User Score
7.3

Generally favorable reviews- based on 487 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Negative: 40 out of 487
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  1. Apr 29, 2013
    8
    A great little superhero inspired film, one of the strengths of the film is how it surprisingly manages to do something interesting with the found footage motif. The film does a great job at making a complex, sympathetic villain, a sort of modern re-imagining of the Lex Luthor story.
  2. Jan 2, 2013
    8
    While initially the combination of a whining lead character and the shaky cam was a massive turn off, as the film got into full swing I started to really appreciate it, to the point where I didn't even notice it anymore. The film has a superb use of effects, from the subtle to the downright ridiculous, everything has a hyper-realistic shine to it that really adds to the effect and overallWhile initially the combination of a whining lead character and the shaky cam was a massive turn off, as the film got into full swing I started to really appreciate it, to the point where I didn't even notice it anymore. The film has a superb use of effects, from the subtle to the downright ridiculous, everything has a hyper-realistic shine to it that really adds to the effect and overall feel of the movie. Very well paced and I really loved how the movie took a proper (though admittedly predictable) dark turn. Beautifully subtle while at the same time tastefully in your face, one of the best action movies of 2012 without a doubt and one to watch again. Expand
  3. Feb 18, 2012
    7
    What a clever film......It's equal party funny and gritty and even a little unexpected.....
    I was pleasantly surprised that the 'cam corder' type cinematography, something I hate usually, didn't detract from the experience but added to it.
  4. Nov 28, 2012
    9
    Overall, this movie was original (although definitely very inspired by any number of different comic books), very creatively done, well-acted all around, and just plain fun.
    _____
    I'm a picky movie-watcher. In fact, I rarely watch movies at all, because of the simple fact that it's so hard to find the really good ones mixed in with all the multi-million dollar garbage-worthy flicks, but
    Overall, this movie was original (although definitely very inspired by any number of different comic books), very creatively done, well-acted all around, and just plain fun.
    _____
    I'm a picky movie-watcher. In fact, I rarely watch movies at all, because of the simple fact that it's so hard to find the really good ones mixed in with all the multi-million dollar garbage-worthy flicks, but Chronicle was definitely one of those rare gems. I had no particular expectations going into this movie, hadn't even ever heard of it, I was just doing a random search for a sci-fi movie and Chronicle seemed like it could be decent, but it turned out to be much more than decent. I've never seen a super-power inspired film seem so realistic. The emergence of the "super-villians" teenager-angst dark-side was done at just the right pace, starting off showing subtle tidbits here and there of his darker psyche and gradually leading up to the point where his psychological issues just explode out from him. I also really appreciated the use of the hand-held camera style in this film, usually I'm not a fan of that, but I think it just add to the realistic feel in this film, which is exactly what the director was going for.
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  5. Feb 20, 2012
    9
    Chronicle was a fantastic movie and definitely deserves more than a 69%. Its camera angle was experimental and new (similar to Cloverfield) and I enjoyed it, although some people won't. During the first half of the movie I didn't really enjoy the camera angle, but by the second half I did. The acting was fantastic and the characters were interesting. However, the main character Andrew didChronicle was a fantastic movie and definitely deserves more than a 69%. Its camera angle was experimental and new (similar to Cloverfield) and I enjoyed it, although some people won't. During the first half of the movie I didn't really enjoy the camera angle, but by the second half I did. The acting was fantastic and the characters were interesting. However, the main character Andrew did many things that I didn't feel he would do according to his personality. The ending was bittersweet and the movie had many twists and turns so it wasn't predictable. Overall I loved the movie and was really engrossed in the story. Expand
  6. May 2, 2012
    8
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. "Chronicle" (2012) tells the story of a adolescent, Andrew, who is
    socially excluded at school, besides being an introvert personalty, and
    serious problems at home with the aggressive alcoholic father and his
    mother, who is dying of terminal cancer.

    He still enjoys the company of his cousin, Alex, and at a party, he and
    another friend, Michell, find in a nearby cave a meteorite that give
    them powers of telekinesis, which are discovered little by little ...

