100

Chicago Tribune

By Gene Siskel
A shockingly powerful screed against racism that also manages to be so well performed and directed that it is entertaining as well. [30 October 1998, Friday, p.A]
Full Review
83

Entertainment Weekly

By Owen Gleiberman
This is the sort of incendiary role a lot of actors would kill for, yet the shock of Norton's performance isn't its showboat flamboyance. It's that he makes this sadistic junior sociopath rueful and intelligent.
Full Review
75

New York Daily News

By Jami Bernard
Unflinching in its depiction of racism, anti-Semitism, violence and jailhouse politics.
Full Review
75

San Francisco Examiner

Such an ambitious, well-acted film that it's easy to overlook its flaws as relatively minor.
Full Review
75

USA Today

By Mike Clark
While this movie is sometimes overbaked, it is the first major studio release in a while to engross wall-to-wall.
Full Review
75

Chicago Sun-Times

By Roger Ebert
A series of well-drawn sketches and powerful scenes, in search of an organizing principle.
Full Review
75

ReelViews

By James Berardinelli
May be flawed, but it's not easily forgotten.
Full Review
63

The Globe and Mail (Toronto)

By Liam Lacey
Excellent in flashes, unintentionally absurd and lead-footed at other moments, the movie stumbles under the weight of its own grandiose intentions.
Full Review
50

San Francisco Chronicle

By Mick LaSalle
As a visit to a world and a way of life most of us will never experience, American History X is vivid, and it feels honest. At the very least, it's not typical.
Full Review
50

New York Post

The picture is smothered by solemn right-mindedness, and hobbled by scripter David McKenna's simplistic, knee-jerk liberal take on suburban white racism.
Full Review
62 out of 100
Generally favorable reviews
Metascore® based on all critic reviews. Scores range from 0 to 100, with higher scores indicating more favorable reviews.