Altered States - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

Altered States Reviews

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Nick Schager
Lessons of Darkness
July 23, 2010
As the proceedings briskly fly, the silliness of the entire endeavor becomes more readily apparent.
Full Review | Original Score: C+
Jake Euker
F5 (Wichita, KS)
July 29, 2005
Read More | Original Score: 1/5
Matt Brunson
Creative Loafing
August 8, 2012
The film's too aggressively enjoyable to be completely dismissed, though the ending is risible -- I preferred it when this finale was later reconfigured and reused in a-ha's music video for "Take On Me."
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/4
Marjorie Baumgarten
Austin Chronicle
March 10, 2003
An uneasy blend of the extreme visuals of director Ken Russell and the bloated dramaturgy of writer Paddy Chayefsky.

TV Guide
June 6, 2007
[Director Russell] fails to bring any clarity to the silly affair.
Full Review | Original Score: 2/4

People Magazine
August 16, 2014
No character -- including William Hurt in the central role -- is even vaguely likable, and the mawkish ending is a laugh. In the Russell tradition, there are brilliant flashes on an overwrought trip to nowhere.
Top Critic
Jennifer Selway
Time Out
June 24, 2006
[Director] Russell's noisily grandiose swipe at psychedelia embellishes what is no more than the cosily familiar story of the obsessive Scientist Who Goes Too Far and Unwittingly Unleashes, etc.
Simon Miraudo
May 29, 2013
Dynamite stylistic flourishes approximate the experience of taking mescaline with the Mad Hatter.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/5
Philip Martin
Arkansas Democrat-Gazette
May 19, 2003
Read More | Original Score: 3/5
Top Critic
Roger Ebert
Chicago Sun-Times
October 23, 2004
I was overwhelmed, I was caught up in its headlong energy.
Full Review | Original Score: 3.5/4
Alan Jones
Radio Times
August 16, 2014
Russell's razzle-dazzle hallucinogenic style certainly hits bullseye.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/5
Michael Szymanski
September 23, 2005
| Original Score: 4/5
James Rocchi
November 7, 2002
Altered States is much more a film of image and idea than narrative or character, but they're pretty compelling images and ideas, and Hurt is great.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/5
Scott Weinberg
July 25, 2002
Trippy, odd and more than a mite inaccessible, but you sure as heck won't be bored.
| Original Score: 3.5/5
Cole Smithey
December 8, 2006
| Original Score: 4/5
Top Critic
Variety Staff
June 6, 2007
Direction by Ken Russell has energy to spare, with appropriate match-up of his baroque visual style to special effects intensive material.
Jon Fortgang
August 16, 2014
Like much of Russell's work, Altered States is ostentatious and pretentious yet genuinely engaged with ideas and style.
Jeffrey Westhoff
Northwest Herald (Crystal Lake, IL)
February 3, 2003
| Original Score: 3/5
Frederic and Mary Ann Brussat
Spirituality and Practice
January 29, 2004
Altered States explores the human drive to leave the body behind, to be born again, and to experience in the mind things that were once thought divine.
Dennis Schwartz
Ozus' World Movie Reviews
July 7, 2010
Visually dazzling loopy drug film.
Full Review | Original Score: B
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