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Al Pacino stars as Tony Montana, an exiled Cuban criminal who goes to work for Miami drug lord Robert Loggia. Montana rises to the top of Florida's crime chain, appropriating Loggia's cokehead mistress (Michelle Pfeiffer) in the process. Howard Hawks' "X Marks the Spot" motif in depicting the story line's many murders is dispensed with in the 1983 Scarface; instead, we are inundated with blood by the bucketful, especially in the now-infamous buzz saw scene. One carry-over from the original Scarface is Tony Montana's incestuous yearnings for his sister Gina (Mary… More

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Rotten Tomatoes Score: 84%

Critic Reviews from Rotten Tomatoes

"It is a serious, often hilarious peek under the rock where nightmares strut in $800 suits and Armageddon lies around the next twist of treason."
‑ Richard Corliss, TIME Magazine
"An unashamed study of selfish, sadistic criminality, and all the better for it."
‑ Tom Huddleston, Time Out
"The sharp, if expletive-ridden, dialogue in Oliver Stone's script and the vivid cinematography of John A Alonzo help make De Palma's urban shocker a modern-day classic."
‑ Alan Jones, Radio Times
"One fundamentally dishonest character choice launched a billion-dollar industry. But it hardly sours a film that became a garishly ghoulish, bleakly funny and compulsively watchable template for modern-criminal deconstructions of the American Dream."
‑ Nick Rogers,
"...much, much longer than it generally needs to be..."
‑ David Nusair, Reel Film Reviews
"Performances are all extremely effective, with Pacino leading the way."
‑ Variety Staff, Variety
"What were Pacino's detractors hoping for? Something internal and realistic? Low key? The Tony Montana character is above all a performance artist, a man who exists in order to gloriously be himself."
‑ Roger Ebert, Chicago Sun-Times
"Characterization and plot go out the window. Arms are cut off with chain saws. By the third hour everything is out of control."
‑ , People Magazine
"By ignoring its massive, toxic, nuclear-fallout shortcomings, it finds its way to the hallowed status of camp classic."
‑ Rob Vaux,
"One of the best gangster dramas ever made, driven by Pacino's haunting performance and De Palma's lightning pace."
‑ R. L. Shaffer, IGN DVD
"Viewed today, while Scarface seems less shocking than it did during its initial theatrical run, it's no more substantive or interesting."
‑ James Berardinelli, ReelViews
"I like it as a kind of B-movie version of The Godfather. There are a lot of classic lines and a handful of memorably horrific scenes ..."
‑ Richard Roeper, Ebert & Roeper
"[Brian DePalma] apparently considers ''money isn't everything'' an original and profound message."
‑ David Sterritt, Christian Science Monitor
"one of Brian DePalma's best films"
‑ Kevin Carr, 7M Pictures
"It's a whole new spin on the immigrant story and the American Dream as an underworld nightmare and a fitting bookend to the two Godfather films."
‑ Sean Axmaker,
More reviews for Scarface on Rotten Tomatoes

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