Ninotchka (1939)

"Garbo Laughs!" declared the ads for Ninotchka. In the face of dwindling foreign revenues, MGM decided to put Greta Garbo, a bigger draw in Europe than the US, in a box-office-savvy comedy, engaging the services of master farceur… More

Directed By:
Rated: R
Running Time:
Release Date: November 3, 1939
DVD Release Date: September 5, 2005
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Critic Score: 97% Rotten Tomatoes™ Critic Reviews

Consensus: With Greta Garbo proving her comedy chops in the twilight of her career, Ninotchka is a can't-miss classic.

Richard Brody
New Yorker

The romantic roundelay, linking fine emotions with fine lingerie, is shadowed by the brutality of Soviet tyranny.

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Variety Staff

Selection of Ernst Lubitsch to pilot Garbo in her first light performance in pictures proves a bull's-eye.

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Matt Brunson
Creative Loafing

The prospect of seeing the usually oh-so-serious Greta Garbo nyukking it up proved irresistible to the moviegoing public of 1939.

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Whittaker Chambers
TIME Magazine

This one is neither crude clowning nor crude prejudice, but a literate and knowingly directed satire which lands many a shrewd crack about phony Five Year Plans, collective farms, Communist jargon and pseudo-scientific gab.

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Dave Kehr
Chicago Reader

The satire may be mostly a matter of easy contrasts, but the lovers inhabit a world of elegance and poise that is uniquely and movingly Lubitsch's.

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Franz Hoellering
The Nation

This column has generally no quarrel with scene-to-scene entertainment, serving a legitimate demand for relaxation, though it adds up to nothing. But the entertaining gags of this picture add up to something, and it is not pleasant.

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Joshua Rothkopf
Time Out

Ninotchka is delicate flirtation and political satire made into a perfect whole, and a reminder of skills that studio writers have largely lost.

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Geoff Brown
Time Out

It's still consistently amusing, and Garbo throws herself into the fray with engaging vigour.

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David Parkinson
Empire Magazine

Iridescent and teaming with vitality, Garbo glows in her penultimate film.

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More reviews for Ninotchka

Flixster Audience Score: 89% Flixster User Reviews
Jim Hunter
The sale of an exiled countess's diamonds brings a Soviet investigator to Paris where she falls her rival. Garbo laughs! Greta Garbo delivers a phenomenal… More
Stella Dallas
Aj V
This predictable romantic comedy disguises itself as a story about relations between Russia and France, but that story takes a back seat to the romance in the… More
Ken Stachnik
One of my new favorites. One of the most charming movies ever made.
Devon Bott
Greta Garbo stars in the title role in this pre-cold war look at the Soviet Union. When three emissaries come to Paris to sell the royal jewelry confiscated… More
John Ballantine
Very entertaining for Garbo, not so much for Melvyn Douglas who seems out of place in this role. Nonetheless, if it pops up on TMN, give it a whirl.