The Lookout - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

The Lookout Reviews

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Roger Moore
Orlando Sentinel
May 13, 2009
Frank has cooked up an interesting moral dilemma for a character ill-equipped to deal with one. Chris has made one big mistake. Is he up for another?
| Original Score: 3/5
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Amy Simmons
Time Out
November 1, 2007
Forgettable fun.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/6
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Scott Tobias
AV Club
March 31, 2007
The Lookout's thriller elements could stand to be more surprising, but they're ultimately in service of a better understanding of the characters. Usually, it's the other way around.
| Original Score: B+
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David Fear
Time Out
March 31, 2007
There's nothing here you haven't seen before, and even the pleasant hum of a well-tuned engine begins to drone a little.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/6
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Joe Morgenstern
Wall Street Journal
March 30, 2007
A straight-ahead drama, perfectly accessible though psychologically intricate, coupled shrewdly to a crime thriller.
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Claudia Puig
USA Today
March 30, 2007
The movie is sometimes deliberately paced, then intensifies at unlikely moments, artfully blending pulse-stopping, nerve-jangling suspense with sharp dialogue and nuanced portrayals.
| Original Score: 3.5/4
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Peter Howell
Toronto Star
March 30, 2007
This is Scott Frank's first feature as a director, and it speaks of more good things to come.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
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Moira MacDonald
Seattle Times
March 30, 2007
Gordon-Levitt finds something heartbreaking behind Chris' blankness; you can almost watch, on his face, memory quietly draining away. Quietly flavored with sad resignation, it's a performance that's remarkable for what isn't there.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
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Ruthe Stein
San Francisco Chronicle
March 30, 2007
Although filmmaker Scott Frank is unable to sustain the initial intensity, he does a credible job of not signaling where the story is heading and ramps up excitement with a number of unexpected twists and turns.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
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Steven Rea
Philadelphia Inquirer
March 30, 2007
A fine, slow-building affair.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
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Stephen Whitty
Newark Star-Ledger
March 30, 2007
[Writer-director Scott] Frank isn't afraid to kill off one sympathetic character, or have another simply disappear. And unlike other writers-turned-directors, he's not afraid of his own camera, either.
| Original Score: 2.5/4
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Kyle Smith
New York Post
March 30, 2007
Instead of a funny heist flick or a comedy with thrills, [writer Scott Frank] sketches out a gentle sine wave of a movie. It oscillates from not very funny to not very thrilling without ever being in a hurry to get where it's going.
| Original Score: 2/4
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Jack Mathews
New York Daily News
March 30, 2007
Though The Lookout is eventually a genre film, with a tense, bang-up ending, it is also a thoughtful study of a young man trying to make sense of a world that he is having to learn all over again.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
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Tom Long
Detroit News
March 30, 2007
An entertaining heist flick with some real emotional heft at its center and a series of plot curves that mix the unique and familiar. The Lookout is a must-see.
Full Review | Original Score: B+
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Terry Lawson
Detroit Free Press
March 30, 2007
A smart, tense small-town film noir that manages to be suspenseful and poignant.
| Original Score: 3/4
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Robert Denerstein
Denver Rocky Mountain News
March 30, 2007
Scott's script feels as economical and focused as an entry in Chris' diary, and it provides the framework for a thriller that, for the most part, has been hard-boiled to near perfection.
| Original Score: B+
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Lisa Kennedy
Denver Post
March 30, 2007
A solid debut. [Writer-director Scott] Frank never overpowers this at-times familiar material. Aiming for a film that's character-driven, he gets sharp performances that hold promise for the nascent director.
| Original Score: 2.5/4
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Roger Ebert
Chicago Sun-Times
March 30, 2007
From that opening sequence to an ending that's satisfying without being overly sentimental, The Lookout is utterly engrossing. I loved this movie.
| Original Score: 4/4
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Stephanie Zacharek
Salon.com
March 30, 2007
A sure-footed, restrained picture, in which the characters are allowed to drive the action -- not the other way around.
