Mixed or average reviews - based on 10 Critics What's this?

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Generally unfavorable reviews- based on 202 Ratings

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  • Starring: , ,
  • Summary: Heroic Goku is a powerful warrior who protects the Earth from an endless stream of rogues bent on dominating the Universe and controlling the mystical objects, the Dragonball. As the Master Roshi guides Goku on the young man's epic quest to save the Earth from the forces of darknes, he encounters Bulma, a beautiful woman intent on retrieving the mystical Dragonballs for her own reasons and Chi Chi, a young martial artist who captures Goku's eye. (20th Century Fox) Expand
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 2 out of 10
  2. Negative: 2 out of 10
  1. Reviewed by: Aaron Hillis
    Far more entertaining than it deserves to be, unless you're a 10-year-old boy, in which case it's only the greatest movie ever made.
  2. 70
    May or may not appeal to fans of the Japanese fantasy franchise it is based on, but aficionados of apocalyptic teenybopper kung fu extravaganzas are in for a real treat.
  3. Reviewed by: Joel Brown
    Nearly all the actors seem to be having a good time, and the action moves so fast that you don't mind when something nuts happens.
  4. 42
    The film is crammed with treats for old-school "Dragonball" fans, from the inclusion of all these characters (who don't actually do much) to the moment when spiky-haired Goku dons his orange gi. For everyone else, this amounts to another seen-it-before, probably-willing-to-see-it-again distraction.
  5. 40
    Bottom line: costumed Goku and Chi Chi cosplayers may argue the finer points of this adaptation, but it is fairly dazzling it its own overextended, futurist-teenpulp fashion, and Chow makes a vastly more entertaining Roshi than he did a King.
  6. Reviewed by: Glenn Whipp
    Director James Wong ("Final Destination") and writer Ben Ramsey are utterly blasé in their approach to the series' mythology and structure, cobbling together an 84-minute movie that seems to exist only to rile up fanboys. On that count -- and that count alone -- Dragonball Evolution triumphs.
  7. Completely lacking in visual, narrative or stylistic coherence, the film also suffers from cheap-looking visual effects and poorly staged and edited action sequences that will not exactly please the fanboys.

See all 10 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 20 out of 76
  2. Negative: 48 out of 76
  1. MikeH
    Aug 29, 2009
    I must say... i liked it. not so much because the movie itself was good (in any way), but because it evoked memories of the original dragon ball (and dbz), which i LOVED. 10 for the memories, 0 for the movie... averages out to 10. Expand
  2. CharlieM
    Apr 10, 2009
    A great start of a series, but if theres a sequel, don't let James Wong direct, and make it a lot longer.
  3. ChrisC
    May 1, 2009
    I watched dragonball heavily growing up, and in no way was this near the disappointment fans have claimed it to be. Folks expected a live-action dragonball. Well, that's impossible since dragonball is a cartoon and cartoons are completely different from live-actions. If you port a cartoon to live-action, you have to change so much to create the same entertainment value. Plus, the filmmakers had to create a story fitting for live-action that contained the right amount of bad guy-good guy contrast, which meant they had to compress tons of stuff into a film length they could market towards the one audience that's gonna bring in the money, which is not the early 20s nostalgia fan, but the 8-12 year old boy general viewer. Have you ever seen an Uwe Boll film? nuff said. This was a great action movie for kids and did the nostalgia job pretty well for the older fan. Expand
  4. Apr 20, 2011
    I was one of the lucky ones that only saw one ad of the movie, but didn't have time to go to theaters to watch it. However, there was no escape when it was played as one of those movies they show on international airplane flights.

    I will tell this right now: This movie is not only the worst adaptation of all time, but it's also one of the worst movies I have ever seen in my life. The plot is a hacking piece of horsecrap. Nothing but stolen cliches, plotholes, and few characters (not to mention that these characters don't even try to be adapted from the original sorce, neither appearance or personality). But the action makes up for it, right? WRONG! The fighting scenes are boring and choreographed, and the "energy" effects are nothing more than re-colored wind-effects. They even call it "airbending" in order to cover their own incompetence. The acting is also terrible. I would elaborate, but merely writing this review is throwing me into a torrent of rage and hate. To think that something of THIS terrible quality can be released in THIS day and age is a complete insult to humanity, and only proves that 20th Century Fox only dwelves into making money by rehashing icons of previous generations. **** you, Hollywood. Just **** you. The only reason it even has a single point is because it actually accomplishes BEING A MOVIE! Of course, a half-point would definetely be more accurate.
  5. Jan 6, 2014
    Worse than Gaius Expand
  6. Jan 3, 2011
    ive seen every episode of DBZ and just about every episode of DB . i knew from past experiances this film was most likely gonna suck but i tried to keep a open mind thinking there will be some cool redeaming factors atleast that will maybe make it ok. well wow i suprised how this movie got pretty much every thing wrong . the only thing that resembles the DB anime is the names of the charicters and thats it. every thing els is eather wrong or badly badle very badly done. piccalo and guko use to be teamed up ... WTF!!! the action is lame and the special effects look like a B movie or some thing off of the power rangers tv show. one of the worst takes ive ever seen on any thing be it game , comic , cartoon , or anime. if your are a DBZ fan dont ever ever ever see this film. Expand
  7. TomG
    Apr 14, 2009
    One of the worst movies I've ever seen. If you like the cartoon, the comic or things that are good, stay away.

See all 76 User Reviews