Generally unfavorable reviews - based on 17 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 1 out of 17
  2. Negative: 7 out of 17
  1. A B-movie goof on an A-minus budget, Returner is a mini-epic tweaked with computer effects and one blazing gun battle after another and set to an anonymous techno-beat.
  2. Like all good B-movies, Returner comes loaded with enough eccentric touches to give the recycling a whiff of freshness and, as is often the case with many above-par follies, it's the cast that takes the whole thing to another level.
  3. Reviewed by: Derek Elley
    Kaneshiro is all long flowing locks and smoldering disdain, the visual F/X are only so-so, and pacing is almost brisk enough to hide the plot holes.
  4. 50
    Yamazaki is clearly a science-fiction fan himself, and in Returner, he shows some worthwhile style, if only by stealing the biggest and best possible elements for his serviceably entertaining genre mashup.
  5. Hovering between "Last Action Hero" and "E.T.," this sci-fi extravaganza is bookended with violence but has some gentle moments in between.
  6. Reviewed by: Peter Hartlaub
    Less a new Japanese movie than a series of scenes from old American ones, most notably "The Terminator" and "ET."
  7. Overwrought and overlong, Returner might been a rousing B-movie -- had it not been hamstrung by Yamazaki's bigger pretensions.
  8. 50
    Hardcore genre fans may find some appeal in this warmed-over tale, but most viewers will be squirming in their seats even before the prolonged finale.
  9. 40
    A smorgasbord that seems to have been picked out of a Dumpster. It clumsily combines a fish-out-of-water story with bits lifted from sources including the "Terminator" movies, "Star Wars," "Starman," "Close Encounters," a couple of Pink Floyd albums and H. G. Wells.
  10. 40
    Mines familiar territory and does nothing especially new with it. On the plus side, Kishitani is a spectacular villain.
  11. Serves as both an homage to and shameless thief of its influences. The result: a sprawling, deformed, undisciplined piece of cinema that hobbles along on weak, genre-splicing tactics.
  12. With his tousled mane and wispy facial hair, Asian pop star/ Prada model Kaneshiro suggests a Japanese Johnny Depp, but even his charisma can't carry Returner through its interminable longueurs. Blame it on Yamazaki.
  13. Reviewed by: Ed Park
    A shamelessly recycled vision of decrepit high tech.
  14. 30
    Suzuki and Kaneshiro keep the first hour afloat with their easy comic interplay, but Yamazaki badly needs editing: the opening escape sequence is needlessly repeated later, and a slow drip of false endings drags this out to a tiring 118 minutes.
  15. 30
    Silly, derivative stuff.
  16. 25
    Soporific, shamelessly derivative and barely coherent by American standards.
  17. Reviewed by: Scott Warren
    The story and stunts are outlandish, and the effects are distractingly computer-generated. To be fair, some of the best things about the film are very Japanese, notably the anime.
User Score

Generally favorable reviews- based on 22 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 13 out of 16
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 16
  3. Negative: 3 out of 16
  1. Jan 3, 2015
    I love this movie. It is fun, clever, visually perfect. And Takeshi Kaneshiro is wonderful in his role. After all those American-hero movies,I love this movie. It is fun, clever, visually perfect. And Takeshi Kaneshiro is wonderful in his role. After all those American-hero movies, this is refreshening! Full Review »