The Phenom Reviews

January 1, 2017
When Buschel narrows his focus and has a handle on these characters' essences, there are flashes of greatness. All he needs is a tighter grip.
July 1, 2016
This "love me daddy" baseball pic that earns points for spending less than 5 percent of its time on the diamond and refusing to end in open competition...so far as the playing field is concerned.
June 24, 2016
It's Hawke who gives the film its dramatic urgency.
Top Critic
June 24, 2016
Not everything here works... But it's an interesting, great-looking film, and Simmons is just dynamite in it.
June 24, 2016
A welcome surprise for sports cinema, "The Phenom" handles itself like Robert Redford's "Ordinary People" when exploring the psychology of a Lebron James or Johnny Manziel-like sports sensation.
June 24, 2016
Instead of big fireworks, "The Phenom" offers low-key character moments. It's a small film with a lot of insight.
June 23, 2016
It's not necessary, of course, for "The Phenom" to be an all-out sports drama, but writer-director Noah Buschel sets up the rare opportunity to explore what makes a jock tick, then doesn't follow through.
June 23, 2016
An unusual and affecting baseball drama where nearly all the action is internal.
June 23, 2016
"The Phenom" is a baseball movie with virtually no baseball, which would be fine if the thing it relied on instead - lots and lots of talking - exhibited zest and originality. It doesn't.
June 23, 2016
Don't let its restraint fool you: As unshowy as it is, "The Phenom" has an impressive collection of tools.
June 23, 2016
Consider "The Phenom" a baseball film for people who would never step foot inside a baseball stadium.
June 23, 2016
Written and directed by Noah Buschel, The Phenom may not be a home run for those in search of traditional peanuts and Cracker Jacks. But as an examination of a young man at a crossroads, it's a good day at the ballpark.
June 23, 2016
The Phenom unfolds as a series of quiet, incisive conversations that showcase subtle, insightful performances.
June 21, 2016
Simmons, Hawke, and Giamatti are all compelling enough to ensure that The Phenom doesn't turn into a bunch of empty tricks and fussy lighting.
June 20, 2016
If there's an MVP, it's Simmons. The Perks of Being a Wallflower alum tosses off another subdued performance, a good counterpart to Hawke's more over-the-top coiled rage.
April 18, 2016
The Phenom, like its protagonist, is hard to pin down, making for a film that's transfixing and opaque in equal measure.