The movie is overly ambitious but never dull, and the ensemble cast is fun to watch.
Ben Sachs, Chicago Reader, 2015-06-25
The film's ability to confound expectations while delivering some big laughs may be its most crowd-pleasing characteristic but the anti-stereotype message rings clear as a bell throughout.
James Berardinelli, ReelViews, 2015-06-19
Dope's biggest strength lies in its affectionate and honest portrait of a different kind of young urban blackness than we're used to seeing on movie screens.
Dana Stevens, Slate, 2015-06-19
Even as Famuyiwa acknowledges the preconceptions that Malcolm's blackness engenders, he invites audiences to identify with the character on the basis of his relatable interests, aspirations and vulnerabilities.
Julian Carrington, Globe and Mail, 2015-06-19
When so many black movie characters are simple stereotypes, it's a pleasure to see a film with real wit about the benefits and pitfalls of playing to and against those expectations.
Patrick Dunn, Detroit News, 2015-06-19
"Dope" may be the perfect movie for the summer of 2015.
Andrew O'Hehir, Salon.com, 2015-06-19
Writer-director Rick Famuyiwa ... doubles down on an applying-to-Harvard satire that both upends demographic expectations while insisting (at times a bit strenuously) that we all aim a little higher.
Joshua Rothkopf, Time Out, 2015-06-18
A narrative as freewheeling as this one might ordinarily daze and confuse. But Malcolm makes for such a forceful character, it's easy to go along with whatever direction he's headed in.
Peter Howell, Toronto Star, 2015-06-18
Dope digs into racial culture in a real way with Malcolm struggling with the fact that he doesn't fit being a geek or a menace to society, and it's a hoot to root him on as he finds his place somewhere in between.
Brian Truitt, USA Today, 2015-06-18
Mr. Famuyiwa ... shoves disparate genre elements together as if pulling jigsaw puzzle pieces from a half-dozen different boxes, and if the finished work isn't quite convincing, it's still fun to look at.
A.O. Scott, New York Times, 2015-06-18
This vibrant film is a bit of a mess, but it's a beautiful one.
Alonso Duralde, TheWrap, 2015-06-18
Be sure to stay for the end credits. No other summer-movie credit crawl is going to get audiences dusting off their old Running Man and Cabbage Patch dance moves like this one. Take that, Jurassic World.
Cary Darling, Fort Worth Star-Telegram/DFW.com, 2015-06-18
The tone is fast and funny, with a modern "Risky Business" or "Ferris Bueller's Day Off" vibe, but there's an additional layer that stems from the violence of the neighborhood.
Jordan Hoffman, New York Daily News, 2015-06-18
A freewheeling comedy about sex, drugs and identity politics.
Rafer Guzman, Newsday, 2015-06-18
If "Dope" were as earnest as Malcolm seems to be, you might expect it to be a bit of a bore. No worries on that count, though.
Joe Morgenstern, Wall Street Journal, 2015-06-18
The acting is uniformly good. This is Moore's first big role, and he delivers a performance both entertaining and believable.
Bill Goodykoontz, Arizona Republic, 2015-06-18
Here is the rare movie overstuffed with memorable moments that would have been better if there had been fewer of them.
Rene Rodriguez, Miami Herald, 2015-06-18
It's a remorselessly entertaining, Frankenstein's monster of pop-culture borrowings and appropriations. So much so that it becomes very much its own thing.
Bilge Ebiri, New York Magazine/Vulture, 2015-06-19
"Dope" is too smart and lively to be dismissed. It's even original in its mixing of ingredients, however unoriginal those ingredients may be. But it's also unfeeling and, beneath its in-the-hood surface, as much a bit of artifice as a Wes Anderson movie.
Mark Feeney, Boston Globe, 2015-06-18
"Dope" is, in the end, just another unfunny grab bag of stereotypes. Don't believe the hype.
Robert Abele, Los Angeles Times, 2015-06-18