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Based on 15 Reviews
critic reviews (10)
fan reviews ( )
  • 75
    Walter Addiego San Francisco Chronicle

    Questions of politics and policy, even urgent ones, seem pretty dry after watching Henry and the other elderly patients come to life. Those scenes are a revelation. show more

  • 100
    Duane Byrge The Hollywood Reporter

    A gloriously inspirational film documenting music’s healing power in Alzheimer patients. show more

  • 63
    Slant Magazine

    The doc is heartwarming, but it doesn't delve deeply into the backstories that inform the ailing patients' connection to the music that stirs their memories. show more

  • 50

    A passionate documentary with a lot of valuable information to impart, and a laudable humanist agenda to push. Unfortunately, it’s also not a particularly good movie. In fact, at certain points it can be an actively annoying one. show more

  • 38
    Peter Keough Boston Globe

    Unfortunately, though, Rossato-Bennett and Cohen seem to think that the technique is a panacea. In fact, it is not even original, as music therapy in nursing homes has been around for some time. show more

  • 70
    Barbara VanDenburgh Arizona Republic

    The film is less effective, and less focused, when it switches into activism mode. Not that its heart isn't in the right place — we all know about the appalling state of institutionalized elder care. Which is the problem with those segments: We all know this already, and the filmmaking feels like perfunctory, necessary padding. show more

  • 60
    Andrew Lapin The Dissolve

    Cohen’s goal—to bring music to every nursing home—is modest, and the film is smart to follow his lead by keeping bombastic rhetoric to a minimum. Strangely, though, the movie lacks any discussion of professional music therapists, who have been doing this kind of work for decades. show more

  • 83
    Nikola Grozdanovic The Playlist

    Alive Inside contains a tiny revolution within its message, and will likely end up being one of the most important documentaries of the year. show more

  • 67

    Whether it's purely through the use of music or through the individual, attentive care given by some of the featured nursing home workers, the proof of positive changes presented in "Alive Inside" provide a sense of idealism amid bleak situations. show more

  • 90
    Nick Schager Village Voice

    Practically guaranteed to elicit tears within its first five minutes, Alive Inside... is nonetheless more than just a tearjerker. show more

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