Malcolm X
Malcolm X (1992)

Writer-director Spike Lee's epic portrayal of the life and times of the slain civil rights leader Malcolm X begins with the cross-cut imagery of the police beating of black motorist Rodney King juxtaposed with an American flag burning… More

Directed By:
Rated: PG-13
Running Time:
Genre: Drama
Release Date: November 18, 1992
DVD Release Date: January 18, 2000
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Critic Score: 91% Rotten Tomatoes™ Critic Reviews

Consensus: Anchored by a powerful performance from Denzel Washington, Spike Lee's biopic of the legendary civil rights leader brings his autobiography to life with an epic sweep and a nuanced message.

Todd McCarthy

Spike Lee has made a disappointingly conventional and sluggish film in Malcolm X.

Richard Corliss
TIME Magazine

Lee sketches Malcolm's life colorfully, if by the numbers. But he falls victim to the danger of movie biography: he elevates Malcolm's importance until the vital historical context is obscured.

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Peter Canavese
Groucho Reviews

Spike Lee called 1992's Malcolm X "the picture I was born to make," and star Denzel Washington referred to the titular civil-rights leader as "the role of a lifetime." They're both right...[Blu-ray]

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Jonathan Rosenbaum
Chicago Reader

Benefits from a lively lead performance by the miscast Denzel Washington but doesn't come within light years of the book, one of the greatest American autobiographies.

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Derek Adams
Time Out

It plays surprisingly safe as a solidly crafted trawl through the didactic/hagiographic conventions of the mainstream biopic.

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Jeffrey M. Anderson
Combustible Celluloid

The perfect combination of epic and personal, intimate and spectacular.

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David Ansen

Lee and company have performed a powerful service: they have brought Malcolm X very much to life again, both as man and myth.

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Vincent Canby
New York Times

An ambitious, tough, seriously considered biographical film that, with honor, eludes easy characterization.

Scott G. Mignola
Common Sense Media

Insightful and well-rounded portrait of Malcolm X.

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More reviews for Malcolm X

Flixster Audience Score: 91% Flixster User Reviews
Reid Volk
Now that is how you make a biopic. Spike Lee's monument to one of the most controversial figures in American history is bold, comprehensive, &… More
Matthew Roe
The best films to date from Spike Lee and one of Denzel Washington's best performances to date. And this is also one of the most snubbed films in the… More
familiar stranger
I was expecting an interesting biographical tale, but the genuine presentation crushed the possibility of fulfilment of any such expectation. More often than… More
Alex roy
Before reviewing this film, I'll say this about Spike Lee, he is one of the most painful directors that I have ever seen in the cinematic medium. On the… More
Jonathan Hutchings
Malcolm X is a lot of things: controversial, bold, procedural, and informative. From the audacious opening shot that reimagines and redefines the classic Patton… More
Curtis Lilly
Man. If you can make it through this one, you get a prize.

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