Metascore
52

Mixed or average reviews - based on 27 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 11 out of 27
  2. Negative: 4 out of 27
Watch On
  1. Has a great look and an edgy feel, along with some broad swaths of humor.
  2. This is not for the Merchant-Ivory crowd, but action fans will feel their pulses quicken.
  3. Reviewed by: Sean Means
    70
    The gravity-defying harness maneuvers popularized in the U.S. with "The Matrix" -- ... look really cool, but seem out of place in a realistic gang-style action movie.
  4. 70
    Doesn't even come close to being a good movie, but it is a lot of fun.
  5. May not have the best script in the world, but it brings Jet Li to the big screen in a way that all action junkies, not just the video-store geeks, will appreciate.
  6. 70
    Who needs iambic pentameter when you have Jet Li around?
  7. Reviewed by: Ryon Justin Horne
    70
    Although Romeo Must Die sets new standards for action films, the action drowns to a predictable and ridiculous plot.
  8. 70
    A canny, ingeniously crafted guilty pleasure.
  9. Doesn't take advantage of its own possibilities, either as a hard-boiled gangland battle or as a soft-boiled, interracial Shakespearean love story.
  10. 63
    A plodding, play-it-safe rendition of "The Family Feud."
  11. Reviewed by: Jay Carr
    63
    The reason to sit through its uninspired, formulaic moves, however, is its half-dozen spectacular fight sequences.
  12. Reviewed by: Richard Corliss
    60
    Doesn't touch (Li's Hong Kong movies). But it is trying something clever.
  13. 60
    The hinted romance, featuring Aaliyah, makes for some decent drama and some fine comedy.
  14. In fact, when not kicking butt, (Li)'s kind of a blank spot in the center of the screen.
  15. Based on "Romeo and Juliet" the way a martini is "based" on vermouth.
  16. Aspires to rise above the conventional drugs-and-action genre and succeeds about half the time.
  17. Just don't think about what's going on, and you should be OK.
  18. 50
    Sadly, if this movie was a fight, they'd have stopped it.
  19. 49
    Li's light touch and explosive fighting skills deserve a better vehicle than this overcooked pot of New Jack suey.
  20. 42
    To be fair, the film is trash and doesn't aspire to very much, but it's bad trash -- inept -- and that really isn't forgivable.
  21. 40
    The fight scenes are splendidly choreographed...but they're shot in that grating, thoroughly American flashcut style that leaves you wondering just who the hell is hitting who.
  22. 40
    Then there's the utter lack of sexual chemistry between Li and Aaliyah, sucking all the urgency out of the relationship between the star-crossed lovers.
  23. 38
    (Li)'s scenes are so clearly computer-aided that his moves are about as impressive as Bugs Bunny doing the same.
  24. Between fights, the film can't even rely on the luxury of Lindo, Isaiah Washington, Russell Wong, Rottweiler rapper DMX or the scary Henry O as Han's father to make it watchable - the dialogue is wreaking more havoc than Li.
  25. 30
    The wall-to-wall rap score is as kinetic as the acrobatic fight choreography, and nothing else matters.
  26. 25
    So needlessly convoluted, so crammed with subplots within subplots, it simply forgets about its gangland "Romeo & Juliet" premise.
User Score
7.3

Generally favorable reviews- based on 43 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 6 out of 11
  2. Negative: 2 out of 11
  1. May 20, 2013
    6
    I've seen this film once before and I didn't think much of it but I thought I would give it another chance, but no this really isn't a filmI've seen this film once before and I didn't think much of it but I thought I would give it another chance, but no this really isn't a film for me. It has a lot of action and fight scenes, obviously made for Jet Li, but lacks substance. The only real reason I watched it in the first place was Aaliyah, and yeah she's pretty hot in it but acting wise she isn't really up there. Honorable mention to the awkward death scenes with heart-bursting special effects Overall it's OK, but nothing special. Full Review »
  2. LyanH.
    Jun 30, 2006
    10
    forget the critics this movie was great. It had a perfect balance of action, drama and romance and I believe Aaliyah did great to say this is forget the critics this movie was great. It had a perfect balance of action, drama and romance and I believe Aaliyah did great to say this is her first film. Full Review »