Haywire Reviews

Top Critic
David Edelstein
New York Magazine/Vulture
January 8, 2013
Steven Soderbergh continues his occasional practice of using actors as found objects in his perfectly enjoyable formula action-thriller Haywire.
Top Critic
Rafer Guzman
Newsday
January 8, 2013
Mixed martial-arts star Carano puts major muscle, if minor acting ability, into this enjoyable action flick.
Top Critic
David Denby
New Yorker
January 24, 2012
Carano is strong, fast, relentless. She's not much of an actress yet, but Soderbergh hides her weaknesses well...
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J. R. Jones
Chicago Reader
January 23, 2012
There's a good deal of pleasure to be had in the clockwork precision of her hand-to-hand combat, which Soderbergh often shoots in profile to showcase her wall-climbing backflips.
Top Critic
Eric D. Snider
Film.com
January 21, 2012
Carano is nothing special as an actress - but darned if it matters when she's supported by a killer screenplay, a sharp cast, and Steven Soderbergh's unmistakably sly, mordant direction.
Full Review | Original Score: A-
Top Critic
Stephen Whitty
Newark Star-Ledger
January 20, 2012
If "Mission: Impossible - Ghost Protocol" was a fancy top-shelf cocktail, this is Polish vodka, neat.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
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Alonso Duralde
TheWrap
January 20, 2012
Like The Limey, also written by Haywire scribe Lem Dobbs, it's the kind of film that hearkens back to lean-and-mean revenge movies like Get Carter and Point Blank.
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Dana Stevens
Slate
January 20, 2012
Though Carano isn't without a certain glowering charisma, her flat line readings and apparent discomfort with dialogue-heavy exchanges make her seem like a refugee from a different, schlockier movie...
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Liam Lacey
Globe and Mail
January 20, 2012
Hand it to a wily indie veteran like Soderbergh to find a fresh twist to an old genre: The fighting isn't faked, but the acting is.
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/4
Top Critic
Adam Graham
Detroit News
January 20, 2012
"Haywire" isn't a by-the-numbers action vehicle, it's a crafty thriller that works to undo beat-em-up clichés. In short, it's a livewire.
Full Review | Original Score: B
Top Critic
Ann Hornaday
Washington Post
January 20, 2012
"Haywire" stays true to its low-rent B-movie principles, right down to the fast, strong and quietly competent heroine at its center.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
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Kyle Smith
New York Post
January 20, 2012
'Haywire" is a wannabe, or rather a wanna-B, and that B is for "Bourne."
Full Review | Original Score: 2/4
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Claudia Puig
USA Today
January 19, 2012
A vigorous spy thriller that consistently beckons the viewer to catch up with its narrative twists and turns. Bordering on convoluted, it works best when in combat mode.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
Top Critic
Andrew O'Hehir
Salon.com
January 19, 2012
"Haywire" is a lean, clean production, shot and edited by Soderbergh himself and utterly free of the incoherent action sequences and overcooked special effects that plague similarly scaled Hollywood pictures.
Top Critic
Mick LaSalle
San Francisco Chronicle
January 19, 2012
You don't love movies if the sight of Gina Carano beating up every guy in sight doesn't make you laugh, get happy and feel as if you're getting your money's worth.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
Top Critic
January 19, 2012
As with any great action movie, what we're really here to see is the star showing off whatever skills got them on screen to begin with. And Haywire never disappoints.
Full Review | Original Score: 8/10
Top Critic
Chris Vognar
Dallas Morning News
January 19, 2012
"I don't wear the dress," explains Mallory Kane as she ponders the details of her next job. If she did, she'd probably strangle someone with it.
Full Review | Original Score: B+
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Betsy Sharkey
Los Angeles Times
January 19, 2012
Watching Carano kick, spin, flip, choke, crack and crush the fiercest of foes - mostly men about twice her size - is thoroughly entertaining, highly amusing and frankly somewhat awe-inspiring.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/5
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Wesley Morris
Boston Globe
January 19, 2012
The pleasure of this small, eccentric movie is the natural way Carano hurts people - by, say, walking partway up a wall and climbing onto a man's back, by sprinting toward the camera and flying into the human target standing in the foreground.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
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Joe Morgenstern
Wall Street Journal
January 19, 2012
There's no deeper meaning to Steven Soderbergh's thriller than what meets the eye, yet its lustrous surfaces offer great and guilt-free pleasure.
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Steven Rea
Philadelphia Inquirer
January 19, 2012
From start to finish, serious fun.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
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Colin Covert
Minneapolis Star Tribune
January 19, 2012
While she can't out-act Angelina Jolie, Carano definitely looks comfortable onscreen. And she's a lot more credible kicking butt.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
Top Critic
Richard Corliss
TIME Magazine
January 19, 2012
Carano is her own best stuntwoman, but in the dialogue scenes she's all kick and no charisma. The MMA battler lacks the conviction she so forcefully displayed in the ring. She is not Haywire's heroine but its hostage.
