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Daredevil (2003)

tomatometer

45

Average Rating: 5.2/10
Reviews Counted: 214
Fresh: 96 | Rotten: 118

Passable if derivative as entertainment, Ben Affleck fits the role but the film is not up to par with recent superhero films.

26

Average Rating: 4.4/10
Critic Reviews: 38
Fresh: 10 | Rotten: 28

Passable if derivative as entertainment, Ben Affleck fits the role but the film is not up to par with recent superhero films.

audience

36

liked it
Average Rating: 2.8/5
User Ratings: 466,300

My Rating

Movie Info

One of Marvel Comics' most popular characters comes to the screen for the first time in this sci-fi action-thriller. Matthew Murdock (Ben Affleck) is a lawyer whose father, a prizefighter, was killed by gangsters when Murdock was just a boy. Since then, Murdock has devoted his life to bringing wrongdoers to justice and is willing to help others by taking on cases no other attorney will touch. Murdock is also blind, after being struck down by a truck while trying to save a man from being hit.

Jul 29, 2003

$102.5M

20th Century Fox - Official Site External Icon

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Latest News on Daredevil

October 21, 2013:
Marvel Taking Its Time with Daredevil and Punisher Projects
"We want to do the smart thing at the smart time."
April 26, 2013:
Weekly Ketchup: Daredevil Rejoins the Marvel Lineup
This week's Ketchup includes lots of superhero news (both for The Avengers 2 and Justice League),...

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All Critics (216) | Top Critics (38) | Fresh (96) | Rotten (118) | DVD (45)

Torn between moody grandiosity and cartoonish mayhem, Daredevil tries to have it both ways, and succeeds at neither.

July 7, 2010 Full Review Source: Newsweek | Comment (1)
Newsweek
Top Critic IconTop Critic

[A] dull actioner.

April 18, 2007 Full Review Source: Chicago Reader | Comment (1)
Chicago Reader
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Convincing in the physical demands of the role, Affleck persuades us of the pain of sightlessness and supersensitive hearing, although writer/director Johnson's scrappy construction fails him and everyone else as the showdown approaches.

January 26, 2006 Full Review Source: Time Out
Time Out
Top Critic IconTop Critic

The movie has far less emotional weight than, say, Spider-Man.

February 20, 2003 Full Review Source: L.A. Weekly
L.A. Weekly
Top Critic IconTop Critic

The numerous fight scenes have been filmed in Confuse-o-Rama, a headache-inducing technique that mixes a dozen too many cuts per minute, projectile P.O.V., and intermittent glimpses of the hero's sonar sensorium.

February 19, 2003 Full Review Source: Village Voice
Village Voice
Top Critic IconTop Critic

A collection of false starts interrupted by an awful lot of angst-ridden contemplation, the picture serves up soul-searching gush with scant pulse-pounding rush.

February 19, 2003
Hollywood Reporter
Top Critic IconTop Critic

For all its clichés, it has a cracking third act, helped by doses of 15-rated violence.

October 19, 2012 Full Review Source: Film4

there's a lot to like here and a comic film more people should give another chance.

July 30, 2012 Full Review Source: Lyles' Movie Files | Comment (1)
Lyles' Movie Files

Superhero is darker, more violent than Spiderman.

December 22, 2010 Full Review Source: Common Sense Media
Common Sense Media

The film is impressively dark and gritty, but the melodrama and Daredevil's relationship with woman warrior Elektra are labored.

July 7, 2010 Full Review Source: Sacramento News & Review
Sacramento News & Review

Justice may be blind, but the only enjoyment to be had out of this is to be blind drunk.

July 7, 2010 Full Review Source: Dark Horizons
Dark Horizons

Give it a shot, and you'll be pleasantly surprised.

April 29, 2009 Full Review Source: Cinema Crazed | Comments (3)
Cinema Crazed

It may not have the heart of Superman, the charm of Spider-Man or the thrills of X-Men, but Daredevil is an engaging B movie in the tradition of good Saturday afternoon entertainment.

