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Mixed or average reviews- based on 146 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 71 out of 146
  2. Negative: 36 out of 146

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  1. Mar 1, 2014
    It wants to be Gladiator + Titanic, but ends up being an empty ripoff of both. The protagonist is a horseman who gets enslaved after his tribe is massacred...and that's it. This being a disaster, people die one by one in exactly the order you expect, with trite, meaningless last lines. The effects look computer generated even in 3D. Historical accuracy is optional.

    The film's high
    points are eye candy (Kit Harrington or Emily Browning, whichever floats your boat) and the occasional moment where you do get a glimpse of the city itself.

    The low points are a meaningless romance, ludicrously contrived plotting, and dreadful casting. There are a lot of well-known character actors who have no business playing ancient Romans. The film's ending brought unintended laughter to my screening. Just stick to watching Game of Thrones.
  2. Feb 22, 2014
    Wow, this is just as bad as Legend of Hercules, I mean wow is this bad, the dialogue is laughably bad, the CGI is horrible, the acting is terrible, just don't watch it, it is not worth it.
  3. Feb 25, 2014
    This is basically a hackneyed gladiator movie with a volcano at the end. Kit Harington plays a slave who fights his way into Pompeii's big arena, but not before he falls for the daughter of a prominent local merchant. Meanwhile, Kiefer Sutherland makes an embarrassingly out-of-place villainous Roman senator. The writing and plot are as preposterous as they sound, so it's up to the big blowout to save the day (or ruin it for the citizens). While it's always fun to watch destruction on a grand scale, this eruption is a yawn. Surprisingly, Paul W.S. Anderson, who has given us the beautifully designed and elegantly violent Resident Evil series, has fallen flat this time. Interesting note: Julian Fellowes (creator of "Downton Abbey") is credited as one of 4 screenwriters. Expand
  4. Mar 13, 2014
    It squanders the potential of its cast and relatively fresh visual for cheap imitation of Titanic's plot. The story of Pompeii is about the titular doomed city which was erased by a disastrous volcanic eruption, somehow this translated into a pauper boy and noble lady forbidden love plot with average gladiatorial bouts. Trying to utilize many popular elements and mix it with thin script, the movie only succeeds in making the inevitable destruction more enjoyable because its story is so shallow, mindless fiery doom is counted as a release.

    Pompeii actually has good assembly, such as Kit Harington (Jon Snow), Emily Browning (Elder sister from A Series of Unfortunate Events), Carrie Anne Moss and Keifer Sutherland. In a poor choice of decision, the movie gives them a vanilla script instead of more profound content. The main offender is how blatantly mediocre its love story is, anyone who ever laid eyes on any soap opera would immediately realize the two main characters would fall in love within two awkward eye contacts, might as well make them bump each other while carrying stacks of paper.

    The two lovebirds act in tedious manner, the actors are capable of so much more, but here they almost seem as if they’re phoning their lines. It goes on to incredibly familiar territory of a longing, passionate romance barred by social prejudice and angry tyrant, which is played by Kiefer Sutherland, who oddly delivers his painful fake accent. He sounds very uncomfortable, not to mention doesn't exude any menacing threats. If any, his character in 24 was more intense as a angry protagonist than this half-hearted excuse of a villain. His Roman battalion could've been random extras from Spartacus.

    Gladiator subplot is also present, but don't expected weighty aspect of slavery or social difference. Pompeii has very simplistic ideas about sword-swinging slave versus vilified Romans. It almost creates some decent backstory in Atticus character, but the love triangle plot proves to be more important. Action is rather lackluster, another wasted opportunity considering its big budget. Fights tend to be similar to others periodic movies or TV shows. It doesn't offer tricky choreography or smooth transition, the combat is merely there, unimpressively.

