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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.
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16 Blocks is the best of this trio [of recent crooked cop movies, including Dirty and Running Scared], thanks to the winning performances of its stars -- a restrained Bruce Willis and a very likable Mos Def.
While 16 Blocks may be two blocks and three left-hand turns too long, it's still one sturdy cop thriller, filled with grit, corruption, action and redemption and fueled by strong performances from Bruce Willis, Mos Def and David Morse.
This is a sturdy little cop thriller, and even when it stretches the bounds of plausibility, you go with it, partly because you believe -- almost against your better judgment -- in what the characters are doing.
The bedrock of the plot is the dogged determination of the Bruce Willis character. Jack may be middle-aged, he may be tired, he may be balding, he may be a drunk, but if he's played by Bruce Willis you don't want to bet against him.
This action-thriller is so predictable that you probably could outline the plot after watching a 30-second TV spot. But it's so entertaining you won't budge from your seat until the final bullet has flown.
It goes from one implausible situation and hail of bullets to the next outlandish moment and more gunfire. There are also moments of extreme, flat dullness -- those generally being the moments when Def isn't talking.
Idiotic, for sure, but what saves 16 Blocks is Richard Donner's slick direction and the occasional flash of humor you get in most Bruce Willis flicks, whether it's in the script or not. He can scarcely say a line without smirking.
It's a small movie trying to seem epic, or a bloated monster trying to seem lean (real B movies don't have 14 producers), but it's clear that at 99 minutes, 16 Blocks should've been at least 20 minutes shorter still.