Metascore
50

Mixed or average reviews - based on 35 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 13 out of 35
  2. Negative: 5 out of 35
  1. Reviewed by: Drew Taylor
    Dec 18, 2012
    83
    In terms of pure pop entertainment value, you'll be hard-pressed to find a more smartly constructed, beautifully shot, pulse-pounding movie this holiday season.
  2. Reviewed by: Mark Dinning
    Dec 31, 2012
    80
    Christopher McQuarrie and Tom Cruise deliver on their promise, with a witty, violent take on Reacher that makes up for its lack of height with an abundance of smarts and thrills.
  3. Reviewed by: Todd McCarthy
    Dec 10, 2012
    80
    Tom Cruise is in fine form as mysterious tough guy Jack Reacher finally reaches the big screen.
  4. Reviewed by: James Mottram
    Dec 10, 2012
    80
    A superior thriller, with Cruise and McQuarrie slotting together like a bullet in a clip. Like Reacher on the firing range, the aim isn't always true – but the misses are fractional.
  5. Reviewed by: Peter Rainer
    Dec 23, 2012
    75
    Werner Herzog, better known as one of the finest living directors, plays a bad guy with Teutonic relish. If he doesn't watch it, he'll have a whole other career for himself playing dead-eyed villains.
  6. Reviewed by: Kyle Smith
    Dec 20, 2012
    75
    Cruise's Jack Reacher is a loner who doesn't smile, charm, love the ladies, aim his index fingers to the heavens or sing "You've Lost That Lovin' Feeling" in bars. Here he just snarls and kills people. Yes, please, and let's have more of the same.
  7. Reviewed by: Peter Travers
    Dec 18, 2012
    75
    This is Cruise's show. And he nails it. The patented smile is gone, replaced by a glower that makes Jack Reacher a dark and dazzling ride into a new kind of hell.
  8. Reviewed by: Anthony Lane
    Jan 19, 2013
    70
    A trim thriller with an enviable lack of grandeur. [21 Jan. 2013, p.79]
  9. Reviewed by: Chuck Wilson
    Dec 18, 2012
    70
    Cruise is definitely too short for the gig, but in this first fight, he proves his tough-guy chops. Outraged Reacher readers can stand down.
  10. Reviewed by: Louis Black
    Dec 23, 2012
    67
    This violent, sometimes brutal suspense thriller was thus quite a surprise, both in how effectively Cruise creates a commanding physical presence despite his lack of size, and for how well the film works in general.
  11. Reviewed by: Stephanie Zacharek
    Dec 20, 2012
    65
    The bigger problem is that Cruise, as Reacher, has no wit and no style, other than the studiously applied kind. He's so desperate to do everything right that nearly everything he does comes off all wrong.
  12. Reviewed by: Amy Nicholson
    Dec 19, 2012
    65
    Beat by beat, Jack Reacher is just like Child's paperbacks in the best possible way: it's fast, fun, and smarter than it looks.
  13. Reviewed by: Michael Phillips
    Dec 20, 2012
    63
    McQuarrie... is a real writer; his banter has snap and bite. His directorial skills are still catching up with his writing skills; the movie loses steam in the final half-hour.
  14. Reviewed by: Peter Bradshaw
    Dec 20, 2012
    60
    Outrageous but entertaining pulp-melodrama thriller.
  15. Reviewed by: Elizabeth Weitzman
    Dec 20, 2012
    60
    Cruise's tightly controlled performance holds our attention all the way through to the tense finale. Still, McQuarrie's script never gets at the heart of a character who's already inspired such a passionate fan base.
  16. Reviewed by: Lisa Schwarzbaum
    Dec 12, 2012
    58
    That Cruise fails to make a case for Reacher's allure, though, has less to do with physical dissonance than it does with the film's inability - stupefying inability, really - to otherwise make a case for the character's originality in a movie so choked with visual clichés and dreadfully moldy dialogue.
  17. Reviewed by: Claudia Puig
    Dec 23, 2012
    50
    Despite a terrific cast, Jack Reacher comes up empty-handed.
  18. 50
    The whole movie is like an NRA wet dream, with Robert Duvall as a crusty gun-range owner who pitches in to shoot bad guys. Jack Reacher already feels as if it belongs to another era.
  19. Reviewed by: James Berardinelli
    Dec 23, 2012
    50
    Jack Reacher has the distinction of being little more than it initially appears to be: a clumsily condensed mystery/thriller novel made into a movie that offers little more than every other clumsily condensed mystery/thriller novel made into a movie.
  20. Reviewed by: Liam Lacey
    Dec 20, 2012
    50
    World-weariness is not really the energetic star's best driving gear. Nor are declarations of menace intended to identify Jack Reacher as a modern-day mythic avenger. When he tells an enemy, through his clenched choppers, "I mean to beat you to death and drink your blood from a boot," the effect is, unintentionally, popcorn-spitting funny. Talk about overreaching.
