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The Tomatometer is 60% or higher.
The Tomatometer is 59% or lower.
The Tomatometer is 75% or higher, with 40 reviews (movies) or 20 reviews (TV). At least 5 reviews from Top Critics.
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The Good: Costner was fantastic. Despite playing an NFL executive, he makes the character easy to relate to and human. He might have a high powered job, but at his core he's a regular guy. Entertaining and dramatic at times, the movie keeps your interest and contains a chuckle or two. Denis Leary, Frank Langella, Chadwick Boseman, Terry Crews, and Jennifer Garner all shine in support roles. Fans of the NFL will enjoy the film with it's jargon and scenarios that they can completely understand.
The Bad: But that's also the downside. Casual fans will be lost and at times bored with the material. Hardcore fans will be disappointed in the lack of true realism and pie in the sky ideals. A touch of Hollywood is to be expected, but far too many things happen that simply would NEVER happen in the actual NFL Draft. Lastly, some of the dramatic elements were dry and didn't add to the film. Costner's family drama and romantic life were sort of crammed into the movie to prevent it from solely being a sports film.
The Good: The cast was outstanding, especially Russell Crowe as Noah. The film goes through several stages of Noah's life and his personality changes throughout. Crowe was more than capable of making that seem realistic and believable. The film's base premise is a man balancing what he believes is right with what is best for humanity. That aspect was interesting and comes to a head late in the final act. Portions of the last 30 minutes are amazing. At it's core, it's also an interesting take on a tale that we all know by heart.
The Bad: It's too long and isn't quite interesting enough to fill the time. The first hour or so is difficult to get through and the last 10 minutes drag on way too long. Some aspects are sort of silly as the film blends historical fiction with sword and sorcery. It doesn't mesh well.
The Good: Johnson, already with a physique larger than life as it is, stands tall throughout the film and is not only an imposing mythical figure, but also pulls it off dramatically. Based on a graphic novel, the story at it's core is a solid one. A more human Hercules whose exploits are the work of tall tales based on real events, was a great idea and piqued my interest. Hercules was not alone though. His cohorts were also well characterized and interesting. I honestly rooted for them and hoped that they all lived. Veteran actors Ian McShane and Rufus Sewell especially stood out as members of Hercules' group of mercenaries. The pair had some of the best lines in the film.
The Bad: Unfortunately, the story falls apart somewhat and becomes overly straight-forward. This is to be expected for this sort of film, but it is a real let down regardless. Obstacles were presented and overcome at lightning speed before they even had time to set in. At times, the film was cheesier than it needed to be and some of the humor simply didn't work. Lastly, the antagonists were cliche characters that we've already seen in other films ... but not as deep or interesting. Hercules deserved better foes to fight. A much better film than I expected, but falls just short of being truly good.