Never Back Down - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

Never Back Down Reviews

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Steve Davis
Austin Chronicle
October 18, 2008
While the character of Jake isn't an emotionally taxing one, Faris has his moments, especially in a low-key scene in which he attempts to explain why his character is full of rage.
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/5
Jeff Bayer
The Scorecard Review
August 27, 2008
Here's what I hoped for: someone to root for, someone to root against, an inspiring coach, some eye candy and, of course, training montages. I got what I wanted.
Full Review | Original Score: 7/10
Matthew Turner
April 3, 2008
Enjoyably trashy teen flick that plays like a dumbed-down version of Fight Club, enlivened by an engaging lead performance by star-in-the-making Sean Faris.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/5
Urban Cinefile Critics
Urban Cinefile
March 28, 2008
The result is an entertaining roller coaster of emotions and actions, with Djimon Hounsou bringing dignity and meaning to his role as Jean, the martial arts coach with his own demons to conquer
Armond White
New York Press
March 19, 2008
Maybe it's just a genre picture, but scene after scene in Never Back Down displays vitality and wit. This is the year's first good-looking and fully enjoyable American movie.
Michelle Alexandria
Eclipse Magazine
March 17, 2008
When I think of tough fighters the first thing I think is Disney World. You can take so much of that place before you want to go and beat the heck out of someone.
Full Review | Original Score: C
Ethan Alter
Film Journal International
March 17, 2008
Compulsively watchable...there's always something viscerally exciting about watching kung fu fighters whaling on each other.
Top Critic
Richard Roeper
Ebert & Roeper
March 17, 2008
I laughed so much at the litany of clichés that I finally had to admit I was entertained from start to finish by this cheesy knock-off.
Tim Cogshell
Boxoffice Magazine
March 17, 2008
Pretty much all of Never Back Down is shot like an episode of Punk'd, with a soundtrack from an MTV2 playlist. Which is all perfectly appropriate and kinda fun.
March 14, 2008
This unlikely hybrid of The Karate Kid and Fight Club is formulaic and derivative, but sufficiently well made to work as both teen-angst melodrama and bone-rattling brawl picture.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
Top Critic
Roger Moore
Orlando Sentinel
March 14, 2008
Even though it's as predictable as a pro-wrestling match, what it lacks in originality it makes up for in the nervous energy of youth and testosterone.
| Original Score: 3/5
Top Critic
Donald Munro
Miami Herald
March 14, 2008
Director Jeff Wadlow finds a sort of nobility in the subject matter than you might not expect for a film that consists in large part of bloodthirsty mobs clamoring for violence.
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/4
Fred Topel
Can Magazine
March 14, 2008
Remember in the '80s when they used to make all those stupid fight movies? Never Back Down is just like that. I was in the mood for a stupid '80s fight movie where fights happen just because we want to see fights.
Top Critic
Stephen Farber
Hollywood Reporter
March 14, 2008
At its core Never Back Down is just another teen exploitation movie, but middle-age viewers who wander into the theater might get the same giddy rush as the kids.
Matt Pais
March 13, 2008
Finally, a movie that tells us what to do actually has something to say.
Full Review | Original Score: 3.5/5
Victoria Alexander
March 12, 2008
High School Fight Club. Discover new star Sean Faris and his homoerotic nemesis Cam Gigandet.
Full Review
Top Critic
Jim Ridley
Village Voice
March 11, 2008
A modest surprise: better acted than needed, better made than expected.
Kam Williams
March 10, 2008
The Karate Kid joins the Fight Club and kicks butt!
Full Review | Original Score: 3.5/4
Staci Layne Wilson
Buzzine Magazine
February 22, 2008
Never Back Down is a compulsory guilty pleasure. Think: Save the Last Dance meets Fight Club meets 8 Mile meets YouTube.
Nell Minow
Movie Mom at Yahoo! Movies
February 14, 2012
Full Review | Original Score: C
Mark Bazer
Boston Phoenix
April 23, 2009
Top Critic

St. Louis Post-Dispatch
October 18, 2008

Baltimore Sun
March 14, 2008
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