The Recruit - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

The Recruit Reviews

February 12, 2003
Here I suspected the ultimate villain almost from the very beginning -- and, if I wasn't fooled, I can't imagine anyone else will be, either.
February 5, 2003
The Recruit weighs in like a porous brick of recycled polypropylene.
February 3, 2003
I liked all those set pieces where they set up these elaborate schemes, and you're not sure who the good guy is, and the bad guy.
February 1, 2003
A conjurer's trick that delights for about an hour, then spirals into idiocy.
January 31, 2003
A compelling, if throwaway, drama.
January 31, 2003
It's nothing but style and noise, threadbare of content, empty of ideas.
January 31, 2003
The Recruit manages to be almost utterly without innovation apart from its heroic determination to make matinee idol material out of a spy agency that pioneered the process of extra-legal bureaucratic sociopathology known as 'black ops.'
Full Review | Original Score: 1/5
January 31, 2003
The Recruit feels like a training exercise, for a star who's still in the making.
Read More | Original Score: 2/4
January 31, 2003
Unfolds more like a 100-minute game of Gotcha! than a conventional spy drama, and, depending on your tolerance for such things, this will either thrill or bore you.
Read More | Original Score: 2.5/4
January 31, 2003
The Recruit falters after it leaves the Farm, throwing in unbelievable plot devices and losing its high-wire tension.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
January 31, 2003
An entertaining ride.
Read More | Original Score: 3/4
January 31, 2003
It's hard to tell which brand of coffee they're plugging in The Recruit but they sure drink a lot of it. Which is a good thing. A vicarious caffeine buzz is better than nothing, and you're going to need something to keep you awake.
Read More | Original Score: 2/4
January 31, 2003
Although The Recruit isn't Len Deighton or Robert Ludlum, it is enjoyable until the screenwriters develop a collective brain cramp.
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/4
January 31, 2003
This is Donaldson's third thriller set amid Washington's powerful. They've all been winners -- smart, taut and more satisfying than anyone has a right to expect.
Read More | Original Score: B+
January 31, 2003
The Recruit is serviceable spy fodder made a great guilty pleasure by Pacino's 'OK, no Oscar here, let's have some fun' performance.
Read More | Original Score: B-
January 31, 2003
The foreshadowing is a bit heavy-handed, but the writers and director largely manage the tension and mystery tactfully.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
January 31, 2003
A serviceable spy thriller that stumbles over one too many plot twists, one too many shots of its hero typing desperately at his computer, and a romantic subplot that's nice to look at but awfully silly.
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/4
January 31, 2003
It's the kind of movie you can sit back and enjoy, as long as you don't make the mistake of thinking too much.
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/4
January 31, 2003
The Recruit adds little to the already overworked espionage genre, but it completes its mission, working quietly and stealthily, without drawing too much attention to itself.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
January 31, 2003
Beyond the opening frames, the whole movie has an altogether musty odour, as if those up-to-the-minute lines had simply been tacked on to a mothballed script.
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/4
January 31, 2003
The Recruit may have a storyline as generic as its title, but in the explosive Pacino and the smoldering Farrell, it has a pair of stars who are not as easily dismissed.
Read More | Original Score: 2.5/4
January 31, 2003
In this tepid spy thriller, everything is pretty much what you would expect.
Read More | Original Score: 3/5
January 30, 2003
A less-than-middling melodrama whose subject matter and talent never click as much as its credits portend.
Read More | Original Score: 2/4
January 30, 2003
Preposterous CIA thriller.
January 30, 2003
Everything else in The Recruit may be tiresomely predictable, but [Pacino], at least, is not.
Read More | Original Score: 2/5
January 30, 2003
Probably better than anyone else working today, Donaldson knows how to knit a thriller. Each time you think this taut yarn is about to unravel, that's when he pulls the wool over your eyes.
Read More | Original Score: 3/4
January 30, 2003
Fun but make few demands on moviegoers.
Read More | Original Score: 4/5
January 30, 2003
The Recruit is little more than a fairy tale, one in which the prince gets to shoot the ball to smithereens.
Full Review | Original Score: 2/5
January 30, 2003
We've seen movies like The Recruit before, but this one is fun.
Full Review | Original Score: B-
January 30, 2003
The Recruit may not bring anything new to the spy genre, but it passes the test as entertainment.
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/4
January 30, 2003
Colin Farrell's wild-eyed intensity manages to cover, for a good long time, the fact that the film's plot is going nowhere.
January 30, 2003
The Recruit is not a bad film, it's just not a very good one.
January 30, 2003
While The Recruit is fast and slick enough to carry us along during its setup scenes, the screenplay isn't witty or tricky enough to sustain the payoff.
Read More | Original Score: 2.5/4
January 30, 2003
You've seen this before, but probably not done this well.
Read More | Original Score: B
January 23, 2003
For more than an hour, The Recruit is slickly entertaining escapism that deftly plays into common fantasies about what training to be a CIA op might be like.
January 21, 2003
The top-billed Al Pacino and Colin Farrell bring plenty of emotional oomph to their shallow and routine characters, but audiences may find these spy games somewhat disappointing.
January 16, 2003
A CIA thriller that plays some very tricky and entertaining spy games.
Full Review | Original Score: B+