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Lord of War (2005)


Average Rating: 6.2/10
Reviews Counted: 142
Fresh: 87 | Rotten: 55

Critics Consensus: While Lord of War is an intelligent examination of the gun trade, it is too scattershot in its plotting to connect.

Average Rating: 5.8/10
Critic Reviews: 38
Fresh: 18 | Rotten: 20

Critics Consensus: While Lord of War is an intelligent examination of the gun trade, it is too scattershot in its plotting to connect.


Average Rating: 3.6/5
User Ratings: 388,275


Movie Info

One man demonstrates how to get rich selling warring nations the tools of their deadly trade in this dark comedy drama. Yuri Orlov (Nicolas Cage) is an opportunistic businessman who stumbled into a gold mine after the end of the Cold War and the collapse of the Soviet Union. Huge caches of Soviet weapons became available at bargain prices (and even for free if one wasn't above stealing), and as literally billions of dollars' worth of Soviet military technology disappeared, it began finding its … More

R (for strong violence, drug use, language and sexuality)
Drama , Action & Adventure , Mystery & Suspense
Directed By:
Written By:
Andrew Niccol
In Theaters:
Jan 17, 2006
Box Office:
Lions Gate - Official Site



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Critic Reviews for Lord of War

All Critics (146) | Top Critics (39) | Fresh (87) | Rotten (55) | DVD (23)

Niccol is no stranger to hot-button issues, but he outdoes his previous efforts by injecting this satire of war profiteering in the Halliburton age with a wicked arsenic wit.

Full Review… | August 16, 2007
Time Out New York
Top Critic

ELord Of War drops the hammer slowly, laying out the fascinating parameters of Cage's world before opening up its argument in an astonishing denouement.

Full Review… | October 7, 2006
Top Critic

Lord Of War drops the hammer slowly, laying out the fascinating parameters of Cage's world before opening up its argument in an astonishing denouement.

Full Review… | September 26, 2005
AV Club
Top Critic

A caustic satire masquerading as an action adventure.

Full Review… | September 24, 2005
Chicago Reader
Top Critic

A raffishly ironic and insinuating movie -- and probably the most sheerly enjoyable film of the year so far.

September 20, 2005
New Yorker
Top Critic

There are the makings here of a really good feature or an even better documentary, but as it stands, Lord of War is not quite either.

Full Review… | September 16, 2005
San Francisco Chronicle
Top Critic

A carefully choreographed devil's dance in which Nicolas Cage finds fleet-footed rejuvenation as a man aware evil can't exist without good, but that evil often wins. This uniquely unsympathetic, world-weary film earns the right to fling that truth.

Full Review… | September 19, 2010

A fine, grown-up movie, half thriller, half black comedy.

Full Review… | September 19, 2008

The movie ultimately crushes itself in a vise of self-loathing.

Full Review… | March 11, 2008

I'm beginning to get discouraged about Andrew Niccol.

Full Review… | July 14, 2007
Big Picture Big Sound

Satire is rarely so hard-hitting, or high calibre.

Full Review… | July 10, 2007
Eye for Film

This film fails so miserably don't be surprised to find yourself often rooting against the supposed good guy.

Full Review… | May 26, 2007
Upstage Magazine

That the CIA engages in these activities with all sorts of Orlovs no doubt slithering around in the mix somewhere, is a far more intriguing huge chunk of vital information that sadly never made it to the screen.

Full Review… | February 8, 2007
WBAI Web Radio

Lord of War has a surreal edge, despite being enmeshed in world events, with absurdity and dark humor laced throughout.

September 27, 2006
Christianity Today

Una película frívola y superficial sobre un tema serio e importante como el tráfico de armas. Entretiene, pero como denuncia cínica se queda corta.

Full Review… | September 13, 2006
Uruguay Total

The movie's too flippant for good drama and not funny enough for satire, but the morbidly fascinating subject and Cage's reptilian performance hold our interest.

Full Review… | May 12, 2006
Sacramento News & Review

Impressive performances, fascinating info-bytes and pertinent editorial, but in the end, it feels too much like an illustrated lecture.

Full Review… | April 1, 2006
Empire Magazine

The film's approach to violence is unflinching: this is what poor people are doing to each other with the guns the West sells them, it screams -- but there's no suggestion it might be stopped, or slowed.

Full Review… | February 17, 2006
Sydney Morning Herald

The film is totally engaging, even though not always on an emotional level; there are so many issues striding through the screenplay it's hard to relate too closely to Yuri, although there are moments.

Full Review… | February 12, 2006
Urban Cinefile

Unlike most Hollywood movies being made today, Lord of War actually has something to say even though it goes about saying it clumsily . . .

February 8, 2006
SA Movie & DVD Magazine

Niccol seems to have bitten off more than he can chew here, substituting feverishness for character development...

Full Review… | January 28, 2006
Reel Film Reviews

The high point is Niccol's script, which turns weighty subject matter into dark comedy.

Full Review… | January 27, 2006

This film entertained me throughout, but it also provided me with a truly insightful look at the amoral world of trading man-killers.

Full Review… | December 23, 2005
JoBlo's Movie Emporium

O anti-herói complexo oferece ao brilhante roteiro a oportunidade de analisar, de forma inventiva e fascinante, o mercado negro (abastecido por grandes governos) das armas de fogo.

December 20, 2005
Cinema em Cena

Audience Reviews for Lord of War


Directors Cat
Directors Cat

Super Reviewer

Nicolas Cage is the worst actor ever.

Christian C

Super Reviewer


An criative and intelligent, Lord of War is an interesting view to the world of weapons dealers, dispite some scenes look poorly wrote and that the writer/director Andrew Niccol could present much more better his talent. Anyway, Lord of War become one of the few films that I really liked with Nicolas Cage. Fresh.

Lucas Martins
Lucas Martins

Super Reviewer

Nicolas Cage is an arms dealer who is at the top of his profession but when he wants to give it up, but it's not that easy.

Candy Rose

Super Reviewer

Lord of War Quotes

Yuri Orlov: There are only two tragedies in life. One is not getting what you want, the other is getting it.
– Submitted by Dann M (2 years ago)
Yuri Orlov: They say, 'Evil prevails when good men fail to act.' What they oughta say is, 'Evil prevails.'
– Submitted by Dann M (2 years ago)
Yuri Orlov: Often, the most barbaric atrocities occur when both combatants proclaim themselves 'freedom fighters.'
– Submitted by Dann M (2 years ago)
Yuri Orlov: That's the trouble with falling in love with a dream girl. They have a habit of becoming real.
– Submitted by Dann M (2 years ago)
Yuri Orlov: You can't force someone to fall in love with you, but you can definitely improve your odds.
– Submitted by Dann M (2 years ago)
Yuri Orlov: You know who's going to inherit the Earth? Arms dealers. Because everyone else is too busy killing each other. That's the secret to survival. Never go to war, especially with yourself.
– Submitted by Daniel K (2 years ago)

Discussion Forum

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