User Score
6.3

Generally favorable reviews- based on 190 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Negative: 33 out of 190
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  1. Jul 6, 2012
    6
    Overall the movie was more good than bad. It achieved goal #1 of any movie: be entertaining. The story was a little slow to start, but once it got in the swing of things I was very interested to see what would happen next. The cast was good for the most part, but the story didn't really give much room for character development outside of maybe Salma Hayek's character. It had a veryOverall the movie was more good than bad. It achieved goal #1 of any movie: be entertaining. The story was a little slow to start, but once it got in the swing of things I was very interested to see what would happen next. The cast was good for the most part, but the story didn't really give much room for character development outside of maybe Salma Hayek's character. It had a very stylish look to it, and the vibrant colors gave it a trippy feel, which worked well considering the subject matter. Despite this, there were two things that really annoyed me about this movie, and that was Blake Lively's multiple voiceovers, and the horrible ending. Expand
  2. Jan 24, 2013
    5
    It is the typical movie you do not know if you liked it or not.
  3. Jul 16, 2012
    6
    In his reversion to graphic, unrelenting brutality and incendiary sensationalism--elements found in his frenetically charged "Natural Born Killers"--Oliver Stone celebrates a trio of non-heroes against the backdrop of the pot industry; everything is well, even an unconventional menage a trois, until the consequences of their homegrown operation take a pernicious turn. Mixing an overtlyIn his reversion to graphic, unrelenting brutality and incendiary sensationalism--elements found in his frenetically charged "Natural Born Killers"--Oliver Stone celebrates a trio of non-heroes against the backdrop of the pot industry; everything is well, even an unconventional menage a trois, until the consequences of their homegrown operation take a pernicious turn. Mixing an overtly expressed "Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid" love triangle with a ruthless ring of drug lords, Stone creates a flashy- meets-filthy-mess of a spectacle sure to satisfy fans of the summer caper, while too, alotting time on the soap box, pushing a political agenda--though not excessively--all while capturing the idiocy of current legislation. As for the characters themselves, it's the trio not mentioned that are the most effective; Del Toro, as Lado, is delightfully dark and chilling as the deranged assassin, a middle-aged, fatted, amorally disciplined Travolta is also worthy of mention, as he renders his best performance in years, delineating the greatly desperate family man, and arguably most entertaining of all is Hayek, the svelte Cleopatra-esque boss who avoids falling into camp thanks to her dexterous handle on the moral complexities that come from maintaining the facade of power on the outside with the melancholy ruefulness she holds privately behind closed doors. She nails the balance, and does so passionately. Though many will find "Savages" to be far too violent, and unwarrantably so, others voicing opposition in relation to its conclusion, all should be joyed to see Stone in his regular form: dauntless and headstrong. This, however, is not without noting the undeniable mess he creates and craftily "cleans up;" let's not deny, love him or hate him, Stone is one of the best in the business in that regard. At times taking the audience away from the film, (I'm sure I'm not the only one who was frustrated by Lively's intermittent narrative) "Savages" doesn't always immerse, as by the end of it all, one might question why they should care about the three uninterestingly woeful friends (Klitsch, Johnson, Lively). Further, "Savages," is energetic and entertaining, no question, but the closer the eye examines Stone's cunning skill for deception, and what lies beneath the elaborately stylish skirt he loftily casts, the more familiar this summer caper looks--the only difference being--this one has an eye for fashion. Expand
  4. Jul 12, 2012
    6
    Benecio Del Toro's performance as Lado was "Savages" primary saving grace. The brief time the film does devote to familiarizing the audience with the protagonists only generates feelings of aversion. All of the 'good guys' are part of a peculiar, domestic love triangle that consists of two men (Ben and Chon) and a woman (Ophelia). Ben comes off as a naive, Pseudo-Buddhist stoner; ChonBenecio Del Toro's performance as Lado was "Savages" primary saving grace. The brief time the film does devote to familiarizing the audience with the protagonists only generates feelings of aversion. All of the 'good guys' are part of a peculiar, domestic love triangle that consists of two men (Ben and Chon) and a woman (Ophelia). Ben comes off as a naive, Pseudo-Buddhist stoner; Chon comes off as a bitter, depraved Veteran; and Ophelia comes off as a bland, irritating bimbo with an undeserved sense of entitlement. In a scene shortly after her capture, 'O' is shown complaining to Hayek, the leader of the cartel, about not being given healthier food such as a salad. Pretty sure if I just almost had my fingers cut off after being captured by a Mexican drug cartel that would not be my priority. We won't even get into Expand
  5. Jul 8, 2012
    4
    The movie was a fine effort by the director and the actors but the subject matter was sick, really dark....the most likable character was a corrupt DEA agent. Maybe a little too close to reality is the problem. Another scary commentary on society.
