A History of Violence Reviews

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November 19, 2019
Reveals its hand way too early, and then proceeds to deliver a second hour that left me cold.
March 10, 2006
There's nothing more off-putting than being treated like a guinea pig.
October 27, 2005
... like biting into a sour pickle hidden in the bottom of your ice cream cone... simply fails to deliver what it promises to fulfill another agenda.
October 25, 2005
I have mixed feelings. Cool, engaging, well acted (William Hurt is brilliant). But could have used a bit more shaving in the editing room and a bit messy on point.
October 18, 2005
[David Cronenberg] no doubt wanted to say something profound about the nature of violence, but his approach betrays his intentions.
October 17, 2005
Strangely absorbing but extreme and implausible.
October 17, 2005
Olson should have studied a history of screenwriting before attempting to adapt A History of Violence. One of the most aimless, derivative films to ever be overrated.
October 15, 2005
The plot is really very close to being a 1950s Western plot warmed over. This is a film with good and bad elements, but the good elements I have been familiar in films for almost half a century.
October 7, 2005
It's impossible to recommend a movie that fails at its most basic level, in this case as a thriller.
October 7, 2005
Will go down in film history as an ambitious failure.
October 6, 2005
I know this film is the critics' darling, but this critic is here to tell you, take a pass.
October 6, 2005
The movie never regains the momentum that it had from its promising beginning.
October 2, 2005
Cronenberg denounces violence by celebrating it. That in itself is more troubling than anything he portrays with A History of Violence.
October 1, 2005
A History of Violence is a hollow story from an empty graphic novel. A master -- Canada's David Cronenberg -- has directed it. But all he can do with the material is turn it into a clinic on movie mayhem.
September 29, 2005
With no real heroes, no real lessons and no real resolution, it leaves a lingering sense of 'huh?' But damnit if those exit wounds aren't memorable.
September 29, 2005
The first half of the story -- the one shrouded in doubt -- is much more effective than the second half, which is shrouded in bloodletting.
September 27, 2005
A flawed and unimpressive meditation on violence.
September 23, 2005
The movie is always engaging but not quite convincing.
September 23, 2005
As a history of Cronenberg, it's a good introductory lecture, detailing his careful composition, mastery of unease and complicated thematic interests. As a Cronenberg film though, it's figuratively bloodless, without any real body to it at all.
September 23, 2005
The film has a very good cast and it is an interesting story but it does have an odd pace.
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