S.W.A.T. Reviews

Top Critic
J. R. Jones
Chicago Reader
May 20, 2008
As summer shoot-'em-ups go, this is pretty well executed, with plenty of macho posing and gunfire.
Top Critic
Jessica Winter
Time Out
February 9, 2006
he high definition SWAT training footage resembles a US Army recruitment ad, appropriate since TV journeyman Johnson imagines downtown LA as an unpatrolled Baghdad, swarming with guntotin' mercenaries pursuing their share of the bounty.
Top Critic
Peter Rainer
New York Magazine/Vulture
August 7, 2004
There is something sneakily gratifying about all this.
Top Critic
Michael Atkinson
Village Voice
August 13, 2003
A rigmarole of stranded clichés and thrill-free action-movie legerdemain.
Top Critic
August 9, 2003
The director, a TV guy named Clark Johnson, doesn't shoot action very well, which is sort of a handicap.
Top Critic
Charles Taylor
Salon.com
August 9, 2003
You can't get mad at it -- except for the two hours of your life it steals from you.
Top Critic
Robert Koehler
Variety
August 8, 2003
Director Clark Johnson strives for realistic detail and action. Unfortunately, such adherence to technical purity proves to be a weakness for the movie.
Top Critic
Mike Clark
USA Today
August 8, 2003
There have been far worse movies this summer, but the best justification for seeing this spinoff of the mid-'70s TV series is if your date or mate is holding you hostage in the theater.
Full Review | Original Score: 2/4
Top Critic
Peter Howell
Toronto Star
August 8, 2003
S.W.A.T. has blockbuster ambitions, but it develops characters and plot at a leisurely pace better suited to the small screen than the big one.
Full Review | Original Score: 2/5
Top Critic
Moira MacDonald
Seattle Times
August 8, 2003
As summer popcorn movies go, you could do worse than S.W.A.T.
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/4
Top Critic
Mick LaSalle
San Francisco Chronicle
August 8, 2003
SWAT is better than Gigli, but so is most outpatient surgery.
Full Review | Original Score: 1/4
Top Critic
Peter Travers
Rolling Stone
August 8, 2003
What we have here is a model for the paint-by -numbers, perfectly generic, proudly soulless summer action flick.
| Original Score: 2/4
Top Critic
Roger Moore
Orlando Sentinel
August 8, 2003
A worn-out yawner of a cop thriller where even the cliches seem to realize how dated they are.
| Original Score: 1/5
Top Critic
Bob Campbell
Newark Star-Ledger
August 8, 2003
Schlocky, slam-bang fun.
Top Critic
Megan Lehmann
New York Post
August 8, 2003
A lifeless trudge through squandered opportunities and god-awful dialogue.
| Original Score: 2/4
Top Critic
Jack Mathews
New York Daily News
August 8, 2003
Fresher popcorn than most of the sequels that have come and gone.
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/4
Top Critic
Rene Rodriguez
Miami Herald
August 8, 2003
S.W.A.T. is a compendium of missed opportunities, uninspired action and clichés so tired, you wish the screenwriters had called 911.
Full Review | Original Score: 1.5/4
Top Critic
Stephen Cole
Globe and Mail
August 8, 2003
A film full of phony swagger and dialogue so awful you hope for once-distracting conversations to break out in the theatre around you.
Full Review | Original Score: 1.5/4
Top Critic
Terry Lawson
Detroit Free Press
August 8, 2003
One of those generic cop-slash-war movies of the Jerry Bruckheimer school -- where men are men and so are the women, where the hardware is fetishized.
Full Review | Original Score: 2/4
Top Critic
Lisa Kennedy
Denver Post
August 8, 2003
Strictly standard issue.
Full Review | Original Score: 2/4
Top Critic
Roger Ebert
Chicago Sun-Times
August 8, 2003
A well-made police thriller.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
Top Critic
Ty Burr
Boston Globe
August 8, 2003
Those who love police overkill, guns, jingoistic race-baiting, guns, macho smugness, and guns will be well served.
