User Score
6.3

Generally favorable reviews- based on 12 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 7 out of 12
  2. Negative: 4 out of 12
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  1. ChadS.
    Apr 12, 2007
    5
    When Beatrice(Sarah Polley) encounters The Monster(Robert John Burke), "No Such Thing" starts to bear a faint resemblance to "King Kong"(maybe this is a retelling from the avant-garde perspective). If the ape was in a play, he'd be mumbling solioquies, too. As The Monster expresses his loneliness and despair to Beatrice(who is there to search for her fiance), it occured to me that When Beatrice(Sarah Polley) encounters The Monster(Robert John Burke), "No Such Thing" starts to bear a faint resemblance to "King Kong"(maybe this is a retelling from the avant-garde perspective). If the ape was in a play, he'd be mumbling solioquies, too. As The Monster expresses his loneliness and despair to Beatrice(who is there to search for her fiance), it occured to me that this might be a literal translation of Kong's roaring(maybe Kong was in anguish about being the last of his kind, too). Like the RKO film, a woman is delivered to the beast as a peace offering by the natives(and also, the woman reaches her destination by boat, albeit by a more convoluted manner). For most viewers, "No Such Thing" goes off the rails when Beatrice returns home with The Monster; the change in tone(from sobering to bubbly) is abrupt and jarring to even the most adventurous cineaste. Inexplicably, Beatrice undergoes a personality change; she wears provocative clothing and jumps into bed too easily with strange men, which is a drastic change from the nice girl(bookish, chaste) image we previously had of her. This is a stretch, but let's consider that in "King Kong", the giant ape was the spectacle(he was put on exhibition by his captors); in "No Such Thing", the girl is put on display(Polley wears a push-up bra and dominatrix clothing). When the monster gets loose in the city, it's the people who do the pummeling. In the final scene of "No Such Thing"(the monster's death), there's another inversion of a "Kong" plotpoint; the giant ape who climbs the building and stands at the apex of New York City with Fay Wray(or Jessica Lange, or Naomi Watts) in his hand. This filmmaker made me realize for the first time that the giant ape was probably trying to commit suicide. Was this obvious to everybody but me? Kong wanted to die with his beloved prize, but he changed his mind and set the girl down. "No Such Thing" fails as an entertainment(and fails as art), but if you consider the filmmaker's oeuvre, attention must be paid to the madness(too much time is spent on Beatrice's rehab) because there just might be a method(or not). Expand
Metascore
36

Generally unfavorable reviews - based on 21 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 1 out of 21
  2. Negative: 6 out of 21
  1. 50
    Hartley's most ambitious film, but it's also among his most uneven, shifting away at moments when its characters should be allowed to connect, underemphasizing some themes, overemphasizing others, and letting a general clash of ideas stand in for momentum.
  2. Reviewed by: Derek Elley
    10
    Deadly dull in stretches, and just plain embarrassing in others.
  3. Reviewed by: Ken Fox
    50
    The film is little more than a stylish exercise in revisionism whose point -- we create, then destroy our own monsters in order to assure ourselves we're human -- is no doubt true, but serves as a rather thin moral to such a knowing fable.