It's a risky approach that's bound to frustrate many folks, but it's also quite illuminating in its own way.
Christy Lemire, RogerEbert.com, 2014-09-26
Thanks to Benjamin's performance and the unique quality of the subject itself, the movie's hard to dismiss.
Stephen Whitty, Newark Star-Ledger, 2014-09-26
A flawed, ambitious and deeply peculiar portrait of one of the 20th century's most enigmatic musical talents, in the year before he ascended to rock-god status, that resembles no other pop-music biopic you've ever seen.
Andrew O'Hehir, Salon.com, 2014-09-26
Benjamin captures Hendrix's nodding swagger, his effortless cool, and most important, his voice - going beyond mimicry into some other, spookier realm.
Steven Rea, Philadelphia Inquirer, 2014-09-26
The film's own spontaneous experimentation provides dazzling context for the musician's impact on the world.
Tom Keogh, Seattle Times, 2014-09-26
Most of the action occurs below the surface -- genius giving birth to ideas, ambition crystallizing into action -- and, at times, Ridley's direction evokes the inner life with subtle invention.
Richard Brody, New Yorker, 2014-09-25
One reason "All Is by My Side" works is that the story - with its girl, guy, guitar and revolution - is enjoyable, whether it's precisely true or not.
Manohla Dargis, New York Times, 2014-09-25
None of Jimi Hendrix's classic music found its way into "Jimi: All Is By My Side," but that doesn't hurt this moody, mesmerizing film one bit.
Kenneth Turan, Los Angeles Times, 2014-09-25
There's no doubt that Andre Benjamin is the film's magnetic core. His silky-voiced, dangerously volatile turn as Jimi Hendrix is a star-spangled triumph.
Peter Travers, Rolling Stone, 2014-09-25
Liberated from playing the hits, Benjamin eloquently captures Hendrix's emerging style without having to succumb to jukebox-musical opportunism.
Ann Hornaday, Washington Post, 2014-09-25
"Jimi: All Is by My Side" manages to keep an aura of mystery while letting us see the inspiration.
Joe Neumaier, New York Daily News, 2014-09-25
[Benjamin's] mesmerizing work saves this unique and somewhat controversial new biopic from a level of entirely un-Jimi-like mediocrity.
Chris Riemenschneider, Minneapolis Star Tribune, 2014-09-25
Andre Benjamin, from OutKast, is perfect as Hendrix, nailing his look (the teased-out nimbus of hair and groovy Carnaby Street threads) as well as his space-cadet cadences, his selfish dark side, and the way he comes alive on stage.
Chris Nashawaty, Entertainment Weekly, 2014-09-25
Ridley doesn't present Hendrix's ascension to guitar god in conventional fashion, which is both an interesting and at times frustrating decision.
Bill Goodykoontz, Arizona Republic, 2014-09-25
A hip-looking mess of a movie, made tolerable by Benjamin's spacey-cool Hendrix. Great costumes, few insights.
Rafer Guzman, Newsday, 2014-10-02
You can sense the movie's desire to break free of the demands of the rock biopic, but you can also sense it constantly being pulled back.
Bilge Ebiri, New York Magazine/Vulture, 2014-09-26
A strangely lethargic and self-consciously arty trudge that struggles to find a narrative through-line or turn the great Hendrix into a vivid personality.
Chris Vognar, Dallas Morning News, 2014-09-25
To really understand Hendrix, Ridley would have had to reach much farther back.
J. R. Jones, Chicago Reader, 2014-09-25
Think of a famous Hendrix song. For that matter, think of an obscure Hendrix song. Whatever you're thinking of, it's not in the movie. That's a little like making a film about Henry Ford without ever showing a car.
Mick LaSalle, San Francisco Chronicle, 2014-09-25
Jimi Hendrix: All Is By My Side knows the pitfalls of musician biopics that cram a lifetime into a formula, and it knows that musicians are more than just their hit songs. It also dissects Hendrix into such thin slices that it's hard to see him at all.
Jesse Hassenger, AV Club, 2014-09-25