    Lazy story aside, the movie redemption lies in its CGI destruction. While throwing a bunch of money in this department bears fruit, the effects are not different much from what disaster movies have done in recent decade. This unfortunately doesn't overcome its uninspiring script, the lack of vigor as actors try their hardest to look interested and any cliché convenient screenplay, so old they may have been written before the actual event of the movie. Pompeii is a disaster by any means.
  5. May 25, 2014
    The movie is dreadful. The story is about as interesting as a rock. The destruction is the only thing to look forward to and even that was terrible. The effects were annoyingly all digital.
  6. Feb 22, 2014
    Anderson's film does a decent job in making ancient Pompeii come to life. You get a sense of what differentiates Romans from the citizens of Pompeii, the geography and culture of the place, and the production values seem solid enough for what was probably a mid-to-lower end of high-budget film. However, the visual effects, which only become more important as the film progresses, vary in quality. Director Paul W.S. Anderson and his writers borrow heavily from Best Picture winners Titanic and Gladiator for their decidedly not-Oscar-worthy disaster epic Pompeii. But if you just want to see mother nature lose her s**t then Pompeii has enough to satiate your craving for molten mayhem. Expand
  7. Mar 16, 2014
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. Wow. This was a BAAAAD movie. I was actually rooting for the volcano.

    Everything about this movie was bad. I've seen better acting and dialogue at an elementary school play. Most of the movie exploited the fact that half the cast had boobs, and the other half had muscles.

    The character development was actually WORSE than everything else. The main character's sort-of friend, Atticus, had basically this as his character: "I'm a gladiator, I have muscles, and if I kill you, I'll be freed from being a gladiator." Done. Then it changes to the first two and "Oh, now I want to help you. Because friends." The main character was worse. I actually knew less about him than I did about Atticus.

    True, I expected nothing less, but even the science of this movie failed. The cloud of superheated ash from a volcano travels at over 400 miles an hour. They should have all been dead, like, as soon as it exploded.

    All in all, the worst movie I've ever seen.
  8. May 24, 2014
    It is not a disaster movie, this movie is a disaster. The plot is as bad as any soap opera, it is full of anachronism and impossibilities. The bad guy is simplistically bad and the good guys almost saints. To make such a boring movie with a theme so good requires a mediocrity talent of epic level. One good note tough for the the special effects which are very nice, there is no other good things to say about this pathetic film. At least I didn't have to pay to watch it a friend of mine rented it and we laughed from beginning to end... it is a good comedy. Expand
  9. Jun 9, 2014
    A pure American blockbuster. If you are going to see this to live again the history of Pompeii I disadvice it to you. If you want to release yourself, while thinking of nothing, well you might enjoy it.There is all that it is necessary to do a crap. An overduse of the decorations made on computer and the special effects, so much that one wonders whether it is not a cartoon. A mushy moral : there are stereotyped characters who are goods and the others which are the malicious ones. Plus, an insipid little love story. (The feelings from nowadays in a antique movie). Dialogues of a masterly poverty and far too much violence, probably to compencer the lack of scenario. Expand
  10. May 8, 2014
    Not as bad as Legend of Hercules but still bad. Poorly directed, Terrible plot with laughable dialogue that absolutely ruins the talented actors on the cast, The visuals are so-so but quickly becomes dull and uninteresting. It's a trash movie so why bother watching it.
  11. May 28, 2014
    Not a good film but better than I expected. I was expecting Legend of Hercules bad, but at least got some decent gladiator scenes and an ok ending. In the end the film suffers from campy acting and no character development. C-
  12. May 25, 2014
    You know whats funny is that i thought this movie was going to be straight garbage but honestly it ended up being better then what i thought it would. Don't get me wrong the film is horrible anyways but i don't think its as bad as some other films films we have gotten this year like "The legend of hercules" and I,Frankenstein but Pompeii is a somewhat entertaining action movie despite its tedious plot which felt like a copy of Ridley Scott's Gladiator but only much much much! worse. I have never been a fan of Paul W.S. Anderson all but one of his movies have been mediocre at best, the only one that i have liked is Event Horizon and that's because its hard for me not to like a sci-fi movie. The action was pretty decent and entertaining enough to keep me somewhat intrigued, Kit Harington and Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje as the two main gladiators was a actually pretty fun duo to watch unfortunately we didn't get to see enough of them. Kiefer Sutherland as the stories antagonist was painful to watch and for the first time made me think that keifer was a douche in a movie although his character calls for it but instead of convincing how bad he is i just found him to be rather annoying. Anyways the best part of the movie was seeing the volcano explode sadly it takes over an hour till that happens and when we finally do its just short glimpses of it. Surprisingly the CGI was decent but for a movie with a $100 million dollar budget that really shouldn't be a surprise although seeing how many movies nowadays have $100m+ budgets and the CGI ends up looking like complete garbage this one ends up being good enough to pass.

