The Sum of All Fears - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

The Sum of All Fears Reviews

Top Critic
Robert Denerstein
Denver Rocky Mountain News
August 9, 2002
| Original Score: B
Top Critic
Michael Wilmington
Chicago Tribune
July 20, 2002
An implausible apocalypse without depth or resonance, a cartoon of international politics presented with no James Bond-like playfulness and with all the superficial realism money can buy.
| Original Score: 2/4
Top Critic
Bill Muller
Arizona Republic
June 13, 2002
I'm not saying Affleck is in way over his head, but a scuba tank and swim fins might come in handy.
Top Critic
Peter Travers
Rolling Stone
June 10, 2002
Affleck merely creates an outline for a role he still needs to grow into, a role that Ford effortlessly filled with authority.
| Original Score: 1/5
Top Critic
Michael Atkinson
Village Voice
June 4, 2002
A trite espionage thriller without the thrills but with a lingering measure of nausea.
Top Critic
Richard Roeper
Ebert & Roeper
June 3, 2002
The Sum of All Fears is almost impossible to follow -- and there's something cringe-inducing about seeing an American football stadium nuked as pop entertainment.
Top Critic
Peter Rainer
New York Magazine/Vulture
June 2, 2002
Phil Alden Robinson, who directed from a script by Paul Attanasio and Daniel Pyne, is an accomplished craftsman, but his movie has been upstaged by the sum of our fears.
Top Critic
Ella Taylor
L.A. Weekly
June 1, 2002
It's a smartly directed, grown-up film of ideas.
Top Critic
Ann Hornaday
Washington Post
May 31, 2002
Has something to disappoint nearly every constituency to which it appeals.
| Original Score: 2/5
Top Critic
Desson Thomson
Washington Post
May 31, 2002
One that bombs literally and figuratively.
| Original Score: 1.5/5
Top Critic
Erik Lundegaard
Seattle Times
May 31, 2002
Subtract the slickness, and Sum adds up to a smart thriller.
| Original Score: 3/4
Top Critic
Mick LaSalle
San Francisco Chronicle
May 31, 2002
It's a movie that, frankly, I could not recommend to a friend, and yet I find no fault in the filmmaking.
Full Review | Original Score: 2/4
Top Critic
Charles Taylor
Salon.com
May 31, 2002
The Sum of All Fears pretends to be a serious exploration of nuclear terrorism, but it's really nothing more than warmed-over Cold War paranoia.
Top Critic
Jay Boyar
Orlando Sentinel
May 31, 2002
Watching this film, we can't shake our fears that we may be witnessing a version of our own previously unthinkable future.
| Original Score: 4/5
Top Critic
Jan Stuart
Newsday
May 31, 2002
This engrossing, characteristically complex Tom Clancy thriller is shifty in the manner in which it addresses current terrorism anxieties and sidesteps them at the same time.
| Original Score: 2.5/4
Top Critic
Rene Rodriguez
Miami Herald
May 31, 2002
It's a testament to how effective The Sum of All Fears really is that it sends you home feeling more scared than you were before.
| Original Score: 3/4
Top Critic
Bruce Westbrook
Houston Chronicle
May 31, 2002
Toward the end Sum of All Fears morphs into a mundane '70s disaster flick.
| Original Score: C+
Top Critic
Susan Stark
Detroit News
May 31, 2002
Bold, imaginative, rational and persuasive an account of the lethally dangerous world we live in, The Sum of All Fears is an international spy drama with visceral impact.
| Original Score: 3/4
Top Critic
Steven Rosen
Denver Post
May 31, 2002
The explosion essentially ruined -- or, rather, overpowered -- the fiction of the movie for me.
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/4
Top Critic
Rick Groen
Globe and Mail
May 31, 2002
All that moviemaking money, plus all those gadgets, plus Ben Affleck: It doesn't add up to very much.
Full Review | Original Score: 2/4
Top Critic
Mike Clark
USA Today
May 31, 2002
A mediocre terrorist melodrama turned even punier by real-life events.
Full Review | Original Score: 2/4
Top Critic
Lou Lumenick
New York Post
May 31, 2002
Plays like a cheesy '80s TV movie.
| Original Score: 1/4
Top Critic
Roger Ebert
Chicago Sun-Times
May 31, 2002
Director Phil Alden Robinson and his writers, Paul Attanasio and Daniel Pyne, do a spellbinding job of cranking up the tension.
Full Review | Original Score: 3.5/4
Top Critic
Renee Graham
Boston Globe
May 31, 2002
There's nothing ambiguous here -- no twisty plot lines, no out-of-left-field jolts. Just lots of angry boys with big angry toys designed to wipe out the whole ever-lovin' lot of us.
Full Review | Original Score: 2/4
Top Critic
Terry Lawson
Detroit Free Press
May 30, 2002
The most exciting [two hours] I've spent on any would-be summer blockbuster in a long, long time.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/4
Top Critic
Carrie Rickey
Philadelphia Inquirer
May 30, 2002
I am still scratching my head at the callowness of the film's hero and at the haziness of the terrorist objective.
| Original Score: 2/4
Top Critic
Stephen Holden
New York Times
May 30, 2002
It's a striking measure of the nervousness of the country right now that a movie so full of holes should be as gripping as it is, at least for its first two-thirds, after which it collapses into a swamp of sentimental mush.
| Original Score: 2/5
Top Critic
Kevin Thomas
Los Angeles Times
May 30, 2002
Absorbing and disturbing -- perhaps more disturbing than originally intended -- but a little clarity would have gone a long way.
Full Review | Original Score: 3.5/4
Top Critic
Philip Wuntch
Dallas Morning News
May 30, 2002
A slick, well-oiled machine, exquisitely polished and upholstered.
Full Review | Original Score: B
Top Critic
May 30, 2002
The nonstop action takes you all over the planet, and you'll find yourself totally caught up in this exhilarating adventure.
Top Critic
Glenn Lovell
San Jose Mercury News
May 30, 2002
In terms of escapist fun, this one ranks right up there with a newsreel tour of ground zero in Hiroshima and Nagasaki.
| Original Score: 1.5/4
Top Critic
Rex Reed
New York Observer
May 30, 2002
An exciting action blockbuster.
Top Critic
Andrew Sarris
New York Observer
May 30, 2002
I was impressed by how many tit-for-tat retaliatory responses the filmmakers allow before pulling the plug on the conspirators and averting an American-Russian Armageddon.
Top Critic
Eleanor Ringel Gillespie
Atlanta Journal-Constitution
May 30, 2002
The Sum of All Fears may not be super-smart, but it's rock-solid.
| Original Score: B
Top Critic
Owen Gleiberman
Entertainment Weekly
May 30, 2002
Ben Affleck is more than a stand-in for Harrison Ford.
Full Review | Original Score: B-
Top Critic
James Berardinelli
ReelViews
May 29, 2002
The movie does what all good thrillers should do -- provide enough shocks and surprises to keep us guessing, and never lets up on the suspense until the end credits arrive.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
Top Critic
David Hunter
Hollywood Reporter
May 28, 2002
Vigorously directed by Phil Alden Robinson and tautly scripted by Paul Attanasio and Daniel Pyne.