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The Limey (1999)

tomatometer

93

Average Rating: 7.5/10
Reviews Counted: 80
Fresh: 74 | Rotten: 6

Crafted with eccentric moodiness and style by Steven Soderbergh, The Limey is also a gritty neo-noir showcase for the talent of leading man Terence Stamp.

96

Average Rating: 7.7/10
Critic Reviews: 24
Fresh: 23 | Rotten: 1

Crafted with eccentric moodiness and style by Steven Soderbergh, The Limey is also a gritty neo-noir showcase for the talent of leading man Terence Stamp.

audience

79

liked it
Average Rating: 3.6/5
User Ratings: 10,995

My Rating

Movie Info

Two actors best known for their work in the late 1960s, Terence Stamp and Peter Fonda, star in The Limey, a drama in which a recently released felon contemplates the gulf between aging criminals like himself and their modern counterparts. Wilson (Stamp) is a British career criminal who has been released after nine years in prison. He has learned that his daughter Jenny died under suspicious circumstances in Los Angeles, so he travels to America for the first time to find out what happened and

R,

Mystery & Suspense, Drama

Lem Dobbs

Feb 20, 2001

Artisan Pictures - Official Site External Icon

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All Critics (100) | Top Critics (28) | Fresh (74) | Rotten (6) | DVD (18)

The crimer suffers from a slim, underdeveloped script by Lem Dobbs (who also write Kafka), but benefits from Soderbergh's astute direction that posits two 1960s cinematic icons, Brit Terrence Stamp and American Peter Fonda as long-time enemies.

November 9, 2006 Full Review Source: Variety
Variety
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Those interested in more challenging work will find the film a unique meditation on the nature of Hollywood.

February 21, 2004 Full Review Source: Atlanta Journal-Constitution
Atlanta Journal-Constitution
Top Critic IconTop Critic

An apparently simple movie that demands and rewards a deeper look.

April 25, 2003 Full Review Source: Globe and Mail
Globe and Mail
Top Critic IconTop Critic

A first-rate crime thriller and further proof that director Stephen Soderbergh is one of our great contemporary film stylists.

June 18, 2002 Full Review Source: San Francisco Chronicle
San Francisco Chronicle
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All of its style can't altogether conceal that director Steven Soderbergh doesn't have as much to work with here.

January 1, 2000
Boston Globe
Top Critic IconTop Critic

The movie has lots of drive, and it keeps Stamp front and center almost continuously, even in flashbacks.

January 1, 2000 Full Review Source: New York Magazine/Vulture
New York Magazine/Vulture
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Assuredly Soderbergh's masterpiece

February 14, 2010 Full Review Source: CinePassion
CinePassion

Not your standard revenge movie, thanks to the inventive and stylish direction of Steven Soderbergh.

November 28, 2009 Full Review Source: TheMovieReport.com
TheMovieReport.com

A montagem, a interessante utilização de imagens de Poor Cow e, claro, a interpretação impecável de Stamp transformam um roteiro prosaico em uma experiência intrigante.

June 2, 2009
Cinema em Cena

Soderbergh returns to the crime genre, but The Limey couldn't be more different than Out of Sight, except for the fact that it's just as good.

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

Bien que le scénario soit plutôt conventionnel, The Limey amène une bouffée de fraicheur au genre grâce à la touche bien particulière de Soderbergh.

December 17, 2004

Soderbergh's brilliant non-linear storytelling keeps us asking questions about this gunslinging Brit right to the end.

December 6, 2004 Full Review Source: Looking Closer
Looking Closer

The movie belongs to Stamp and Fonda.

April 6, 2004
Jam! Movies

[Stamp] hasn't had a role like this since his heyday in the '60s and he shows he has been overlooked far too long.

April 6, 2004
Jam! Movies

Stamp is the elder statesman of intelligent counterculture cinema, and his performance here makes what is otherwise a lackluster project come energetically alive.

November 3, 2003 Full Review Source: Mixed Reviews

The film is subtly stolen by Amelia Heinle, joining such actresses as Andie MacDowell, Elisabeth Shue, Betsy Brantley and Jennifer Lopez as the latest in a line of Soderbergh's saving graces.

December 2, 2002 Full Review Source: Sight and Sound
Sight and Sound

There's more to this crime-thriller than meets the eye.

