Mixed or average reviews - based on 32 Critics What's this?

User Score

Universal acclaim- based on 22 Ratings

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  • Starring: ,
  • Summary: Adapted from Ethan Canin's acclaimed short story "The Palace Thief," this film explores the turbulent relationship between a high school Classics professor (Kline) and one of his students (Hirsch).
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 14 out of 32
  2. Negative: 5 out of 32
  1. This isn't a stand up and cheer flick; it's a sit down and ponder affair. And thanks to Kline's superbly nuanced performance, that pondering is highly pleasurable.
  2. Like the story, Kline builds in intensity: He has no flowery speeches that would be untrue to his character, but he leaves a clear impression of a man who values knowledge and the imparting of it above all else.
  3. 63
    More than just another feel-good teacher movie.
  4. It's well crafted by director Michael Hoffman, not painful to sit through, and even contains some 21st century plot twists -- But unless you have a predisposition toward this kind of thing, none of that is going to matter much.
  5. At a time when much public education is in a state of perilous decay, one wonders whether this sentimental ode to old-school dignity and privilege is in touch with today's pressing realities.
  6. Would be a much better film had it not relied so heavily on a bombastic soundtrack (by James Newton Howard) for its emotional impact and spared itself some of the more overdone images of campus life.
  7. It's a simpering, ineffective ersatz-drama, so simple-minded and unrealistic and so full of fussy stupidity, it exiles you.

See all 32 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 14 out of 17
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 17
  3. Negative: 3 out of 17
  1. Jan 6, 2013
    This movie is a aftershock of Dead Poet's Society and it goes down in flames due to it's predictable plot and uninteresting characters. The ending was unique but most of it was unnecessary. Costner has never been my favorite and he has proven again he is only a par actor. Expand

See all 17 User Reviews