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The Alamo

The Alamo (2004)



Average Rating: 5/10
Reviews Counted: 155
Fresh: 46 | Rotten: 109

Too conventional and uninvolving to be memorable.


Average Rating: 5.2/10
Critic Reviews: 38
Fresh: 12 | Rotten: 26

Too conventional and uninvolving to be memorable.



liked it
Average Rating: 3/5
User Ratings: 19,149

My Rating

Movie Info

Re-teaming Dennis Quaid with John Lee Hancock, the director of 2002's The Rookie, The Alamo retells the story of the historic 1836 battle in the Texan War of Independence. Facing 4,000 Mexican troops, 186 Texan soldiers and volunteers -- including William Travis (Patrick Wilson), Davy Crockett (Billy Bob Thornton), and Jim Bowie (Jason Patric) -- retreat within the walls of the Alamo, a Franciscan mission that was converted into a military fort. Once inside, the men prepare themselves for what

Sep 28, 2004


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All Critics (165) | Top Critics (42) | Fresh (46) | Rotten (109) | DVD (25)

It's dull, talky, and sometimes maudlin.

April 13, 2004 Full Review Source: Village Voice | Comment (1)
Village Voice
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Thanks to the skills of director and co-screenwriter John Lee Hancock and a deep cast of reliable veterans, this is an authentic and rousing version of the most famous battle in Texas history.

April 12, 2004 Full Review Source: Ebert & Roeper
Ebert & Roeper
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Absorbing yet ever-so-slightly jaundiced retelling.

April 9, 2004
Washington Post
Top Critic IconTop Critic

With the notable exception of Thornton's Crockett, none of these characters engages you.

April 9, 2004
Washington Post
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Although handsomely mounted, and boasting some historically immaculate dressing and impressive battle sequences, it's a movie that ultimately can't convincingly get behind the idea of sacrifice.

April 9, 2004 Full Review Source: Toronto Star
Toronto Star
Top Critic IconTop Critic

It may be history, but it's too meticulous to be believable.

April 9, 2004 Full Review Source: Seattle Times
Seattle Times
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Doesn't work despite Thornton's top performance.

September 9, 2010 Full Review Source: Common Sense Media
Common Sense Media

This dog of a movie confirms that in 1836 Texas was stolen from Mexico by a bunch of opportunistic bastards whose descendants went on to use similarly underhanded methods to steal the office of the White House in 2000.

May 5, 2009 Full Review Source: | Comments (8)

There are great moments, though it's ultimately a lightweight film and certainly not an Oscar contender.

September 1, 2006
Christianity Today

Not even good sets, plenty of historical detail, and Billy Bob Thornton can put life into director John Lee Hancock's slow-moving, poorly acted Texan saga.

August 31, 2006 Full Review Source:

Com exceção das performances de Thornton e Quaid, o filme traz caracterizações estereotipadas e freqüentemente se entrega ao sentimentalismo barato.

July 7, 2006
Cinema em Cena

Laborious mush.

May 3, 2005 Full Review Source: Lessons of Darkness
Lessons of Darkness

But is this 'Alamo' the definitive version? No, this is no History Channel presentation.

October 15, 2004 Full Review

Like its sets of the Alamo...the movie attempts to do more than is necessary, bogging down in minutiae where traditional facades would have done just as well.

October 5, 2004 Full Review Source: Movie Metropolis
Movie Metropolis

In spite of two great performances, this is a muddled affair.

September 4, 2004 Full Review Source: Empire Magazine
Empire Magazine

Sluggish, talky and unfocused, its downbeat revisionism robbing its historical figures of the iconic status that would have made their story worth retelling.

August 24, 2004 Full Review Source: BBC

Remembering this Alamo is a lot easier with the fiddle in the capable hands of Billy Bob.

June 29, 2004 Full Review Source: Spectrum (St. George, Utah)
Spectrum (St. George, Utah)

This film is mainly for people who are interested in history, not entertainment.

May 30, 2004 Full Review Source: Laramie Movie Scope
Laramie Movie Scope

For much of the time, it's a desultory tour through period movie hell, complete with carefully aged costumes and cement-like chunks of exposition.