  21. Reviewed by: Mick LaSalle
    Dec 20, 2012
    50
    An average action film, made slightly better by Cruise, and more bizarre by Herzog, and more watchable by Pike, but still within the average range, a silk purse that still says oink.
  22. Reviewed by: Wesley Morris
    Dec 20, 2012
    50
    This movie is the height of by-the-book dullness.
  23. Reviewed by: Rene Rodriguez
    Dec 20, 2012
    50
    Reacher is so good at everything he does, and Cruise plays him in such a robotic manner, that the movie becomes a bit of a bore: The hero is practically omnipotent.
  24. Reviewed by: Kerry Lengel
    Dec 19, 2012
    50
    In the movie version at least, efforts to render the hero larger than life result in a story that is less than convincing.
  25. Reviewed by: Richard Corliss
    Dec 18, 2012
    50
    Even when the film is cool, it manages to be wrong.
  26. Reviewed by: Peter Debruge
    Dec 10, 2012
    50
    Reacher is a brawny action figure whose exploits would have been a good fit for the likes of Arnold Schwarzenegger or Sylvester Stallone back in the day, but feel less fun when delegated to a leading man like Tom Cruise. The star is too charismatic to play someone so cold-blooded, and his fans likely won't appreciate the stretch.
  27. Reviewed by: Tasha Robinson
    Dec 19, 2012
    42
    Jack Reacher isn't much of a man, and Jack Reacher isn't the story of a man. It's mythmaking for self-satisfied sociopaths.
  28. Reviewed by: Keith Uhlich
    Dec 23, 2012
    40
    Whether blithely comparing American prisons to retirement homes or gleefully recalling the time he chewed off his own fingers in Siberia, the moonlighting German New Wave auteur injects some much-needed black humor into what is otherwise a soporific star vehicle.
  29. Reviewed by: Betsy Sharkey
    Dec 20, 2012
    40
    So thrill-less, so chill-less is Jack Reacher that it is unlikely to spark interest, much less controversy.
  30. Reviewed by: A.O. Scott
    Dec 20, 2012
    40
    Apart from the car chase, the only real fun in Jack Reacher comes from Mr. Herzog and Robert Duvall, called in near the end for some marvelously gratuitous scenery chewing as a gruff former Marine. They enliven the movie's atmosphere of weary brutality for a few moments, but they also call attention to the dullness of their dramatic surroundings.
  31. Reviewed by: Ann Hornaday
    Dec 20, 2012
    38
    Jack Reacher is a wildly ill-advised miscalculation, with Cruise's virtually unstoppable appeal butting uncomfortably against Reacher's alternately cocky and downright crude cynicism.
  32. Reviewed by: Steven Rea
    Dec 20, 2012
    38
    The violence is plenty, and pointless.
  33. Reviewed by: Chris Cabin
    Dec 20, 2012
    25
    The film is as incompetent, manipulative, safe, and disposable as any number of nickel-and-dime actioners, but goes to great, unconvincing lengths to insist it's different.
  34. Reviewed by: Rex Reed
    Dec 18, 2012
    25
    Jack Reacher is mostly grim, violent and stupid.
  35. Reviewed by: Joe Morgenstern
    Dec 20, 2012
    0
    Jack Reacher, which Christopher McQuarrie directed from his adaptation of a Lee Child crime novel, is not just another dumb thriller. It's almost peerlessly self-important, weirdly incoherent and eerily smarmy. It's also mysteriously inept, considering that Tom Cruise plays the title role.
User Score
6.2

Generally favorable reviews- based on 291 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 64 out of 102
  2. Negative: 22 out of 102
  1. Dec 21, 2012
    3
    Not sure why this was rated over 60% on Rotten Tomatoes. This movie is terribly paced, the story is ridiculous and frankly the whole blonde damsel in distress scene was over the top. Some scenes just drag on too long and others feel like they should have been cut out all together. This is one of those movies you watch when it's free on TV and you have nothing else to do. Full Review »
  2. Dec 21, 2012
    8
    Tom cruise is like marmite you either love him or hate him, usually i tend to go for the latter. However i found this film to be very true to the book which i respect, it had action, suspense and a bit of romance between the two main leads "Cruise, Rosamund pike". If you're looking for a thrill ride then i recommend you go and see this despite what the critics say this is definitely a crowd pleaser. Full Review »
  3. Dec 21, 2012
    0
    This was one of the worst movies I have ever seen and it was so bad in fact that I purposefully created an account on this site just so I could talk about how terrible it was. I feel like I threw away two hours of my life and will never get it back. The lead actress was wooden and laughable, as if she were trying to emote with a face-full of Botox. Tom Cruise was standard Tom Cruise. I got so angry by the end at the fact that I had to sit through this pathetic movie that I threw my bottle of water on the floor. Full Review »