  6. May 4, 2014
    5
    This is a very different movie from Mr.Stone, it differs a lot from his usual patriotic films like Born On The Fourth Of July. It's a darker film and it gives solid performances from a well casted film. But the ending wasn't really my taste
  7. Jul 6, 2012
    6
    Two great performances by Selma and Benicio as really bad guys. They seem to have a great deal of fun with their parts. It's hard to care at all about the good guys, whose story is convoluted and not all that interesting. Blake Lively is hot, but her character thinks she is smarter than she is. Basically, the bad guys are really interesting and sadistic and the good guys are a littleTwo great performances by Selma and Benicio as really bad guys. They seem to have a great deal of fun with their parts. It's hard to care at all about the good guys, whose story is convoluted and not all that interesting. Blake Lively is hot, but her character thinks she is smarter than she is. Basically, the bad guys are really interesting and sadistic and the good guys are a little boring (one is an annoying tree hugger; the other is a vicious Iraqi vet), There is a buried legalization of weed story. But this is mostly about the implied torture porn angle. The bad guys make the movie entertaining. It is not as preachy and pedantic as Oliver Stone movies tend to be. Though, the movie would have been way better with more interesting protagonists. Expand
  8. Jul 8, 2012
    5
    Stone sets up a interesting plot but then takes it absolutely nowhere. Once O is kidnapped, the story moves nowhere. I have never seen "dangerous "drug cartels" where the leader goes on her own to meet or where her daughter is basically unprotected. How more unrealistic could this be! Travolta character was typical. An important player but no major development in the story. The story justStone sets up a interesting plot but then takes it absolutely nowhere. Once O is kidnapped, the story moves nowhere. I have never seen "dangerous "drug cartels" where the leader goes on her own to meet or where her daughter is basically unprotected. How more unrealistic could this be! Travolta character was typical. An important player but no major development in the story. The story just was not plausible and it really dragged out. Also, why did it take over two hours to tell? I like a good long movie but this story could have been told in one hour at the max. The other thing that keeps disturbing me is the substitution of good story telling with graphic violence. Violence can add to a movie but it seems to be the focus too many times now. Another disappointing night out at the cinema. Expand
  9. Jan 1, 2013
    5
    when I saw the trailer for this film was one of the ones I get excited to see in 2012, and I saw the 2/3 of the movie seemed good but not magnificent or memorable, compared to masterpieces like Traffic. But the end ..... blessed end! I dare say that between the 3 worse end was I seen in my **** life, that way to **** a movie.
  10. Jan 31, 2013
    6
    Brutal, bloody, and ruthless. Savages was worth the rent, however it lacked the realism that makes most movies in the crime drama genre great. Blake Lively's( "O") over the top stoner got annoying after about 15 minutes of the movie----which made it more aggravating that her character was the narrator. Still other performances, especially Del Toro, picked up the movie. That beingBrutal, bloody, and ruthless. Savages was worth the rent, however it lacked the realism that makes most movies in the crime drama genre great. Blake Lively's( "O") over the top stoner got annoying after about 15 minutes of the movie----which made it more aggravating that her character was the narrator. Still other performances, especially Del Toro, picked up the movie. That being said I came out with that feeling of not knowing whether or not I truly liked it. It was nothing compared to Ted Demme and Johnny Depp's "Blow". Expand
  11. Jul 11, 2012
    5
    There was too much violence for me - some of it gratuitous violence. But I guess with news stories of the drug-related killing in Mexico, it must be realistic. Sad to see that this is reality. Good acting by the principals.
