Metascore
61

Generally favorable reviews - based on 47 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 26 out of 47
  2. Negative: 4 out of 47
  1. Reviewed by: Adam Nayman
    Aug 8, 2013
    38
    One of Blomkamp’s most unlikely conceits is a machine – apparently standard-issue in all of Elysium’s made-to-order McMansions – that can heal all injuries and infections at the flick of a switch. He could have used one to fix Elysium’s battered and broken screenplay.
  2. Reviewed by: Kyle Smith
    Aug 6, 2013
    38
    For a 99 percenter movie, then, Elysium is kind of a head-scratcher. It throws away its best opportunity for drama. It’s as if Han and Leia parked on the Death Star and started asking, “How much is a two-bedroom around here?”
  3. Reviewed by: Dana Stevens
    Aug 8, 2013
    30
    Blomkamp proceeds to spend the last two-thirds of his film crashing spaceships into lawns, or staging high-tech fistfights between Elysium’s stolid hero and his even duller arch-nemesis. It’s a waste of a perfectly good dystopia.
  4. Reviewed by: Richard Corliss
    Aug 8, 2013
    30
    The result is a grim and predictable adventure saga that is not nimble but leaden. Dystopia has rarely been so dysto-pointing.
User Score
6.7

Generally favorable reviews- based on 716 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Negative: 44 out of 208
  1. Aug 9, 2013
    10
    Just caught the matinee and feel a little guilty this one deserved a full price! No soph0more slump for Blomkamp I loved District 9 this to me even surpasses it.We get developed characters that we actually care about the performances by all were stellar,especially Damon as the guy we can relate to and Copley in a scene chewing performance delivering one of the best villains in recent memory,Foster was the too as the cutthroat politician .Blomkamp has balls and his vision of two separate societies one of the diseased, overpopulated planet and Elysium where the rich flourish disease free was richly brought to life truly a beautiful the effects by Weca are amazing! I bought in to this future world and the plot actually had a purpose with something to say about our modern society while still being balls to the wall entertaining and affecting its audience. Blomkamp delivers another classic go check it out i can't recommend enough Full Review »
  2. Aug 9, 2013
    3
    I just got back from the 10 o'clock screening of Elysium, and boy am I disappointed. I mean, talk about underwhelming in pretty much every way possible. There were tons of fairly sizable problems with the film, one of the most damning being the reliance on generic cookie-cutter characters (excluding Kruger, who was kinda awesome) and a convoluted chase-movie plot that lacked real motivation since the audience wasn't brought up to speed on the stakes of the mission or the endgame of the heroes.

    However, I would argue the greatest flaw of the movie is just the fact that it doesn't have a whole lot going for it. Once you get past the clever premise and fantastic world-building, the movie doesn't have a whole lot of originality to spare. Its few creative weapons concepts (like the air-burst gun and shield you see in the trailer) are only used for a few seconds a piece before being traded for something more uninspired. A few characters look promising from the get-go, like the bonkers Kruger and some of Max's gangster buddies, but all these guys end up going the safe and dull route. Even the climax of the film, which I was hoping would do something daring and different to solve the character's predicament, went the trite path of a million different feel-good endings that were nothing but convenient B.S. that wrapped up everything with a nice bow, regardless of how little sense it made.

    TL;DR

    Elysium may have a fantastic setting and some cool ideas, but its let down by blah characters, a messy story, and a lack of creativity
    Full Review »
  3. Aug 9, 2013
    4
    I'm able to suspend my disbelief a fair amount, especially if there's something to be gained from it. But I feel like Neil Blomkamp took the easy way out of every difficult situation during his first draft of the screenplay and then never went back to edit it. Almost nothing interesting happens the entire movie and every difficult situation is resolved the boring, predictable way. The main characters don't act like people, and the minor characters and robots are on screen precisely when it the plot asks for them to be there and no more. Elysium did not surprise me or make me care about anything that was happening, and the times it made me laugh were mostly from the ridiculousness of it. The thing I liked the most about the film was the cinematography, but most of that was reminiscent of District 9. In fact, District 9 was just a better movie in every single way. I recommend watching that again (or for the first time!) instead of watching Elysium. Full Review »