    Initially the jokes with the use of these powers were funny, but they
    begin to take another course, and the situations of Andrew's life
    ultimately influence his control (and uses) over these powers.

    The film has a very good visual, with convincing effects, extremely
    well made that does not transpire much use of CG. Also just taking a
    different approach, because Andrew, early in the film uses a hand-held
    camera to film the assaults of his father, and the camera ends up being
    the main perspective by which the film is shown, until the final half
    hour.

    The performances are very good, particularly Dane DeHaan (Andrew) that
    clearly shows the psychological chaos in his life and that culminates
    with the final events shown in the end.

    The audio of the movie is nice, with effects and music very good and
    appropriate to the film.

    There are some comparisons to Akira, and yes, it resembles it - but
    what that involves psychic powers that does not refer to the Manga or
    Carrie's, somehow?

    Anyway, the movie ends up having a very good approach to what the
    conditions of life a person could do with their mind, and what would
    happen if by chance, this person had powers - of course, in a common
    sense much in the film ends up being driven to a adolescent target
    public, but even so, the focus is very good, and it is enjoyable for
    older people.

    A great choice for a science fiction - drama movie, with a different
    theme to what we are accustomed.
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  7. Mar 16, 2012
    9
    Chronicle's portrayal of superheroes is dark, gritty and true to life. The found-footage theme does add an amount of realism, and adds a certain emotional impact to the characters that other found footage movies haven't done before. The films morality theme plays out nicely with clever writing and characters you can relate to, however, the pacing can be slow and only seems to pick upChronicle's portrayal of superheroes is dark, gritty and true to life. The found-footage theme does add an amount of realism, and adds a certain emotional impact to the characters that other found footage movies haven't done before. The films morality theme plays out nicely with clever writing and characters you can relate to, however, the pacing can be slow and only seems to pick up around a third of the film. Another issue is the CGI that does seem outdated but isn't bad enough to pull you out of the experience. Overall, Chronicle is a movie you can't miss, with a great story and amazing new actors, Chronicle is a true modern great. Expand
  8. May 10, 2012
    9
    A fantastic film that starts with a fun and overall teenage theme before developing bit by bit into a suspenseful superhero epic that lasts in your memory. The combination of normal life with superhuman abilities was excellently pulled off, and the cast of young and mostly unheard of actors showcased their talents extremely well.
  9. Feb 13, 2012
    8
    It's been a while since I wrote reviews in metacritic, so I thought writing some would be good. Anyways, all could say of Josh Trank's "Chronicle" is that it's very original. He diminishes those first-person camera angle problems by switching viewpoints (from Andrew's camera to other cameras, iphones, and even from the news chopper) which is clever. The script is well written and althoughIt's been a while since I wrote reviews in metacritic, so I thought writing some would be good. Anyways, all could say of Josh Trank's "Chronicle" is that it's very original. He diminishes those first-person camera angle problems by switching viewpoints (from Andrew's camera to other cameras, iphones, and even from the news chopper) which is clever. The script is well written and although the movie's kinda short it has it's sense of intensity most 2 hour movies can't even show off. Expand
  10. Feb 21, 2012
    10
    From movies like Jumper, Push, Next, Clockstoppers, and some other movies about people getting superpowers and using it for their own good, Josh Trank and Max Landis have pulled of the impossible. So what is it about this movie that i liked so damn much, well for one thing i loved the pacing and the timing in this movie, for a running time of 83 minutes, the movie doesn't waste your timeFrom movies like Jumper, Push, Next, Clockstoppers, and some other movies about people getting superpowers and using it for their own good, Josh Trank and Max Landis have pulled of the impossible. So what is it about this movie that i liked so damn much, well for one thing i loved the pacing and the timing in this movie, for a running time of 83 minutes, the movie doesn't waste your time and gets to the point very quickly and perfectly. Another thing is how realistic this movie is, with the camera work, it definitely worked out for this movie, and the characters were aware of it, which was a major plus in my book. I could say so much more, but what i will say is my regards to the director and writer for delivering one of the best movies of the year, and were only getting started. Expand
  11. Feb 20, 2012
    8
    Its rare to find movies that actually portray what average people would do if they had super powers. Chronicle was a very good movie. where the special effects lacked, the story and characters shined.
  12. Apr 29, 2012
    10
