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Rotten Tomatoes Score: 88%

Critic Reviews from Rotten Tomatoes

"Nicholas Musaraca's excellent cinematography contributes a number of fine effects, and there's a strange and witty aside on the invention of movies."
‑ Dave Kehr, Chicago Reader
"A weak end to a great career [for producer Val Lewton], but not, in and of itself, a bad movie."
‑ Tim Brayton, Antagony & Ecstasy
"Another strong chiller from brilliant producer Val Lewton."
‑ , TV Guide's Movie Guide
"A fine feature in the Val Lewton series for RKO is not so much a horror film, though it does contain one of Karloff's more deliciously sadistic performances."
‑ Bob Bloom, Journal and Courier (Lafayette, IN)
"Last gasp in the famed Lewton horrors. Frankly, pretty dull."
‑ Ken Hanke, Mountain Xpress (Asheville, NC)
"While the film has a tendency to wander into unadulterated Hollywoodisms in spots, it is a generally straight-forward and imaginative estimate of a two-century-old sociological theme."
‑ Bosley Crowther, New York Times
"Lewton had something to say. Perhaps inevitably, he found less interesting ways of saying it over the course of nine films in a short four years."
‑ Walter Chaw, Film Freak Central
"As a sociological tract it's right on the money, as a psychological thriller it wanders at times too far away from the money."
‑ Dennis Schwartz, Ozus' World Movie Reviews
"One of Val Lewton's final films, this collaboration with Boris Karloff is also one of his most tragically underrated."
‑ Christopher Null, Filmcritic.com
"The film's single most resonant image -- that of the grasping arms of the Bedlam inmates straining to reach through the bars of their cells -- has inspired countless other movies."
‑ , Film4
"Robson's notably unpoetic direction doesn't help, either; yet few Hollywood films ever had such ambition."
‑ , Time Out
"The feminist-political fable is couched in absorbing grey zones"
‑ Fernando F. Croce, CinePassion
"Notable only for a nuanced performance by Boris Karloff."
‑ Michael W. Phillips, Jr., Goatdog's Movies
"Creepy doings with Karloff amok in asylum."
‑ Steve Crum, Kansas City Kansan
"Creepy, atmospheric, yet underrated Val Lewton thriller."
‑ Jeffrey M. Anderson, San Francisco Examiner
More reviews for Bedlam on Rotten Tomatoes