100

Christian Science Monitor

By David Sterritt
It's a terrific movie, smart and funny enough to hold up at any time of year.
Full Review
83

Entertainment Weekly

By Lisa Schwarzbaum
The disarming comedic tone -- silly and novel in its lack of cynicism -- is driven by the fearless, cheerful unself-consciousness of Will Ferrell, a big man last seen streaking (all too unself-consciously) through ''Old School.''
Full Review
80

The Hollywood Reporter

By Michael Rechtshaffen
While the words "instant holiday classic" might be pushing it, Elf is at the very least a breezily entertaining, perfectly cast family treat.
Full Review
75

Philadelphia Inquirer

By Steven Rea
Pays homage to a sack of Christmas movies, from the department store Claus of "Miracle on 34th Street" to a standing-on-the-bridge-contemplating-suicide moment, a la "It's a Wonderful Life."
Full Review
75

New York Daily News

By Jami Bernard
A non-sappy and genuinely adorable confection. It wiped away the Scrooge in me for 90 enchanting minutes.
Full Review
75

San Francisco Chronicle

By Mick LaSalle
Funny and intelligently made, a film for kids and adults that's both sweet and sardonic...Elf stays perfectly in balance, a pleasure throughout.
Full Review
75

Boston Globe

By Wesley Morris
The movie sets Ferrell's assaultive and juvenile physical comedy in a less-combative playground, and the result might leave the Ferrell-intolerant exiting the theater on a high.
Full Review
75

Chicago Sun-Times

By Roger Ebert
This is one of those rare Christmas comedies that has a heart, a brain and a wicked sense of humor, and it charms the socks right off the mantelpiece. Even the unexpected casting is on the money.
Full Review
50

Rolling Stone

By Peter Travers
Ferrell makes the damn thing work. Even though he can't get naked or use naughty words, there's a devil of comedy in Ferrell, and he lets it out to play. Director Jon Favreau has the good sense to just stand out of his way.
Full Review
50

USA Today

By Claudia Puig
Its message is unobjectionable, and there are a few laughs to be had, but too much of Elf is like Buddy's favorite meals: syrupy sweet.
Full Review
64 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.