As Above, So Below

Metascore
38

Generally unfavorable reviews - based on 23 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 3 out of 23
  2. Negative: 8 out of 23

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Critic Reviews

  1. Aug 29, 2014
    72
    The film’s finely tuned middle act, a fast-paced and quick-witted journey into (possible) madness, eventually gives way to an unsettlingly over the top final section that relies far too much on larger setpieces and supposed “big scares” that are never as good as the smaller, weirder stuff.
  2. Reviewed by: Drew McWeeny
    Aug 30, 2014
    67
    For sheer craftsmanship, As Above, So Below is the type of horror film you should see theatrically. It's really well-made, even if it ends up feeling a little familiar by the end.
  3. Reviewed by: Simon Abrams
    Sep 4, 2014
    63
    Novel enough to be worth the price of admission, but you'll think twice before getting back in line for a second visit.
  4. Reviewed by: Jordan Hoffman
    Aug 29, 2014
    60
    One of the world's top disturbing tourist attractions is now finally getting the spooky film it deserves
  5. Reviewed by: Matt Risley
    Aug 25, 2014
    60
    Boasts sporadically electrifying visuals but a frustratingly messy mythology.
  6. Reviewed by: A.A. Dowd
    Aug 29, 2014
    58
    What’s the point in shooting a horror movie in the catacombs if it’s just going to end up looking like every horror movie not shot in the catacombs?
  7. Reviewed by: Chuck Wilson
    Sep 2, 2014
    50
    As Above, So Below is sometimes creepy but mostly silly, which is too bad because the film's cramped subterranean setting is inherently unnerving.
  8. Reviewed by: Kyle Anderson
    Sep 1, 2014
    50
    Like other movies of its ilk, it's missing a very simple bit of next-level Hollywood technology: a tripod.
  9. Reviewed by: Drew Taylor
    Aug 31, 2014
    50
    It offers a handful of effective moments and some characters that are fun to watch squirm through muck and bones, but not much more than that, especially when the films spins out of control towards its conclusion.
  10. Reviewed by: Ed Gonzalez
    Aug 28, 2014
    50
    The film predictably alternates in scaring its characters by tapping into their deepest fears and having them rub shoulders with the relics of a past that insists on being undisturbed.
  11. Reviewed by: Peter Debruge
    Aug 25, 2014
    50
    It all makes for clumsy-fun escapism, not bad as end-of-summer chillers go.
  12. Reviewed by: William Goss
    Sep 3, 2014
    40
    While its characters attempt to go deeper, As Above/So Below’s stabs at scares and sentiment only seem that much shallower.
  13. Reviewed by: Bilge Ebiri
    Aug 29, 2014
    40
    There are moments of welcome tension amid the inchoate lunacy, but these in turn merely highlight why the rest of the film doesn’t work.
  14. Reviewed by: Peter Bradshaw
    Aug 28, 2014
    40
    There are some interestingly contrived moments of claustrophobia and surreal lunacy, but this cliched and slightly hand-me-down script neither scares nor amuses very satisfyingly.
  15. Reviewed by: Mike McCahill
    Aug 28, 2014
    40
    These catacombs are just an echo chamber into which any rubbish can be pumped, and while this gives carte blanche to production designer Louise Marzaroli, the relentless flow of subterranean non-sequitur becomes at least as trying as the whirling, jerky non-cinematography.
  16. 38
    It’s more unpleasant than scary, and ever so slow in getting up to speed.
  17. Reviewed by: Mark Jenkins
    Aug 30, 2014
    37
    As Above, So Below is inherently absurd, but it would be somewhat less so had it fully committed to just one of its ridiculous premises.
  18. Reviewed by: Nathan Rabin
    Aug 30, 2014
    30
    As Above/So Below purposefully generates a certain air of mystery by keeping the exact nature of its protagonists’ experience enigmatic, but for a film that takes place underground in tightly enclosed spaces, it’s surprisingly thin on suspense and palpable physical danger.
  19. Reviewed by: Jeannette Catsoulis
    Aug 30, 2014
    30
    This quivering effort from the director John Erick Dowdle only increases in impenetrability whenever anything mildly curious occurs.
  20. Reviewed by: Dan Callahan
    Aug 29, 2014
    30
    It's clear from the start that Dowdle isn't taking any of this seriously. The same cannot be said for the game and luckless cast of young actors, who are so whiny and hysterical right from the start of their plunge into the tombs that they win hearty unintentional laughs throughout.
  21. Reviewed by: Jordan Mintzer
    Aug 20, 2014
    30
    This low budget effort from director John Erick Dowdle and writer-producer-brother Drew Dowdle provides a few late scares after plenty of eye-rolling setup, with said scares due more to the heavy sound design than the action itself.
  22. Reviewed by: Claudia Puig
    Sep 4, 2014
    25
    As forewarned, so avoid.
  23. Reviewed by: Robert Abele
    Aug 30, 2014
    10
    An entertainment-free sinkhole of Dramamine-worthy nonsense.
User Score
6.2

Generally favorable reviews- based on 132 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 24 out of 51
  2. Negative: 13 out of 51
  1. Dec 26, 2014
    10
    Stupid horror movies are boring; this one isn't stupid. It tries to establish its own mythology and sticks to it. Though the mythos isn't theStupid horror movies are boring; this one isn't stupid. It tries to establish its own mythology and sticks to it. Though the mythos isn't the best thing since sliced bread, I did appreciate the filmmakers giving it their best shot. This film is like a terrifying version of the abyss shot with headcams. They just keep going deeper and deeper into the depths of the underworld and it's a wild ride. It's worth watching once. I watched "sinister" last night, and in contrast, this flick was worlds better. The monsters were actually scary instead of some idiot wearing a tuxedo. Don't listen to people giving as above so below 0 scores because they obviously aren't bright enough to recognize what a real scary movie should be like. Full Review »
  2. Sep 13, 2014
    0
    Don't waste the $9. Awful Blair Witch-type shake cam footage leaves it nearly impossible to watch, let alone figure out what is happening. I'mDon't waste the $9. Awful Blair Witch-type shake cam footage leaves it nearly impossible to watch, let alone figure out what is happening. I'm unsure as to how anyone on metacritic could give this a good review, maybe they are all the actors and crew? Full Review »
  3. Sep 12, 2014
    3
    The same horror movie tricks every F*****g movie for the last 20 years! they need to lay off the indistry for a few years and come up with aThe same horror movie tricks every F*****g movie for the last 20 years! they need to lay off the indistry for a few years and come up with a GOOD idea AND story. Full Review »