100

Boston Globe

By Ty Burr
With at least nine primary characters and running two and a half hours, it's a big, fat novel of a movie - a domestic epic that fuses bitterness and forgiveness in completely satisfying ways.
Full Review
100

Chicago Tribune

By Michael Phillips
Desplechin's films are great, chaotic, unsettling fun. This one's scored, elegantly, to a mixture of standards and classics and original music by Gregoire Hetzel.
Full Review
100

Entertainment Weekly

By Lisa Schwarzbaum
The movie is enchanting.
Full Review
90

Wall Street Journal

By Joe Morgenstern
Density of detail and intensity of experience are the twin distinctions of A Christmas Tale, a long, improbably funny and very beautiful film.
Full Review
88

Philadelphia Inquirer

By Steven Rea
Roiling with laughter, tears, drunken confessions, revelatory soliloquies, pain, sorrow, hospital visits, and various kinds of love, A Christmas Tale is a smart, sprawling, and sublimely entertaining feast.
Full Review
88

Rolling Stone

By Peter Travers
Dark secrets are unlocked, words draw more blood than punches, and Desplechin turns one family into a universe that resembles life as a startling work of art.
Full Review
80

New York Daily News

By Elizabeth Weitzman
Though overly self-conscious, this "Tale" is nonetheless wry, observant and frequently heartbreaking. It's also bound to make you feel better about your own holiday plans.
Full Review
75

San Francisco Chronicle

By Mick LaSalle
With Desplechin, it doesn't ever feel as though he's straining to show us things. It's more like we're just hanging out. We're in this house, and by some strange coincidence, every time we turn around, something interesting is happening.
Full Review
75

USA Today

By Claudia Puig
If feuds, drunken outbursts and thoughtless bed-hopping sound like fun, then A Christmas Tale is a hoot. Some wry humor runs through the course of the overly long saga. But there's not enough dark wit to mitigate the tedium and pretentiousness.
Full Review
70

The Hollywood Reporter

Despite the name recognition of such actors as Catherine Deneuve and Mathieu Amalric, foreign audiences might be deterred by the movie's 143-minute length and the profusion of characters and interwoven story lines.
Full Review
84 out of 100
Universal acclaim
Metascore® based on all critic reviews. Scores range from 0 to 100, with higher scores indicating more favorable reviews.