October 18, 2008 Full Review Source: Urban Cinefile
Urban Cinefile

Affleck's lanky, offhand softness hardly suits the superheroic archetype...[but] The R-rated Director's Cut...deserves an extra half-star. [Blu-ray]

September 21, 2008 Full Review Source: Groucho Reviews
Groucho Reviews

I enjoyed Daredevil while it lasted, but ... very little of it has stayed with me.

July 29, 2007 Full Review Source: eFilmCritic.com
eFilmCritic.com

A disappointment at nearly every turn.

July 14, 2007 Full Review Source: Big Picture Big Sound
Big Picture Big Sound

There are enough strong moments to guarantee a good night out.

December 30, 2006 Full Review Source: Empire Magazine
Empire Magazine

It's not bad so much as it is disposable and forgettable.

May 26, 2006 Full Review Source: Combustible Celluloid
Combustible Celluloid

The shame of this mess of a movie is that it could have been quite good.

September 30, 2005 Full Review Source: Three Movie Buffs
Three Movie Buffs

It is Colin Farrell as villainous Bullseye who steals the show.

July 5, 2005 Full Review Source: Bullz-Eye.com
Bullz-Eye.com

A faithful translation of the character and one of his more memorable tales on the page; it satisfies as an adventure and as a more intimate story.

January 15, 2005 Full Review Source: Movie Poop Shoot
Movie Poop Shoot

Du cinéma préfabriqué qui donne envie de revoir Hulk et X2.

December 16, 2004

The relationship between Murdock and Elektra could have made for an interesting film.

December 6, 2004
Looking Closer

Audience Reviews for Daredevil

[img]http://images.rottentomatoes.com/images/user/icons/icon13.gif[/img]
August 12, 2013
Directors Cat
Directors Cat

Super Reviewer

Back before the superhero invasion we were given this semi gritty realistic take to the man in red, and boy did they take it seriously!. Although there had been a few serious Marvel flicks before this, this was the first 'Batman-like' film to come along before the enormous Nolan film 'Batman Begins'.

So what do we have? a blind man in a red leather outfit with little horns, super senses, martial arts and a custom designed billy club. To be honest I've never really been into this character and kinda though of him as a poor mans
Batman. He pretty much does everything Batman does like lurking in dark alleyways and being vigilant from the rooftops in that traditional comic book gothic manner, accept DD is in New York and Batman is in Gotham. Just guys in slick suits with weapons.

The plot includes the characters origins which is fine, of course its all quite predictable and similar to all superhero origins. As a kid 'Matt Murdoch' gets accidentally blinded by some radioactive liquid, his dad raises him whilst he boxes in the ring under 'Kingpin'. His dad refuses to throw a fight so he gets whacked, this causes the young Murdoch to seek revenge and become the 'Daredevil', fighting for justice, forever in darkness, a guardian devil blah blah blah...Must admit I did like the origins though, wasn't overly long and preachy, it was simple and straight forward, looked good too.

To be honest the film isn't too bad it just lacks any real punch. There are of course plenty of money shots with DD leaping through the air in slow motion, plenty of acrobatics, martial arts and dark cityscapes for our hero to pose against, but its all style and no substance really...or should I say action. The opening battle within a seedy bar is by far the best action in the film, the whole sequence feels very 'Blade-like' visually and is good fun, After that everything is pretty anti climatic frankly, even the finale fights aren't that impressive.

Don't get me wrong the film isn't bad, its well put together and looks quite good, its just rather dull for a superhero flick. Was this the first time we had a (sort of) crossover in a superhero flick? I think it might have been. The intro of female hero 'Elektra' is a nice add on in the film which does set up the spin-off nicely and future adventures, shame she is kinda useless here though. The bad guys are also kinda unadventurous here too, 'Bullseye' is performed amusingly at times by Colin Farrell but the character just seemed average. Apart from hurling paperclips at everyone with his deadly aim he has nothing else to offer...accept the obligatory martial arts. I just felt DD could beat this guy easily with all his super senses, body padded suit and amazing fighting skills.

