Self/less

Self/less Image
Metascore
34

Generally unfavorable reviews - based on 30 Critics What's this?

User Score
8.8

Universal acclaim- based on 325 Ratings

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  • Starring: , , , , ,
  • Summary: An extremely wealthy man (Ben Kingsley) dying from cancer undergoes a radical medical procedure that transfers his consciousness into the body of a healthy young man (Ryan Reynolds). But all is not as it seems when he starts to uncover the mystery of the body’s origin and the organizationAn extremely wealthy man (Ben Kingsley) dying from cancer undergoes a radical medical procedure that transfers his consciousness into the body of a healthy young man (Ryan Reynolds). But all is not as it seems when he starts to uncover the mystery of the body’s origin and the organization that will kill to protect its cause. Expand

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Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 2 out of 30
  2. Negative: 13 out of 30
  1. Reviewed by: John Hazelton
    Jul 6, 2015
    70
    There are enough twists and turns in Self/less to keep things interesting
  2. Reviewed by: Bill Goodykoontz
    Jul 9, 2015
    50
    This is a first-rate cast in a second-rate story with some entertaining bits and some maddening holes. That combination works for late-night channel surfing. Anywhere else, not so much.
  3. Reviewed by: Steven Rea
    Jul 10, 2015
    50
    You'd think a movie about transplanting human consciousness would be smarter than this.
  4. Reviewed by: Scott Foundas
    Jul 6, 2015
    40
    Even the resourceful, likable Reynolds is at a loss to elevate this rather dreary piece of would-be escapism, which calls out for the wry, pulpy touch of a John Carpenter (or his acolyte David Twohy) and instead gets the strained self-seriousness of director Tarsem Singh.
  5. Reviewed by: James Berardinelli
    Jul 9, 2015
    38
    There's enough material in Self/less to fuel a mini-series. Instead of letting the story breathe, the film rushes along at breakneck speed, using contrivances and "shortcuts" in failed attempts at character development.
  6. Reviewed by: Kyle Smith
    Jul 8, 2015
    38
    Self/less is a celluloid smoothie blended from dozens of familiar elements, but it’s neither tasty nor nutritious.
  7. Reviewed by: Kevin Jagernauth
    Jul 6, 2015
    0
    Self/less is brain/less entertainment, but if there’s any consolation, the impression it leaves is so fleeting that you can soon replace it with better movie memories.

See all 30 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 10 out of 22
  2. Negative: 2 out of 22
  1. Aug 30, 2015
    9
    Matter of fact, I don't think the "critics" watched the same movie I did. Self/Less is an amazing movie not only 'cause of its intriguingMatter of fact, I don't think the "critics" watched the same movie I did. Self/Less is an amazing movie not only 'cause of its intriguing premise, but also 'cause of the realism it exudes. If this sci-fi dramatization doesn't pull you in, I wonder what will.
    I recommend this movie to anyone who's familiar with how to have a good time with a movie - you'll love it.
    Expand
  2. Jan 4, 2016
    8
    Not very innovative, as well as not that bad.

    Like the previous year, the 2015 was also considered the year of sci-fi in the film world.
    Not very innovative, as well as not that bad.

    Like the previous year, the 2015 was also considered the year of sci-fi in the film world. Plenty of large and small scale flicks came out and among them I was eagerly waiting for this one. If the story is what you always prefer with a fine production quality, then this film won't disappoint you. The performances were also well supported. Then what was this film's issue?

    The last time widely accepted movie by Tarsem Singh was when he engaged in the screenplay development. After that he did not see much success where all his directed ones were written by others. My perception is that he must do those both department where he's good at it. Take this film as an example, an awesome story and had a good cast, but the writing was let down according to many who saw it.

    Even in the short period of appearance, Ben Kingsley's role's legacy carried out till the end, because the concept was designed like that way. Being one of the top actors, Ryan Reylands films are not that celebratable. Though he's doing a decent flicks often and those were failing to recognise in the higher level, which did not spare this one as well.

    People are comparing it to 'Face/off', but to me it looked more like coming together of 'The Island' and 'Skeleton Key'. Whatever it is I had a good time. Not a fresh concept of an idea, but narrated differently and it needed a bit depth in showcasing everything in the film.

    My formula/secret for watching a movie successfully even it considered as an average or worse is, I won't bother for all the departments come together to become a well crafted product like the critics expect, because I'm a movie fanatic and love watching them almost most of the time than arguing about its flawed contents. If I find anything solely interesting like acting, music, story, visuals, I respect the efforts. So do I to this one and believe me it is much better than what the critics say so.

