Instinct Image
Metascore
43

Mixed or average reviews - based on 23 Critics What's this?

User Score
6.7

Generally favorable reviews- based on 9 Ratings

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  • Starring: ,
  • Summary: Set in a maximum-security prison, a psychiatrist (Gooding) examines an anthropologist (Hopkins) who was retrieved from the African jungles where he had lived for several years amongst the apes.
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 2 out of 23
  2. Negative: 6 out of 23
  1. 70
    Although Instinct is strictly a Hollywood formula picture, it's such an efficiently executed one, built around two such outstanding actors, that for the most part you won't mind.
  2. Reviewed by: David Edelstein
    60
    The more subversive Instinct gets in proclaiming free will an illusion fostered by a rigidly repressive society, the more captive it seems to a rigidly repressive studio marketing department.
  3. Reviewed by: Gary Dauphin
    60
    Instinct moves along at a competent clip, but it's mostly a tease.
  4. 50
    A sloppily structured, snoozily paced psychodrama about living in harmony with nature and all the rest of that tree-hugging hooey.
  5. A greatest-hits collection of plot devices and emotional cues from such films as "Gorillas in the Mist" and "One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest," making it something of a trained chimp, one that apes a lot of good movies while making itself look ridiculous.
  6. John Turtletaub directs Gerald DiPego's silly script, pumping it full of sudden shocks and cheap dramatics where there should be steady tension and character development.
  7. 20
    In search of inspiration and the human spirit triumphant, they managed to cook up a pot of sanctimonious, reductive claptrap (which the credits confess was only "inspired" by Quinn's book) that's not in the least instructive or entertaining.

See all 23 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 0 out of 2
  2. Negative: 0 out of 2
  1. Feb 21, 2012
    4
    Come on now... as much as they might try to disguise it, this is just a vehicle to make Anthony Hopkins play another Hannibal Lecter-esque character. Not bad but I'll bet there's no more than a handful of folks in the world who's seen it more than once. Expand

See all 2 User Reviews