Clarke as Kingpin felt underused really, all he does is stand around and pose with his cane. His finale fight against DD is quite good but over too quickly, although I guess that is more realistic seeing as he's pretty heavy and slow. Not much of a fight for DD really. As for the Daredevil himself...well the character is kind of a second rate hero really, in my opinion, he's not up there with the main superstar heroes. In that sense Affleck fit the role perfectly because at the time he was a second rate action hero (still is). He doesn't quite have the looks, or the physique, or the voice, or the hair, or the jawline, he's a poor mans action hero, harsh but true.

Funny to see a young Jon Favreau here, who'd have thought he would be so important in the future of comic book adaptations eh.

I don't really recall the original theatrical version but this director's cut does feel much better, tighter, better plotting. I did enjoy re watching this and the added violence does indeed help. The film was never really gritty and dark but it has its moments, the DC does enhance that in places with a bit of blood, swearing and less romance...I think. But this version definitely comes across much better as I'm sure this film was much crapper when I saw it in the cinema.

At the time of release this was probably one of the best Marvel flicks alongside 'Blade' and 'Blade II'. Believe it or not it was the darkest superhero flick seen ('Blade' aside as that's more horror) as 'Spider-Man' was very childish and 'X-Men' was clearly tamed for the kids. It still does hold up quite well despite cheesy billy club twirling moments, the iffy looking outfit, the hammy dialog with Elektra and typical dark goth shots on rooftops.

With all those super senses I feel this guy should be a member of the X-Men really. And how exactly does getting splashed with radioactive goo in your eyes enable you to leap from the tops of skyscrapers and from rooftop to rooftop as if you can fly?!. It enhanced his senses so I don't get that connection but never mind.
July 29, 2013
phubbs1

Super Reviewer

Shocking considering all who were involved. Affleck is good mates with Kevin Smith, why didn't he ask him for advice? I really hope this hasn't killed off Daredevil though as the Comics are really good! The Elektra spin off just adds insult.
January 9, 2013
SirPant

Super Reviewer

Altho referred to by some kinder folks as a poor man's Spider-Man, its clearer to say that ol' DD was originally intended as a direct reflection of Batman ... and has never left that admittedly very large shadow. The film tries, as the magazines did, but no. I added a star for the attempt.
August 31, 2012
ApeneckFletcher

Super Reviewer

    1. Bullseye: You're good, baby. I'll give you that. But me? I'm magic.
    – Submitted by Nick S (13 months ago)
    1. Matt Murdock/Daredevil: As for Daredevil...well, soon the world will know the truth. That this is a city born of heroes, that one man can make a difference. Hell's Kitchen is my neighborhood. I prowl the rooftops and alleyways at night, watching from the darkness. Forever in darkness. A guardian devil.
    – Submitted by Nell M (2 years ago)
    1. Franklin Nelson: He paid in fluke. Fluke is a fish, Matt. Did you know that? Because I sure as hell didn't.
    2. Matt Murdock/Daredevil: Well, Mr. Chang is a nice guy, he doesn't have a lot of money and he likes to go fishing on the weekends.
    3. Franklin Nelson: Yeah, well I like to go salsa dancing on the weekends. But I don't shake my ass to pay my phone bill. You know what I'm saying?
    – Submitted by Robert H (2 years ago)
    1. Bullseye: I never miss!
    – Submitted by Andrew O (3 years ago)
    1. Kingpin: How's your daughter?
    – Submitted by Marc L (3 years ago)
    1. Elektra: You don't know how I feel.
    2. Matt Murdock/Daredevil: Revenge won't make the pain go away. Trust me.
    – Submitted by Marc L (3 years ago)
View all quotes (8)

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