100

Boston Globe

By Jay Carr
It rates a resounding yes because it doesn't insult our emotional intelligence. [23 Nov 1983]
Full Review
100

The Globe and Mail (Toronto)

By Jay Scott
Terms of Endearment is the rare commercial picture that sets audiences to laughing hysterically and crying unashamedly, sometimes within consecutive seconds, and then shoos them out of the theatre in contented emotional exhaustion. [23 Nov 1983]
Full Review
100

Time

By Richard Schickel
No film since Preston Sturges was a pup has so shrewdly appreciated the way the eccentric plays hide-and-seek with the respectable in the ordinary American landscape; no comedy since Annie Hall or Manhattan has so intelligently observed not just the way people live now but what's going on in the back of their minds; and finally, and in full knowledge that one may be doing the marketing department's job for them, it is the best movie of the year.
Full Review
100

Chicago Sun-Times

By Roger Ebert
This is a wonderful film. There isn't a thing that I would change.
Full Review
88

TV Guide

Lopsided comedy turned tearjerker, saved by excellent performances.
Full Review
80

Empire

James L. Brooks's clever and witty cry-a-long which has as many guys pretending not to cry, as women unashamedly sobbing.
Full Review
80

Variety

Teaming of Shirley MacLaine and Jack Nicholson at their best makes Terms of Endearment an enormously enjoyable offering for Christmas, adding bite and sparkle when sentiment and seamlessness threatens to sink other parts of the picture.
Full Review
80

The New York Times

By Janet Maslin
Terms of Endearment is a funny, touching, beautifully acted film that covers more territory than it can easily manage.
Full Review
50

Christian Science Monitor

By David Sterritt
There's not enough substance to support the sentiment of this longish comedy-drama.
Full Review
40

Chicago Reader

By Dave Kehr
The dual-track plot, with constant cutting between mother and daughter, seems less an attempt to establish meaningful parallels between the two stories than the nervous twitches of a compulsive channel changer.
Full Review
79 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.