Hereafter - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

Hereafter Reviews

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Super Reviewer
½ July 2, 2014
Clint Eastwood has always made very good films, and here he crafts something is riveting, thrilling and captivating, and it's a film that is quite underrated and is an overlooked film that is much better than what the initial reviews have stated. The film has its weak parts, but overall, it's a solid affair, that is salvaged by terrific performances by its cast and a good storyline. I quite enjoyed the film's story, and thought that the concept was quite good as well. Matt Damon does some very good work here, and is aided by a great cast of varied talent, that all of whom really deliver something worthwhile on-screen. This is a well directed drama from Clint Eastwood, a director who has always managed to craft some entertaining and memorable films. Although not one of his finest efforts, the film is worth seeing and is quite good for what it is, but at times it could have been slightly better as well as the story does slow down a bit at times. Nonetheless due to terrific direction from Clint Eastwood and memorable performances from its cast, Hereafter works well enough to grab your attention for two hours of solid entertainment. Although not one of Eastwood's strongest directorial efforts, this most certainly not his worst either. If you enjoy a well crafted drama with good performances, Hereafter is a worthy film to watch. The picture tells a very good story, one that does deserve more praise than it does, and for what it is, it's a film that tells a very good story and despite its shortcomings is quite enthralling from the first frame onwards, and under the capable direction of Clint Eastwood is a worthwhile affair.
Super Reviewer
September 15, 2013
A long movie dealing with response to death - involving three non-related people. To me, the connection between the three was contrived, so I thought it didn't end well.
Super Reviewer
½ September 14, 2013
A medium and two people with near-death experiences collide eventually.
A rather pedestrian secular meditation on death and the afterlife, Clint Eastwood's ocean-crossing film is buoyed only by strong performances by Matt Damon and Cecile de France. Its plot is plodding, and the eventual meeting of these characters predictable, but Damon is a rare actor who is able to make his characters more interesting in moments of weakness. George's fear of human connection and his rejection of his gift are made palpable in Damon's work - so much so that even the obviously expository scene with Jay Mohr are watchable. De France's tenacious Marie, also a character so obvious to the plot that she defies believability and smells of convenience, is a nice counter-balance to the film.
Overall, this is far from a strong film, but good performances can do a lot.
Super Reviewer
November 5, 2010
It wanted to be Babel. It wasn't. I have the same complaint about it as I did with Invictus: it relies too much on the inherent fascination with simultaneity and drags incredibly because of it. Not without its moments, but it's a waste of a pretty strong Matt Damon performance and a real disappointment from Eastwood, who's definitely on the decline.
Super Reviewer
October 23, 2010
A nice idea but the film seems to be lacking direction in the early stages as it switches from 3 stories which eventually come together. Thought it would be more interesting than it was, very surprising to find out it was directed by Clint Eastwood and Steven Speilberg was an executive producer. They normally do much better than this. A missed opportunity.
Super Reviewer
February 3, 2012
In what constitutes contemplating your navel, Clint Eastwood has brought us an allegedly thought provoking film that.... Doesn't provoke any thought. I suppose it's nice that Clint is of an age where he might be ruminating on such a subject, and I found it refreshing that the G word was nowhere to be found here, but the film, and here I'm guessing again, failed to provide any answers because it didn't WANT to.

You are left with a bland supposition that an afterlife exists, but what, why, when and how are left drifting in the wind. Taken at face value you have a script that shows three characters all searching for something. A French journalist survives a near death experience and subsequently can't stop thinking about it and what she believes she "saw" while "officially dead". A young twin is lost without his recently deceased brother and thinks that he should be able to communicate with him.

The 3rd character is Matt Damon, who can see past the veil of death and communicate with dead people. Yeah, he really can, and as he tells us, it's a curse, not a blessing. When he touches a person he gets a kind of shock wave and then can see dead folk who are hanging around in purgatory or some such, waiting to contact the real world. This is kind of unnerving and really makes it hard for Damon to carry on a "normal" relationship (Clint and Co do a nice job with this aspect - showing a potential girl friend who, upon being told by Damon that her father wishes forgiveness for what he did to her, feels that there should be secrets in a relationship so dumps him).

