Chicago Sun-Times

By Roger Ebert
Sophie's Choice is a fine, absorbing, wonderfully acted, heartbreaking movie.
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The New York Times

By Janet Maslin
Thanks in large part to Miss Streep's bravura performance, it's a film that casts a powerful, uninterrupted spell.
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Christian Science Monitor

By David Sterritt
The overall result is a serious though harrowing journey into the dark corners of this century, marked by a compassionate approach and even a fillip of optimism at the end.
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Boston Globe

Alan Pakula's literal adaptation of William Styron's Sophie's Choice is an admirable, if reverential, movie that crams this triangle into a 2 1/2 -hour character study enriched by Meryl Streep and Kevin Kline, and nearly destroyed by Peter MacNicol. [21 Jan 1983]
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The Globe and Mail (Toronto)

By Jay Scott
The film is a respectable, claustrophobic and slick piece of work, and cinematographer Nestor Almendros' color strategies - Rembrandt-like light at night, lemony tones during the day, desaturated sepia at Auschwitz - are arty to a fault. [14 Dec 1982]
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TV Guide

Competently directed by Pakula and featuring gorgeous cinematography by Almendros, Sophie's Choice is an overlong, fairly schlocky film that takes itself very seriously.
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The Dissolve

By Keith Phipps
Alan J. Pakula’s 1982 adaptation of William Styron’s 1979 novel Sophie’s Choice is one of those films whose great qualities put its lesser elements in sharp relief.
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Sophie's Choice is a handsome, doggedly faithful and astoundingly tedious adaptation of William Styron's best-seller.
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Chicago Reader

By Dave Kehr
The picture is completely devoid of cinematic interest, adopting instead a tiresome theatrical aesthetic in which showy monologues are filmed in interminable, usually ill-chosen long takes.
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68 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.