The improvised dialogue takes hairpin turns, some less fruitful than others, holding onto just enough traces of structure to sustain the film's brief length.
—Sam Adams Onion AV Club
Dafoe, who also starred in Ferrara's woefully underseen Go Go Tales, brings a quiet grace to his role, while Leigh has a rough-hewn emotional directness.
—Mark Olsen Los Angeles Times
Your last day - or, as it happens, the whole planet's last day - will be just like every other one. Mr. Ferrara makes this point with ingenuity and characteristic thrift by using found news footage to provide images of apocalypse.
—A. O. Scott New York Times
The use of stock footage eventually approaches overkill in the montage-heavy climax. Much more impressive is the way Ferrara uses his own "documentary" footage of the city.
—Karina Longworth Village Voice
It's only natural that Abel Ferrara's vision of the end of the world should take corporeal form as a quasi-autobiographical hangout movie.
—Jaime N. Christley Slant Magazine
In his 4:44 Last Day on Earth, the auteur imagines the apocalypse from an aging NYC hipster's perspective, hitting melancholy notes that may ring true for a small segment of the art-house audience but, without the compelling presence of Willem Dafoe, would have little hope at the box office.
—John DeFore Hollywood Reporter
An hour into Earth and we're waiting for the film to end, not just the planet.
—Scott Bowles USA Today
One of Dafoe's deadbeat friends observes, ''The world's been ending ever since it started, man,'' and you may think the same thing about this movie.
—Owen Gleiberman Entertainment Weekly