Assault on Precinct 13 Reviews


Time Out
Top Critic
June 24, 2006

At its best, though, this is witty, tense and bloody: a homage that Carpenter might appreciate.

Ken Tucker
New York Magazine/Vulture
Top Critic
July 5, 2005

Fishburne even manages to make crass violence witty.

Desson Thomson
Washington Post
Top Critic
May 20, 2005

It's good for a silly laugh, this stuff. And maybe this movie will draw renewed attention to Carpenter's eminently better movie.

Joe Leydon
Variety
Top Critic
January 25, 2005

This meat-and-potatoes dish of moviemaking is sufficiently tasty to satisfy auds hungry for old-fashioned rock-the-house action.

Stephanie Zacharek
Salon.com
Top Critic
January 24, 2005

A great deal of thought may have gone into the making of Assault on Precinct 13, but its tone and its rhythms are consistently out of whack.

Richard Roeper
Ebert & Roeper
Top Critic
January 24, 2005

An assault to your intelligence, and an assault on your ears and eyes.


St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Top Critic
January 23, 2005

Paul Clinton (CNN.com)
CNN.com
Top Critic
January 23, 2005

It's a good old-fashioned shoot-'em-up with a few nice twists and some very good acting.

Jonathan Rosenbaum
Chicago Reader
Top Critic
January 23, 2005

My preference for the remake over the original has more to do with its harsh representation of contemporary state corruption and its unsentimental ethical distinctions than with its success as a thriller.

Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
Peter Travers
Rolling Stone
Top Critic
January 21, 2005

Restores thirteen to its place as the unluckiest number.

| Original Score: 2/4
Ella Taylor
L.A. Weekly
Top Critic
January 20, 2005

James De Monaco's strenuously hipster script reaches for black comedy but never comes close.

Claudia Puig
USA Today
Top Critic
January 19, 2005

The film has an appropriately dark and gritty look, but it suffers from some glaring problems.

Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/4
A.O. Scott
New York Times
Top Critic
January 19, 2005

Don't avoid the new Assault on Precinct 13 because it's a remake. There are plenty of other reasons.

Full Review | Original Score: 1.5/5
Peter Howell
Toronto Star
Top Critic
January 19, 2005

You've got to smile at a movie that puts two key female characters in high heels and skimpy dresses and brazenly insists that it makes perfect sense that they be dressed that way for a shootout in the middle of a snowstorm.

Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
Ann Hornaday
Washington Post
Top Critic
January 19, 2005

Breaks the first and only commandment of remakes: Thou shall at the very least do justice to the original, or thou shall not be made at all.

Moira MacDonald
Seattle Times
Top Critic
January 19, 2005

Fans should appreciate the remake for what it is: a breathless little revisit to that old precinct house, expertly performed.

Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
Mick LaSalle
San Francisco Chronicle
Top Critic
January 19, 2005

Matches a dingy urban setting with a compelling situation and throws in an ensemble of interesting characters who become even more interesting under stress.

Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
Steven Rea
Philadelphia Inquirer
Top Critic
January 19, 2005

A studiously cheesy remake of John Carpenter's 1976 cult fave shoot-'em-up.

| Original Score: 2/4
Roger Moore
Orlando Sentinel
Top Critic
January 19, 2005

Just duck, shoot or be shot, a bloody race to see who can be the last man standing, and maybe manage a wisecrack or two.

Full Review | Original Score: 2/5
Stephen Whitty
Newark Star-Ledger
Top Critic
January 19, 2005

Making a B-movie out of an old A-movie -- which is what Carpenter did -- is smart and fun. Making an A-movie out of an old B-movie -- which is what director Jean-Francois Richet tries to do here -- is just sort of silly.

Lou Lumenick
New York Post
Top Critic
January 19, 2005

A thriller that actually thrills.

| Original Score: 3/4
Jami Bernard
New York Daily News
Top Critic
January 19, 2005

Hawke and Fishburne make it work, supported by a mostly strong cast.

Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/4
Connie Ogle
Miami Herald
Top Critic
January 19, 2005

The sort of remake that inspires faith in second chances.

Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
Stephen Cole
Globe and Mail
Top Critic
January 19, 2005

A smartly assembled noir package.

Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
Terry Lawson
Detroit Free Press
Top Critic
January 19, 2005

Richet and DeMonaco respect the original movie while adding depth to the characters and complications to the situation.

Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
Tom Long
Detroit News
Top Critic
January 19, 2005

Gleefully filled with corruption, violence, paranoia, thug-speak and mayhem. It's mad, it's bad and it's bloody. Yep, it's a bonafide blast.

| Original Score: B+
Robert Denerstein
Denver Rocky Mountain News
Top Critic
January 19, 2005

Assault can't be called great, but it has the guts to throw all its hard-core chips into the pot, which makes it almost as much of a butt-kicking novelty as Carpenter's original.

| Original Score: B
Michael Booth
Denver Post
Top Critic
January 19, 2005

One of the few good things to be said about Assault on Precinct 13 is that, early in the new season, we get one of the year's worst movies over and done with.

Full Review | Original Score: 1/4
Bill Muller
Arizona Republic
Top Critic
January 19, 2005

Though Richet stretches believability near the end, action-movie fans should assault theaters for an entertaining stay at Precinct 13.

Full Review | Original Score: 3.5/5
Owen Gleiberman
Entertainment Weekly
Top Critic
January 19, 2005

Jean-François Ríchet, the director of the new Assault, is working from a script, by James DeMonaco, that creates a handful of zingy one-note lowlifes but that hasn't updated the isolated-precinct premise in a timely or thoughtful way.

Full Review | Original Score: C+
Michael Wilmington
Chicago Tribune
Top Critic
January 19, 2005

The premise may be outlandish, the action unrealistic and sometimes silly and the characters formulaic. But the movie rips and roars.

Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
Wesley Morris
Boston Globe
Top Critic
January 19, 2005

For one thing, it's silly. For another, it's not always silly enough to be diverting.

Full Review | Original Score: 2/4
Roger Ebert
Chicago Sun-Times
Top Critic
January 19, 2005

Strong performances and a couple of new twists.

Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
James Berardinelli
ReelViews
Top Critic
January 18, 2005

It's not great art, but, for B-movie fans and those looking for a mid-winter jolt of energy, it's good fun.

Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
Colin Covert
Minneapolis Star Tribune
Top Critic
January 18, 2005

Gets a ruthless grip on the audience's throat early and never lets go.

Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
Kevin Thomas
Los Angeles Times
Top Critic
January 18, 2005

A savvy and extensive reworking of John Carpenter's 1976 cult classic of the same name.

Full Review | Original Score: 4/5
Bruce Westbrook
Houston Chronicle
Top Critic
January 18, 2005

Good, gory fun.

Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
Chris Vognar
Dallas Morning News
Top Critic
January 18, 2005

A polished B-movie with lots of gunfire, a sheen of craftsmanship and few pretensions to be anything it isn't.

Full Review | Original Score: B-
Eleanor Ringel Gillespie
Atlanta Journal-Constitution
Top Critic
January 18, 2005

The cheese factor is satisfying and the no-frills approach has a gut-level appeal.

Full Review | Original Score: C+
J. Hoberman
Village Voice
Top Critic
January 18, 2005

A surprisingly credible action flick -- even with Ethan Hawke in the role of a neurotic hipster police sergeant.

Michael Rechtshaffen
Hollywood Reporter
Top Critic
January 13, 2005

Stars (the Carpenter version didn't have any) Ethan Hawke and Laurence Fishburne provide enough gravitas to keep things involving even as some of the supporting characters fight a losing battle with caricature.