Million Dollar Baby - Critical Reception

Critical Reception

The film received critical acclaim; Roger Ebert of the Chicago Sun Times gave the film four stars and stated that "Clint Eastwood's Million Dollar Baby is a masterpiece, pure and simple," listing it as the best film of 2004. Michael Medved stated: "My main objection to Million Dollar Baby always centered on its misleading marketing, and effort by Warner Brothers to sell it as a movie about a female Rocky, with barely a hint of the pitch-dark substance that led Andrew Sarris of the New York Observer to declare that 'no movie in my memory has depressed me more than Million Dollar Baby.'"

In early 2005, the film sparked controversy when some disability rights activists protested against the ending. Wesley J. Smith in The Weekly Standard also criticized the film for its ending and for missed opportunities; Smith said, "The movie could have ended with Maggie triumphing once again, perhaps having obtained an education and becoming a teacher; or, opening a business managing boxers; or perhaps, receiving a standing ovation as an inspirational speaker."

Eastwood responded to the criticism by saying the film was about the American dream. In an interview with the Los Angeles Times, Eastwood distanced himself from the actions of characters in his films, noting, "I've gone around in movies blowing people away with a .44 Magnum. But that doesn't mean I think that's a proper thing to do". Roger Ebert believes "a movie is not good or bad because of its content, but because of how it handles its content. Million Dollar Baby is classical in the clean, clear, strong lines of its story and characters, and had an enormous emotional impact".

Some Irish speakers criticized the fact that the phrase Mo Chuisle, a term of endearment meaning My pulse, was misspelled in the film as Mo Cuishle, as shown on the back of Maggie's robe. In Irish and other Goidelic languages, consonants soften when followed by an 'h', hence the "c" in "chuisle" turns into a guttural "ch". It is translated in the film as "My darling, my blood". The original phrase is short for A chuisle mo chroĆ­, meaning "O pulse of my heart". The film has also been praised for stirring interest in the Irish language in the U.S.

Read more about this topic:  Million Dollar Baby

Famous quotes containing the words critical and/or reception:

    To take pride in a library kills it. Then, its motive power shifts over to the critical if admiring visitor, and apologies are necessary and acceptable and the fat is in the fire.
    Carolyn Wells (1862–1942)

    Satire is a sort of glass, wherein beholders do generally discover everybody’s face but their own; which is the chief reason for that kind of reception it meets in the world, and that so very few are offended with it.
    Jonathan Swift (1667–1745)