  12. Dec 13, 2012
    6
    They remove Blake Lively's greatest asset by having her narrate. The villains make the movie while the ending nearly ruins it. A mixed bag if there ever was one, but it's entertaining.
  13. Jan 19, 2013
    5
    A return to form for Stone's dark side,"Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps" and "World Trade Center" were almost insultingly faceless, a definite problem for a director whose best films exude righteous anger. "Savages" generates ruthless energy, a battle between good and evil, except that everyone in it is evil, and the momentum generated by the savagery doesn't compensate for a lack-lusterA return to form for Stone's dark side,"Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps" and "World Trade Center" were almost insultingly faceless, a definite problem for a director whose best films exude righteous anger. "Savages" generates ruthless energy, a battle between good and evil, except that everyone in it is evil, and the momentum generated by the savagery doesn't compensate for a lack-luster storyline.
    California dudes Ben and Chon (Aaron Johnson and Taylor Kitsch) are dragged into a turf war with the expansion-minded Mexican cartel run by Salma Hayek's drug-war widow Elena, and her brutally amoral deputy, Lado (Benicio del Toro). The Mexicans regularly show their power by creating and disseminating videos documenting torture and lots and lots of beheadings. Eighty miles over the border, in Laguna Beach, Ben and Chon supply their ultra-potent, genetically engineered strains to legal medical dispensaries but make their real money illegally shipping out of state. The product and its profits fuel the boys' lifestyle of neo-hippie decadence, embodied by the business partners' enthusiastic bedroom sharing of poor little rich girl turned eco-friendly, hippie Ophelia (Blake Lively). Both sides consider the other to be "savages"-which we know because they say it aloud repeatedly just in case we didn't catch it already.
    Mexican Baja Cartel decides to move in and demands that the trio partners with them. When the merciless head of the BC, Elena, and her brutal enforcer, Lado, underestimate the unbreakable bond among these three friends, Ben and Chon--with the reluctant, slippery assistance of a dirty DEA agent (John Travolta), wage a seemingly unwinnable war against the cartel. And so begins a series of increasingly vicious ploys and maneuvers in a high stakes, savage battle of wills. Honestly, not that bad but not that good either, resulting in complete indifference on this one. A talented cast that doesn't feel fully utilized and a story that's not all that compelling. Soul is something "Savages" lacks and feels hollow, not least because Kitsch and Johnson, who take on lead roles, register as blanks on-screen. In contrast, Hayek and del Toro, both sporting apparently intentionally terrible wigs, give over-the-top performances who command our interest while committing heinous acts, and setting a record for number of beheadings in a single film.
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Metascore
59

Mixed or average reviews - based on 41 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 24 out of 41
  2. Negative: 7 out of 41
  1. Reviewed by: Peter Bradshaw
    Sep 21, 2012
    20
    Sadly, Savages plays up to Stone's worst tendencies: machismo, bombast and self-indulgence, and the factor that could conceivably have made this movie tolerable – humour – is off the menu.
  2. Reviewed by: William Thomas
    Sep 17, 2012
    40
    What could have been an effective excoriation of US drug policy and a proper look at the violence inherent in the trade is wasted on a simplistic thriller that offers very little, especially given who is behind the camera. Sorry if that harshes anyone's buzz.
  3. Reviewed by: Ken McIntyre
    Sep 1, 2012
    60
    Savages is punishing in places, but there are enough colourful characters and careening twists to make it worth the effort.