    Overall i give it a 4.5
  13. May 17, 2014
    The first half of this film is really just tolerating the useless characters and cheering for the guy from Game of Thrones until the first major volcanic explosion. The second half is good for CGI explosions and using the last scenes with dialogue for sending a text message or doing anything other than looking at the screen. This movie wasn't terrible but it was pretty close. Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje is a decent actor who was giving bad lines. I'm a big Kiefer Sutherland fan and I was surprised he even took this role. But for what it's worth, he played the over-the-top villain....very over-the-top. Collapse
  14. Feb 25, 2014
    Seriously this was a bad movie. Everything that could go wrong did. Acting, voices, CGI, etc was all terrible. Instead of wasting money watching this, just go give you money to a homeless person because it would be better use of it.
  15. Feb 26, 2014
    This movie represents the worst excesses of an industry that has just forgotten who it is supposed to be. It distorts a historical event, and seems to think that "cool" special effects trump all content whatsoever. The plot is stupid, the characters are inane, the dialogue is the worst. And even the big deal special effects bear little resemblance to what the actual eruption would have been like. How could Kiefer Sutherland ever allow himself to be ensnared in such a dog? Not to mention Kit Harington, no doubt typecast into the sword and sandals cliche for the rest of his acting life. A waste of a lot of human and other resources to put this pooch on the market. Expand
  16. May 18, 2014
    A very boring movie up until near the end when the movie actually starts. Up until the disaster scenes the movie is so boring, but it is not that it is a love story because it is really not it is kind of just a story where nothing happens. There are a couple battle scenes during the first bit of the movie that suck and a couple that are good so those kind of cancel out. Like I said it isn't good until the volcano erupts. During those scenes the effects are really cool, but there are still so farfetched scenes that still don't allow you to enjoy the movie that much. Expand
  17. May 4, 2014
    I spit in the face of every movie of the Roman empire that shown sub-saharan africans as something "normal", in this movie there are more such actors than in the whole of Italy in the present. -_-
  18. May 3, 2014
    The pacing is all over the place. From slow and boring to fast and exciting, and then back again in a moments notice without any build up or suspense. It reminds me of the Starz hit show "Spartacus" but it fails to deliver in every way. The only redeeming quality about this movie is that there is an epic Volcanic Eruption, followed by a Tsunami, followed by some type of Nuclear explosion. I'd highly advise skipping to that part, and ignoring the horrid story, characters, and corny dialogue...oh and yes a man does say "Why so serious?" and "This is madness!" in this movie... Expand
  19. Jun 15, 2014
    Pompeii is a story about Milo, a slave who hopes to buy his freedom and be able to marry his master's daughter. But the powerful master has already promised his girl's hand in marriage to a wealthy senator from Rome. The story takes place in the year 79, just at the time when the Vesuvius entered in eruption. The character of Milo is being played by Kit Harrington who has been recently revealed to the world thanks to his role in the tv-show "Game of Throne". I found the movie quite annoying. Kit didn't convince me in this role. The movie bets more on impressive special effects than on a scenario well tied together. It is too bad because the storyline had some real potential. Expand
  20. Jul 28, 2014
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. This movie is a total waste of time. No character development no nothing. I mean there is this small child in Britain, seeing how his parents are slaughtered and killed by romans, getting caught by sort of mercenaries or whatever the **** they were, becoming a gladiator, killing everyone who is in his way over 17 years in London. After being recognized by a fat roman who wants him for his shows, getting him to italy where he gets to know a rich pompeiian girl on the way to pompeii, who falls in love with him, because he killed a horse with his bare hands. Being stuck in a cell with a black gladiator who just has the opportunity to get free after his last fight against the main character, realizing that the black guy Atticus is a formidable man having the same thoughts about romans... recognizing that the romans who killed his family 17 years ago are also in pompei, while the parents of the girl want to make business with the roman guy who killed the mom or the main character "Milo". Afterwards typical, i cannot reach the "bad" guy I have to kill countless statists in a fight in the collosseum, being rescued by the gutts of the girl who gets locked away.... Having to fight against the bad bad romans... Blubb* Ahh yeah there was a volcano... Piuu piuuu bad CGI, bad VFX bad everything... First there is an earthquake destroying the collosseum... Then a fight as usual in the ruins... Running away from the volcano.... Ahhh there was this girl.... Locked away just 2 Minutes before the volcano broke out... 15 km away from the collosseum... *WTF??? - Milo escapes with Atticus.. Atticus wants to run to the habour... Panicing people, booom tsss. typical cliché effects alla Dantes Peak, Volcano, or Armageddon - I have seen everything before in other movies... Total predictable development. Then Milo runs in 30 seconds 15 km to the place where the girl is locked... rescues her, brings her back to the city... Then the habour is flooded by a tsunami, which is stopped by the Citywall....... .*omfg.... Atticus, Girl and Milo try to find a way out... They meet the romans again... Girl gets kidnapped. Milo and atticus have to fight a bunch of romans.... Atticus fights against the ultrastrong roman... Atticus gets lethally injured but killes the roman.... Milo tries to follow the kidnapped girl on a horse which definetly has gps, because it can avoid any sort of impact, rock, fire, dust etc.... Car of the bad guy crushes.... girl gets sort of rescued... Stupid fight between milo and Kiefer Sutherland ( Bad Guy) **** result - Girl locks arm of bad guy with handcuffs... Milo is not getting his revenge .... " My gods are coming after you" - BOOOOORING .... Big Lava wave comes, which is at least 600 mph fast. Bad Guy Burns.... Atticus Burns as a free man .... The couple burns .... END .....

