USA Today - 10/24/2003
"...Downey fans may enjoy it because DETECTIVE gives the actor one of his best showcase roles since CHAPLIN..."
Entertainment Weekly - 10/31/2003
"...Robert Downey Jr. is great in a role no one less magnetically reckless would dare approach..."
Los Angeles Times - 10/24/2003
"...[With] Robert Downey Jr. in a boldly theatrical portrayal that represents a personal career high watermark..."
Chicago Sun-Times - 11/14/2003
"It proposes to be a subjective view of suffering, and the ways this character tries to cope with it. Understand that, and the pieces fall into place."
Uncut - 12/01/2003
"It's an intriguing, brisk effort..."
Director Keith Gordon (MOTHER NIGHT, WAKING THE DEAD) makes another brave adaptation with THE SINGING DETECTIVE. Based on Dennis Potter's stunningly brilliant 1986 BBC mini-series of the same name, Gordon's version finds the film's troubled hero transplanted to 1950s America, not post-WWII London. Dan Dark (Robert Downey Jr.) is a pulp novelist in the thralls of a crippling skin disease that has rendered him delusional and immobile. Bitter, angry, and at the end of his rope, Dan manages to offend everyone he encounters. As he lies in bed, scenes from his novel swim into his mind, blurring with experiences from his own childhood. In the present, he remains paranoid that his ex-wife Nicola (Robin Wright Penn) is out to steal a script he wrote. Adding to his disgust are forced visits with an uptight psychotherapist, Dr. Gibbon (Mel Gibson), who is determined to make a breakthrough with his hateful patient. Along the way, Dan envisions several musical sequences, which appear out of nowhere and add glorious confusion to his fevered state. Gordon, working from a script that Potter himself wrote before his death, delivers an imaginary, vibrant film that is aided greatly by Robert Downey Jr.'s ferocious performance.