    7/10
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  3. Jul 10, 2015
    8
    I strongly suspect Self/less will be criticized more for what it is not than what it is. As the film begins, icy real-estate magnate DamianI strongly suspect Self/less will be criticized more for what it is not than what it is. As the film begins, icy real-estate magnate Damian (Ben Kingsley) is diagnosed with cancer and facing the end of his life, beset by fear and regret. Out of desperation, he agrees to a highly expensive and unlawful medical procedure developed by an enigmatic scientist (Matthew Goode, exuding very British malevolence). The treatment involves the transfer of his mind into a youthful and reportedly laboratory-grown new body (Ryan Reynolds). At first, Damian enjoys his extended lease on life and renewed vigor, but disorienting, opaque memories he cannot identify lead him to investigate the true origin of his new form. To be honest, this film does not cover much ground as a piece of cerebral and/or psychedelic speculative fiction, a fact which may dispirit viewers since it is by Tarsem Singh, a music-video veteran and the director of such stylish cult favorites as The Cell and The Fall. The first-act cognitive switch is utilized as a plot-inciting device, à la the wrong-man dubiety in North by Northwest or amnesia in The Bourne Identity, rather than an invitation to travel inside the human mind and explore its contradictory, ever-shifting complexity. And though both are in fine form, Kingsley (featured only briefly) and Reynolds do almost nothing to emulate one another, not even in the early scenes in which Damian undergoes physical therapy to become comfortable inside his just-purchased figure. No trace of the elder English actor's fierce, guarded, stern turn can be found in Reynolds' instantly more charismatic and relaxed performance. However, its shortcomings as science fiction notwithstanding, Self/less is a very well-executed action film. A certain one-man-against-a-deadly-conspiracy tension builds at a steady and involving pace, and twists and turns are well-placed throughout. The plentiful sequences of chasing and fighting are staged with spacial clarity and laced with a modest-but-still-recognizable amount of Singh's characteristic visual whimsy. One key scene, for instance, unfolds in an out-of-the-way industrial field of discarded, decaying Mardi Gras floats and props. There is also a grounded and low-key charm to the film's set pieces, perhaps because it is a comparatively inexpensive studio release, particularly at this time of year. It entirely eschews ultra-over-the-top, physics-defying computer-generated wizardry. So, Self/less may bend one's mind only slightly, but it does raise the pulse and warmly satisfy as an escapist summertime jaunt. Expand
  4. Jul 13, 2015
    6
    Ben Kingsley plays a rich New York real estate baron (his apartment in the film is actually one of Donald Trump's gaudy dwellings). He's dyingBen Kingsley plays a rich New York real estate baron (his apartment in the film is actually one of Donald Trump's gaudy dwellings). He's dying of cancer, so he pays to have his consciousness transferred into the body of a healthy Ryan Reynolds. When he tries to discover the fate of the man who previously occupied his body, the sci-fi angle fades into a traditional chase flick. While the plot turns on predictable points, the action and pacing are adequate. Nothing about this film is special, but it's passable "escape"-ism. Expand
  5. Oct 6, 2015
    6
    Is this like that John Travolta and Nicholas Cage movie? If so, 10/10, if not, I'll play it safe and give it a 6/10. Haven't seen it yet.Is this like that John Travolta and Nicholas Cage movie? If so, 10/10, if not, I'll play it safe and give it a 6/10. Haven't seen it yet. Honestly IDK if anyone's seen it, lol. Expand
  6. Nov 16, 2015
    6
    I enjoyed watching this film though it's highly forgettable. Tarsem Singh has a very unique style that I didn't see much of in this movie.I enjoyed watching this film though it's highly forgettable. Tarsem Singh has a very unique style that I didn't see much of in this movie. Overall I had a decent time watching this film but I can't say it stays with you. B- Expand
  7. Nov 19, 2015
    2
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. So.. the plot to selfless is pretty out there! MASSIVE SPOILERS:
    A company basically buys poor people, kind of kills them, then a rich guy comes along to buy their body to live in, now in the new body they take pills to slowly kill off the host and kind of wear their host's body as a weird meat suit kind of thing and live out a new life. The main character finds all this out after his 'swap' (with who just so happens to be a highly trained soldier) then decides to take down this evil corporation. While this is all kicking off he's also met the 'donor's' wife and daughter, kinda likes it all and is struggling whether to let himself die and let the donor retake their own body back or to live on and kill his donor person, probably stealing his wife too as he kind of likes her. He also didn't do a very good job of raising his own daughter and wants to have another crack at doing it right, so wants to basically rob this poor guy's family as well as his body.. Okayy.. yeah. Not the greatest of films!
    Expand

See all 22 User Reviews

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