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Ty Burr
Boston Globe
March 30, 2007
A modestly effective thriller about a lost boy who falls in with a nasty pack of bank robbers, The Lookout promises minor pleasures and delivers them.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
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Matt Zoller Seitz
New York Times
March 30, 2007
Most impressive of all is Mr. Gordon-Levitt, who is convincing as one of cinema's most difficult archetypes: the reactive protagonist whose complex emotions are visible to the viewer but invisible to his fellow characters.
| Original Score: 4/5
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Kenneth Turan
Los Angeles Times
March 29, 2007
An effective homage to the kind of small-scale thrillers we never forget. We can't avoid knowing where The Lookout is headed, but we are so deep inside its characters' heads that we wouldn't want to go anywhere else.
Full Review | Original Score: 4.5/5
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J. R. Jones
Chicago Reader
March 29, 2007
Sleekly tooled but eminently forgettable.
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Peter Rainer
Christian Science Monitor
March 29, 2007
[Director Scott] Frank wrote the film adaptations of Elmore Leonard's Out of Sight and Get Shorty, and at times he seems to be trying for a similar tough-tender tone. But the material here is more fragile than Leonard's, more touchy-feely.
Full Review | Original Score: B+
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Colin Covert
Minneapolis Star Tribune
March 29, 2007
Cinematographer Alar Kivilo supplies a mundane winter-gray look that underscores the story's chilling tone. The Lookout begs to be seen by anyone who enjoys falling under the spell of a good thriller.
| Original Score: 3.5/4
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Ann Hornaday
Washington Post
March 29, 2007
The dour, downbeat story eventually spirals into grisly Grand Guignol and contrivance.
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Michael Phillips
Chicago Tribune
March 29, 2007
Small but satisfying, and you're pleased to find yourself in the company of a writer who knows what he's doing, doesn't showboat yet doesn't turn to stone, and plays straight into the tangy strengths of his script.
| Original Score: 3/4
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Ella Taylor
L.A. Weekly
March 29, 2007
Funny, tender and littered with elegantly written characters played by actors cast for goodness of fit rather than star wattage.
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Jan Stuart
Newsday
March 29, 2007
Character nuance and sly wit trump plot novelty in this immensely satisfying suspense drama.
| Original Score: 4/4
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Eleanor Ringel Gillespie
Atlanta Journal-Constitution
March 29, 2007
The sort of thing all movie lovers should be on the lookout for -- an early-spring sleeper, deftly played and smartly written.
| Original Score: B+
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Owen Gleiberman
Entertainment Weekly
March 28, 2007
Joseph Gordon-Levitt, as a fellow who has suffered serious head trauma, comes up with such a moody Method assemblage of twitches, tics, and guilty Memento mannerisms that he's not much fun to watch.
Full Review | Original Score: C
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James Berardinelli
ReelViews
March 28, 2007
I left the theater entertained but not fully satisfied.
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/4
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Robert Wilonsky
Village Voice
March 27, 2007
Gordon-Levitt's worth the admission all by his lonesome. He's that good - the proverbial young man with an old soul who brings unexpected depth, complexity, and sincerity to what could have been just another damaged-guy role. He's the one to look out for.
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Christy Lemire
Associated Press
March 27, 2007
The Lookout may look like just another bank heist caper, but it's actually a beautifully drawn character drama, and the rare film that manages to balance subtlety with suspense.
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David Edelstein
New York Magazine/Vulture
March 26, 2007
Frank's writing is razor-sharp, his filmmaking whistle-clean.
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Peter Travers
Rolling Stone
March 24, 2007
In a knockout directing debut, Frank cooks up his own mischief. The web he spins will pull you in. Guaranteed.
| Original Score: 3.5/4
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Richard Roeper
Ebert & Roeper
March 20, 2007
Every once in a while it's my great privilege to see a small film that strikes me as an instant masterpiece.
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John DeFore
Hollywood Reporter
March 14, 2007
Out of Sight scribes slides nicely into director's chair with darker crime tale.
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Andrew O'Hehir
Salon.com
March 13, 2007
Fueled by yet another terrific performance from Joseph Gordon-Levitt, it's a curiously satisfying genre picture, with all the tight plotting and meticulous character building you'd expect from the writer of Out of Sight.
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Joe Leydon
Variety
March 12, 2007
A stealthy neo-noir drama that isn't afraid to take its time developing characters on the way to the payoff of a neatly designed caper scenario.