Critics at a Crossroads: How a ‘Promising Young Woman’ Review Got Caught in the Culture Wars

“This has become some huge culture war instead of some acknowledgment that we as critics all need to be constantly self-examining ourselves,” critic Clarisse Loughrey writes

Film critics found themselves at a crossroads this week trying to defend one of their own while also acknowledging that a review of Carey Mulligan’s performance in “Promising Young Woman” in Variety may have crossed a line.

What started as a conversation among critics on Film Twitter escalated to the mainstream on Tuesday when the National Society of Film Critics called on Variety to remove an editor’s note apologizing for its review of “Promising Young Woman” by freelance critic Dennis Harvey. The group argued that the publication had thrown its own writer under the bus rather than defend his right to his opinion, calling it “appalling” that Variety chose to “side with that power rather than supporting its writer.”

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Brian Welk

Brian Welk

Film Reporter • brian.welk@thewrap.com • Twitter: @brianwelk