The Tomatometer rating – based on the published opinions of hundreds of film and television critics – is a trusted measurement of movie and TV programming quality for millions of moviegoers. It represents the percentage of professional critic reviews that are positive for a given film or television show.
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The Tomatometer is 60% or higher.
The Tomatometer is 59% or lower.
Movies and TV shows are Certified Fresh with a steady Tomatometer of 75% or higher after a set amount of reviews (80 for wide-release movies, 40 for limited-release movies, 20 for TV shows), including 5 reviews from Top Critics.
Percentage of users who rate a movie or TV show positively.
If constructing a thriller could be likened to building a house, then Wes Craven's Red Eye is a perfect piece of architecture: It's clean-lined and soundly structured, without a foot of wasted space or any materials left unused.
The movie turns into a complicated duel that depends on precise observation of physical detail and moment-by-moment continuity so closely calibrated that it's impossible to find a wasted shot or an exaggerated emotion.
After a summer of crashes, bangs, endless chase scenes and special effects that belittle the actors standing in front of them, what a pleasure to see characters in a thriller doing what people like themselves possibly could do.
Rare these days is the thriller that takes its time, allowing us to get comfortable with the characters and the characters to get comfortable with one another before starting the chase or inducing the shocks.
A movie that, like its heroine, is lithe, limber and quick-thinking. Like a triple latte from the airport Starbucks, Red Eye will keep you awake, jittery and perched on the edge of your seat for pretty much the entire flight.
There are enough thrills during the final third to give Red Eye viewers a few of Craven's patented jolts near the end. But it requires forbearance for both a silly script and uneven pacing to get to that point.
Preposterous, to be sure. And the credibility gap only widens as Jack's lethal mission nears its consummation. But by that point, Craven already has us in the palm of his hand, smooth-talking us with a finesse worthy of his dashing villain.
A good measure of the movie's white-knuckle fun comes from Craven's old-hand familiarity with the way thrillers tick, predicated on the smallest and most banal of missed connections, the kind that get an audience to go crazy.