Stop-Loss - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

Stop-Loss Reviews

Top Critic
Jessica Winter
Time Out
April 25, 2008
It's the film equivalent of a weary shrug - capturing the national mood at a moment when we'd all prefer some mood enhancers.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/6
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Amy Nicholson
I.E. Weekly
March 31, 2008
Stop-Loss misses emotional beats and hammers home its frustration; yet in a week where we've lost our 4,000th soldier, its impatience is a virtue.
Full Review | Original Score: B
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David Denby
New Yorker
March 31, 2008
Stop-Loss is not a great movie, but it's forceful, effective, and alive, with the raw, mixed-up emotions produced by an endless war -- a time when the patriotism of military families is in danger of being exploited beyond endurance.
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David Edelstein
New York Magazine/Vulture
March 31, 2008
The power of Stop-Loss -- and this is no dumb joke -- is that it shows its hero between Iraq and a hard place.
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Richard Roeper
Ebert & Roeper
March 31, 2008
[A] very worthy film.
Top Critic
Joanne Kaufman
Wall Street Journal
March 28, 2008
Swamped by clichés, continuity problems, stock characters and very good intentions.
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Claudia Puig
USA Today
March 28, 2008
Stop-Loss can't quite decide whether to focus on making a powerful statement on a controversial and unfamiliar military policy or on a more predictable drama about the traumatic effect of war on young people's lives.
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/4
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Philip Marchand
Toronto Star
March 28, 2008
The movie is a gripping but very limited view of their lives.
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/4
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Richard Schickel
TIME Magazine
March 28, 2008
As a nation, we owe them more than they owe us -- as this painfully necessary and heartfelt movie makes abundantly clear.
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Moira MacDonald
Seattle Times
March 28, 2008
Though it's no Boys Don't Cry, there's something about Stop-Loss that haunts you: Peirce has an uncanny way of catching the fierce light in her actors' eyes.
Read More | Original Score: 3/4
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Mick LaSalle
San Francisco Chronicle
March 28, 2008
Clearly, Peirce's motives are pure. She's not using the 'stop-loss' issue as a wedge to make the government or the administration look bad. She's using it to dramatize an injustice and to advocate on behalf of the soldiers.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
Top Critic
Carrie Rickey
Philadelphia Inquirer
March 28, 2008
While it would be premature to decorate it as the Best Years of Our Lives or Coming Home of the Surge, Stop-Loss carries the emotional force and propulsive drama of the quintessential soldier's story.
Full Review | Original Score: 3.5/4
Top Critic
Stephen Whitty
Newark Star-Ledger
March 28, 2008
There are good and confident choices here, particularly in the direction, and the way it integrates the soldiers' own war movies.
Read More | Original Score: 3/4
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Kyle Smith
New York Post
March 28, 2008
After five years of news footage and documentaries coming from the war in Iraq, Stop-Loss is as phony as a re-enactment with finger pup pets.
Full Review | Original Score: 1/4
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Elizabeth Weitzman
New York Daily News
March 28, 2008
Viewers of any age are bound to be moved by [director Peirce's] primary theme: that there is no easy cure for these damaged young veterans, whether they return to war or fight their demons at home.
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/4
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Colin Covert
Minneapolis Star Tribune
March 28, 2008
The story steers away from clichés and political polemics, maintaining a tone of unflinching emotional realism.
Full Review | Original Score: 3.5/4
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Kenneth Turan
Los Angeles Times
March 28, 2008
Stop-Loss is a film that does it right.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/5
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Amy Biancolli
Houston Chronicle
March 28, 2008
It's more a sweaty assemblage of dramatic high-points than a coherent, persuasive story of wounded warriors trying to make it.
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/4
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Rick Groen
Globe and Mail
March 28, 2008
Writer/director Kimberly Peirce has clearly done her homework. What she hasn't done, at least not here, is develop any strong point of view about the war.
Full Review | Original Score: 2/4
Top Critic
Tom Long
Detroit News
March 28, 2008
There's a keen and ugly sense of anguish to Stop-Loss, a caged sense of powerlessness beyond political outrage that makes this film far and away the most effective effort yet at capturing the frustration of the war in Iraq.
