The Island

User Score
8.3

Universal acclaim- based on 596 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Negative: 50 out of 596

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User Reviews

  1. MarkB.
    Jan 21, 2006
    3
    America's Most Obnoxious Director tries something different with this trite, contrived and unconvincing sci-fi film, and as a result gives us two bad movies for the price of one. The first hour is a futuristic fantasy about a highly structured, repressed society of slaves, drones and worker bees held in check not only because the system they work under is all they've known, but America's Most Obnoxious Director tries something different with this trite, contrived and unconvincing sci-fi film, and as a result gives us two bad movies for the price of one. The first hour is a futuristic fantasy about a highly structured, repressed society of slaves, drones and worker bees held in check not only because the system they work under is all they've known, but also by the promise of winning a daily lottery whose prize is supposedly a permanent retirement on an idyllic island but is in reality...well, a permanent retirement, anyway. This will prove shocking and illuminating only to those who have never seen Beneath the Planet of the Apes, Logan's Run or any of hundreds of other bad-new-world films; forget that some of the people involved with the obscure B-movie Parts: The Clonus Horror took the moviemakers to court, I saw the whole lottery premise played out on a decade-plus-old rerun of Sliders on DVD not long ago! Lack of originality is, of course, not a mortal sin, but mind-numbing idiocy is: this is the kind of movie that in order to work requires that not one but two major characters stumble across a highly elaborate, sophisticated security system in order to see Things They're Not Supposed To See, else you don't have a movie; the most effective and powerful lesson the film teaches is one that all non-homeschooled sixth graders already know, namely, if you're really nice to the cafeteria lady you get extra treats. Once our heroes (Evan McGregor and Scarlett Johansson) discover the big secret and the chase is underway, director Michael Bay (The Rock, Bad Boys, Bad Boys 2) stops sucking in his gut and reverts to just plain sucking as usual, giving us plenty of everything we love to hate him for once again: loud, irritating noise, an almost gleeful heartlessness toward innocents caught in the crossfire and their property, self-referential humor that isn't funny, promiscuous use of product placement that's truly corrupt both in number and inappropriateness, criminal misuse of Steve Buscemi, and the editorial philosophy of why settle for one shot when 32 will do even better? (As always, Bay cuts his own throat with the latter; a potentially spectacular stunt involving an armored truck doing a 360-degree flip is robbed of all effectiveness because Bay shoots it from several different angles and insists on showing them all to us.) Some people have praised Bay for having te self-discipline to not revert to his most irritating trademark techniques until almost halfway through the movie; to me, this is like praising an infant because he went for an hour WITHOUT soiling his diaper before finally doing so. Acting is mediocre or nonexistent with one exception: Ethan Phillips is actually quite touching as a drone who never wins the lottery and doesn't realize how lucky he is; McGregor gives a performance as dull as his vocal turns in Robots and Valiant while the sublime Johansson (Lost in Translation, Match Point) not only does her first very bad work but is photographed and costumed to look like Tara Reid. That's unforgivable...even by Michael Bay standards! Expand
  2. Aug 27, 2010
    1
    The movie takes a controversial biological/ethical issue and handles it with all the tact and seriousness of a Goosebumps serial. In the end its nothing more than a prolonged futuristic chase scenario with lots of color filtering (did they really have to make the ENTIRE movie look orange and blue?) It's a shame, because there were a lot of talented actors at work here...
  3. Sep 15, 2013
    1
    Great movie! Ewan Mcgregor amazing as always! The movie is an amazing aspect on a conflicting issue the world has been debating. All the bad reviews don't get it and think its only a movie about running, when truly it is more than that. It's funny, curious, and entertaining!!
  4. Sidiot
    Aug 3, 2005
    1
    Minor plot holes? How about the entire movie which was stolen from every other sci fi movie that came before it? Completely farsical with insane writing and acting. Oh I forgot, it had what you morons like? Lots of car chases, with big explosions. Where were the cops? Oops! Too stupid for words.
  5. WayneK.
    Aug 3, 2005
    0
    Not even believable. One giant commercial for everything on retreaded science fiction movies. Horrible.
  6. David
    Jul 23, 2005
    0
    Come one. Come all for your free lobotomy to this spaghetti western sci fi flop that has no original ideas and has stolen everything from other movies we have seen. It is so bad that even when the stupidy should end, they go on for another 30 minutes in a shameless ridiculous premise. I think I want to puke. Avoid like the plague.
