Pioneer (2014) - Rotten Tomatoes

Pioneer (2014)

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AUDIENCE SCORE

Critic Consensus: Pioneer boasts strong acting and a throwback conspiracy thriller vibe, but fails to take it far enough -- and is very slow about not getting there.

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This conspiracy thriller is set in the early 80's, the beginning of the Norwegian Oil Boom. Enormous oil and gas deposits are discovered in the North Sea and the authorities aim to bring the oil ashore through a pipeline from depths of 500 meters. A professional diver, Petter, obsessed with reaching the bottom of the Norwegian Sea has the discipline, strength and courage to take on the world's most dangerous mission. But a sudden, tragic accident changes everything. Petter is sent on a perilous journey where he loses sight of who's pulling the strings. Gradually he realizes that he is in way over his head and that his life is at stake. (C) Magnolia

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Critic Reviews for Pioneer

All Critics (42) | Top Critics (12)

Director Erik Skjoldbjærg (Insomnia) makes excellent use of the high-tech, low-glamour world he depicts, and manages an ending that is happy without being farcically so.

December 26, 2014 | Rating: 3/5 | Full Review…
San Diego Reader
Top Critic

Skjoldbjaerg is unable to make us care as much as we should, and gives the film a kind of muddy look that translates directly into the viewer's mood.

December 18, 2014 | Rating: 2/4 | Full Review…
San Francisco Chronicle
Top Critic

"Pioneer" has the necessary parts for a finger-pointing thriller that could boil the blood if handled well. Alas, this story of workers wounded by corrupt oil industrialists and politicians sinks from drawn-out scenes and too few surprises.

December 5, 2014 | Rating: 2/5 | Full Review…
New York Daily News
Top Critic

Remember this name: Aksel Hennie. If "Pioneer," a mixed bag of a conspiracy thriller, works at all, it largely does so because of him.

December 5, 2014 | Rating: 2.5/4 | Full Review…
RogerEbert.com
Top Critic

A brooding psychological drama where everything that happens is open to multiple interpretations and figuring out who if anyone is on your side gets harder and harder to do.

December 4, 2014 | Full Review…
Los Angeles Times
Top Critic

Mr. Skjoldbjaerg, who also tapped Norwegian history with his bank robbery re-enactment "Nokas," doesn't convey a creeping atmosphere of moral rot so much as an irksome glumness.

December 4, 2014 | Full Review…
New York Times
Top Critic

Audience Reviews for Pioneer

½

Despite Lang and Bentley being in the film, be forewarned -- the film is at least 75% in Norwegian with English language lines thrown in for atmosphere. This is not even close to Bentley's best work, although he's not really given an opportunity to shine. The acting is a bit above average, but nothing is noteworthy. The premise of the film should have spawned a more suspenseful story, and it likely would have in the hands of a different director. As it is, the film is only marginally more exciting than a slow-burn LeCarre film. The film's good, but its potential has been squandered.

Christian C
Christian C

Super Reviewer

Strange how a movie can be good, but still bore the freaking crap out of you. Well made, well acted, ugly to look at.

Nicki Marie
Nicki Marie

Super Reviewer

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