All this is fairly interesting, and Clint directs with a sure hand. The cinematography is beautiful (longtime Clint partner Tom Stern is again the Director of Photography), and yet, for all its earnestness and the tightening of circles within circles involving the three characters, the film simply lacks something... it's as if the three stories just don't have any pizzaz on their own - and only by weaving them together do we get any spark of narrative. Even the ending, which makes perfect sense in a way, left me uninvolved when I should have been happy for the outcome.

In the end, I freely admit that we're all searching for something - be it the face of God, or simply a good hamburger, but while I certainly enjoyed my theology courses in college, I really couldn't get involved with the characters nor the big question of the film: what happens to you when you die? As the journalist's colleague states, getting to the gist of it "the lights go out and there's the endless nothing". I don't really agree with that point of view, but I certainly don't adhere to the conventional notions of heaven and hell either - so maybe Clint has point here after all - just wish the film had more going for it in the here and now.
Super Reviewer
July 31, 2010
I am just one of those that likes to be lazy watching a movie and HATES subtitles. I know it makes a movie more realist I guess, but I watch movies because they are not reality and like to not have to pay too much attention.... I like to multi-task while watching a movie. But the story is ok and the acting is very good, but the damn subtitles were just too distracting scattered throughout the movie.
Super Reviewer
½ March 13, 2011
Hereafter is another Eastwood film that did not really live up to my expectations, but did not ruin them either, it was a decent and cool experience.
Super Reviewer
½ November 17, 2011
Hereafter presents the audience with a complicated, touchy, and thought-provoking premise and delivers pretty well. Clint Eastwood does a great job weaving the multiple story lines together, the film looks great, and there is exceptional acting skills by supporting cast. But the films effectiveness is diminished because of it's slow pace, it's slight predictability, and it's repetitiveness. Consensus: Hereafter has a thought-provoking premise and the film is too long, but has great acting and three great story lines that are told and woven together quite effectively.
Super Reviewer
½ September 27, 2010
I actually thought this was really good and well written...
Super Reviewer
September 16, 2010
It's interesting that, at Clint Eastwood should, for the first time, choose to tackle the supernatural and the question of what happens after we die. The fact that the script which hooked him was written by Peter Morgan - such an astute dramatiser of major true-life political events and figures (particularly, The Queen and Frost/Nixon) - should make for an exciting prospect.
This drama is about three lonely people each living in different countries whose lives become indelibly connected in an unforseeable, yet touching way. Cecile De France is stunning as a television reporter who touches her own death and returns. Frankie (or is it George) McLaren is good as the young boy. And Matt Damon's restrained performance is a revelation.
Eastwood has the assured hand that allows long segments in French with English subtitles and a juncture with two disasters and such a touchy-feely subject, and yet it works. Quietly. Thoughtfully.
Super Reviewer
½ October 14, 2010
This somber drama with supernatural elements is not only a surprising, atypical film for Clint Eastwood to direct, it is also a reinforcement of the fact that, even at his age, he is still a man willing to take risks, and to do so with no real evidence of fear.

Honestly, I'm rather puzzled by this film. I think it may have been better under someone else's direction, but I will give Mr. Eastwood props for doing this. Also, while I did find some enjoyment out of this, I do think this film (as is) has a number of issues with it, so, even though there are thigns about it I really liked, and some scenes I really enjoyed, I can only give this a mild recommendation.

The plot concerns three different stories about three different people who all have in common the fact that they have experience with death and the afterlife (or supposed afterlife) in some way or another. One is a trouble former psychic, another is the survivor (barely) of a natural disaster, and the other is a grieving young man.

This film, as some have said, is somewhat of a chore to sit through. It's a bit over two hours, but the main thing is that the pacing is not only slow, it's practically glacial. Also, there's a lot of material here, enough so that there really could have been three separate films- one for each lead, instead of tryign to tell all three storeis in a single film. I do admire the ambitiousness, though.

