Payback Reviews

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Top Critic
April 27, 2012
March 16, 2012
March 16, 2012
November 6, 2002
Demonstrates why Mel Gibson is a movie star: He can take mediocre material and through sheer willpower -- not to mention oodles of charm -- make it work.
June 18, 2002
A higher class of thriller.
March 22, 2002
It quickly slides into a Lethal Weapon without Danny Glover, complete with blowups and wisecracks, gratuitous torture scenes and Gibson in familiar form as the twinkling rascal who makes a virtue out of viciousness.
May 11, 2001
In the popcorn sense, it certainly delivers on mindless escapism. In the artistic sense, let's just say that Payback is a long way from Point Blank.
February 14, 2001
It's undone not so much by the shadow of Lee Marvin falling heavily on it (which it does) as by the twin obstacles of big star image and, more to the point, excessive violence.
January 1, 2000
Sadly, though, Payback finally puts Gibson at the mercy of a torture and sadism sequence so attenuated and so painful to watch that it sabotages the picture's own quite solid instincts for theater, innovation and wit.
January 1, 2000
Its smirking sense of humor and generic self-consciousness suggest that Payback would like to think of itself as a hip descendant of Pulp Fiction. But the movie is utterly devoid of narrative ingenuity and visual and dramatic flair.
January 1, 2000
A sharp and funny script, understated acting, stylish.
January 1, 2000
It's a good, strong shot for fans who like their crime stories rough and no-nonsense.
January 1, 2000
Rehashed Quentin Tarantino or a rusted-out Pinto.
January 1, 2000
One big, ugly chase scene!
January 1, 2000
A mind-mangling disappointment, with a dopey sell-out ending.
January 1, 2000
Morally bankrupt, but it's rich entertainment!
January 1, 2000
Direction is choppy, the interplay between the characters is perfunctory, although not as perfunctory as the unearned ending.
January 1, 2000
Sadism is the film's only real subject, and its only real life as well.
January 1, 2000
This film is riddled with cliches and impossible situations.
January 1, 2000
So generic that it sometimes approaches the self-parody of a Naked Gun movie!
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