Generally unfavorable reviews - based on 23 Critics What's this?

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Generally favorable reviews- based on 37 Ratings

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  • Starring: ,
  • Summary: A simple enough question, but how Jonathan McQuarry answers it will change his life forever. A corporate auditor adrift in a sea of New York's power elite, Jonathan's work is his entire life. But a chance meeting with Wyatt Bose, a charismatic corporate lawyer, introduces Jonathan to a decadent playground for Manhattan's executive upper crust. For these power brokers, whose eighteen-hour workdays leave no time for a personal life, there's "The List" - a sex club, of sorts, where the right cell-phone number and four simple words ("Are you free tonight?") can lead to an evening's sexual fulfillment. It's a world of "intimacy without intricacy," as Jonathan's first conquest (or vice versa) explains to him, and through The List Jonathan discovers a side of himself that he didn't know existed. But an affair with a ravishing and mysterious stranger known to Jonathan only by her first initial 'S', will expose him to yet another world he never imagined - one of betrayal, treachery and murder. (20th Century Fox) Expand
  • Director: Marcel Langenegger
  • Genre(s): Drama, Mystery, Thriller, Romance, Crime
  • Rating: R
  • Runtime: 107 min
  • More Details and Credits »
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 1 out of 23
  2. Negative: 12 out of 23
  1. 63
    Jackman and McGregor are a delight to watch.
  2. Reviewed by: Claudia Puig
    Deception is not the cool, noirish thriller it tries to be. Despite a cast that includes double-crossers Hugh Jackman and Ewan McGregor and Michelle Williams caught in the middle, the film is a yawn.
  3. With her arresting, off-kilter look of bruised desire, Michelle Williams ends up being the most interesting aspect of this somber corn.
  4. 38
    To succeed, Deception requires viewers to be both inattentive and stupid. There's not a twist in this flimsy and moth-eaten plot that isn't both contrived and transparent and not a character who hasn't been hopelessly manipulated by the needs of the narrative.
  5. Reviewed by: Mark Olsen
    Deception would be laughably bad if it weren't so rotely inert.
  6. Deception is another example of when genre-fication (the forcing of otherwise intriguing stories into the straitjackets of horror, thriller or other genres) reduces our entertainment to head-shaking banality.
  7. 20
    Whether you view it as intellectually dishonest or just plain sloppy, Deception is a movie that more than lives up to its title.

See all 23 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 2 out of 7
  2. Negative: 0 out of 7
  1. ChrisW.
    Apr 29, 2008
    While Deception might have been contrived and improbable at best, it was also both remarkably beautiful and fascinatingly ugly simultaniously. Both Jackman and McGregor deliver dynamic performances that refuse to be ignored. And who really gives a crap if it delivers too few plot twists? Many critics have lately been complaining of too many plot twists. Is there a specific number of twists a plot should have? Expand
  2. QuinH.
    May 15, 2010
    Highly underrated! If you like thrillers and dont mind nudity with women then watch it!!!!
  3. JayH
    Sep 18, 2008
    The plot is far fetched, the story is uninvolving and for a thriller, it has too many slow stretches. Well made technically, the stars are bland.
  4. ChadS.
    Apr 26, 2008
    If "Deception" was a European production, first of all, there would be more sex. Waaaay more sex. Even if a dead body, or two, turned up, it wouldn't stop the French, or the Swedes, or the Krauts, from f****** like bunnies, and not feeling guilty about it the next morning. If "Deception" was a Tootsie Roll Pop, we'd want to know how many licks it would take to get to the center. But "Deception" doesn't want to be graphic like a sucker. The film lacks the tongue for it. In other words, we never find out how many anonymous sexual encounters it would take before Jonathan McQuarry(Ewan McGregor) got sick of "The List". That's because "Deception" would rather be a second-rate version of David Mamet's "The Spanish Prisoner", as the film turns into a sort of Hitchcockian coitus interruptus. Since the film ignores the potential for irony(an irony that a European production might've strived for): a lonely man who ends up lonelier, even though he's always surrounded by beautiful, willing women; for the love of God, I thought, please don't let Wyatt Bose(Hugh Jackman) turn out to be imaginary. Please don't let this sex club be like "Fight Club". But such a banality is all relative. Regardless of Wyatt's true identity and motive for befriending Jonathan, "Deception", like most contemporary mainstream American films, fails to deal with sexual themes in a methodologically serious fashion. Expand
  5. BillyS.
    Apr 27, 2008
    This must be one of those movies that has been on the shelf for three years and they decided to release it now when there is nothing else out there to compete with it. It was better on the shelf! Collapse
  6. Feb 7, 2012
    Half of the movie was like a porn and the other half was predictable. A waste of good actors for a simple and boring plot. It didnt thrill me at all... Expand
  7. PKO
    May 3, 2008
    Chad S. Nails it perfectly with a 4! As I left the theatre I thought "If you want to see this movie done well, see The Spanish Prisoner by David Mamet." It is all this film was not: clever and intriguing. I'd gladly watch Ewan McGregor or Hugh Jackman make toast for 2 hours, but this film tries the patience since is could have been so much more and, ultimately, is nothing at all. Even the sex is not that hot, which is difficult to manage considering who is involved. Rental? Maybe on a slow night alone, in January. Expand