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The Fourth Kind Reviews

Ian Buckwalter
NPR
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When the director divides the screen into quadrants for his big finish, the effect is just laughable -- but then by that point, the movie is too.

Full Review Source: NPR | Original Score: 3.9/10

July 4, 2010
Joshua Rothkopf
Time Out New York
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Unfortunately, none of the subsequent noise is all that scary, and the striving for Paranormal Activity's buzz is shameless.

Full Review Source: Time Out New York | Original Score: 2/5

November 11, 2009
A.O. Scott
At the Movies
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[A] dull, clumsy little movie.

Full Review Source: At the Movies

November 9, 2009
Michael Phillips
At the Movies
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No, no, no, no.

Full Review Source: At the Movies

November 9, 2009
Joe Neumaier
New York Daily News
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Badly acted by everyone (including the director, Olatunde Osunsanmi, who appears onscreen), this insipid jumble's idea of fright is incessant screaming.

Full Review Source: New York Daily News | Original Score: 0/5

November 6, 2009
Amy Biancolli
San Francisco Chronicle
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Ultimately, the film's narrative segments are far too glossy and over-stylized, larded with ponderous scoring, obvious melodrama and split-screen visuals that offset the "reenactments" with the "real."

Full Review Source: San Francisco Chronicle | Original Score: 2.5/4

November 6, 2009
Rick Groen
Globe and Mail
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The mission here is to demonstrate how, in this explosive age of dubious information, cynicism can be quickly trumped by gullibility.

Full Review Source: Globe and Mail | Original Score: 3/4

November 6, 2009
Tom Long
Detroit News
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Unintentionally, laughably bad.

Full Review Source: Detroit News | Original Score: D

November 6, 2009
Kyle Smith
New York Post
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The Fourth Kind has a clever gimmick and nothing more.

Full Review Source: New York Post | Original Score: 2/4

November 6, 2009
Nigel Floyd
Time Out
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Osunsanmi's tricksy formal device simply reinforces our disbelief and invites ridicule.

Full Review Source: Time Out | Original Score: 1/5

November 6, 2009
Michael O'Sullivan
Washington Post
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At a recent preview screening, the most common audience response to this nonsense was laughter, not gasps of horror.

Full Review Source: Washington Post | Original Score: 1/4

November 6, 2009
Richard Corliss
TIME Magazine
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You'd do better downloading an old Art Bell show -- say, the one about the guy who put an alien in his freezer -- than investigating this evidence of subnormal activity.

Full Review Source: TIME Magazine

November 6, 2009
Linda Barnard
Toronto Star
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Without the true-story conceit, The Fourth Kind would be just another formula horror flick with a couple of passable jolts trying to hold a flimsy story together.

Full Review Source: Toronto Star | Original Score: 1.5/4

November 6, 2009
Stephen Holden
New York Times
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May be humorless, paranoid nonsense, but its biggest failure is its inability to scare.

| Original Score: 1/5

November 6, 2009
Wesley Morris
Boston Globe
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In two climactic scenes, the screen goes fuzzy. For over a minute what we're watching is basically a television on the fritz. The only place that's ever been frightening is in the privacy of your living room.

Full Review Source: Boston Globe | Original Score: 1/4

November 6, 2009
Connie Ogle
Miami Herald
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The Fourth Kind may not be the most honest movie in the galaxy, but it's got one thing right: With horror, what you don't see is usually more terrifying than what you do.

Full Review Source: Miami Herald | Original Score: 2/4

November 5, 2009
James Berardinelli
ReelViews
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Not entirely uninteresting, but it suffers from some ill-advised decisions. In fact, the film's "hook" may be its greatest detraction.

Full Review Source: ReelViews | Original Score: 2/4

November 5, 2009
Joe Morgenstern
Wall Street Journal
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Mr. Osunsanmi's chutzpah exceeds his skill.

Full Review Source: Wall Street Journal

November 5, 2009
Robert Abele
Los Angeles Times
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Writer-director Olatunde Osunsanmi attempts an Orson Welles-like confluence of "real" and imagined that might have worked had he gotten out of the way more, literally and figuratively.

Full Review Source: Los Angeles Times | Original Score: 1/5

November 5, 2009
Kara Nesvig
Minneapolis Star Tribune
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The Fourth Kind is legitimately scary enough to keep you in your seat. (Just don't Google the flick before you see it.)

Full Review Source: Minneapolis Star Tribune | Original Score: 2/4

November 5, 2009
Jeff Shannon
Seattle Times
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A frustrating exercise in terror that relies too heavily on gimmicks to have any genuine impact.

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

November 5, 2009
Claudia Puig
USA Today
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You don't have to believe in far-fetched tales of mysterious beams of light and alien abductions to get caught up in The Fourth Kind.

Full Review Source: USA Today

November 5, 2009
Steven Rea
Philadelphia Inquirer
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A mildly scary, totally meaningless excursion into the realms of psychological horror and alien-abduction conspiracies.

Full Review Source: Philadelphia Inquirer | Original Score: 2/4

November 5, 2009
Stephen Whitty
Newark Star-Ledger
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As the movie repeatedly insists, it's only presenting this information; it's up to you to decide what to believe. Well, I believe this was a waste of about an hour and a half.

Full Review Source: Newark Star-Ledger | Original Score: 1/4

November 5, 2009
Scott Tobias
AV Club
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The Fourth Kind is terminally awkward in the way it meshes fake real footage with faker fake footage. It isn't required to be convincing as fact, but it doesn't convince as fiction, either.

Full Review Source: AV Club | Original Score: C-

November 5, 2009
Glenn Whipp
Associated Press
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The flat-lining, alien-abduction thriller The Fourth Kind offers a close encounter that buries an interesting idea under a barrage of gimmicky, carnivallike hokum.

Full Review Source: Associated Press

November 5, 2009
Cliff Doerksen
Chicago Reader
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Olatunde Osunsanmi's big formal innovation tunrs out to be the split-screen pairing of patently bogus "archival" black-and-white video that shows alleged abductees undergoing hypnosis and color "reenactments" of same.

Full Review Source: Chicago Reader

November 5, 2009
Roger Ebert
Chicago Sun-Times
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Why the aliens chose this community of 9,261 to abduct so many people is a mystery. Also why owls stare into bedroom windows.

Full Review Source: Chicago Sun-Times | Original Score: 1.5/4

November 5, 2009
Michael Rechtshaffen
Hollywood Reporter
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This stiff paranormal thriller could stand a lot more activity.

November 5, 2009
Owen Gleiberman
Entertainment Weekly
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Too often, The Fourth Kind makes the paranormal look disappointingly normal.

Full Review Source: Entertainment Weekly | Original Score: C

November 4, 2009
Rob Nelson
Variety
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Universal's alien-abduction thriller none too cleverly bids to pass off mock-documentary footage of levitating psychological patients--and, scarier still, ordinary talking heads--as the real deal.

Full Review Source: Variety

November 4, 2009
Scott Foundas
Village Voice
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A couple of modestly effective shocks lie in store, but none as frightening as the onscreen text informing us that some 11 million people claim to have seen a UFO.

Full Review Source: Village Voice

November 3, 2009
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