Backdraft Synopsis
Firefighter brothers (Kurt Russell, William Baldwin) face arson in Chicago.
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Movie Reviews

Critic Ratings

38
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75

Chicago Sun-Times

By Roger Ebert
What I regret is that all of the expertise lavished on this movie couldn't have been put at the service of a more intelligent story about...
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75

Entertainment Weekly

By Owen Gleiberman
Fire, as this movie makes clear, is nothing if not photogenic, and Howard has done a beautiful job of conjuring both its danger and its...
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60

TV Guide

Not only do the firefighting scenes evoke a feeling of gritty authenticity, but the fire itself really does seem to be alive.
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60

Variety

By
Visually, [the film] often is exhilarating, but it's shapeless and dragged down by corny, melodramatic characters and situations.
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50

The New Republic

By Stanley Kauffmann
It's sad to see two talented actresses, Rebecca de Mornay and Jennifer Jason Leigh, wasted in puppet parts. [17 June 1991, p.28]
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50

The New York Times

By Elvis Mitchell
While Mr. Howard ably maintains a strong forward momentum, Backdraft often feels directionless beneath its overlay of frantic activity. One...
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40

Austin Chronicle

Absolutely marvelous special effects are the salvation and the curse of this movie.
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40

Chicago Reader

By Jonathan Rosenbaum
Howard, as usual, seems bent on mixing genres to make several movies at once--monster movie, crime movie, coming-of-age movie, and...
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30

Washington Post

By Desson Thomson
Director Howard is so mesmerized by the flames, he squirts formulaic lighter fluid over everything. A conflagration of hyped-up movie...
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25

The Globe and Mail (Toronto)

By Rick Groen
The flames sure look real, but everything else in Backdraft, director Ron Howard's inflatable ode to firefighters, seems about as genuine as...
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More Info

Rated R
What Parents Need to Know
Common Sense Media says Iffy for 14+ Ron Howard popcorn-muncher is sappy, not smokin'.
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