    I recommend anybody who wants to see a movie with a plot to not watch this film. It is an absolute waste of time... I felt like i wasted 106 minutes of my life after finishing this movie, cause it is giving you absolutely nothing. The characters are totally flat, the story is already clear ( Pompeii falls) and the Main Story of Milo is absolutely pointless... He gets no revenge, he gets no friends, he gets no girl, he gets no life as a free man... I asked myself at the end... If I am able to run about 15 km in 30 seconds, I would at least have had the time to escape to Vienna with my "girl" to suisse germany or even denmark... Nooo .... I choose to die in the flames.... By telling the "girl" just look at me... while i burn to death.... This movie is absolute crap... Sorry.... If you want to see an entertaining movie, where you don't feel like you wasted valuable lifetime... Don't even think about watching this waste of money movie with a story which could've been more interesting if apes wrote it.

Generally unfavorable reviews - based on 33 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 6 out of 33
  2. Negative: 11 out of 33
  1. Reviewed by: Amon Warmann
    May 3, 2014
    Pompeii make tick all the necessary movie checkboxes, but its execution is unoriginal and uninspired.
  2. Reviewed by: Robbie Collin
    May 3, 2014
    Anderson’s Pompeii doesn’t sweat the human stuff. His camera is mostly trained on the big picture: billowing smoke, tidal-waves, fireballs streaking through the sky. What’s happening to the people on the ground doesn’t matter, so long as we’re aware that 95 percent of them are being squashed or torched.
  3. Reviewed by: Ken McIntyre
    Apr 28, 2014
    While it offers spectacular CGI devastation and a chiselled hero, Pompeii is so soulless and empty that you won’t shed any tears when the ‘cano blows its top.