The Kingdom - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

The Kingdom Reviews

January 18, 2008
Read More | Original Score: 2/6
November 30, 2007
The Kingdom works as an exotic action thriller, but its politics are so choked on checks and balances it cancels itself out.
October 7, 2007
When it's got the pedal to the metal, which is a substantial fraction of the running time, The Kingdom delivers the goods.
October 6, 2007
Sensationally directed by Peter Berg.
October 5, 2007
A terrifically stupid film. Dumb, dumb, dumb.
Full Review | Original Score: 1/6
October 2, 2007
Everything moves so much and so fast that the movie seems both gutsy and brainy. But the main strategy is to keep viewers' pulses racing so they concentrate on the action, not the message.
October 1, 2007
One could say [director Peter Berg] shoots first and asks questions later, if at all.
Read More | Original Score: 2/4
October 1, 2007
See this movie, but take a motion sickness pill first.
September 28, 2007
The Kingdom comes down to a police procedural, and one whose procedures prove none too interesting.
September 28, 2007
It attempts to say something profound about the war on terrorism and the human tendency toward an us-vs.-them mentality. But the finale feeds on a sense of bloodlust and then tries to pull back to show us the error of maniacal revenge.
Read More | Original Score: 2.5/4
September 28, 2007
The Kingdom may be the most potent counter-programming of the year, even though it has no patience with such sissy-pants concerns.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
September 28, 2007
The Kingdom does suggest the potential to mix action and the complexity of Middle East politics in a revealing fashion. It simply fails to establish its central characters properly.
Read More | Original Score: 2/4
September 28, 2007
The movie pretends to be a dramatic exploration of the gulf of mutual suspicion that has grown from the oil alliance between the United States and Saudi Arabia. In the most superficial way imaginable, it does that.
Full Review | Original Score: 2/4
September 28, 2007
After outdoing himself in the opening sequence, director Peter Berg, who appears briefly as an FBI honcho, overdoes everything that follows.
Full Review | Original Score: 2/4
September 28, 2007
The Kingdom offers the war on terrorism we wanted to fight -- with clear, identifiable enemies; rock-solid intelligence; and precise deployment of American might -- instead of the one we're stuck with.
Read More | Original Score: C
September 28, 2007
Whether or not Americans are ready for a popcorn thriller about real-life terrorism is yet to be seen. But that's basically the sort of solid, episodic-TV level at which the film operates.
Read More | Original Score: 2.5/4
September 28, 2007
A xenophobic, overblown, revenge-driven action thriller that exports the Rambo mentality to the contemporary Middle East.
Full Review | Original Score: 1.5/4
September 28, 2007
Does it feel real? No. Is it fun? Yes. Will it win the war? Hey, I see light at the end of the tunnel.
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/4
September 28, 2007
Though its violence is searing and brutal, the film shows a conscience and a brain, and if it explains things a bit simplistically at times, so much the better.
Read More | Original Score: 3/4
September 28, 2007
It wants us to feel as if we're watching something relevant when what's really going on is a slick excuse for efficient mayhem that's not half as smart as it would like to be.
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/5
September 28, 2007
It's clear that Berg wants to humanize the Saudis, but I suspect much of this nuance will get blown to smithereens in a firestorm of bullets.
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/4
September 28, 2007
From a literally explosive beginning to its high-octane end, The Kingdom is rocking-good mainstream moviemaking: painfully topical, edge-of-the-seat thrilling and totally engrossing.
Full Review | Original Score: B+
September 28, 2007
A lot of satisfying, entertaining action pictures have only an artificial brain to power the machinery. The Kingdom is the opposite: It's a smart picture with much to say. But in the end, it elects not to say it.
Read More | Original Score: 2/4
September 28, 2007
Actor-director Peter Berg's action-loaded, idea-embracing political thriller starring Jamie Foxx doesn't skirt post 9/11 tensions.
Read More | Original Score: 3/4
September 28, 2007
The Kingdom has its cake, eats it, then blows it up with an RPG.
Full Review | Original Score: B-
September 28, 2007
The Kingdom has a heart and a viewpoint. It's a thrill ride with a lingering thought or two in its wake. But the explosions, breakneck chases, daredevil escapes and predictability about which side will be victorious remain its foremost mission.
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/4
September 28, 2007
At its core this is just another piece of big-studio nothingness.
September 28, 2007
A taut, slickly made thriller.
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/4
September 28, 2007
It's an overused phrase, but it's true when it comes to The Kingdom. This smart, caffeinated thriller will have you sitting on the edge of your seat.
Read More | Original Score: 4.5/5
September 28, 2007
A barely coherent compendium of Middle East fantasies, fears and doubts.
Read More | Original Score: 2/4
September 28, 2007
A slick, brutishly effective genre movie: Syriana for dummies.
Read More | Original Score: 3/5
September 28, 2007
Propelled by The Kingdom's sheer velocity, I was with it for its thrilling first two acts. It doesn't hurt that the gallows humor humanizes the characters of the ensemble.
Read More | Original Score: 2.5/4
September 27, 2007
The picture is made with a degree of care, and what's surprising about it is the way [director] Berg actually resists making rah-rah jingoistic proclamations instead of relying on them.
September 27, 2007
I left the theater completely uncertain about what the filmmakers intended to say about the orgiastic bloodshed they showed me. The Kingdom is an explosion of rage in search of a rationale.
Full Review | Original Score: 1.5/4
September 27, 2007
The blam-blam histrionics devalue the verity.
Full Review | Original Score: B-
September 27, 2007
One electrifying performance becomes the only saving grace of The Kingdom, a goofy action movie that tries to marry the blitzkrieg entertainment of Rambo to the cultural consciousness of Syriana.
September 27, 2007
This is loose history but gripping drama, an action thrill ride ready-made for C.S.I. Nation, braced with stunning shoot-outs and chases.
Read More | Original Score: 4/5
September 27, 2007
Screenwriter Matthew Michael Carnahan wants us to know that there are good Arabs and bad Arabs, but he panders to our basest 9/11 anxieties.
Read More | Original Score: 2/4
September 26, 2007
Both discordant and disingenuous, this faux-profound final note suggests that Berg and screenwriter Matthew Michael Carnahan don't know what kind of movie they've actually made -- or would like to pretend they've made another kind.
September 26, 2007
The film is smart and engaging, and if it plays a little on our fears of the next big terrorist attack, it does so without feeling exploitative.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
September 26, 2007
Shot in the 115-degree heat of Arizona and on location in Abu Dhabi, it has a visual intensity and intimacy reminiscent of Michael Mann.
September 26, 2007
So shameless is The Kingdom, ignoring consequence and treating its audience like cash-dispensing machines with buttons to be pushed rather than thinking individuals willing to consider the reality of America's entanglement with the Middle East.
Full Review | Original Score: C-
September 25, 2007
...the movie's main satisfaction is the utopian spectacle of wounded Americans heading home, mission accomplished.
September 24, 2007
If Frank Capra had ever made a Rambo movie, it would have looked like this.
September 20, 2007
[Director] Berg stages every ambush, gun battle and car chase as if his life depends on it. The Kingdom could have been a jingoistic CSI: Riyadh, and sometimes it is.
Read More | Original Score: 3/4
September 14, 2007
Peter Berg's movie is no more than an action movie with an exotic backdrop. That would be fine, if only the movie were more exciting.
September 11, 2007
Where pic goes astray is in turning anonymous, indigenous peoples into ducks at a shooting gallery.