The Last Station - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

The Last Station Reviews

Top Critic
Connie Ogle
Miami Herald
March 18, 2010
Literature lasts, but sometimes, The Last Station suggests, the ties that bind last, too.
| Original Score: 3/4
Top Critic
March 2, 2010
Some critics have derided the central performances as scenery-chewing excess, but these Tolstoys are characters who demand histrionics, and Mirren and Plummer are magnificent in delivering on those demands.
Top Critic
Roger Moore
Orlando Sentinel
February 24, 2010
The Last Station is a moving, fictionalized account of a piece of real Russian history, a tour de force for an actor who's in his prime in his 70s and 80s, and a real return to form for a director most at home in period pieces.
| Original Score: 3.5/4
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Trevor Johnston
Time Out
February 19, 2010
Engaging performers all, but the movie's superficial flummery is slightly exasperating when the true-life events would have provided an even richer palette of ideas.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/5
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Joe Williams
St. Louis Post-Dispatch
February 18, 2010
It's rewarding for a film to render rarefied ideas so concretely, but The Last Station works best as a battle of wills between husband and wife.
| Original Score: 3.5/4
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Tom Long
Detroit News
February 12, 2010
Director and writer Michael Hoffman, adapting Jay Parini's novel, lets the history play out, and this little-known chapter plays out nicely indeed.
Full Review | Original Score: B
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Moira MacDonald
Seattle Times
February 11, 2010
Acted beautifully by a cast you never want to take your eyes off, so as not to miss a tiny nuance.
| Original Score: 3/4
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J. R. Jones
Chicago Reader
February 8, 2010
If you come to this expecting the philosophical depth and psychological detail of Tolstoy's work you're sure to be disappointed, but as an actors' romp it's delectable.
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Amy Nicholson
I.E. Weekly
February 5, 2010
Though the cast is fantastic, this won't be the definitive take of the Tolstoys' marriage - but whose could ever be?
Full Review | Original Score: C+
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Ann Hornaday
Washington Post
February 5, 2010
If the operatic emotional pitch ultimately proves unsustainable (not to mention tiresome), the film is full of captivating details.
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/4
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Mick LaSalle
San Francisco Chronicle
February 4, 2010
An actor can be 80 years old, but give him fake whiskers and a pair of heavy boots, and he'll stomp through a two-hour movie like a happy kid.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
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Colin Covert
Minneapolis Star Tribune
February 4, 2010
A fun, sexy romp about the last days of Leo Tolstoy? Believe it.
Full Review | Original Score: 3.5/4
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Carrie Rickey
Philadelphia Inquirer
February 4, 2010
Michael Hoffman's adaptation of the Jay Parini novel is a most affecting look at the twilight of a marriage and how its parties adapt to the dawn of a new era.
Full Review | Original Score: 3.5/4
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Ty Burr
Boston Globe
February 4, 2010
The movie's a chocolate box of nougaty performances, from Christopher Plummer's delightful depiction of Tolstoy as a ribald old naf to Paul Giamatti twirling his waxed mustache and playing to the gallery as Vladimir Chertkov...
Full Review | Original Score: 3.5/4
Top Critic
James Berardinelli
ReelViews
February 4, 2010
Tansforms Tolstoy's waning days into material worthy of one of his tragedies while simultaneously making a biting statement about how the politics of a "movement" often warp the underlying philosophy which caused it to develop.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
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Roger Ebert
Chicago Sun-Times
February 4, 2010
Mirren and Plummer make Leo and Sofya Tolstoy more vital than you might expect in a historical picture.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
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Liam Lacey
Globe and Mail
January 22, 2010
Despite its literary pedigree, this stagy production mixes ribaldry and campy overacting.
Full Review | Original Score: 2.0/4.0
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Peter Rainer
Christian Science Monitor
January 22, 2010
Isn't all that it should be, but whenever these two actors are onscreen, it's like a great night at the theater.
Full Review | Original Score: a-
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Linda Barnard
Toronto Star
January 22, 2010
The story's a bit of a bore, but the cast is terrific.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
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Lou Lumenick
New York Post
January 15, 2010
Helen Mirren outdoes even her Oscar-winning performance in The Queen.
Full Review | Original Score: 3.5/4
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Joe Morgenstern
Wall Street Journal
January 14, 2010
A lovely quicksilver version of literary history, with the accent on young love that emerges unbidden, and old love that endures.
Top Critic
Sam Adams
AV Club
January 14, 2010
Little more than a gilded trifle, though it offers its share of light enjoyments.
Full Review | Original Score: B-
Top Critic
David Edelstein
New York Magazine/Vulture
January 11, 2010
The movie has its evocative moments, but it's so rigged on the side of anti-intellectualism that you'd never guess that Tolstoy's late work inspired Gandhi and Martin Luther King.
Top Critic
Michael Phillips
At the Movies
December 14, 2009
It just feel like a lifeless costume drama.
Top Critic
Rex Reed
New York Observer
December 8, 2009
The arrival of a movie with as much intelligence and artistry as The Last Station should also be accompanied by the sound of trumpets.
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David Denby
New Yorker
December 7, 2009
It's the most emotionally naked work of Mirren's movie career; she gives poetic form to the madness and the violence of commonplace jealousy.
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Elizabeth Weitzman
New York Daily News
December 4, 2009
Though all the actors try to expand their underwritten roles, Mirren is most successful.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/5
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A.O. Scott
New York Times
December 4, 2009
The kind of movie that gives literature a bad name. Not because it undermines the dignity of a great writer and his work, but because it is so self-consciously eager to flaunt its own gravity and good taste.
| Original Score: 2/5
Top Critic
David Ansen
Newsweek
December 4, 2009
The Last Station slides gracefully between comedy and pathos (it aims for tragedy, but doesn't quite get there).
Top Critic
Kenneth Turan
Los Angeles Times
December 3, 2009
For those who enjoy actors who can play it up without ever overplaying their hands, The Last Station is the destination of choice.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/5
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Peter Travers
Rolling Stone
December 3, 2009
Helen Mirren is a lusty, roaring wonder playing, of all things, the long-suffering wife of Russian novelist Leo Tolstoy (Christopher Plummer in peak form).
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
Top Critic
Claudia Puig
USA Today
December 3, 2009
Every second Helen Mirren is on-screen in The Last Station is a study in peerless talent.
Full Review | Original Score: 3.5/4
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Jake Coyle
Associated Press
December 2, 2009
The message is clear, if you didn't get it from the rich acting: This is a film to celebrate nature and life.
Top Critic
Lisa Schwarzbaum
Entertainment Weekly
December 2, 2009
Based on the equally entertaining, erudite novel by Jay Parini and adapted and directed by Michael Hoffman, the movie is at once a hot marital showdown and a cool political debate, a domestic War and Peace.
Full Review | Original Score: B+
Top Critic
Ella Taylor
Village Voice
December 2, 2009
This workmanlike adaptation of Jay Parini's novel about Tolstoy's last days, adapted and directed by Michael Hoffman, settles into a lushly scenic television drama, though with dialogue strangely located somewhere in the 1950s.
Top Critic
Nick Schager
Time Out
December 2, 2009
Michael Hoffman's biopic of Leo Tolstoy's final year filters its historical drama through a turgid coming-of-age experience.
| Original Score: 2/5