Chicago Tribune

By Michael Wilmington
This is a terrific movie: jolting, savage, horrifically funny, nightmarishly exciting but also brainy and compassionate.
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Chicago Sun-Times

By Roger Ebert
Lee has a wealth of material here, and the film tumbles through it with exuberance.
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Film Threat

By Ron Wells
Lee gives us cross-section of characters, almost none of whom escape the summer unchanged.
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San Francisco Chronicle

By Mick LaSalle
The most refreshing thing about Summer of Sam is that it doesn't try to impose a moral or define the limits of its story.
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By James Berardinelli
It is a dark, violent, sexually explicit motion picture that will surely offend timid viewers.
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San Francisco Examiner

By Wesley Morris
One of Lee's unsung gifts as a filmmaker is his discovery of that place between eye-popping surrealism and wrenching Greek tragedy.
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TV Guide

By Maitland McDonagh
A tabloid slice of tabloid life, ragged, vivid, awkward and punchy all at once.
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Austin Chronicle

By Marc Savlov
An intelligent, viscerally kinetic throw-down, a jolt of pure adrenalized Spike that holds more than a few touches of genius in its overripe storyline.
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The Globe and Mail (Toronto)

By Liam Lacey
It's a kaleidoscope of ideas that range from exciting to silly and gaudy.
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Entertainment Weekly

By Lisa Schwarzbaum
Spike Lee noisily attempts to place the hunt for real-life serial killer David Berkowitz at the center of a hotheaded sociological fantasy linking disco glitz, punk rebellion, ethnic insularity, sexual craving, and sizzling heat into one rattling chain of urban hysteria.
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67 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.