The Beach

Metascore
43

Mixed or average reviews - based on 34 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 7 out of 34
  2. Negative: 6 out of 34

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Critic Reviews

  1. The theme (social breakdown in isolation) is strong, but the plot meanders, and the motivations are decidedly hazy, so its popularity probably stems from its seamless blending of naive wonder and soul-mining horror.
  2. As a book, The Beach offers the option of diving deep. As a movie, it sticks too close to the shoreline.
  3. Chicago Tribune
    Reviewed by: Michael Wilmington
    50
    Tries to take us from heaven to hell but winds up leaving us in limbo: exasperated and dumfounded.
  4. 50
    A seriously confused film that makes three or four passes at being a better one and doesn't complete any of them.
  5. Rolling Stone
    Reviewed by: Peter Travers
    50
    Colorful and exciting, as far as it goes. But Boyle and Hodge pull back on their usual wit and grit.
  6. As (DiCaprio's) character heads for The Beach's predictable heart of darkness denouement, only die-hard fans will have the heart to tag along.
  7. Reviewed by: Todd McCarthy
    50
    Visually resplendent but dramatically uneven.
  8. 50
    An intermittently gripping, good-looking movie.
  9. Boyle's movie jettisons much of the telling detail; it has the shambling rhythm of a shaggy dog story and so simplifies the characters' ethical dilemmas that it's hard to care what they do.
  10. Portland Oregonian
    Reviewed by: Shawn Levy
    50
    It's not that The Beach is a stinker, exactly. It's that nothing in it -- and that includes the gifted DiCaprio -- ever feels other than perfunctory.
  11. Baltimore Sun
    Reviewed by: Ann Hornaday
    50
    Terrific looking in the extreme, The Beach is the movie equivalent of vacation reading: no more demanding -- and no less satisfying -- than a sandy paperback left on a damp towel.
  12. The story is less original than its setting - it knocks off everything from "Lord of the Flies" to "The Blair Witch Project" -and its unromantic moods may make DiCaprio's countless "Titanic" fans want to swim in the opposite direction.
  13. There's only so much meaningful interplay you can get out of a beachful of slackers and some tanning oil.
  14. TNT RoughCut
    Reviewed by: Christopher Brandon
    45
    The titular beach really is stunning. But the second hour is an incomprehensible mess that's too dark for Leo's Teen People fanbase and too convenient for the arthouse crowd.
  15. 40
    A narrative that tries to juggle thriller elements, tons of pop culture imagery, and way too much philosophical baggage.
  16. 40
    Boyle's Beach lacks imagination and energy, two things that might have distracted us, at least occasionally, from the material's tepidness.
  17. 40
    It's hobbled by odd plot contrivances and some less-than-stellar acting from DiCaprio.
  18. Reviewed by: David Ansen
    40
    Gorgeous but curiously weightless.
  19. Reviewed by: Robert Horton
    40
    The opening reels here promise something big, but the movie settles for a sour, predetermined funk -- "Lord of the Flies" as imagined by a Nintendo junkie.
  20. Reviewed by: Ernest Hardy
    40
    Obvious in its observations, predictable in its conclusions, and a little dull in the telling.
  21. 40
    Not a terrible movie, just an insubstantial one. All of DiCaprio's charisma and the director's savvy are used to divert us from the fact that there's not much going on.
User Score
8.1

Universal acclaim- based on 157 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 14 out of 22
  2. Negative: 5 out of 22
  1. Oct 16, 2012
    10
    Excellent story with breathtaking scenery set in Thailand. Leo's character Richard is an American tourist and he embarks on an adventure toExcellent story with breathtaking scenery set in Thailand. Leo's character Richard is an American tourist and he embarks on an adventure to find a paradise island. But at what price? My favourite scenes are when Francoise pretends to be eaten by a shark, when they debate how they are to get down from the waterfall and the scene where they are together in the water. Excellent cast and soundtrack. Directed by Danny Boyle. Full Review »
  2. Feb 14, 2013
    8
    The beach is a really touching story with dark and harrowing aspects to it, really well acted by Leo dicaprio. It almost seems like a modernThe beach is a really touching story with dark and harrowing aspects to it, really well acted by Leo dicaprio. It almost seems like a modern tale of The Lord of flies but with adults, it asks the question what happens to humanity without order and civilisation? Ignoring the deep philosophical nature to this film, it is truly is a weird and wonderful watch. Full Review »
  3. TimR.
    Jan 25, 2007
    10
    (Based on the Alex Garland Novel) The Beach is truly touching and compelling picture with a new-age lord of the flies feel entering the (Based on the Alex Garland Novel) The Beach is truly touching and compelling picture with a new-age lord of the flies feel entering the millennium, terrific music score and intriguing escape into the unknown, fantastic. Full Review »