The Tomatometer rating – based on the published opinions of hundreds of film and television critics – is a trusted measurement of movie and TV programming quality for millions of moviegoers. It represents the percentage of professional critic reviews that are positive for a given film or television show.
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The Tomatometer is 60% or higher.
The Tomatometer is 59% or lower.
Movies and TV shows are Certified Fresh with a steady Tomatometer of 75% or higher after a set amount of reviews (80 for wide-release movies, 40 for limited-release movies, 20 for TV shows), including 5 reviews from Top Critics.
Percentage of users who rate a movie or TV show positively.
Although the film delivers the expected action and efficiently jacks up the suspense, longtime devotees of the director will undoubtedly miss the visionary qualities that have long distinguished his work.
Perhaps if [director Herzog] had tossed in a few Chevys that transform into robots, the studio would have given him the cash to make Rescue Dawn definitive, instead of generic, which is the best he manages here.
Herzog shows all of this with a fresh, observant eye. While sadism is a staple of most POW movies, Herzog focuses on the punishing tedium and deprivation of confinement. And filming on location in Thailand gives the film a harshly sensual look.
That such a masterful depiction of American heroism and can-do spirit has been created by a German art film director known for considerably darker visions of obsession is an irony Herzog no doubt finds delicious.
Herzog aims this genre effort at a broader audience than he usually gets, and he does so without losing his soul. It's a remarkably straightforward tale that allows the director to dwell on obsessions familiar to those who know his work.
The canniness of Bale's performance (which may be the best of his young but brilliant career) is that he plays Dengler as a fundamentally kind and simple yet rather ingenious man -- a cross between MacGyver and Candide.
Werner Herzog is finally unveiling the first American narrative feature of his long career. As any Herzog fan would expect, it's an odd and thrilling mixture, and I can't imagine a better Fourth of July present to his adopted country.
[Rescue Dawn] offers its own vision of deprivation but doesn't linger long enough, even mid-jungle, to leave us in the kind of directionless trance that was conjured by Aguirre and Every Man for Himself.
A potentially commercial audience-pleaser that retains all of the characteristic Herzog complexity and nuance, Rescue Dawn is an electrifying action adventure that clamps your nerves with jaws of steel.
[T]he most harrowingly realistic and unsentimentalized P.O.W. film I'd ever seen [...] Nobody will be surprised to learn that Herzog [...] refuses to let Dieter [Dengler's] story be opportunistically exploited for jingoistic propaganda.