Metascore
51

Mixed or average reviews - based on 37 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 12 out of 37
  2. Negative: 5 out of 37
  1. Reviewed by: Richard Roeper
    Feb 27, 2013
    88
    A rousing, original and thoroughly entertaining adventure.
  2. Reviewed by: Randy Cordova
    Feb 27, 2013
    80
    One reason it works so well: The film always looks believable, and it’s easy to get wrapped into Singer’s fairy-tale world.
  3. Reviewed by: Scott Foundas
    Feb 26, 2013
    80
    By the standards of today's bombastic "event" movies, this is a refreshingly modest endeavor—one in which the main event is the skillful holding of our attention, all the way from "Once upon a time" to "Happily ever after."
  4. Reviewed by: James Berardinelli
    Feb 28, 2013
    75
    Jack the Giant Slayer is an enjoyable fantasy/adventure whose magic is partially undermined by marginal 3-D.
  5. Reviewed by: Tom Russo
    Feb 28, 2013
    75
    A giant chef character is an icky bit of inspiration (complete with booger humor to soothe any shell-shocked young’uns in the audience), and the monsters are key to an epic-scale third act. If you thought the tale ended when Jack clambered back down from the skies, then you haven’t given it as much thought as Singer.
  6. Reviewed by: David Denby
    Mar 18, 2013
    70
    Singer honors a child's desire not only for adventure but for noble deeds, for loyalty and friendship. [18 March 2013, p.87]
  7. Reviewed by: Todd McCarthy
    Feb 26, 2013
    70
    There's little facetious comedy a la the "Pirates of the Caribbean" series. It's all traditional stuff, done well but without an original spark.
  8. Reviewed by: Kevin Jagernauth
    Feb 26, 2013
    67
    Ultimately, it’s hard and a bit pointless to nitpick Jack The Giant Slayer because it never sets out to be or presents itself as anything more than a slightly beefed up fairy tale.
  9. Reviewed by: Steven Rea
    Feb 28, 2013
    63
    Peter Jackson devotees may not like to hear this, but Jack the Giant Slayer is far more accomplished, visually speaking, than The Hobbit: An Unexpected Snooze, I mean, Journey.
  10. Reviewed by: Claudia Puig
    Feb 28, 2013
    63
    Vivid visuals are the key to this handsome and moderately entertaining adventure. And the tone is more fairy-tale appropriate than video-game friendly, though the effects-laden swashbuckling sometimes obscures efforts at light whimsy.
  11. Reviewed by: Kyle Smith
    Feb 28, 2013
    63
    This digitally tricked-out fairy tale makes for a reasonably engaging kids’ fantasy, but at best we’re talking about a junior varsity “Lord of the Rings.” It’s March. What did you expect?
  12. 63
    For all Singer’s expertise at making the fantastic real, all we’re left with here is an expensive-looking bauble – worth looking over, but not really anything to treasure.
  13. Reviewed by: David Hughes
    Mar 18, 2013
    60
    Far from the giant mess you’d expect from the delayed release, late title change and a production history as muddled as the source material, Singer’s tall tale is snatched from disaster by an all-hell-breaks-loose third act.
  14. Reviewed by: Paul Bradshaw
    Mar 11, 2013
    60
    Not one for cynics or bedwetters, if you’re after a ripping, roaring, thigh-slapping giant of a fairytale, Bryan Singer’s blockbuster panto will be right up your beanstalk.
  15. Reviewed by: Keith Uhlich
    Mar 2, 2013
    60
    So many blockbuster movies are impersonal, micromanaged hashes that Jack, with its bare minimum of craft and commitment, comparatively comes off like a diamond in the rough.
  16. Reviewed by: Ian Buckwalter
    Mar 1, 2013
    60
    The film's main problem — apart from its predictability and the sometimes unconvincing and cartoonish CGI for the army of giants — is that it never entirely commits to what kind of fantasy movie it wants to be.
  17. 60
    It’s fast, rousing, and blessedly brief.
  18. Reviewed by: Peter Rainer
    Mar 1, 2013
    58
    Not awful, not wonderful, Jack the Giant Slayer is a midrange fairy tale epic that’s a lot more ho-hum than fee-fi-fo-fum.
  19. Reviewed by: Owen Gleiberman
    Feb 28, 2013
    58
    This is how a fairy-tale movie gives us our money's worth today. Even if once upon a time, it was called overkill.
  20. Reviewed by: Jordan Hoffman
    Feb 27, 2013
    58
    It is highly likely you’ll forget the movie by the time you go to bed.
  21. Reviewed by: Mary Pols
    Mar 2, 2013
    50
    The technology is undeniably there to make a credible beanstalk fly into the heavens, and giants that are utterly grotesque and vividly threatening. But how about something we can take our kids too? Doesn’t anyone want them to be there?
  22. Reviewed by: Liam Lacey
    Feb 28, 2013
    50
    While it’s fine for a director to explore his childhood inspirations, you hope he would bring something a bit more personal to it. Instead, Jack the Giant Slayer, while well-crafted, feels entirely generic.
  23. Reviewed by: Joe Morgenstern
    Feb 28, 2013
    50
    Jack's problem is that he's a commoner, but the movie's problem is that its script is commoner still, an enchantment-free pretext for animated action, straight-ahead storytelling and ersatz romance.
  24. Reviewed by: Manohla Dargis
    Feb 28, 2013
    50
    If it drifts with increasing frequency it’s because, well, this finally is just a digitally souped-up, one-dimensional take on Jack and the Beanstalk.
  25. Reviewed by: Connie Ogle
    Feb 28, 2013
    50
    A competent but utterly unnecessary retelling of the story.
  26. Reviewed by: Peter Travers
    Feb 28, 2013
    50
    It's a bloodless, gutless piece of PG-13 fodder, geared to go down easy. That it does. It practically evaporates while you're watching it, lulling when you most want it to levitate.
  27. Reviewed by: Michael Phillips
    Feb 28, 2013
    50
    The film is ruled by sound and fury signifying an attempt to launch a new franchise.
  28. Reviewed by: Louis Black
    Feb 27, 2013
    50
    A terrific cast, intelligent direction, state-of-the-art special effects, a strong story, and skilled narrative construction all end up being much ado about not very much.
  29. Reviewed by: Justin Chang
    Feb 26, 2013
    50
    Jack the Giant Slayer feels, unsurprisingly, like an attempt to cash in on a trend, recycling storybook characters, situations and battle sequences to mechanical and wearyingly predictable effect.
  30. Reviewed by: Marc Mohan
    Feb 28, 2013
    42
    As is, the slapstick humor and mild repartee won't please many with a mindset above that of a 10-year-old, while the level of (admittedly fantastical) violence might be a bit much for the pre-teen set.
  31. Reviewed by: Tasha Robinson
    Feb 27, 2013
    42
    The extra shading is nice, but it doesn’t change the degree to which Jack The Giant Slayer feels like a paint-by-numbers story.
  32. Reviewed by: Elizabeth Weitzman
    Feb 28, 2013
    40
    A director as talented as Singer (“The Usual Suspects,” “X-Men”) should be working to raise popcorn movies to a higher level. Instead, this uninspired effort feels like a colossal letdown.
  33. Reviewed by: Michael O'Sullivan
    Mar 1, 2013
    37
    Too scary for very young children, yet too silly for most older fans of director Bryan Singer’s earlier forays into the Superman and X-Men franchises, “Jack” seems designed to appeal to a very narrow, and possibly illusory, demographic: the mature moppet.
  34. Reviewed by: Kenneth Turan
    Feb 28, 2013
    30
    With some momentary exceptions, Jack the Giant Slayer simply isn't any fun.
  35. Reviewed by: Peter Hartlaub
    Feb 28, 2013
    25
    By the end, I was adding my own internal "Deadwood"-style profanities to McShane's clean dialogue. "For the sake of the (God-@#$%) kingdom, cut it (the @#$%) down!" Movies about mile-high beanstalks shouldn't require additional audience imagination.
  36. Reviewed by: Steve Persall
    Feb 27, 2013
    25
    Jack the Giant Slayer is merely cable TV fodder waiting to happen and not worth a hill of beans, magic or otherwise.
  37. Reviewed by: R. Kurt Osenlund
    Feb 27, 2013
    12
    This epic waste of $190 million plunders the grab bag of overused plotlines, failing to put its own stamp on much of anything.
User Score
6.2

