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62

Generally favorable reviews - based on 23 Critics What's this?

User Score
7.0

Generally favorable reviews- based on 12 Ratings

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  • Starring: , ,
  • Summary: A fiercely original psychological thriller, The Dying Gaul is a tale of lust, power, corruption, betrayal and revenge set in the seductive world of the Hollywood elite. (Strand Releasing)
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 15 out of 23
  2. Negative: 3 out of 23
  1. Mr. Sarsgaard gives the riskiest screen performance of his career. Save perhaps for Sean Penn's outbursts in "Dead Man Walking" and "Mystic River," no actor in a recent American film has delivered as explosive a depiction of a man emotionally blasted apart.
  2. Has too many contrivances, but as an act of sinister staging, it proves Lucas, the noted playwright, to be a born filmmaker.
  3. 80
    Lucas' beautiful script and a trio of first-rate performances carry the material with an intermittently breathtaking urgency.
  4. 70
    If you cut through Lucas' thickets of self-reflexivity, metaphysical mumbo jumbo and banal potshots at media violence, there are three ace performances here by actors who can elevate and enliven even as mediocre a piece of material as this.
  5. 63
    The heavily symbolic The Dying Gaul doubtless worked better as a play, but the film is worth seeing for its peerless cast.
  6. 60
    Entertaining if cornball, lacking the cold-eyed nastiness of something like Mike Nichols's "Closer," The Dying Gaul is tricked out with strident montage sequences and tremulous Steve Reich music. It's already drowning in an icky sea of language when Lucas makes a stretch for Greek tragedy and sends the whole Malibu playhouse abruptly crashing down.
  7. Reviewed by: David Edelstein
    30
    A sour little psychodrama.

See all 23 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 6 out of 9
  2. Negative: 1 out of 9
  1. olivaV.
    Nov 11, 2005
    10
    One of the most original and emotionally scary film i have seen in a long time. a wonderful accomplishment that everyone should see!
  2. P.Nicol
    Nov 9, 2005
    10
    Awesome...Crazy ending...but awesome!
  3. katherines
    Nov 10, 2005
    10
    Utterly breathtaking, will stay with you long after you leave the theater, a beautiful haunting movie!
  4. RhettW.
    Dec 28, 2005
    6
    A very watchable movie with three totally captivating performances, but not totally satisfying.
  5. ChadShiira
    Oct 9, 2006
    6
    This film is the oddest thing. The three principal actors in "The Dying Gaul" play such appealing characters, but then they inexplicably stop being appealing after the set-up. The script starts to break down when the film makes its transition from a spot-on look at how Hollywood thinks to a psychological drama that has its talented actors trying to prove the old adage that people would pay good money just to see them read from a telephone book (in this case, their dialogue from a chat-room). [***SPOILERS***] Sometimes "The Dying Gaul" just doesn't make sense. In one scene, Robert (Peter Saarsgard) seems to have outed his tormentor, but in the next scene, he's caught off-guard and floored by a revelation we think is already established. When you get right down to it, Robert is pretty stupid, or rather; the screenplay made him that way. Robert gives his internet stalker pertinent information that could be used against him, in which he seems to have forgotten, when trying to identify the true identity of his chat-room poltergeist. This is a pity, because the opening scenes are almost as fun as Robert Altman's "The Player". Expand
  6. WayneB.
    Apr 12, 2006
    5
    An entrancing mess. Sarsgaard gives a shattering performance in an utterly senseless plot. There are so many logic leaps in the story that it becomes a pointless jumble wallowing in its own pretentiousness. But like a spectacular car wreck, you keep watching nonetheless. Sarsgaard will blow your mind. Expand
  7. jakiek.
    Nov 7, 2005
    1
    Not good.

See all 9 User Reviews

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