    I usually don't like shaky cam movies and when I first saw the trailers for Chronicle, I wasn't exactly too keen on watching it. I finally sat down to watch it the other day and was amazed that I almost missed one of the greatest superhero movies ever made. All I can say is that if you're a comic book fan, go and watch this movie. Max Landis and Josh Trank really know their comics.
  13. Sep 17, 2012
    7
    Chronicle has what many lesser found footage films lack. The genre has a history of sacrificing character for style, of using hand-held filming to hide a lack of budget. This film has very strong performances from the three leads Dane DeHaan, Alex Russell and Michael B. Jordan (especially DeHaan) who all play interesting, well-developed characters that you enjoy spending time with, and theChronicle has what many lesser found footage films lack. The genre has a history of sacrificing character for style, of using hand-held filming to hide a lack of budget. This film has very strong performances from the three leads Dane DeHaan, Alex Russell and Michael B. Jordan (especially DeHaan) who all play interesting, well-developed characters that you enjoy spending time with, and the film's entertaining premise of the three highschool friends gaining superpowers after the discovery of a mysterious object provides some good laughs and fun spectacle, particularly in the scenes where the boys are learning to control their new gifts. The film also creatively gets round the chief weakness of the found footage genre - who's holding the camera? (the way they do this is a highlight which I won't spoil here). Like Cloverfield, Chronicle doesn't try to provide a concrete explanation for the odd goings on that we witness, but this mostly works for the film, and you should be able to fill in the gaps yourself (at least until an inevitable sequel surfaces which will doubtless expand on the film's universe). Disappointingly, the final act of Chronicle is pretty poor. The action becomes all-consuming and repetitive, the characters are reduced to conduits for the filmmakers to spend their remaining budget rather than anyone you can care about anymore, and the presence of one of the secondary characters is seemingly only to have someone else holding a camcorder. In other words, the film becomes just like all the films it has, up to the final act, been surpassing. Though the finale is an overblown, flaccid bore, the rest of Chronicle is a riot, and feels pleasingly original for a film that is part of a filmmaking craze that has long outstayed its welcome. Here's hoping the sequel builds on the considerable successes we find here, though without Josh Trank's sturdy direction (he's reportedly been headhunted to helm bigger superhero fare), it remains to be seen whether a second instalment will become too big and dumb. Expand
  14. Mar 29, 2012
    9
    Not a big fan of the shaky camera like Paranormal Activity. I loved this movie because it has a very good story line, and his keeps you on the edge of your seat.
  15. Feb 14, 2013
    7
    Really cool film! The handheld shaky tone of the film worried me when watching it, it is usually annoying the have to deal with a whole film's worth of dodgy angles and motion sickness but this film does it so cleverly that makes it so enjoyable, overalls a really cool concept and well produced film!
  16. Mar 5, 2012
    10
    Finally! A superhero movie I don't laugh at. Chronicle shows, not akward or unfortunate nobodies who by some accident develop superpowers and decide "I wanna dress funny and save complete strangers". True, the three main characters do develop superpowers by literally stumbling into them, but they dont start playing superhero/supervillain until they absolutely have to; in fact, never onceFinally! A superhero movie I don't laugh at. Chronicle shows, not akward or unfortunate nobodies who by some accident develop superpowers and decide "I wanna dress funny and save complete strangers". True, the three main characters do develop superpowers by literally stumbling into them, but they dont start playing superhero/supervillain until they absolutely have to; in fact, never once in the movie was the word "superhero" even used. When I first saw the trailer, I thought to myself "Well, that's the movie, right there. No need to go see it. Boy, was I wrong. I won't reveal much about the plot or characters, but suffice it to say the trailer actually barely reveals anything at all. The acting has its ups and downs, and admittedly the movie could be a little better paced, but for the most part everything balances out. It's worth a look, for sure. Expand
  17. Feb 12, 2012
    10
    Definetly worth watching! Wasn't crazy about the ending so much but loved the plot and unique script. Was interested through out the entire movie and audience deemed to be as well.
  18. Feb 12, 2012
    9
    I don't write many reviews (for how many movies I see), however I have to say I was surprisingly impressed with this movie. The acting and special effects were above average, and the story had many interesting themes. You have to dig a little bit deeper in order to get the most out of this movie; but if you're familiar with any philosophy (particularly Schopenhauer), you'll probably find aI don't write many reviews (for how many movies I see), however I have to say I was surprisingly impressed with this movie. The acting and special effects were above average, and the story had many interesting themes. You have to dig a little bit deeper in order to get the most out of this movie; but if you're familiar with any philosophy (particularly Schopenhauer), you'll probably find a lot to like here.

