Fences (2016)

Denzel Washington directed and stars in this adaptation of August Wilson's Pulitzer Prize-winning play, which centers on a black garbage collector named Troy Maxson in 1950s Pittsburgh. Bitter that baseball's color barrier was only… More

Directed By:
Rated: PG-13
Running Time:
Genre: Drama
Release Date: December 25, 2016
DVD Release Date: March 14, 2017
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Critic Score: 94% Rotten Tomatoes™ Critic Reviews

Consensus: From its reunited Broadway stars to its screenplay, the solidly crafted Fences finds its Pulitzer-winning source material fundamentally unchanged -- and still just as powerful.

Dave Calhoun
Time Out

Washington is very good, but it's Davis - hurt, proud, determined - who's the star of this show.

Full review…
Katie Walsh
Tribune News Service

The two lead performances are stunningly complex and deeply human achievements from two of the finest actors working today.

George Thomas
The Cleveland Movie Blog

That may be Washington's greatest accomplishment in bringing it to the screen - allowing hope to rise from circumstances that are less than hopeful.

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Nancy Churnin
Dallas Morning News

Washington has pledged to bring all of plays in the cycle to the screen. The good news is he started with a home run.

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David Edelstein
New York Magazine/Vulture

It's not cinematic enough to make you forget you're watching something conceived for another, more spatially constricted medium, but it's too cinematic to capture the intensity, the concentration, of a great theatrical event.

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M. Faust
The Public (Buffalo)

Playwright Wilson wrote the screenplay, and resists the effort to open the play up too much. If it sometimes reminds you of its origins on stage, it's worth remembering that that medium offers dramatics potentials that can't always be found on film.

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James Berardinelli

Yes, Fences suffers somewhat from the bare-bones transferal of the "action" from stage to screen but the material is so compelling that viewers can easily lose sight of the movie's "play nature."

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Richard Roeper
Chicago Sun-Times

It's a privilege to watch Washington and Davis lay it all on the line.

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Lisa Jensen
Good Times Santa Cruz

It's a meaty tour-de-force of comic camaraderie, defiance, disillusion, and chutzpah, that [Denzel] Washington delivers con brio-and it's only the first 10 minutes of the movie.

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More reviews for Fences

Flixster Audience Score: 76% Flixster User Reviews
Mark Hobin
What really elevates Fences is the acting. This is a richly written ensemble pieces that heavily relies on powerful performances. Denzel and Viola are reprising… More
KJ Proulx
From A Streetcar Named Desire to Les Miserables, bringing a stage play to life on the big screen is a very hit-or-miss genre to tackle. Never having seen the… More
Carlos Magalh„es
Like a long filmed play, Fences at least relies on some outstanding performances that compensate for the film's lack of visual inventiveness. Full review… More
Nate Zoebl
There's something about plays turned into movies that bring out the best in actors. Usually they provide meaty characters with flaws and big personalities,… More
Film Crazy
Had I seen the stage version I may have enjoyed this script. However, it's move to the big screen is one which didn't work for me. Instead of enjoying… More
Kevin Mozulay
It took me a while to gather my thoughts after walking out of the theater. Denzel and Viola Davis gave two incredible, Oscar-worthy performances, and the… More