May 20, 2004 Full Review Source: Film Journal International | Comment (1)
Film Journal International

The Alamo feels fraught with compromise, both artistic and historical.

May 6, 2004
Boxoffice Magazine

Hancock keeps what could have been a leaden behemoth accessible and engaging by drawing a bead on the personalities of the men who've loomed over history books, warts and all.

April 23, 2004
Tyler Morning Telegraph (Texas)

When it feels like its winding to a close, [director] Hancock inserts a five minute scene of Dennis Quaid shaving, and then the movie goes on for another 20 minutes.

April 22, 2004 Full Review

You may or may not remember "The Alamo."

April 19, 2004 Full Review
Quad City Times (Davenport, IA)

The equivalent of one long drone from a stiff Social Studies teacher who can scarcely be bothered to add any sort of relevance to the topic.

April 19, 2004 Full Review Source: Creative Loafing
Creative Loafing

...there's too much and too little simultaneously to make this a really good film.

April 17, 2004
Greenwich Village Gazette

Where's John Wayne when you need him?...Even if you're inclined to remember the Alamo, you're likely to forget The Alamo.

April 16, 2004 Full Review Source: Boulder Weekly

Audience Reviews for The Alamo

The Alamo was just not a good film. I did not like the acting, it was overdone and there's too much talking going on. The film tried to portray some men as heroes when, for example, the character Jim Bowie just seemed like a drunkard, slave-owning bastard (maybe America tries to portray him as a hero when in my perception he's not?. It's just not an interesting film.
November 16, 2011

Super Reviewer

The Alamo is the perfect example of a film that really good, but has gotten so much bad press because it was a box office bomb. The Alamo is a very underrated film that is an interesting history lesson as well as an entertaining film. Yes, it's a period piece, and it doesn't have exciting, thrilling explosion. But the film is nonetheless an accomplished piece of work with a good enough cast to keep the viewer interested. I would recommend this film to people interested in history, and those interested in the Battle of the Alamo. There's a pretty good cast at hand here, and the film is one of those films that shouldn't be dismissed. The battle scenes are impressive, and will appeal to history buffs for sure. I think it's always impressive to see real events recreated and I thought that John Lee Hancock created a worthwhile historical film that will definitely appeal to history buffs. The Alamo shouldn't be regarded as a bad film. Just because the film bombed, doesn't mean films suck. There are tons of great films that have failed at the box office. If you're interested in the subject, then I recommend watching this film. But to the others expecting a solid action film, you will be sadly disappointed. A must see film for the history buff.
July 4, 2011
Jeff "The Dude" Lebowski

Super Reviewer

boring. C-
July 29, 2010

Super Reviewer

This has a few problems that the 1960 version also had (mainly with uneven pacing), but is still a few hairs better. If I could I'd give it 4.25/5. As far as a letter grade, I'd give it as close to an A- as possible without it actually being an A-. This is an entertaining, thoughful and quite accurate depiction of the battle at the Alamo. It's still guilty of taking liberties of course, but nonetheless stands as the most accurate portrayal of the battle to date. The music by Carter Burwell is good, the camera work is not too shabby, and the set and costumes are just fantastic. The best part of the film is the casting, but more specifically, the performances they give. The highlights are Billy Bob Thornton as Billy Bob Thornton and Dennis Quaid as Sam Houston. Jason Patric is also good as Jim Bowie, and Patrick Wilson is decent as WIlliam Travis, but maybe slightly underwhelming. I really liked that these characters are presented as more human than in previous depictions. It was also nice to see more of the political side of things, and to get a better look at events from Santa Anna's perspective. It's unfortunate that this film din't do well at the box office and that most people crap all over it. It's a good movie that is worth seeing, so give it a chance.
April 25, 2010
Chris Weber

Super Reviewer

    1. Davy Crockett: We're going to need more men.
    – Submitted by Jim Z (21 months ago)
    1. Davy Crockett: If it was just me, simple old David from Tennessee. I might drop over that wall some night and take my chances. But that Davy Crockett feller...they're all watching him.
    – Submitted by Ethan H (24 months ago)
View all quotes (2)

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