100

Rolling Stone

By Peter Travers
Nothing the Hughes brothers have done in their videos for Tone Loc, Tupac Shakur and others prepares you for the controlled intensity and maturity they bring to their stunning feature debut.
Full Review
100

Film Threat

By Brad Laidman
The film is one chillingly authentic scene after another... In the end it's more of a war movie than "Saving Private Ryan" ever was.
Full Review
100

Chicago Sun-Times

By Roger Ebert
As well-directed a film as you'll see from America this year, an unsentimental and yet completely involving story of a young man who cannot see a way around his fate.
Full Review
100

Entertainment Weekly

By Owen Gleiberman
Bleak, brilliant, and unsparing.
Full Review
88

Chicago Tribune

A film of great integrity, assurance and political passion, if not driving plot. [26 May 1993, Tempo, p.3]
Full Review
88

ReelViews

By James Berardinelli
Menace II Society has a devastating impact. Few films possess the power to keep an audience sitting in stunned silence after the end credits begin rolling, but this is one of them.
Full Review
75

San Francisco Chronicle

By Mick LaSalle
The movie's biggest weakness is in the presentation of Caine's grandparents.... The attempt, it seems, is to show a potentially positive influence in Caine's life. But the grandparents come across as canned characters, corny and concocted. [26 May 1993, Daily Notebook, p.E1]
Full Review
75

USA Today

By Mike Clark
An unusually knowing movie from filmmakers of any age, both in its coldly clinical viewpoint and assured filmmaking style that even puts fresh spin on a routine police interrogation. [26 May 1993, Life, p.8D]
Full Review
60

TV Guide

It lacks the vision, and the fully defined characters, of "Boyz (in the Hood)." Tyrin never becomes more than the sum of his conflicting impulses--he's a composite sample of a social group rather than a fully-fledged individual.
Full Review
25

The Globe and Mail (Toronto)

By Rick Groen
Because the society in Menace II Society is boxed in sociologically, the picture (for all its strengths) is boxed in esthetically. Already, this genre is beginning to seem as much a victim as the victims it portrays.
Full Review
76 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.