Besides beign very slow, kinda long, and switching between people, places, and storylines, this film really doesn't have a whole lot to say, leaving much up to speculation. No real answers are given. A couple things I really liked htough were that there was a fair amount of subtitles (the natural disaster survivor is a French woman), and the disaster sequence is extremely well done, and very convincing. Watching it made me think more of Roland Emmerich movies, except more realistic, more restrained, and more gripping in terms of being more than just an assault on the ears and eyes.

I really wish this film could have been far better paced, and had more to say, especially since it's roughly 128 minutes long. It did feel odd that Eastwood was directing it, because it's not really something I think he's suited for, but I won't say that it was a mistake for him to make this.

There's enough here that I liked though, so I think you should perhaps give this one a look.
Super Reviewer
½ October 15, 2010
Damon plays a very sympathetic character. The dichotomy between George and some of the other characters are very real-world, very believable. It's a slow paced film with great character development and some intertwine a la Crash. Bryce Dallas Howard did a great job as a supporting character. Eastwood is quickly becoming a favorite directer of mine.
Super Reviewer
½ June 20, 2011
A disappointing afterlife-mumbo-jumbo from Clint Eastwood, as if we haven't seen enough of supersensitive psychics and white lights already.
Super Reviewer
September 12, 2010
This is very much a love-it or hate-it movie. Aside from the opening scenes, it's not a popcorn flick, so you need to be wide-awake to appreciate the subtle brilliance of this film. This movie is understated, quiet, and thoughtful. Personally, I think that Clint Eastwood is a matter which side of the screen he is on. Nice movie!
Super Reviewer
½ May 1, 2011
I have enjoyed every Clint Eastwood directed movie I have ever seen, until I sat down and watched this one. This film just seemed to lack the overall enjoyable real life theme that comes from most of his movies. The intertwining of peoples life's in movies has been over done. This was a huge disappointment from the previews and movie title. Only can muster up 2 1/2 stars.
Super Reviewer
September 14, 2010
A stellar drama (with an extraordinary opening sequence) that works as a slow-paced meditation on life, death, the afterlife, and ultimately destiny. Clint Eastwood brings his strong direction to this unusual fable and is helped greatly by an ensemble of subtle, realistic performances. While not one of Eastwood's masterpieces (as director), this is one of the best films from 2010 and his strongest effort in years.
Super Reviewer
½ April 16, 2011
Hereafter is definitely going to be misinterpreted and shoved aside because it had some of the worst marketing of all time. The promoters had no idea what this movie was about or what it was trying to say. Clint Eastwood's look into the afterlife is completely unique and more believable than anything similar. It's a movie about connecting with the dead, yet it never feels like a hokey ghost movie or insincere in any way at all. It's hard to evaluate because of the three plots going on that seem unrelated, but turn out to make sense by the end. Matt Damon and Cecile De France both put in really great performances, but also know how to be subtle and let the characters exist in a very real world. The score is one of my favorite parts; Clint Eastwood really took a chance with it and it worked wonders on the end result. Given a proper chance, this is a great movie that attempts (and succeeds) at making an outlandish topic become a incredibly moving and powerful.
Super Reviewer
½ March 22, 2010
Hereafter is a slow, quiet study on the affect that death and the dearly departed have on the living.

It's not really a ghost story or even a very supernatural movie. The three main characters each have felt death's power in different ways in their life. George (Matt Damon), a man who can contact the deceased, has fled from his abilities because they keep him from having a normal life. Marie (Cecile de France) is a journalist who has a near-death experience during a tsunami, and becomes consumed with understanding what she saw. And in London, a young British boy is desperate to contact a lost family member one last time.

The three separate stories do eventually connect, but that's not really where the value of Hereafter lies. I can see this film being a source of frustration for some viewers eager for a traditional conflict and resolution or character arc, but those things aren't really Eastwood's priority.The movie doesn't have much of a "point", other than how death is such an important part of all of our lives, even as it's also probably the most mysterious.

I liked it, but I'm hesitant in recommending it. Slow-paced movies like these need the right audience. It's fairly different from Eastwood's other movies, and I wouldn't mind seeing him tackle something like this, again.
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