Generally unfavorable reviews - based on 17 Critics What's this?

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Mixed or average reviews- based on 132 Ratings

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  • Summary: Chernobyl Diaries is an original story from Oren Peli, who first terrified audiences with his groundbreaking thriller, "Paranormal Activity." The film follows a group of six young vacationers who, looking to go off the beaten path, hire an "extreme tour" guide. Ignoring warnings, he takes them into the city of Pripyat, the former home to the workers of the Chernobyl nuclear reactor, but a deserted town since the disaster more than 25 years ago. After a brief exploration of the abandoned city, however, the group soon finds themselves stranded, only to discover that they are not alone. (Warner Bros. Pictures) Expand
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 1 out of 17
  2. Negative: 8 out of 17
  1. Reviewed by: Clark Collis
    May 25, 2012
    If nowhere near as scary as the original Paranormal, the result is superior to many of the low-budget terror flicks that have arrived since (yes, The Devil Inside, we're talking about you) and benefits hugely from Dimitri Diatchenko's performance as moviedom's Worst. Tour. Guide. Ever.
  2. Reviewed by: James Berardinelli
    May 25, 2012
    Chernobyl Diaries is afflicted with a fatal flaw that damages many horror films: after a better-than-average setup and a promising first half, everything falls apart.
  3. Reviewed by: Scott Tobias
    May 25, 2012
    It's mostly boilerplate horror, plucking visual ideas from better sources and relying on the sick novelty of referencing an actual catastrophe.
  4. Reviewed by: Bill Goodykoontz
    May 25, 2012
    In Chernobyl Diaries, directed by Bradley Parker, stupidity is taken to extremes.
  5. Reviewed by: Claudia Puig
    May 25, 2012
    Despite an unlikely setting and a moderately intriguing premise, Chernobyl Diaries proves to be a generic horror flick where young tourists are systematically victimized in unoriginal and not terribly scary ways.
  6. 30
    If this horror movie cashes in on the audience that echoes its character's awareness ("That's where the nucular thing happened, right?") then we're about to learn how low our national academic standards are.
  7. Reviewed by: Dana Stevens
    May 25, 2012
    You might actively root for their collective demise, if you could rouse yourself to care one way or the other. Go gallivanting in Chernobyl and you get what you pay for, nimrods.

See all 17 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 21 out of 57
  2. Negative: 22 out of 57
  1. Oct 12, 2014
    Very awesome! I would like to see pewdiepie on this movie and hearing him screaming like a little girl.

    I don't know why this movie has low
    ratings, I enjoyed a lot. Expand
  2. May 25, 2012
    This movie was amazingly good...Oren did an amazing job at building the suspense. There were scene we're the jumpy camera sorta throws you off but still Chernobyl Diaries was completely worth the money. Collapse
  3. Jun 11, 2013
    That's a great film. Good plot and great direction. The end.. bahh extraordinary I am sad that this movie has such bad reviews. In my opinion it's a must-see horror movie of the decade. Not the best of course, but still a good one Expand
  4. Oct 8, 2014
    Summary: Chernobyl Diaries boasts an eerie setting, but its screenplay is awful and the characters are forgettable. 40/100 [C-]

    Directed by
    Bradley Parker and written by Oren Peli. Chernobyl Diaries is a horror film released in 2012. It was filmed in Hungary and some other close locations. Its whole location is scary and the plot is quite interesting. Its first act delivers some fake jump-scares; So, if you're a person who gets scared easily, i recommend it. Even though it has 86 minutes of running time, it was pretty boring, because the suspense is awfully handled. Also, the script and the situations are very cliché. The worst thing about it is that it had lots of potential, this is such a waste of time.

    There's a huge lack of screenplay, the direction and the writing are so lazy. The camera work is cheap and crappy. It's great to see a film about this catastrophe, of course it's a good idea, but "Chernobyl Diaries" fails to give us interesting characters and genuine scares. It definitely has its moments but the plot is very confusing, especially in its last act. Sometimes the film is way too dark, it's almost unwatchable. Well, at least the performances were decent and a few scares were effective. It is just another mediocre Blumhouse production just like "The Devil Inside" and "Insidious: Chapter 2".

    I recommend it only for very curious horror fans and people who get scared easily. The first time i saw it i really liked it, but after the second viewing i realize how bad written it was. In conclusion, Chernobyl Diaries boasts a frightening setting that is wasted by an awful script, poor direction and awful camera work. Anyway i recommend it if you're curious horror fan, or if you have low expectations. I don't recommend it if you're not a huge fan of the genre, or if you expect lots of scares and surprises. Spooky location, bad execution, that's it. [C-] Check out my blog: Twitter: @MemoBosque
  5. May 28, 2012
    Oren Peli is best known for the Paranormal Activity series and last year's favorite "Insidious." "Chernobyl Diaries" is not one of them. This could be a big misfire for a critical indie favorite. The actors are kinda boring to me and I don't see any horror monsters, just a dose of radiant heatwaves and a rip-off of last year's Matt Damon film "Contagion." All I see is a couple of 90 minutes of wasted memories of the 2002 disaster. Get on with the "Insidious" sequel already. Chernobyl Diaries is a mess and I hope Oren Peli learned a lesson today: We don't even care what Chernobyl means. Expand
  6. Jun 1, 2012
    I really wanted to like this movie, I did. This story had potential. But I feel like very minimal effort was put into this film. There were some interesting ideas and tense scenes that hinted at a decent movie, but most of it was poorly done. There where times in which I did not feel like I was watching a movie at all, and that I was just watching a fake one, and I was waiting for the real one to begin. And the ending (my God, that ENDING!) was so obviously written last minute. Do not spend $10 like me and see this in theatres. If you feel like you need to see this movie asap, resist the urge, I beg you, and at least wait until it's rent-able. Expand
  7. Jun 5, 2012
    Besides the point of it taking a controversial stance of actually daring to touch the already sensitive subject of Chernobyl, it doesn't give any love or care into it at all. We've been on this ride before hundreds of times. The ninety minutes of this was the longest two years of my life. With zombies and vampires on the rise and flooding the markets in the movie and game section I thought it would be different, I actually miss not and going seeing a zombie or vampire film that's barely passed as B-Movie now. If people want to explore Chernobyl and go to Pripyat, my advice would be to actually go there or stop by and pick up S.T.A.L.K.E.R.: Shadow of Chernobyl for PC from 2007 or S.T.A.L.K.E.R.: Call of Pripyat for PC from 2010. They offer more entertainment and actual scares then this does while actually getting to see real time mapped landscapes and scenery from their current time. Expand

See all 57 User Reviews