November 7, 2002 Full Review Source: Netflix
Netflix

...a tough, lean revenge picture with a smattering of subtle wit.

April 22, 2002
Movie Metropolis

It'll serve as perhaps the final reminder of what was once [Soderbergh's] great career.

March 7, 2002 Full Review Source: Matinee Magazine
Matinee Magazine

A moody five-finger exercise about loss with a terrific performance by Terence Stamp.

March 4, 2002 Full Review Source: Spirituality and Practice
Spirituality and Practice

What looks like an ordinary revenge tale is livened and improved by Stamp's nuanced performance.

February 28, 2002 Full Review Source: Goatdog's Movies
Goatdog's Movies

A stylish, hard-edged melodrama, and it's a wonderful showcase for Stamp.

January 9, 2002 Full Review Source: Movieline
Movieline

Audience Reviews for The Limey

This is the classic revenge thriller, as tweaked by Steven Soderbergh.

Terence Stamp stars as WIlson, the titular character, who is a recently released career criminal who travels to Los Angeles to investigate the death of his estranged daughter, whom he is told died of mysterious circumstances. Besides being about a man who is out for straight up vengeance, and really not much more, it also touches upon the divide between old school criminals like Wilson, and their modern day counterparts.

The film is pretty clear cut, and Soderbergh is maybe one of the few directors who can really get away with such a basic, single minded premise with not much else backing it up. Even though the film doesn't have much depth to it, it oozes style, mood, and tone, and is really rather mesmerizing.

I also liked how the film is a meeting of two titans of 60s cinema, with the British Stamp going up against America's Peter Fonda as the shady record producer Valentine who was involved with Wilson's daughter, and is thus the prime suspect in her "accidental" death. Both are amazing, but this is easily Stamp's film through and through, and a real showcase for him. Luis Guzman is pretty terrific as Ed, an acquaintance of Wilson's daughter, and perhaps the only person he can trust. He's pretty much the guiding light here, as he;s the one who contacted Wilson about his daughter, and provides him basically everything he needs to complete his quest. Barry Newman is also pretty awesome as Avery, Valentine's chief of security. Nicky Katt also makes a brief appearance as a hitman associated with Avery, but he could have been used a little more. He's good for how much we get him, though.

Being a Soderbergh film, it's got a great amount of style, slick production values, and is shot masterfully. Some of the proceedings get rather dark and intense, but thankfully there's a nice undercurrent of sly humor. One of the coolest things going on here is the creative integration of footage from an old Stamp film from the 60s as bits of flashback sequences.

This really isn't a deep film, and while it is pretty cut and dried, and just a variation on a theme, it's somehow gets a pass because Soderbergh just has this touch that elevates even the most unoriginal concept into something fresh and entertaining.
May 18, 2013
cosmo313
Chris Weber

Super Reviewer

If it weren't for the assured direction of Soderbergh, 'The Limey' would be a simply forgettable film. In a way, it kind of is. Stamp's performance is a little sketchy and the script a little rugged, but Soderbergh's thriller has a tasteful touch of noir that does it a solid amount of good.
February 25, 2013
Kase Vollebregt

Super Reviewer

I rarely like these new stylistic thrillers from directors like Soderbergh, but this had a great story and great actors starring in it. I should watch it again soon.
October 26, 2012
ajv2688

Super Reviewer

The more Soderbergh I see, the less I like him, but I thought this film had a lot going for it. One trick did drive me nuts, though: the edits in which we hear the characters talking while we look at their faces with their mouths not moving. I can see the technical point he might have been trying to make - who says the audio and video have to sync up? - but I don't see what it adds to this particular story, a simple one about a father seeking revenge for his daughter's death. I did, however, enjoy seeing Peter Fonda and Terence Stamp for the first time in decades, and as a straight-ahead noir piece, it's a decent enough flick.
September 25, 2012
danperry17

Super Reviewer

    1. Stacy: You'd watch a show called 'Big Fat Guy', right? I'd watch that show.
    – Submitted by Moe J (20 months ago)
    1. Wilson: You tell him- you tell him I'm coming! Tell him I'm f***ing coming!
    – Submitted by Moe J (24 months ago)
View all quotes (2)

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