The Promise Reviews

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Top Critic
September 5, 2017
Terry George ... proved with Hotel Rwanda that he can tackle the wrenching subject of genocide with thrilling cinematic results. A wonderful cast adds no-fail polish.
June 14, 2017
It's a handsome film and George manages to keep the genocide in focus with shots of the Turks herding long lines of refugees across the desert expanses. But the full horror is kept at one remove.
April 28, 2017
The sets look phoney. The relentlessly sun-dappled skies are naff. The "action" lacks momentum and Tom Hollander's eyeliner is mad.
April 28, 2017
A terrible event very few are taught about, absorbingly retold.
April 27, 2017
A catastrophically earnest drama.
April 21, 2017
A sprawling, '60s-style epic with just enough political intrigue to prop up the occasionally wobbly romantic triangle formed by Oscar Isaac, Charlotte Le Bon, and an uncharacteristically ill-fitting Christian Bale.
April 21, 2017
You have to swallow some inadequacies to get the most out of The Promise. It is appealingly photographed and boasts some stunning location work, yet it's also saddled with the tone of a biblical epic, invisibly watermarked with the label important.
April 21, 2017
The Promise is drenched in production value and replete with ravishing shots of sunrises and sunsets, but it's in the scenes of fleeing, of battle, and of horrendous loss that the film is at its most effective.
April 21, 2017
Despite its flaws, it's important that it was made.
April 21, 2017
Director Terry George delivers a scalding dramatization of the Ottoman Empire's 1915 genocidal annihilation of its Armenian citizens, and then dulls it with a soapy, invented love triangle.
April 21, 2017
Noble intentions can't disguise their epic failure: The love story fails to ignite.
April 21, 2017
"The Promise" should have been priority viewing, but it's all over the place, taking on the Armenian Genocide, journalism ethics, foreign diplomacy and a host of other weighty topics.
April 20, 2017
With seemingly all the right pieces, it's a disappointment that "The Promise" lacks the energy and originality needed to sustain itself.
April 20, 2017
Yes, The Promise veers into corny territory, and yes, it's derivative of better war romances - but it's a solid and sobering reminder of the atrocities of war, bolstered by strong performances from Isaac and Bale.
April 20, 2017
Although at times overwrought and overtly manipulative, the film as a whole is like a kick to the gut.
Top Critic
April 20, 2017
What The Promise lacks in subtlety and sophistication, it makes up for in the visceral potency of its imagery.
April 20, 2017
A well-executed and reasonably engrossing film.
April 20, 2017
Attempting to make an atrocity palatable to a mainstream audience, "The Promise" delivers the history, but undercuts its impact.
April 20, 2017
The historical context renders the fictional story trivial, while the fictional story keeps the audience removed from the history. We end up with an unimportant movie about important events.
April 20, 2017
Weighed down by the worthiness of its intentions, "The Promise" is a big, barren wartime romance that approaches the Armenian genocide with too much calculation and not nearly enough heat.
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