While Stop-Loss is more ambitious and well-crafted than the paint-by-numbers Varsity Blues, these two coming-of-age stories still belong in a similar film category: melodrama
| Original Score: 3/5
Feverish yet bizarrely apolitical, the movie tries to have it both ways and fumbles its outraged and reconciliatory impulses equally
It's more a sweaty assemblage of dramatic high-points than a coherent, persuasive story of wounded warriors trying to make it.
| Original Score: 2.5/4
occasionally seems like an MTV/Varsity Blues pop variation of In the Valley of Elah
| Original Score: 3/5
That Stop-Loss wears its generally good intentions on its camo sleeve doesn't keep it from being consigned to the missed-opportunity file.
| Original Score: 2/4
It strokes every personal ideal, whatever it is, rather than aligning itself with its characters and letting the conclusions arise out of who they are.
The film gets pretty heavy handed in the last third and is weighed down by an inadequate performance.
...more of an artillery based Abercrombie and Fitch road trip than a concise character study.
| Original Score: 2.5/5
Stop-Loss features cartoonish lessons on disillusionment and irksome actors trying to blue-steel the crap out of each other.
| Original Score: D
...road-picture inertia with flashes of overwrought melodrama.
| Original Score: 2/5
Stop Loss was just a big hot mess of a film, that I'm sure will sell well with teenage girls.
After five years of news footage and documentaries coming from the war in Iraq, Stop-Loss is as phony as a re-enactment with finger pup pets.
| Original Score: 1/4
Plays like a homage to '70s and '80s-era Vietnam films, which only underlines how depressing it is that the same kind of human tragedy is still being explored today.
Peirce (with co-writer Mark Richard) also vacillates between earnestness and superficiality, making Stop-Loss too often feel like eye candy with a message.
Stop-Loss can't quite decide whether to focus on making a powerful statement on a controversial and unfamiliar military policy or on a more predictable drama about the traumatic effect of war on young people's lives.
It's one long, angry howl with nary a pause for breath.
| Original Score: 1.5/4
"Stop-Loss" isn't so much a bad film as it is an annoyingly uneven one.
Stop-Loss should have been a thought-provoking drama; instead, the crucial subject of PTSD is lost amidst melodrama and mediocrity.
An incredibly frustrating drama that starts off promisingly, featuring a talented ensemble, but devolves into too much repetitive rhetoric and a predictable non-conclusion.
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