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Joe Neumaier
New York Daily News
January 19, 2012
Carano is cool and in control, even after running, in real time, several blocks and pummeling a guy in an alley. But "Haywire," clean and no-fuss as it is, needs more action scenes to match Carano's game.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/5
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A.O. Scott
New York Times
January 19, 2012
It is self-consciously and aggressively trivial, a feast for formalists who sentimentalize the gloriously cheap B-movies of the past.
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/5
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Peter Travers
Rolling Stone
January 19, 2012
Haywire comes close to achieving Soderbergh's goal of creating "a Pam Grier movie made by Alfred Hitchcock."
Full Review | Original Score: 3.5/4
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Michael Phillips
Chicago Tribune
January 19, 2012
Carano may not be a born or a natural actress; she is, however, an undeniable and heartening rebuke to the skinny-Minnies Hollywood favors over real women with curves.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
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Roger Ebert
Chicago Sun-Times
January 19, 2012
Carano is wonderfully athletic, which is just as well, because she spends most of the film being wonderful athletic.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
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Moira MacDonald
Seattle Times
January 19, 2012
Right up to the film's comically abrupt ending, it's all about Mallory's strength, speed and uncanny ability to survive. A dismissive cop, early on, refers to her as "Wonder Woman"; turns out he's not kidding.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
Top Critic
Scott Tobias
AV Club
January 19, 2012
It's [Dobbs] and Soderbergh's idea of lizard-brain entertainment, and its pleasures are remarkably distilled.
Full Review | Original Score: A-
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Peter Howell
Toronto Star
January 19, 2012
Haywire is really just a vehicle for Carano to demonstrate her action chops, which she does with a vengeance, set to David Holmes' buoyant and badass score.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
Top Critic
Christy Lemire
Associated Press
January 18, 2012
"Haywire" feels like minor Soderbergh: zippy, hugely entertaining and well-crafted as always, but not one of his more important films in the broad scheme of things.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
Top Critic
Richard Roeper
Richard Roeper.com
January 18, 2012
'Haywire' is a pulse-pounding and fast-moving thriller.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/5
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Lisa Schwarzbaum
Entertainment Weekly
January 18, 2012
Carano projects an intriguing aura in her dramatic-acting debut - part smoky, dark-haired sexuality, part bruiser, with an uninflected alto voice that cuts through crap.
Full Review | Original Score: B-
Top Critic
Bill Goodykoontz
Arizona Republic
January 18, 2012
Soderbergh plays with the action genre by planting a real fighter in the role of butt-kicking protagonist, and Carano rises to the challenge.
Full Review | Original Score: 3.5/5
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Rene Rodriguez
Miami Herald
January 18, 2012
Once you get over the novelty of watching mixed martial arts fighter Gina Carano beat up her male co-stars, the film has practically nothing else to offer.
Full Review | Original Score: 2/4
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James Berardinelli
ReelViews
January 18, 2012
This is not "great" Soderbergh, regardless of whether one considers him as an auteur or a mass market entertainer. But it is "good" Soderbergh, and that's more than enough.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
Top Critic
Nick Pinkerton
Village Voice
January 18, 2012
As cartoonish live-action and photorealistic cartoons reign at the multiplex, all but obsoleting the laws of gravity, Haywire puts the impact back into screen violence, brings it back to earth.
Top Critic
Rex Reed
New York Observer
January 17, 2012
The whole point of this time-wasting farrago of idiocy is that women can cut, kick, slash, burn, maim and kill just like men -- and make bad movies that are just as stupid.
Full Review | Original Score: 1/4
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Keith Uhlich
Time Out
January 17, 2012
There's shockingly little thrill in watching Carano bounce off walls and pummel antagonists.
Full Review | Original Score: 2/5
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David Jenkins
Time Out
January 17, 2012
Only Steven Soderbergh could produce a slick, modern, cineliterate deconstruction of the Hollywood action caper that also manages to be a rollicking good ride.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/5
Top Critic
James Rocchi
MSN Movies
January 16, 2012
Haywire doesn't just start 2012 with a bang; it sets the bar very, very high for every action film that's going to follow in its footsteps this year.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/5
Top Critic
Justin Chang
Variety
January 9, 2012
Steven Soderbergh's action-filmmaking chops get a swift, vigorous 92-minute workout in Haywire.
Top Critic
Todd McCarthy
Hollywood Reporter
November 8, 2011
The script makes no attempt to assert its plausibility or realism; it is, instead, refreshingly frank about what it is, a simple, workable framework for the melees and mayhem.