, based on Clifford Odets, lured to Hollywood with the promise of untold riches by a boorish studio chieftain (played by Michael Lerner as a combination of Louis B. Mayer and Harry Cohn). Despising the film capital and everything it stands for, Barton Fink comes down with an acute case of writer's block. He is looked after by a secretary (Judy Davis) who has been acting as a ghost writer for an alcoholic screenwriter (John Mahoney, playing a character based on William Faulkner). Also keeping tabs on Fink is a garrulous… More
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Rotten Tomatoes Score: 91%

Critic Reviews from Rotten Tomatoes

"It's at its best when young Barton Fink simply stares at a picture of a bathing beauty contemplating the ocean -- a Hollywood dream."
‑ Gene Siskel, Chicago Tribune
"Scene after scene is filled with a ferocious strength and humor."
‑ Variety Staff, Variety
"Goes off the deep end."
‑ Dennis Schwartz, Ozus' World Movie Reviews
"Does cinema get any better than this?"
‑ Clint Morris, Moviehole
"Someone pleaaaaase explain this movie to me!"
‑ JoBlo, JoBlo's Movie Emporium
"Gnomic, claustrophobic, hallucinatory, just plain weird, it is the kind of movie critics can soak up thousands of words analyzing and cinephiles can soak up at least three espressos arguing their way through."
‑ Richard Schickel, TIME Magazine
"This creepy satire is full of laughs and flaky twists, but by the end you may still be scratching your head."
‑ Jonathan Rosenbaum, Chicago Reader
"Bizarre Hollywood dream factory. Teens only."
‑ Kelly Kessler, Common Sense Media
"The film's period decor, mood lighting and artful camerawork are beautiful, at times thrilling, to look at."
‑ , TV Guide's Movie Guide
"The worst of the Coens' genre-ransacking; mean and self-congratulatory."
‑ Jake Euker, F5 (Wichita, KS)
"Again the Coens take familiar movie tropes and twist them into something new. This may be their most haunting movie."
‑ David Ansen, Newsweek
"Somehow everything coheres, thanks to the Coens' superb writing and assured direction, and a roster of marvellous performances. The result works on numerous levels, thrilling the mind, ears and eyes, and racking the nerves."
‑ Geoff Andrew, Time Out
"Resembles not the artist's churning mind but the filmmakers' conjoined colon"
‑ Fernando F. Croce, CinePassion
"Fascinating tale by the Coen brothers, among their best, with standout work by leads Turturro and Goodman."
‑ Steve Crum, Video-Reviewmaster.com
"Written during their own creative block, Joel and Ethan Coen's noirish satirical allegory decodes the myth of the "sensitive" artist, the mysteries of the creative process, and the ambiguities of Hollywood authorship."
‑ Emanuel Levy, EmanuelLevy.Com
More reviews for Barton Fink on Rotten Tomatoes

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