    8.5/10 (rounding up because some critics were overly harsh)
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  19. Mar 4, 2012
    8
    What a movie to open the year with (the first new release I've seen this year)! It opens slowly, but builds into a truly fantastic climax that had me very excited throughout. The acting at times is very good and the story is actually quite emotional and can become hard to watch. When the characters get their powers and start to mess around with them is fun to watch as well. Now for the badWhat a movie to open the year with (the first new release I've seen this year)! It opens slowly, but builds into a truly fantastic climax that had me very excited throughout. The acting at times is very good and the story is actually quite emotional and can become hard to watch. When the characters get their powers and start to mess around with them is fun to watch as well. Now for the bad points of the film: Some of the dialogue is too cheesy and feels out of place (the ending in particular) and it takes a while to get interesting. From my experience the film splits opinions, upon reflecting on the film, I said the ending was very good, but my friends disagreed. Definitely go into this movie with an open mind, it helped me a lot. Expand
  20. Jun 1, 2012
    9
    This movie for once actually had an interesting story, easily followed up by a sequel, really interesting how they did the camera work, how it was done in the story as well as the technical aspect, and when the water moved away from his feet, WHOA that took some serious work to pull off.
  21. Jun 22, 2012
    7
    Chronicle is a much better movie than I was expecting. Hollywood has been coming with a ton of low budget "found footage" movies lately and, to be honest, most of them have been truly awful. This film is different though. It benefits from a steady hand from talented director Josh Trank and boasts a strong story with a surprising amount of depth from it's young writer Max Landis. This isChronicle is a much better movie than I was expecting. Hollywood has been coming with a ton of low budget "found footage" movies lately and, to be honest, most of them have been truly awful. This film is different though. It benefits from a steady hand from talented director Josh Trank and boasts a strong story with a surprising amount of depth from it's young writer Max Landis. This is definitely a small film that has it's budget constraints. It's a large scale concept that is occasionally held back by suspect special effects but for the most part they will definitely suitable. I thought this was a terrific, low budget sci-fi film that uses it's "found footage" style to it's advantage unlike most "found footage" films of recent. Expand
  22. Jan 28, 2013
    9
    Wow.... just wow. I had no idea what this movie was about going in. I thought it would be really cheesy but good worth at least a 4. Definitely a solid 9 and will leave you thinking about it way after the credits roll. Great and worth a watch!
  23. Feb 17, 2012
    8
    I really enjoyed this movie. At first, the hand held camera bugged me but I got used to it and decided that was the right way to do this movie. What was great about the movie was the exploration of the psychology of the 3 different teens (also the actors really seemed older than high schoolers). All in all, much better than I was expecting.
  24. May 21, 2012
    8
    Its brilliant , its different , it no one ever thought before . Chronicle gives its viewers something totally different . the way they put together the idea of making Superpowers look bad was super . I always wanted to see a movie with superpowers gone bad and Chronicle did it and they did amazing . Josh Trank's direction was super . He is a fine young director and I wish him luck . ofIts brilliant , its different , it no one ever thought before . Chronicle gives its viewers something totally different . the way they put together the idea of making Superpowers look bad was super . I always wanted to see a movie with superpowers gone bad and Chronicle did it and they did amazing . Josh Trank's direction was super . He is a fine young director and I wish him luck . of the three players I like Alex Russell's character and him acting the best . the effects of the film was amazing . How the hell they did all those with so little budget ! Overall an awesome si-fi thriller movie Chronicle is . Waiting for the sequel ..... Expand