Full Review | Original Score: B+
Top Critic
Lisa Kennedy
Denver Post
March 28, 2008
Anchored by deft performances from a sturdy ensemble, Stop-Loss provides proof of Peirce's sensitivity with actors as well as her interest in stories of American folk who don't often get the close-ups they should.
Read More | Original Score: 3/4
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Stephanie Zacharek
Salon.com
March 28, 2008
Stop-Loss tries to be about so many things that it addresses none of them adequately.
Top Critic
J. R. Jones
Chicago Reader
March 28, 2008
Though its intentions are noble, it's hampered by a stock romantic subplot, a familiar structure, and a lack of symmetry.
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Ty Burr
Boston Globe
March 28, 2008
[Director] Peirce wants to leave us with something heavy to ponder, but I'll be damned if I can figure out what that is.
Full Review | Original Score: 2/4
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Nathan Rabin
AV Club
March 27, 2008
As in her superlative debut feature Boys Don't Cry, [director] Peirce explores politically incendiary subject matter with empathy, sensitivity, and a particularly sharp sense of place, in this case, a lovingly depicted Texas.
Full Review | Original Score: A-
Top Critic
A.O. Scott
New York Times
March 27, 2008
In some ways, there is a grim, accidental timeliness in the release of Stop-Loss, which focuses on the ordeal of American soldiers in and out of combat.
Read More | Original Score: 3.5/5
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John Anderson
Washington Post
March 27, 2008
It's a remarkably entertaining movie, thanks in part to a first-rate cast and a director who knows you can't make a point without calling everyone to attention.
Top Critic
Jessica Reaves
Chicago Tribune
March 27, 2008
Peirce's obvious respect for the returned soldiers should prevent Stop-Loss from being dismissed as a Hollywood anti-war screed. It's more accurately described as an anti-war movie with a resolutely pro-troop message.
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/4
Top Critic
Jan Stuart
Newsday
March 27, 2008
Stop-Loss builds a cumulative power and sense of urgency that can't be denied.
Read More | Original Score: 3/4
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Christy Lemire
Associated Press
March 27, 2008
Peirce (with co-writer Mark Richard) also vacillates between earnestness and superficiality, making Stop-Loss too often feel like eye candy with a message.
Top Critic
Scott Foundas
L.A. Weekly
March 27, 2008
Sincere without being especially memorable.
Top Critic
Bill Goodykoontz
Arizona Republic
March 27, 2008
Stop-Loss goes in too many directions at once, and most of those directions are predictable.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/5
Top Critic
Hank Sartin
Time Out
March 27, 2008
While Phillippe does a creditable job and Cornish is suitably torn by her divided loyalties to two men, Tatum and especially Gordon-Levitt are utterly wasted, used like extras when either of their stories seems interesting enough for a film of its own.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/6
Top Critic
Lisa Schwarzbaum
Entertainment Weekly
March 26, 2008
Strewn story parts pile up in Stop-Loss, a painfully polite Iraq war drama pitched at the MTV generation.
Full Review | Original Score: B-
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Roger Moore
Orlando Sentinel
March 26, 2008
Brilliantly observed and vividly shot, built on a career-making performance by Ryan Phillippe, its an Iraq War movie for Americans whove been avoiding Iraq movies, even the good ones such as In the Valley of Elah.
Read More | Original Score: 4/5
Top Critic
John DeFore
Hollywood Reporter
March 26, 2008
Stop-Loss has painted itself into a dramatic corner, which might be the most honest expression of the filmmaker's empathy for the men and women serving in Iraq.
Top Critic
Logan Hill
New York Magazine/Vulture
March 24, 2008
Boys Don't Cry director Kimberly Pearce attempts to anchor the Iraq War debate in the lives of a specific subset of soldiers and nearly pulls it off. But her promising premise runs into a rut of incompatible accents and melodramatic excess.
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Peter Travers
Rolling Stone
March 20, 2008
Even when the script slips into sentiment, [director] Peirce sticks with her troubled, questing soldiers, and through this raw and riveting movie, they stick with us.
Read More | Original Score: 3.5/4
Top Critic
Joe Leydon
Variety
March 17, 2008
A wildly uneven drama, by turns sincere and synthetic.