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Madoff - S01 E02

Drama . Crime

"Madoff" is inspired by the book "The Madoff Chronicles," written by ABC News Chief Investigative Correspondent Brian Ross. In addition to documenting the life of the investment adviser who cost his clients billions of dollars and is currently serving a 150-year prison sentence, the miniseries will examine how his crimes affected those in his inner circle.

Episode Title: Part 2
Airs: 2016-02-04 at 20:00
  • Jeff Korbelik

    This one’s worth watching for Richard Dreyfus’ performance as the scheming con man, Bernie Madoff.

    The Lincoln Journal Star Full Review
  • Joanne Ostrow

    Dreyfuss is sensational as Madoff, a twinkle in his eye as he explains his "magic."

    Denver Post Full Review
  • Ellen Gray

    Richard Dreyfuss' [portrayal of Bernie] makes no excuses for the con artist whose decades-long fraud cost his marks billions. It does humanize his family, which knew sadness even before Madoff's big reveal, and features a strong performance by Peter Scolari as Bernie's brother Peter.

    Philadelphia Daily News Full Review
  • Mark A. Perigard

    Dreyfuss somehow refrains from chewing the scenery, though the script at times would have him leaving only flecks of drywall. Scolari has heartbreaking moments as he flounders with guilt. More focus on the personalities of Ruth and Mark, who killed himself on the second anniversary of his father’s arrest, would have fleshed out this story.

    Boston Herald Full Review
  • Robert Rorke

    It’s a chilling look at the rise and fall of a man whose greed knew no limits and unleashed a tide of misery.

    New York Post Full Review
  • Ed Bark

    Dreyfuss play [Madoff] to the hilt. It’s a juicy part for an aging actor who’s likewise fortunate to have the always good Danner along for the ride. Together they make Madoff a watchable yet curious undertaking.

    Uncle Barky Full Review
  • Robert Bianco

    As long as the film sticks to the scheme, it works as well. It’s less successful when it digs into Madoff’s personal life, or when it begins to search for broader meaning, particularly in a heavy-handed comparison between Madoff and the investment banks that caused the subprime mortgage crisis.

    USA Today Full Review
  • John Anderson

    In attempting to crawl inside the head of Mr. Madoff--given just a touch of ghoulishness by Mr. Dreyfuss--it provides solidly sordid entertainment. But it also elevates its subject into an object of sympathy.

    Wall Street Journal Full Review
  • Molly Eichel

    Madoff takes the easy route, but what it lacks in complexity, it makes up for in a pace that keeps Madoff’s dealings moving at a clip. And while it still won’t explain the inner workings of why we should be enraged by Bernie Madoff’s actions, it still evokes that rage.

    The A.V. Club Full Review
  • Verne Gay

    Two nights implies this will be “epic,” but this is the anti-epic miniseries, where the subject gets smaller and smaller while his crimes get larger and larger. It’s instructional--just not emotionally engaging.

    Newsday Full Review
  • Gail Pennington

    This is one of Dreyfuss' best recent performances, and he is sure to get many awards nominations for it. Danner is also fine, and the supporting cast is generally strong, even when not served by the script. After a meandering Night 1, Thursday's Night 2 cranks up and charges toward the outcome we expect.

    St. Louis Post-Dispatch Full Review
  • Amber Dowling

    It’s all wonderfully led by an unrecognizable Richard Dreyfuss in the leading role and Blythe Danner as his wife, Ruth.... Where Madoff falls short is in developing the man’s complex relationships with his sons, wife and those who beg him to take their money. While the narrative certainly scratches the surface, it’s not often that it delves any deeper as the writers choose instead to grandstand Dreyfuss’ performance as the leading man.

    The Wrap Full Review
  • Ken Tucker

    The first night of Madoff is both entertaining and instructive.... But the first night ends on a breathless cliffhanger, and Thursday’s concluding night resolves that cliffhanger in a way that made me feel cheated of drama. And the TV movie only proceeds to slide further.

    Yahoo TV Full Review
  • Mike Hale

    What the production lacks in moral dimension or psychological acuity it occasionally makes up for in entertainment value.... Madoff is Mr. Dreyfuss’s show, though, and while the charismatic character he puts on screen, generous and loyal to a fault, may not jibe with our impression of the real Mr. Madoff, he’s fun to watch.

    The New York Times Full Review
  • Zach Hollwedel

    Neither particularly bad nor stellar, Madoff is a mildly entertaining, though far from impressive, miniseries with oversimplified depictions of white-collar thieves, bumbling to the point of cartoonish financial analysts, and fraud run rampant.

    Under The Radar Full Review
  • David Wiegand

    It's modestly engaging, but is likely to leave viewers less than satisfied when it's over.

    San Francisco Chronicle Full Review
  • David Sims

    [Richard Dreyfuss] plays Madoff with the exact mix of charm, chutzpah, and extreme denial you would hope for from the notorious fraudster. Madoff is undeniably compelling in the ways it gives its audience the thrill of watching someone flagrantly break the law. But in the end it feels too puffy and cute.

    The Atlantic Full Review
  • Mary McNamara

    Unfailingly exquisite, Danner gives a performance in the last half-hour that offers a glimpse of what Madoff could have been if the script had been less infatuated with the romance of the con and more interested in its human cost.

    Los Angeles Times Full Review
  • Hank Stuever

    Dreyfuss gives a performance that is merely serviceable rather than memorable, while Danner copes with a version of Ruth Madoff that seems regrettably underwritten and underexplored. (Same goes for the sons.) The story is still quite a corker, though--certainly enough to fill four-ish hours of prime-time commercial television, filled with sadness and schadenfreude.

    Washington Post Full Review
  • Matthew Gilbert

    Dreyfuss impressively keeps Madoff’s villainy human-scaled and, at times, petty, and therefore more potent. The miniseries that is constructed around him, though, is flat and simplistic, with none of the intelligence and intrigue that has elevated other stories set in high finance, “Billions” and “The Big Short.”

    Boston Globe Full Review
  • Brian Lowry

    In terms of portraying the numerous subplots surrounding this story, Madoff is a pretty fair juggling act. As for making the tale actually spark to life, that’s a bit of prestidigitation that this straightforward account ultimately can’t muster.

    Variety Full Review
  • Dan Fienberg

    Madoff feels padded, but also warped with artificial cliffhangers, corny ad-break musical stings, cheap attempts to add thriller elements and an ending that lurches across nearly half of the second night. Still, working from ABC News correspondent Brian Ross' research and book The Madoff Chronicles, the movie has enough juicy details to remain very watchable, and Dreyfuss is having a great time playing this awful man.

    The Hollywood Reporter Full Review
  • Ray Rahman

    You're left with a glossy summary of events that leaps from point to point with all the drama of a Wikipedia page. [29 Jan/5 Feb 2016, p.104]

    Entertainment Weekly Full Review
  • Todd VanDerWerff

    The project is also a bit of a mess. It feels like De Felitta never stops moving his camera, even when simply sitting still might do. And Robbins's script is filled with scenes where characters have largely inconsequential conversations... But at the very least, it's worth tuning in to the miniseries for five or 10 minutes to watch a great actor show off what made him so great in the first place. Full Review
  • Sonia Saraiya

    Madoff is a miss, quite unable to measure up either on the outrage/explanation quotient (“The Big Short,” “Too Big to Fail”) or the reveling in billions quotient (“Billions,” naturally, as well as “Wolf of Wall Street”). As a piece of history, the miniseries is hard to follow and a bit too sordid; as a piece of fiction, Madoff feels rushed-off and incomplete.

    Salon Full Review