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Cliffhanger Reviews

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Christopher Harris
Globe and Mail
Top Critic IconTop Critic

it has truly awe-inspiring stunts and special effects and many of its suspense sequences will leave you with your heart in your mouth.

| Original Score: 3/4

August 3, 2013
David Sterritt
Christian Science Monitor

There's a visceral charge to the high-altitude chase scenes, but the thriller ultimately falls flat, even on its own limited terms.

Full Review Source: Christian Science Monitor

August 3, 2013
Alan Jones
Radio Times

High adventure and vertigo blend with blood and bullets to make this tension-packed tall tale a spectacular avalanche of dizzying escapism.

Full Review Source: Radio Times | Original Score: 4/5

August 3, 2013
Jeff Shannon
Seattle Times
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The fact that so much money was lavished on such a thick-headed project represents the height of fiscal ineptitude, but this is the kind of roller-coaster ride for which eager audiences will gladly check their brains at the turnstiles, so go figure.

Full Review Source: Seattle Times | Original Score: 2/4

August 3, 2013
Steven Rea
Philadelphia Inquirer
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The cinematography and gravity-defying stunt performances are exhilarating. The story, alas, is pure routine.

Full Review Source: Philadelphia Inquirer | Original Score: 2.5/4

August 3, 2013
Gary Thompson
Philadelphia Daily News

An unexpectedly average adventure movie.

Full Review Source: Philadelphia Daily News | Original Score: 2/4

August 3, 2013
Jay Boyar
Orlando Sentinel
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Some movies get you so excited - so revved up on action and thrills -- that you almost feel like you're flying. Cliffhanger makes you feel like you're dropping.

Full Review Source: Orlando Sentinel | Original Score: 2/5

August 3, 2013
Leah Rozen
People Magazine

Nothing in Cliffhanger could possibly surpass that terrific opening jolt, but it's a smart, enjoyable summer action thriller nonetheless, directed by Renny Harlin with the focused energy of a Boy Scout earning badges.

Full Review Source: People Magazine

August 3, 2013
Anthony Lane
New Yorker
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That rasping tension is soon smoothed away, as the plot sets off on its daft and hackneyed course.

Full Review Source: New Yorker

August 3, 2013
Kenneth Turan
Los Angeles Times
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Cliffhanger no doubt makes for a great coming attraction, but as a two-hour movie its claims are much more problematic.

Full Review Source: Los Angeles Times | Original Score: 2/5

August 3, 2013
Gene Siskel
Chicago Tribune
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Take away the mountains and what you have is a howlingly bad action film with a cornball villain out to steal a massive amount of United States currency from federal agents.

Full Review Source: Chicago Tribune | Original Score: 1/4

August 3, 2013
Dave Kehr
Chicago Tribune
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Like the roller-coaster ride Cliffhanger clearly wants to be, the film sends you out pleasantly rattled and wobbly of gait.

Full Review Source: Chicago Tribune | Original Score: 3/4

August 3, 2013
Stephen Hunter
Baltimore Sun

The movie could also use more zing in its writing.

Full Review Source: Baltimore Sun | Original Score: 2.5/4

August 3, 2013
Jonathan Rosenbaum
Chicago Reader
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It's hard to think of a movie my feelings have been more divided on.

Full Review Source: Chicago Reader

August 2, 2013
Richard Schickel
TIME Magazine
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We are not at Cliffhanger for realism; we're there for the cliffhanging, and there's plenty of it.

Full Review Source: TIME Magazine

July 25, 2010

Film4

Big-budget nonsense that still manages to provide plenty of thrills thanks to its high-rise settings.

Full Review Source: Film4

July 25, 2010

TV Guide's Movie Guide

It may go down in screen history as the nail in the coffin of the Die Hard sub-genre, in which all the key elements of that blockbuster have been recycled to the point of self-parody.

Full Review Source: TV Guide's Movie Guide | Original Score: 3/4

July 25, 2010
Owen Gleiberman
Entertainment Weekly
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Despite the don't-look-down Olympian settings, Cliffhanger's spirit is brutal and earthbound. The movie is like one of those computer-designed simulator rides that whip you around until you're dizzy and aching but don't actually take you anywhere.

Full Review Source: Entertainment Weekly | Original Score: B-

July 7, 2010
Peter Canavese
Groucho Reviews

As preposterous as this "Die Hard on a mountain" flick is, Cliffhanger remains one of the zestier big-budget action pictures of the nineties. [Blu-ray]

Full Review Source: Groucho Reviews | Original Score: 2.5/4

January 24, 2010
Todd McCarthy
Variety
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Cliffhanger lives up to its title as a two-hour rollercoaster ride that never stops.

Full Review Source: Variety

March 26, 2009
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