The American

The American Image
Metascore
61

Generally favorable reviews - based on 36 Critics What's this?

User Score
6.9

Generally favorable reviews- based on 247 Ratings

Your Score
0 out of 10
Rate this:
  • 10
  • 9
  • 8
  • 7
  • 6
  • 5
  • 4
  • 3
  • 2
  • 1
  • 0
  • 0
  • Starring: , ,
  • Summary: As an assassin, Jack is constantly on the move and always alone. After a job in Sweden ends more harshly than expected for this American abroad, Jack retreats to the Italian countryside. He relishes being away from death for a spell as he holes up in a small medieval town. While there, JackAs an assassin, Jack is constantly on the move and always alone. After a job in Sweden ends more harshly than expected for this American abroad, Jack retreats to the Italian countryside. He relishes being away from death for a spell as he holes up in a small medieval town. While there, Jack takes an assignment to construct a weapon for a mysterious contact, Mathilde. Savoring the peaceful quietude he finds in the mountains of Abruzzo, Jack accepts the friendship of local priest Father Benedetto and pursues a torrid liaison with a beautiful woman, Clara. Jack and Clara’s time together evolves into a romance, one seemingly free of danger. But by stepping out of the shadows, Jack may be tempting fate. (Focus Features) Expand

Trailer

Please enter your birth date to continue:
You are not allowed to view this material at this time.
Autoplay: On | Off

Where To Watch

Stream On
Stream On
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 20 out of 36
  2. Negative: 1 out of 36
  1. 100
    Here is a gripping film with the focus of a Japanese drama, an impenetrable character to equal Alain Delon's in "Le Samourai," by Jean-Pierre Melville.
  2. Reviewed by: Dana Stevens
    80
    If you're willing to let go of your Hollywood-bred expectations for a movie of this type-spectacular action set pieces, constant pulse-pounding music, a killing every 15 minutes-The American is a great pleasure to watch, an astringent antidote to the loud, frantic action movies that have been clogging our veins all summer.
  3. 75
    Anyone who understands what The American offers should come away pleased with the final product.
  4. The movie is a paradox. It's ostentatiously restrained. You cannot say Corbijn lacks rigor. You can, however, say that when a talented director's approach too precisely mirrors the tightly calibrated performance strategy of his leading player, a movie risks stalling out completely.
  5. The film's mood is so somber and minimal, it might be confused for deep. Had the plot (meager and one-last-job-predictable) zipped along, that wouldn't feel like such a problem.
  6. A slow, grim, atmospheric but virtually plotless look at a blank-faced loner who is obsessed with his work, has no friends except for one woman inexplicably attached to him, and ends up making those around him miserable.
  7. 25
    A pretentious Euro-snore that should occasion a fraud prosecution for any marketer who calls it a thriller -- and which stars an actor who seems to wish his name were Jorg Clooné.

See all 36 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 38 out of 79
  2. Negative: 24 out of 79
  1. Sep 23, 2010
    10
    This is a wonderfully executed example of an intelligent and thought provoking character study. Once again, George Clooney is a class act withThis is a wonderfully executed example of an intelligent and thought provoking character study. Once again, George Clooney is a class act with the guts to choose a great project that, sadly, most people will be too over-stimulated by today's mindless movies to truly appreciate. The film is highly engaging. Riveting, in fact, if you're not looking for the typical shoot 'em up action picture. If you're willing to get under the skin of The American, and really feel this guy's harsh reality, it's even shocking, not to mention heart-breaking, at times, and certainly a more realistic look at the life of an assassin than anything that's come out in a long time. Congrats to all involved in the making of the wonderful picture. Great job!!! Expand
  2. Sep 6, 2010
    10
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. One of my least favorite movies of all time. Walked out after an hour and a quarter. Didn't care what happened to any of the characters. Hope they all died in the end. T and A, oh so ho hum and of no interest to me. Certainly didn't save this tedious film. Clooney should keep his shirt on. George, I loved ya, but no more. Expand
  3. Mar 11, 2011
    9
    Excellent, minimalist film, but has a good enough story and action sequences to keep it interesting. Overall very good acting; Clooney isExcellent, minimalist film, but has a good enough story and action sequences to keep it interesting. Overall very good acting; Clooney is excellent again. Expand
  4. Sep 15, 2010
    6
    Very suspenseful in parts and exquisitely slow moving in other parts with the camera stuck on Clooney doing exercises and other things,Very suspenseful in parts and exquisitely slow moving in other parts with the camera stuck on Clooney doing exercises and other things, sometimes unexplainably. Clooney didn't have a lot of lines to learn.his charm doesn't show, not even a sparkle in the eye. Lots of gratuitous violence and sex. Beautiful photography of the land. Despite the title, the film seems more a foreign film. Expand
  5. Sep 9, 2010
    6
    I heard a couple of meatheads walking out of the theater on Oahu say, "I didn't get it.... George Clooney officially ruined his reputationI heard a couple of meatheads walking out of the theater on Oahu say, "I didn't get it.... George Clooney officially ruined his reputation with this one." Huh?? What's not to get? It's not a bad movie by any stretch, but is has much more deliberate pacing than the trailer would suggest. This was not meant to be another Bourne movie. If you're a fan of a show like Rubicon, you'll love it. The actresses in this film are spectacular. (Not sure it's them or the parts - or the direction - but are great opposite George.) Expand
  6. Dec 25, 2010
    2
    Not even halfway through the movie I already hated its guts. The American shows no respect for its film genre, its star, and its premise.Not even halfway through the movie I already hated its guts. The American shows no respect for its film genre, its star, and its premise. Director Anton Corbijin should stick to his short documentaries instead of trying to direct an action thriller. Most of the time the camera is up in Clooney's face, and although his performance is quiet but dangerous, it doesn't make up for all the faults in this film. There were basically no dialogue and when there was, it lacks focus and was all over the place. Spending almost 20 minutes following Clooney around town without doing anything, The American is one of the worst thriller of 2010. Clooney's performance shows promise but the film failed on all other aspects and will/could not be made up by just George Clooney. RazzieBuzz: Worst Director, Worst Screenplay, these are both unlikely because critics liked the film but I put them there just to show how mad I am that George Clooney got involved in this. Expand
  7. Sep 8, 2010
    0
    Anyone who pretends to like this incredibly boring movie are akin to the villagers in the emperors new clothes. There are zero redemingAnyone who pretends to like this incredibly boring movie are akin to the villagers in the emperors new clothes. There are zero redeming qualities about this movie, except for perhaps the very end because I did not make it that far. Expand

See all 79 User Reviews

Trailers

Related Articles

  1. 20 Movies With Fake US Presidents, Ranked

    20 Movies With Fake US Presidents, Ranked Image
    Published: June 14, 2016
    We rank 20 films featuring fictitious American presidents.
  2. Movie Preview: 10 Films to See in January

    Movie Preview: 10 Films to See in January Image
    Published: January 1, 2015
    Our editors select the 10 most interesting films headed to theaters in December, including American Sniper, A Most Violent Year, Paddington, and new films from Michael Mann and Xavier Dolan.
  3. Ranked: American Idol Seasons 1-9

    Ranked: American Idol Seasons 1-9 Image
    Published: May 24, 2010
    As the ninth cycle of Fox's "American Idol" draws to a close this week, we take a look at seasons past to determine the reality franchise's best and worst years.
  4. Hail to the Chiefs: Metacritic's Best and Worst President Movies

    Hail to the Chiefs: Metacritic's Best and Worst President Movies Image
    Published: February 12, 2010
    In honor of Presidents' Day Weekend, we elect the best and the worst movies to feature the American president.