Righteous Kill

User Score
4.8

Mixed or average reviews- based on 78 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 28 out of 78
  2. Negative: 30 out of 78

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User Reviews

  1. MichaelS.
    Sep 13, 2008
    4
    As a very big fan of both of these superstars, I am extremely disappointed at the mediocrity present here. Story is very weak and filled with Cliches. Compare this to Ronin and to Heat and this trite movie becomes embarrassing. Oh well I guess Bob and Al have some spare time and the extra cash never hurts. Hey Mr. Deniro would you show this at your Film festival ? I don't think so . As a very big fan of both of these superstars, I am extremely disappointed at the mediocrity present here. Story is very weak and filled with Cliches. Compare this to Ronin and to Heat and this trite movie becomes embarrassing. Oh well I guess Bob and Al have some spare time and the extra cash never hurts. Hey Mr. Deniro would you show this at your Film festival ? I don't think so . I went to the opening screening last night here in Chicago. Expand
  2. BillyS.
    Sep 13, 2008
    5
    Pacino. DeNiro. Acting Legends. Unfortunately, they will be remembered for their 10 minute scene together in Heat because nobody's going to remember them in Righteous Kill, a made-for-TV movie with take the money and run written right in the script!!
  3. ChadS.
    Sep 14, 2008
    5
    All aging actors reach a critical point of diminishing vim and collapsing vigor; to pretend otherwise, that the whatever-genarian isn't within shouting distance with his own mortality, would put a strain on the audience's suspension of disbelief. From John Wayne in "The Shootist" to Clint Eastwood in "Blood Work", the savvy actor knows its audience have a long memory; All aging actors reach a critical point of diminishing vim and collapsing vigor; to pretend otherwise, that the whatever-genarian isn't within shouting distance with his own mortality, would put a strain on the audience's suspension of disbelief. From John Wayne in "The Shootist" to Clint Eastwood in "Blood Work", the savvy actor knows its audience have a long memory; they'll remember the younger version of themselves with fondness, so he uses his weathered face like a Dorian Gray canvas to comment on his own body of work. But not seventies icons Al Pacino and Robert DeNiro, who both act like they have appointments in Samarra. Since rappers are noted to adore Brian DePalma's "Scarface", the hip-hop setting in "Righteous Kill" is a clever acknowledgment of the black music community's love affair with Pacino's Tony Montana. (SPOILER ALERT!) When Rooster shoots Spider(50 Cent), it's like a kiss on the cheek, a note of thanks to the rap industry. Too bad it's not Pacino who does it doggy-style with Carla Gugino, then he could yell, "Say hello to my little friend," over Gugino's cries of "Harder! Harder!" DeNiro, by the way, is sixty-five-years-old; Gugino, thirty-seven. "Righteous Kill" is a routine police procedural with a denouement that insults the audience by cheating. Parceled throughout the film, Turk(Robert DeNiro) imparts a confession of sorts, in great length, on grainy black-and-white video, but when the moment of its recording is revealed, moviegoers will notice that the running time of his monologue doesn't match what they previously heard in its totality. Turk uses a notebook for reference, but in the video, he's always looking straight into the camera. "Righteous Kill" doesn't cheat to the extent of Frank Oz's "The Stepford Wives", or Alexandre Aja's "Haute Tension", but the filmmaker owes his audience a plausible twist ending that checks out. Expand
  4. JoeB.
    Jan 6, 2009
    5
    There's been a lot of talk about this movie, mostly bad. I watched it last night and was quite interested to see where it would go wrong. It never really does though, I think the main issue here is how pedestrian the actual movie looks. It's generic quality does little to distinguish it from countless other films made in this style. The lead performances are not horrible, There's been a lot of talk about this movie, mostly bad. I watched it last night and was quite interested to see where it would go wrong. It never really does though, I think the main issue here is how pedestrian the actual movie looks. It's generic quality does little to distinguish it from countless other films made in this style. The lead performances are not horrible, they're just uninspired. Any two actors could have played the De Niro and Pacino roles. People expect these guys to be able to direct themselves when we've clearly learned from historical accounts that even the greatest actors need solid direction. Jon Avnet is really the perp here, guiding both men through a series of re-hashes from other films hoping to score points as an homage. The baseball scene at the beginning is clearly aping "The Fan", while the ending is a shameless replay of the ending from "Heat". De Niro should not have been allowed to rest on his laurels (mugging and turning down the corners of his mouth at every opportunity), while Pacino was never really given a whole lot to do other than react. I understand that the idea of making a film in their home town and to be able to "buddy it up" for a few weeks was alluring in itself, but seriously, don't these guys have some people around them to bounce these scripts off of? I mean, what would it take for De Niro to send a copy of the script to his good friend Marty and say, "whatdya think?" In the end, I suppose the decision to make this film made was made for myriad reasons, none of which however, seem to stem from anything sincere. Expand
  5. JustinF.
    Aug 28, 2008
    5
    It has a good cast and script, it's just that the execution and direction jaw-droppingly drops the whole movie to 2/4 rather than a 3/4. And I thought it was very annoying and just sensationally dull and boring. What a shame.
  6. Aug 23, 2010
    5
    Criminals get off lightly, die soon after with a "Righteous Kill", veteran detectives on the case.
    They're too old!!! Pacino & De Niro were great actors but this doesn't really work. Pacino looks like a cross between Paul McCartney & Richard Lewis from Curb your Enthusiasm & De Niro just grimaces his way through it.
    It is quite predictable but still not the worst thing I've seen all year.
  7. Mar 27, 2012
    4
    Spoiler alert - pairing De Niro and Pacino together does not result in a great film alone. Given the chance to star alongside each other for what, on this outcome, may well be the final time, De Niro and Pacino play a pair of veteran detectives struggling to keep up with a serial killer on the loose. Thinking back I struggle to recall either of their characters actually doing any policeSpoiler alert - pairing De Niro and Pacino together does not result in a great film alone. Given the chance to star alongside each other for what, on this outcome, may well be the final time, De Niro and Pacino play a pair of veteran detectives struggling to keep up with a serial killer on the loose. Thinking back I struggle to recall either of their characters actually doing any police work in the slightest, this falls to Donnie Wahlberg and John Leguizamo. Both actors play their characters as nonchalant, wise-cracking smart asses. This is a natural character for Pacino but why both need to appear so is unnecessary and just adds to the feeling that their hearts were not in this fully. That said, the story plods along until the dreadful twist at the end that left me more confused initially than anything else until I recognised how the writer had got away with it. A cheap trick, not in league with the writers previous work (Inside Man), that leaves the viewer feeling disappointed with the previous hour and half serving no purpose but lead up to this charade. Ardent Pacino and De Niro fans may be interested but otherwise steer clear. Expand
Metascore
36

Generally unfavorable reviews - based on 27 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 1 out of 27
  2. Negative: 8 out of 27
  1. Reviewed by: Justin Chang
    40
    Unable or unwilling to match the visceral chops and moral provocations of superior serial-killer chillers, Righteous Kill is content to be a twisty genre exercise; it's like "Seven" as reimagined by M. Night Shyamalan.
  2. 25
    Righteous Kill, a.k.a. The Al and Bob Show, is a cop flick with all the drama of "Law and Order: AARP." This movie defines drag-ass.
  3. An ordinary cop picture boosted by two charismatic superstars but hindered by its dearth of surprises.