Full Review | Original Score: 2/4
Top Critic
Michael O'Sullivan
Washington Post
August 8, 2003
Offers up the kind of pleasures that only a summer movie can.
Top Critic

St. Louis Post-Dispatch
August 8, 2003
Top Critic
Robert Denerstein
Denver Rocky Mountain News
August 8, 2003
The movie has the feel of several episodes of a series that have been jammed into a feature-length helping.
| Original Score: C+
Top Critic
Stephen Hunter
Washington Post
August 8, 2003
While the movie is stupid, it is -- hooray, and let's put this in all the national ads! -- not appallingly stupid.
Top Critic
Elvis Mitchell
New York Times
August 7, 2003
S.W.A.T. is mostly standard-issue muddle.
Full Review | Original Score: 2/5
Top Critic
Colin Covert
Minneapolis Star Tribune
August 7, 2003
An outstanding pulp thriller.
Full Review | Original Score: 3.5/4
Top Critic
Kenneth Turan
Los Angeles Times
August 7, 2003
Though the film's second half has some good action moments, it never fulfills the promise of its earliest scenes.
Full Review | Original Score: 2/5
Top Critic
Eric Harrison
Houston Chronicle
August 7, 2003
An over-amped action film with just enough character shadings and color to make us wish it were better.
Full Review | Original Score: B-
Top Critic
Kirk Honeycutt
Hollywood Reporter
August 7, 2003
A noisy, standard-issue cop actioner.
Top Critic
Chris Vognar
Dallas Morning News
August 7, 2003
A fun way to kill two hours.
Full Review | Original Score: B-
Top Critic
August 7, 2003
One long adrenaline shot that never takes itself seriously and never pauses long enough to worry about making much sense.
Top Critic
Michael Wilmington
Chicago Tribune
August 7, 2003
A big, near-incoherent action thriller best suited for audiences who don't mind being pummeled into submission.
Full Review | Original Score: 1.5/4
Top Critic
Bill Muller
Arizona Republic
August 7, 2003
It's every police movie you've ever seen wrapped into one, done so stiffly that the characters are barely able to bend at the waist to collect their hundreds of spent shell casings.
| Original Score: 2/5
Top Critic
Glenn Lovell
San Jose Mercury News
August 7, 2003
S.W.A.T. proves something of a throwback entertainment in this summer of digital-effects duds. The story couldn't be more cliched or conservative.
| Original Score: 2.5/4
Top Critic
Steven Rea
Philadelphia Inquirer
August 7, 2003
S.W.A.T. is by the numbers, by the book, and, by the way, pretty good.
| Original Score: 3/4
Top Critic
Jan Stuart
Newsday
August 7, 2003
A throbbing dose of high-testosterone schlock in which logic, credibility and characterization also are dispensable in the name of that all-consuming end: keeping things moving.
Full Review | Original Score: 2/4
Top Critic
Scott Foundas
L.A. Weekly
August 7, 2003
A sexed-up recruitment movie that strains to do for cops what Baywatch did for lifeguards.
Top Critic
James Berardinelli
ReelViews
August 7, 2003
A high-octane, brain-dead action picture that happens to feature cops as the characters.
Full Review | Original Score: 2/4
Top Critic
Bob Townsend
Atlanta Journal-Constitution
August 7, 2003
Good cop; bad cop. Bad TV show; bad movie. That about sums up S.W.A.T.
Full Review | Original Score: C
Top Critic
Lisa Schwarzbaum
Entertainment Weekly
August 6, 2003
The way I watch this action thriller is as a field guide to perceived current audience tastes in casting, characters, and storytelling style.
Full Review | Original Score: B
Top Critic
Richard Roeper
Ebert & Roeper
August 4, 2003
This film is proof you can make a pretty exciting cop movie based on a fairly lousy cop TV show.