Critics Consensus

Critics Consensus: Flee From Ninja Assassin

Plus, Old Dogs is in need of new tricks, and The Road is a trip worth taking.

by | November 24, 2009 | Comments

This week at the movies, we’ve got martial arts mayhem (Ninja Assassin, starring Rain and Naomie Harris); family-friendly hi jinks (Old Dogs, starring John Travolta and Robin Williams); and a post-apocalyptic trek (The Road, starring Viggo Mortensen and Charlize Theron). What do the critics have to say?


Ninja Assassin

What we want from a movie called Ninja Assassin is simple: amazing stunts and killer fight scenes. That isn’t too much to ask, is it? Unfortunately, the answer is yes, say critics, who feel that Ninja Assassin‘s thrills aren’t just cheap – they’re low-grade. South Korean pop star Rain is Raizo, an efficient assassin who’s betrayed by his clan, and teams up with an international cop named Mika (Naomie Harris) to bring them down. The pundits say the plot and characters are forgettable, but the big problem is that director James McTeigue edits the fight scenes down to the bone, so it’s often difficult to tell what’s happening.


Old Dogs

Slapstick is one of the hardest of comedic techniques to pull off, and when it fails, it can be brutal. Such is the issue with Old Dogs, critics say; the talented cast is game, but everyone’s trying so hard to generate laughs where there are none to be found that things go south in a hurry. John Travolta and Robin Williams star as a pair of old buddies who find themselves doing the unthinkable – caring for a set of twins just as a big business deal is about to happen. Life lessons and pratfalls ensue. The pundits say Old Dogs is predictable, overly broad, and tonally inconsistent to the point of tedium. (Check out this week’s Total Recall, in which we run down Travolta’s best-reviewed films.)


The Road

Once No Country for Old Men won Best Picture, it was only a matter of time before Cormac McCarthy’s other works would be adapted for the screen. And critics say that The Road, though unrelentingly grim and literal-minded, is still a very good movie version of McCarthy’s prose. Viggo Mortensen stars as a man who’s struggling for survival as he and his son trek across a post-apocalyptic American wasteland, populated only with cannibals and the desperate. The pundits say this is by no means a good time at the movies, but it’s beautifully shot, often moving, and features a fine performance from Mortensen.

Also opening this week in limited release:

Tag Cloud

politics A&E Lifetime Photos TV Land Tumblr Rocky Tomatazos discovery El Rey DirecTV PaleyFest talk show Vudu Starz dragons Calendar E3 2019 Awards Tour TNT Biopics Lucasfilm Countdown transformers Syfy Amazon Prime Britbox cops NBC BBC America Election Comic Book casting docudrama diversity romance Star Wars Writers Guild of America composers Ghostbusters Mindy Kaling RT History HBO Country SXSW SDCC ESPN psycho dramedy TBS 2018 Elton John Hulu Awards National Geographic green book sports sitcom Nominations festivals Schedule Columbia Pictures Pop Sundance Now adaptation Disney Channel GLAAD Mary Tyler Moore Toys Emmys Lionsgate VICE Acorn TV Pet Sematary biography MSNBC spy thriller CW Seed Walt Disney Pictures Video Games CBS All Access Comedy Mary Poppins Returns theme song IFC anthology Music Spectrum Originals Certified Fresh disaster IFC Films Holidays Epix YA Mudbound TCA zombie Polls and Games Rom-Com Reality Competition USA DGA richard e. Grant San Diego Comic-Con thriller 21st Century Fox streaming Universal crossover Quiz Apple TCM Freeform comic Ovation mutant Ellie Kemper miniseries Reality YouTube Red Martial Arts Bravo blaxploitation Oscars Horror Podcast PBS New York Comic Con Fox News strong female leads mockumentary supernatural FOX Cannes historical drama AMC war television comiccon Pixar Best and Worst dceu First Look Masterpiece serial killer space TIFF Song of Ice and Fire Spike doctor who facebook natural history golden globes Shondaland BET 2017 spider-man TCA 2017 LGBTQ FXX 007 Brie Larson Tarantino social media Cosplay Super Bowl Women's History Month 20th Century Fox Superheroes APB Rock Dark Horse Comics Trivia Food Network boxoffice adventure Marvel Sneak Peek GoT Valentine's Day Marathons Extras Anna Paquin Heroines Trophy Talk The CW period drama Amazon YouTube Premium singing competition President Action 2016 Winter TV Sundance Black Mirror Nat Geo WGN NYCC political drama Trailer ITV Comics on TV 45 Christmas Kids & Family Winners SundanceTV nature teaser See It Skip It Logo Drama true crime FX Paramount Musicals BBC ABC Family cults what to watch CBS Creative Arts Emmys hist robots Comedy Central Superheroe The Arrangement Rocketman CMT binge aliens Musical X-Men ratings Cartoon Network Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt Animation Character Guide The Witch elevated horror zero dark thirty Opinion Warner Bros. DC Universe justice league Film Festival DC Comics Fall TV Grammys travel Set visit Pirates TV dc Mystery Box Office Red Carpet Teen E! Summer Showtime sequel cooking Spring TV American Society of Cinematographers OWN DC streaming service MTV USA Network Infographic Star Trek Netflix History witnail Disney Crackle Fantasy Premiere Dates Captain marvel 24 frames zombies unscripted psychological thriller Adult Swim crime drama science fiction Mary poppins award winner based on movie harry potter cinemax Year in Review jamie lee curtis crime thriller Sony Pictures police drama Interview cats Chilling Adventures of Sabrina Nickelodeon TruTV CNN GIFs technology Stephen King finale 2015 Thanksgiving TLC ABC MCU Watching Series Shudder Esquire Paramount Network vampires anime VH1 medical drama Western RT21 crime Sci-Fi