Metascore
27

Generally unfavorable reviews - based on 18 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 1 out of 18
  2. Negative: 11 out of 18
  1. Reviewed by: Ken Fox
    63
    To say Wes Craven's rewrite of Kiyoshi Kurosawa's 2001 "Pulse" isn't as bad as it could have been sounds like faint praise, but Kurosawa's "Pulse" is one of the true masterpieces of recent Asian horror, and the track record for Hollywood horror redos isn't great.
  2. American director Jim Sonzero has taken the same campus setting and plot and added some rationale by "science-fictioning" it.
  3. 50
    If Pulse is unsurprising as a horror movie (come on: chalky, soul-sucking freaks again?), as a campaign against the Internet, digital piracy, cellphones, and anything that computes anything (like laptops or brains), it's a riot.
  4. 42
    Ultimately, the glacial pace kills Pulse. What was dreadful and trance-like in the original feels here like nothing-much-at-all sandwiched between some stock horror jolts.
  5. In this American remake of the spooky, more-atmospheric-than-coherent 2005 J-horror thriller, the ghosts blink and crackle into existence with an electromagnetic sputter, but really, they're not so different from the gauzy, see-through spirits of yesteryear.
  6. A horror film dealing with the terrors lurking via our computers, cell phones and other electronic devices, Pulse isn't nearly as scary as watching your hard drive crash or having your BlackBerry conk out in the middle of a vital call.
  7. Reviewed by: James Dyer
    40
    An unrewarding experience that won't scare you, but might make you think twice before opening email attachments.
  8. Reviewed by: Robert Koehler
    30
    A dumbed-down remake of Kiyoshi Kurosawa's disturbingly abstract Japanese horror film.
  9. Reviewed by: Nathan Lee
    30
    The American version of Kiyoshi Kurosawa's "Pulse" mimics the plot fundamentals, but lacks any traces of Mr. Kurosawa’s creepy minimalism and conceptual rigor.
  10. 30
    The remake begins with the same premise and appropriates the most striking visuals, grafting them onto a more explicable but equally dull George Romero-style doomsday scenario.
  11. Hideously ugly to look at and not even worth following.
  12. 25
    Pulse bears more than a slight resemblance to a 1994 American horror called "Ghost in the Machine." They didn't screen that stinker in advance for critics, either.
  13. 25
    It's not scary, it's not chilling, and it's not interesting.
  14. Reviewed by: Jason Anderson
    25
    Tedious, baffling and ultimately laughable.
  15. Has maybe a half-dozen moderately frightening scenes.
  16. Reviewed by: Stina Chyn
    20
    Laughter erupts during scenes and certain close-ups that were designed to induce screams.
  17. 11
    It's a curiously dull Americanization of one of the finest examples of subtle, moody J-horror out there.
  18. 10
    Here, the CG effects are plentiful, but the scare factor rarely rises above the level of a viral email, and the desaturated color scheme of Sonzero and cinematographer Mark Plummer makes every frame look as though it was developed in a solution of vomit and ash.
User Score
5.8

Mixed or average reviews- based on 172 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 9 out of 26
  2. Negative: 16 out of 26
  1. Sep 26, 2012
    10
    Better than the original by far.
  2. Sep 26, 2012
    10
    Cool cinematography
  3. Sep 26, 2012
    10
    Great, scary film