The Underneath - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

The Underneath Reviews

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April 18, 2017
The plot is a bit silly and trashy, but as usual I had a lot of fun with Soderbergh's fuckery. The non-linearity, the split-focus diopters, the extreme colour-coding, the ten-minute segment shot entirely from the perspective of a hospital bed, it's all a lot of fun to watch. The ending is really great and really terrible at the same time, and I think I loved it.
½ September 3, 2016
Predictable but a good start by Soderbergh.
October 19, 2014
Fantastic Film. One of Soderbergh's Best along with The Limey, Traffic and Side Effects.
½ July 23, 2014
Another movie that everyone in the world seems to hate, except me. This remake of the classic 1949 Burt Lancaster crime film Criss Cross updates the action to present-day Austin, Texas. Michael (Peter Gallagher), an amiable but untrustworthy gambler and reprobate, returns after many years away to see his middle-aged mom marry nice-guy Ed (Tom Dooley). Before long, he decides to stay in town, get a job at an armored car company with his soon-to-be stepdad, and tries to rekindle his romance with Rachel (Alison Elliott), the lover he ran out on years before to escape his gambling debts. But she's married to low-level gangster Tommy (William Fichtner), and still harbors some understandable resentment against Michael. Meanwhile, Michael's cop brother David (Adam Trese) keeps an eye on his older sibling, knowing how he tends to attract trouble. One thing leads to another, as these things happen in film noir, and before long Michael finds himself in the tightest spot he's ever been in. While not flawless, The Underneath benefits from a gorgeous visual style, an interesting narrative structure (prominently featuring flashbacks and flash-forwards), an excellent cast (also including Joe Don Baker and Shelley Duvall in bit roles), and just an all-around excellent sense of atmosphere. That's why I'm puzzled by the widespread disdain for it; even Soderbergh claims to hate this film. I think it's among the better neo-noir films to come out in the 1990s, and while it isn't quite on the level of, say, The Coen Brothers, I think it's one of Soderbergh's most interesting and underrated films.
½ September 17, 2013
A chaotic film noir that offered an unengaged and plodding dialog.

½ April 24, 2013
Wow! Steven Soderbergh is so prolific! Like many of his movies, this was decent but not great.
½ March 13, 2013
Very boring and unrealistic.
October 6, 2012
Stylish, but rather sterile and academic remake of the film noir classic "Criss Cross". Comparing it to the Coen Brothers' "Blood Simple", it's equal in visual flair, but is lacking in heart or characters you care about. Still, it's a Steven Soderbergh film, which makes it worth watching in my book. Plus, I'll watch anything with good ol' Joe Don Baker no matter what.
½ July 25, 2012
A FLEUR DE PEAU, le quatrieme film de STEVEN SODERBERGH est encore une fois une reussite, tant par la qualite de l'interpretation que par les choix habiles et la virtuosite de la mise en scene. SODERBERGH se permet tout et ca marche le plus clair du temps. Malheureusement, on denotera quelques longueurs. Un tres bon film.
July 16, 2012
Soderbergh never disappoints.
½ February 5, 2012
alison elliott rules in this, fuck all those that said she sucks. anyway, i bought this for 50 cents and it surprised me in a good way - a modern film noir, with some real emotions here and there. I had zero expectations and it's not a bad film.

See Criss Cross, for sure.
½ January 7, 2012
Sderbergh dar se vede ca are 16 ani...
½ November 17, 2011
3/4е, 3/4и,е 1/2а Steven Soderbergh. 3/4?ле е ? 1/2и 1/4и еде 1/2 кп е 1/4ек дела.
Super Reviewer
October 20, 2011
Ed Dutton: Michael, when you get to be my age you realize that sometimes the planets just don't line up. And there's nothing you can do about it.

"For passion, betrayal and murder... there's still no place like home."

First off, I haven't seen Criss Cross, so I'm judging this movie based only on itself. It's definitely my least favorite film from Soderbergh. The acting is bad and the dialogue is also horrible. Peter Gallagher, while by no means a terrible actor, just can't hold a movie like this up by himself. William Fitchner is good in his role, but it is still to small to make the movie any better for it. The worst acting comes from two women though, Elizabeth Shue and Alison Elliot. They made ever scene that they were in unbearable to watch.

Michael returns home because his mom is getting remarried. His new stepdad offers to help him get a job as an armored truck driver. It is pretty obvious what is going to happen from here. He's going to try to pull off a robbery. Along the way, he tries to rekindle his relationship with his ex-wife, who is now married to a crook.

The only saving grace in this film, is Soderbergh's cool little tricks that you see in all his movies. In the end, it isn't enough to save an overall worthless film. The movie meanders on at an amazingly boring rate for an hour and then decides to speed up for the last thirty. Then the plot gets all twisty and it just doesn't work. I didn't buy the ending at all.

Still, it's worth a look if you are a Soderbergh fan. If not, this definitely isn't going to make you one. It would probably just turn you against him more.
July 21, 2011
Muddled Re-Make Of 'Criss Cross'
½ June 11, 2011
Steven Soderbergh's attempt at film noir comes short. The biggest problem with this movie is that it feels unfinished. There's too much going on in this movie and then, boom, it's over. Paul Dooley should just have a target on his chest, because he seems to have no other function in the movie. William Fichtner plays the villain. From the mid-90's, it was novel. So, I will give him that. What was up with Elisabeth Shue's character. I mean, there was this build up that she was going to relevant to the plot and she wasn't and the ending is a let down. But the style of this movie works as it shows us a different type of Austin, Texas that isn't cowboys and rodeos. If you want to see a good film noir set in and around Austin, go see Blood Simple.
May 10, 2011
Soderbergh's solid attempt of filming or better re-creating a film noir.
½ April 22, 2011
Overwrought, Southern Gothic nonsense from Steven Soderbergh. The characters here are all completely disposable in an unending series of double crosses upon double crosses. Soderbergh was obviously embarrassed by this silliness as he used a pseudonym for his screenwriting credit.
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