Into The Abyss - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

Into The Abyss Reviews

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Peter Bradshaw
March 29, 2012
It's a decent film, though I felt that a clearer, sharper light could have been cast on the defendants themselves.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/5
Robbie Collin
Daily Telegraph (UK)
March 29, 2012
The extensive use of lurid crime scene videos and subtitles set in a naff typewriter font sit uneasily with the director's opposition to capital punishment.
Full Review | Original Score: 2/5
Nigel Andrews
Financial Times
March 29, 2012
When Tolstoy said all unhappy families are unhappy in their own ways, perhaps he was thinking of Texas. But even he reckoned without the rich, extraordinary complexities of unhappiness chronicled in Herzog's film.
Full Review | Original Score: 5/5
James Bramble
Little White Lies
March 29, 2012
Moving and thought-provoking in equal measure. A Herzog doc of the highest order.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/5
Matthew Turner
March 28, 2012
Offers a convincing and depressing critique of capital punishment in the US while somehow managing to find a glimmer of hope in what Herzog calls the urgency of life.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/5
Top Critic
Ben Walters
Time Out
March 27, 2012
The result is gripping, moving and revelatory, an unabashed if implicit critique of the death penalty.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/5
Bill Chambers
Film Freak Central
March 20, 2012
Less a polemic than a sombre sifting-through of the collateral damage that collects in concentric circles around an execution.
Full Review | Original Score: 3.5/4
Kevin Harley
Total Film
March 19, 2012
Herzog's tapestry testifies to life's light from death's darkness.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/5
Philip Concannon
The Skinny
February 23, 2012
Yet another intriguing and surprising film from this ever-fascinating documentarian.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/5
Philip Wilding
Empire Magazine
February 20, 2012
A haunting portrayal of people who are neither completely innocent nor wholly evil, and the terrible price of killing, whether in the pursuit of a sports car or in the name of justice.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/5
Sarah Boslaugh
January 25, 2012
I doubt anyone would give Into the Abyss a second look were it not directed by Werner Herzog.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/10
Duane Dudek
Milwaukee Journal Sentinel
December 15, 2011
An eerie, unsettling and slightly macabre attempt to understand the how and why of three senseless murders in 2001 in Texas.
Full Review | Original Score: 3.5/4
John Beifuss
Commercial Appeal (Memphis, TN)
December 14, 2011
The most memorable image here is the lethal-injection gurney. With its crossbar for the outstretched arms of doomed prisoners, it resembles a padded crucifix -- a ghastly and inelegant parody of a symbol of Christian comfort.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
Philip Martin
Arkansas Democrat-Gazette
December 14, 2011
[Herzog] simply means to show us things as they are - and in this corner of Texas, just north of Houston, things are undeniably violent. And mean.
Full Review | Original Score: 87/100
Jim Slotek
Jam! Movies
December 9, 2011
Into the Abyss makes Herzog's point powerfully, without descending to the level of polemic.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/5
Norman Wilner
NOW Toronto
December 9, 2011
Unlike, say, Errol Morris in The Thin Blue Line, Herzog isn't seeking to exonerate anyone or introduce new evidence. He's just there, observing the process as it rolls forward and wondering why.
| Original Score: 3/5
Top Critic
Peter Howell
Toronto Star
December 9, 2011
Herzog is pursuing no agenda with Into the Abyss, despite his opposition to extreme judicial measures. He's seeking to answer the question of why people kill, especially in a situation such as this where the reason for the murders was so meaningless.
| Original Score: 3/4
Ian Buckwalter
December 8, 2011
Herzog unforgettably shows how when you pull tight the straps on men who've lain down to die, it leaves a mark.
Full Review | Original Score: 8.5/10
Cynthia Fuchs
December 7, 2011
This is the abyss the film shows, the frightening arbitrariness of the death penalty. People are born into poverty and violence by chance, and their fates -- as crime victims or victims of the state -- are also functions of chance.
Ethan Alter
Television Without Pity
December 5, 2011
The director's ability to objectively pursue this line of inquiry makes Into the Abyss a compelling, revealing work of art.
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