Generally favorable reviews- based on 174 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 35 out of 55
  2. Negative: 5 out of 55
  1. Mar 1, 2013
    9
    Just came from seeing this with my kids. Was not too violent. Kids had a total blast and so did I. Total fun! An Oscar winner for bestJust came from seeing this with my kids. Was not too violent. Kids had a total blast and so did I. Total fun! An Oscar winner for best picture? Never, but who cares! This was totally enjoyable. Full Review »
  2. Mar 24, 2013
    3
    This was a just a sad waste of time. First off, the acting was terrible, especially from Ewan McGregor. Second, the fact that the story isThis was a just a sad waste of time. First off, the acting was terrible, especially from Ewan McGregor. Second, the fact that the story is based off of an old children's story, it just comes to show that hollywood is coming up with stupid rip-offs and unnesacary sequels. Third, the story is typical, i mean come on, trying to save the princess, isn't that overated. Anyway, Overall this was just bad. Full Review »
  3. Mar 20, 2013
    8
    If you were to combine The Lord of the Rings' story with Robin Hood's personality and The Chronicles of Narnia's fantastical whimsy, you'd getIf you were to combine The Lord of the Rings' story with Robin Hood's personality and The Chronicles of Narnia's fantastical whimsy, you'd get Jack the Giant Slayer. With thrills, spills, and chills, Jack is a good adventure film that successfully modernizes its' fairy tale basis while lovingly nodding towards the classic tale.

    Great visuals and acting by the cast, with the stand-out being Ewan McGregor, who brings an Errol Flynn-like personality to Elmont. There's a few good messages also on embracing responsibility, bravery, and self-sacrifice. As far as a family movie night is concerned, Jack the Giant Slayer is a very mild PG-13, but I wouldn't recommend it for children under age 10. For while there is no on-screen blood or gore (the head-chomping is off-screen and the effects are seen from a distance), it still could spark a nightmare or two for younger ones. There's also a bit of mild language and giants are seen having gross habits.

    For a more detailed review, visit www.moviestakenseriously.blogspot.com
    Full Review »