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Mixed or average reviews - based on 36 Critics What's this?

User Score
8.2

Universal acclaim- based on 181 Ratings

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  • Starring: , ,
  • Summary: Denzel Washington stars as a government operative/soldier of fortune who has pretty much given up on life. In Mexico City, he reluctantly agrees to take a job to protect a child (Fanning) whose parents are threatened by a wave of kidnappings. He eventually becomes close to the child and their relationship reawakens and rekindles his spirit. When she is abducted, his fiery rage is unleashed on those he feels responsible, and he stops at nothing to save her. (20th Century Fox) Expand
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 11 out of 36
  2. Negative: 8 out of 36
  1. Man on Fire, with a best-ever Denzel Washington, is the first (nonreligious) sure thing to hit the multiplex this year.
  2. It's resolutely grim and rather predictable but very compelling, and it offers a commanding star vehicle for Denzel Washington.
  3. 63
    Employs superb craftsmanship and a powerful Denzel Washington performance in an attempt to elevate genre material above its natural level, but it fails. The underlying story isn't worth the effort.
  4. Despite its high craft level and Washington's participation in it, this movie's showy violence is finally as deadening as the over-emphatic violence in these kinds of films generally is.
  5. It is a good hour too long, although it does boast Christopher Walken.
  6. 50
    Scott swaddles this fundamentally straightforward revenge story in a jumble of bleary freeze frames, random changes of color saturation and film stock, jump cuts and stuttering montages, splashing text from some menacing word soup onto the resulting collage of chicly disturbing images.
  7. 10
    It's dispiriting to see good actors doing smart, solid work with so much unadulterated garbage swirling around them. Scott's art is also death, and we, the audience, are the ones he's jabbing at with his ruthless paintbrush. It's about time someone told him where to stick it.

See all 36 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 73 out of 88
  2. Negative: 9 out of 88
  1. Oct 16, 2011
    10
    This has become one of my favouite movies of all time. From the great soundtrack, the awesome cinematography/editing and the performances of the actors this film ticks all the boxes. Dakota Fanning is unbelievably good for her age and Denzel lives up to his usual standard. The first half of the film is quite slow but it is required in order to create the backstory of the Creasey/Peta relationship. Once the action kicks in the film really takes off. If I had one criticism, which I'm finding hard, it's that the film could be more violent. The first act of revenge is the most violent so after that it's a bit of a letdown. The ending could have you in tears. Expand
  2. May 16, 2013
    10
    an amazing movie that critics under rate dont listen to them giving it average it was perfect buy this movie on blu ray you and see what you think ok
  3. Oct 6, 2013
    10
    Another master-class movie with Denzel Washington as the movie's biggest highlight. He plays as Crease,
    a skilled combatant entrusted with
    the task to protect a little girl; Pita. He is a force that should be feared; especially when you don't give him answers.

    It's clear that most professional critics are cynical They see a man sadistically brutalising kidnappers for answers; I see a man doing the right thing. Those people were criminals. Plus, if you were smart, you would realise that not once did he take pleasure in torturing his targets. In fact, he was more hesitant in doing so. He merely took the measures that were required. If someone you cared for; Pita in this instance, was taken away by these sick bastards, would you just try to talk to them for information? Treat them nicely? Don't kid yourself, I'm sure you would result in brutality out of desperation.

    In saying that, Man On Fire is an excellent movie for its dramatic depth and moral.
    Expand
  4. Jul 15, 2011
    9
    Very surprised that the critics gave such low reviews for a classic Denzel film. Saw this a couple of weeks ago for the first time, was shocked I missed this. Great plot and always nervous of what will happen next. Expand
  5. Sep 19, 2011
    8
    Powered with beautifully frenzied cinematography and poignant performances by Fanning and Washington, "Man on Fire" is a unstoppable train advancing to the audience with mighty, brazen force. Expand
  6. Dec 8, 2013
    8
    Gritty, violent, and action-packed, Man On Fire showcases Denzel Washington's acting talent. Maybe it was a bit too violent, but it's an R-movie.

    The acting and cinematography was great. Reminds me of Taken.
    Expand
  7. Feb 24, 2013
    4
    This was a good story, and they could have done so much more with it. I found this movie to be quite slow and boring. The character development is terrible, a lot of the acting is poor, and the cinematography, just makes things that much more confusing. I love Denzel Washington and when he teams with Tony Scott, it's usually magic, but they missed the mark in a big way on this one. Expand

See all 88 User Reviews

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