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The Interpreter Reviews

Page 1 of 136
Wildaly M

Super Reviewer

February 15, 2008
Kidman and Penn are good actors but the script is a bit limited, especially in terms of characterization, and it just leaves you thinking that this could've been so much better than what it was. Good thriller.
blkbomb
blkbomb

Super Reviewer

August 3, 2011
Tobin Keller: I'd rather make the mistake of believing her, than the bigger one of not. 

"The truth needs no translation"

Despite liking both Nicole Kidman and Sean Penn(both of whom give good performances), I was left underwhelmed when The Interpreter was all said and done. For the most part, it was really just a dull drama with some thriller elements tossed in here and there. It never had me on the edge of my seat like it could have.

It's not technically a horrible movie, but I really found no joy in it. Other then the leads; the film doesn't really have any redeemable qualities. It's really dialogue heavy which isn't necessarily a bad thing, but the dialogue leaves a lot to be desired. 

There are a few really interesting scenes, but as a whole the movie never really comes together. It doesn't flow at a good pace. It's slow, slower and then slowest and then for a three minute stretch it will pick up the pace. Then it will go back to it's snail crawl. I'm okay with slow films if they have good characters, dialogue and situations. This movie has one interesting character(Kidman's, Penn's character was lifeless, although he did play him well), bad dialogue and two or three cool situations. I really wish this would have turned out different with the people involved. But I guess I can just go watch one of Penn's or Kidman's countless great movies.
Carlos M

Super Reviewer

December 28, 2010
A disastrous film that tries to be more complex than it should be, each time coming up with more unnecessary details at the expense of simple concision. The obvious, predictable narrative suffers from terrible dialogue and gets lost amid contrivances, implausible situations and plot holes the size of Africa.
stevenecarrier
stevenecarrier

Super Reviewer

November 4, 2010
"The Interpreter" is an emotional final film from Sydney Pollack. This is a classy picture that harkens back to the political thrillers of the 60s, but it's done in such a way that it actually hinders much of the plot. The plot, while fitfully absorbing, can dip into the convoluted, but thankfully, the strength of the characterizations and the accompanying performances make up for it. Nicole Kidman and Sean Penn deliver fine work, in roles that give them much more to do rather than fall in love or other such cliches of the genre. "The Interpreter", overall, works fine as a film but works better when viewed as the capstone for a talented director's career.
Richard C

Super Reviewer

July 21, 2010
B-
Julie B

Super Reviewer

June 28, 2010
Yeah... um. Not the finest of films, but better than a sharp stick in the eye.
garyX
garyX

Super Reviewer

April 30, 2007
An interpreter overhears a plot to assassinate an African dictator and is assigned a burnt out cop (is there any other kind?) to protect her. The Interpreter is exactly what I was expecting. A cast of actors on auto-pilot, going through the motions of political intrigue in a factory-farmed Hollywood thriller that seems to have been regurgitated onto the multiplex conveyor belt by a script-writing machine. Penn and Kidman are suspicious at first, bond, share, have a will-they-won't-they scene, the plot twists on cue, there's an earnest race against time and a dash of dramatic irony at the end. Pure film making by numbers, the end result is a big flavourless, colourless bag of meh that I ended up wishing was a bit worse than it was. At least then it would've been more interesting.
Lewis C

Super Reviewer

October 19, 2009
I kept waiting for The Interpreter to kick into high gear and become the thriller that the DVD case advertises, but that never really happened. It's not exactly dull, but calling it a thriller is a pretty huge stretch. There are long periods in its 2+ hours of the same conversations being recycled over and over.

As for the story, it's a bit wobbly. There are a few scenes inserted into the movie seemingly to make sure that the viewer knows the true antagonist long before the story properly reveals what's going on. Nicole Kidman and her pretty hair will only keep you interested for so long, more intrigue and action would have done a lot to lift The Interpreter above mediocrity.
Anthony L

Super Reviewer

September 24, 2009
This is a really good thriller, one of the best in recent years. Penn and Kidman do a good job!
FiLmCrAzY
FiLmCrAzY

Super Reviewer

September 14, 2007
Brilliant film i loved it perfectly acted and action packed really worth a watch
Daniel P

Super Reviewer

April 17, 2007
A decent if predictable thriller that puts two great actors opposite each other with enjoyable results, and does have a handful of "pulse-pounding" moments. Sydney Pollack shoots New York so well, and this film is no exception. It won't blow you away but it's a solid movie in which Penn and Kidman play interesting and layered characters. A better script would have allowed them to truly shine.
Dan S

Super Reviewer

November 2, 2007
A movie you can miss. The two leads are fine, both Penn and Kidman embody their characters well. However, there are too many characters, plot holes, and the formulaic nature really takes over near at its ridiculous conclusion. You would expect more from the late Sydney Pollack, historically a very successful filmmaker.
LorenzoVonMatterhorn
LorenzoVonMatterhorn

Super Reviewer

December 15, 2008
"The truth needs no translation."

An overheard conversation leads a woman into a dark world of deadly intrigue in this political thriller. Silvia Broome (Nicole Kidman) is an African émigré who works as an interpreter at the United Nations. One of the languages she understands is Ku, a dialect spoken in her home country of Matobo. One day, as the General Assembly auditorium is being evacuated for a routine security sweep, Broome overhears a man speaking in Ku, who makes a cryptic statement that could be interpreted as a threat against the life of Zuwanie (Earl Cameron), Matobo's controversial ruler. Secret Service agent Tobin Keller (Sean Penn) is brought in to investigate Broome's story, and it isn't long before he's convinced that she knows more than she's willing to tell. As Keller and his partner, Dot Woods (Catherine Keener), dig deeper into Broome's story as well as her past, they discover a shocking tale of violence and corruption tied to Zuwanie's regime.

Review
My first reaction after seeing this movie was how dramatically different the first and second half of the movie was. It was like all the tension, which was building up finally exploded at the climax of the story. I thought it was a good political thriller despite the rather predictable nature of the story. The main weak point of the story however was the rather weak storyline of Tobin Keller and how it was linked to Broome.

The obvious strong point of the movie was the strong performance of the two lead actors Kidman and Penn. Kidman was particularly strong as the Interpreter who hears more than she should. Overall Sydney Pollack did well in harnessing the talent of two premiere actors and produce a satisfying political thriller.
arashxak
arashxak

Super Reviewer

December 16, 2007
"The truth needs no translation."
Red L

Super Reviewer

March 2, 2008
An interesting political thriller with a complicated plot. I enjoyed Kidman's and Penn's acting.
Alexander W

Super Reviewer

January 6, 2008
Sean Penn substanital acting holds poor old N.Kidman in place as an actress, the story, sad and shocking.
Al S

Super Reviewer

August 15, 2006
A brilliant, nail-biting, edge of your seat suspense thriller. Explosive entertainment. It's a pulse pounding ride thats keeps you going till the end. Tense, thrilling and very intelligent. Sean Penn and Nichole Kidman are sensational. Penn is magnificent. Kidman is teriffic. Gripping and exhilerating. This movie can definately enteratain and keep your adreniline pumping.
Tim S

Super Reviewer

July 30, 2007
Sean Penn thought this was going to be a different movie.
Jens S

Super Reviewer

June 14, 2006
Pretty convincing political thriller with a good cast. While the movie has its strongest moment in the middle with the observation of several persons in a bus, the ending is pretty decent too. While the movie takes an unexpected yet not entirely surprising turn for the finale, it's the acting performances that ship it through one or another not entirely logic water. Still, great entertainment for a DVD evening with intelligent content.
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