  25. Jun 5, 2012
    10
    This movie was awesome. The concept, at face value, might seem corny, or cliche. But this movie pulls it all off. It's spectacular, magical, and the characters make it so easy to suspend your beliefs and enthrall you in an exciting, scary, and deep world.
  26. May 22, 2012
    7
    As boys grow, they dream of having superpowers. And during the first part of the film you are taken on a ride on what it feels like to gain such powers and the possibilities it brings. However, the second part is also a reminder that with great power comes great responsibility and even though the build up is great, the ending felt a bit short. Regardless, this is the stuff greatAs boys grow, they dream of having superpowers. And during the first part of the film you are taken on a ride on what it feels like to gain such powers and the possibilities it brings. However, the second part is also a reminder that with great power comes great responsibility and even though the build up is great, the ending felt a bit short. Regardless, this is the stuff great entertainment is made of. Expand
  27. Mar 27, 2012
    9
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. If you know Akira... you have a good idea about the story of the movie. It has a very weak start but it becomes better after about 20 minutes. What would you do if you suddenly had superpowers? this movie shows not what Peter Parker would have done but hat me and you would have done. The good: a compelling story, the actors performances, nice special effects.
    The bad: some plot holes, some bad cinematography due to the home home video archive style of the movie.
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  28. Feb 19, 2012
    7
    You have to put up with the eye rolling teenage behavior that only Hollywood perceives teenagers to be, and of course the horrible moving camera, but it turns out to be an entertaining film. The movie progressively gets better and better as it goes on so be patient. I thought the special effects, for the most part, were great. They could have made the teenagers a little more likable soYou have to put up with the eye rolling teenage behavior that only Hollywood perceives teenagers to be, and of course the horrible moving camera, but it turns out to be an entertaining film. The movie progressively gets better and better as it goes on so be patient. I thought the special effects, for the most part, were great. They could have made the teenagers a little more likable so that you cared more about the characters and their predicament, but for the most part they are annoying. Still, I enjoyed it. Expand
  29. Feb 18, 2012
    7
    Just once I'd like to see what teenage girls do with a superpower. Why is it always boys? Especially, since we know they will only use it to impress girls... and ultimately kill each other.
  30. May 16, 2012
    10
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. definitively a guy movie. I enjoyed this thoroughly while my girlfriend gave it a "meh" at best. Starts out all fun and games but gets intense fast as one of the character's home life issues destabilizes him. its sad that we never find out what the thing was that gave them their powers but definitively leaves room for a sequel. Expand
Metascore
69

Generally favorable reviews - based on 31 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 24 out of 31
  2. Negative: 1 out of 31
  1. Reviewed by: Peter Debruge
    Feb 10, 2012
    70
    Unlike other mock documentaries, which unconvincingly pass themselves off as real, Chronicle cleverly embraces the format as shorthand for a new kind of naturalism, inviting audiences to suspend disbelief and join in the fantasy of being able to do anything with their minds.
  2. Reviewed by: Aaron Hillis
    Feb 10, 2012
    70
    Chronicle, with its found-footage storytelling and superpowered teens, at least playfully transcends its "Cloverfield meets Heroes" pitch.
  3. Reviewed by: Mark Jenkins
    Feb 10, 2012
    50
    A few more bucks (or a little more thought) for the script would have been a better investment than faking Seattle. The characters are introduced so quickly, and their personalities are so thin, that what happens to them has little weight.