Another sappy but engaging musical fable from the Irish writer and director John Carney, who made "Once."
David Denby, New Yorker, 2014-07-14
The wholesome, hopeful, let's-put-on-a-show enthusiasm may sound hokey but it's actually infectiously joyful. At the same time, Carney roughs up the edges just enough to make this fairy tale seem somewhat accessible and realistic.
Christy Lemire, ChristyLemire.com, 2014-07-12
This soulful outing is sure to please music lovers. And isn't that everyone?
Mara Reinstein, Us Weekly, 2014-07-11
Can a meaningful glance mean as much as a kiss? In this film, it can, and that's enough.
Peter Howell, Toronto Star, 2014-07-10
You can't really blame writer-director John Carney for trying, but despite a few very nice moments, this bigger, slicker follow-up mostly argues that Once should have been enough.
Bruce Ingram, Chicago Sun-Times, 2014-07-07
Its soft-rock bonhomie [prevails] over a story that often registers as trite or naive.
J. R. Jones, Chicago Reader, 2014-07-07
The movie is moderately obsessed with the ideal of authenticity, which is a rather awkward position to champion given that it is a calculatedly more-commercial, less-authentic variation of a film, Once, that Carney had already made.
Christopher Orr, The Atlantic, 2014-07-04
The cast is, to a person, so likable and chummy that you want everyone to succeed. And the songs are hook-laden, easygoing numbers that are genuinely enjoyable.
Bill Goodykoontz, Arizona Republic, 2014-07-02
Doggedly indie but unpretentious, "Begin Again" is one of the best movies I've seen about the music industry and the ways it changes people whose paths diverge.
Joe Williams, St. Louis Post-Dispatch, 2014-07-02
Begin Again is corny, improbable and generally a great deal of fun.
Chris Vognar, Dallas Morning News, 2014-07-02
"Begin Again" sets out to be a feel-good movie and, despite such obvious intentions, it thoroughly succeeds.
Tom Long, Detroit News, 2014-07-02
Can a song save your life? And can an impossibly mushy, mawkish movie make you feel good? The answer to the second question, anyway, is yes.
Steven Rea, Philadelphia Inquirer, 2014-07-02
"Begin Again" may not always swing, but it makes up for that in sincerity and a welcome willingness to ambush expectations.
Ann Hornaday, Washington Post, 2014-07-01
Carney is on to something in "Begin Again," some handle on a particular truth he's exploring, and he remains faithful to it through the finish.
Mick LaSalle, San Francisco Chronicle, 2014-07-01
Carney deserves great credit for the movie's clever, layered structure, and for resisting a few obvious plot turns along the way. Lightning doesn't strike, but sunshine works, too.
Moira MacDonald, Seattle Times, 2014-07-01
Knightley brings emotional confusion into sharp, touching focus as the pair bond over nighttime strolls and the shared love of classic pop. Carney flips film cliches to keep us guessing.
Colin Covert, Minneapolis Star Tribune, 2014-07-01
The trouble with this movie -- aside from its lack of visual wonder and musical shape -- is that you don't trust its priorities.
Wesley Morris, Grantland, 2014-07-16
Begin Again is a not-entirely-successful movie about not selling out; it's a theme that must concern Carney deeply.
Kate Taylor, Globe and Mail, 2014-07-11
"Begin Again" is pleasantly predictable if you're in an undemanding mood. If you're not, it's unbearable, like hearing a treasured folk song given a Hot 97 makeover.
Ty Burr, Boston Globe, 2014-07-01
"Begin Again" is an ode to the indie-rock spirit, but its music -- written by Carney and others -- is as safe, smooth and Starbucks-friendly as Norah Jones.
Rafer Guzman, Newsday, 2014-07-01