Can You Ever Forgive Me? (2018) - Rotten Tomatoes

Can You Ever Forgive Me? (2018)



Critic Consensus: Deftly directed and laced with dark wit, Can You Ever Forgive Me? proves a compelling showcase for deeply affecting work from Richard E. Grant and Melissa McCarthy.

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In CAN YOU EVER FORGIVE ME?, Melissa McCarthy stars as Lee Israel, the best-selling celebrity biographer (and cat lover) who made her living in the 1970's and 80's profiling the likes of Katharine Hepburn, Tallulah Bankhead, Estée Lauder and journalist Dorothy Kilgallen. When Lee found herself unable to get published because she had fallen out of step with the marketplace, she turned her art form to deception, abetted by her loyal friend Jack (Richard E. Grant).


Melissa McCarthy
as Lee Israel
Jane Curtin
as Marjorie
Ben Falcone
as Alan Schmidt
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Critic Reviews for Can You Ever Forgive Me?

All Critics (70) | Top Critics (22)

Yet Lee, played with unerring wit and ferocious verve by Melissa McCarthy, turns out to be terrific company; so does her raffish companion in crime, Jack Hock (Richard E. Grant).

October 19, 2018 | Full Review…

Can You Ever Forgive Me?...hits hardest as a drama about human desperation and survival.

October 18, 2018 | Rating: 3.5/4 | Full Review…

For the most part, this is a nicely sharp character comedy that openly admires Israel's intelligence and resourcefulness and relishes the ingenuity of her multiple vintage typewriters and her hunts for the perfect paper.

October 18, 2018 | Full Review…
Top Critic

What is on paper a small-time heist film in the vein of the Coen Brothers or Breaking Bad is ultimately a cover for a more observant and relatable portrait of loneliness.

October 18, 2018 | Full Review…

[McCarthy] completely disappears into the character and personality of Lee Israel-age, stringy masculine hair, sardonic grimace, reading glasses and all-with a range I never dreamed possible.

October 18, 2018 | Rating: 4/4 | Full Review…
Top Critic

It is a fiercely composed, historically informed, and richly textured film, as insightful regarding the particularities of the protagonist as it is on the artistic life-and on the life of its times.

October 18, 2018 | Full Review…

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