  7. Fantasy
    Jul 18, 2005
    2
    Saw this in a sneak preview last weekend. Typical clone movie where the clones decide that they do not want to be replacement parts and want to live. Predictable and okay until it continues after the climax for another 30 minutes. It drags and loses all believablity as it turns into a shoot em up type western sci fi thriller. Forgotten ten minutes after you leave the theater. Another Saw this in a sneak preview last weekend. Typical clone movie where the clones decide that they do not want to be replacement parts and want to live. Predictable and okay until it continues after the climax for another 30 minutes. It drags and loses all believablity as it turns into a shoot em up type western sci fi thriller. Forgotten ten minutes after you leave the theater. Another overhyped sci fi disaster of a movie, but a litte better than the awful War Of The Morons. Expand
  8. BobH.
    Jul 22, 2005
    2
    Anyone who can't see through this fluff marketing campaign needs a lobotomy. Saw this in preview and it was awful. They took a few other idea's from other sci-fi movies and put them all in here. About an hour and a half too long. Predictable and eventually boring as you start looking at your watch. How many car chases and crash scenes can the public handle. Good doctor turns Anyone who can't see through this fluff marketing campaign needs a lobotomy. Saw this in preview and it was awful. They took a few other idea's from other sci-fi movies and put them all in here. About an hour and a half too long. Predictable and eventually boring as you start looking at your watch. How many car chases and crash scenes can the public handle. Good doctor turns into the evil monster. Spare me and the rest of the public. Expand
  9. TylerC
    Jul 24, 2005
    0
    Will Michael Bay ever make a good movie? Bad Boys, Armageddon, Pearl Harbor, and now this terrible movie. Three strikes and a person is supposed to be out, I guess here he reached on an error.
  10. Iggy
    Jul 26, 2005
    1
    One for the blonde. Nice to look at but no material to work with in this clone of all sci fi movies. Keep away unless you had a lobotomy.
  11. MikeD.
    Aug 7, 2005
    3
    A used, junk-food waste of time and money. There is nothing of value in this movie. But, then again, I've never liked a Bay movie.
  12. TonyB.
    Jan 10, 2006
    3
    One of the more provocative scientific-ethical issues of our time, cloning deserves to be the subject of a good film. "The Island" is not that film. What it is is a loud, clumsy and overly-plotted bore.
  13. AngryMan
    Jan 23, 2006
    1
    What the hell was that?! I'm getting really ****** off with the whole world of film making, as well as with that surprisingly large proportion of people who sincerely believe that stuff like this is of a high standard. I guess it's a sign of the times we're living in. 1 point goes to all those whose combined efforts resulted in me paying to rent this **** and suffer it for What the hell was that?! I'm getting really ****** off with the whole world of film making, as well as with that surprisingly large proportion of people who sincerely believe that stuff like this is of a high standard. I guess it's a sign of the times we're living in. 1 point goes to all those whose combined efforts resulted in me paying to rent this **** and suffer it for 30 minutes before swiching it off in disgust. Expand
  14. PeteD.
    Jul 18, 2005
    2
    Make sure you are ready for a long commercial. I counted about 25 product placements from Mack Trucks to Ben and Jerry's Ice Cream. Some might say this lends validity to an imagined future, but I just think it detracts from an already weak piece of cinema. To be fair the first 30 minutes were engaging with a rather poignant scene involving Michael Clarke Duncan pleading for his life. Make sure you are ready for a long commercial. I counted about 25 product placements from Mack Trucks to Ben and Jerry's Ice Cream. Some might say this lends validity to an imagined future, but I just think it detracts from an already weak piece of cinema. To be fair the first 30 minutes were engaging with a rather poignant scene involving Michael Clarke Duncan pleading for his life. The premise could make for a thoughtful look at many interesting issues, most directly cloning. Unfortunately, like his other films, Bay takes an interesting and original foundation and builds upon it using every piece of action movie rebar imaginable. The audience is left with nothing but a series of action movie clichés including the old Expand
  15. LarryW.
    Jul 21, 2005
    2
    Starts slow and then goes insane as it becomes shoot em up end to end predictable fable. The plot has more holes than Carter has little liver pills. Doesn't Hollywood have any idea as to how to make a movie anymore? Disappointing.
  16. Reggie
    Jul 20, 2005
    1
    Good beginning and then falls off a cliff. Too stupid to discuss.
  17. JamesD
    Jul 24, 2005
    0
    Mindless pap. Insulting to watch, and even more insulting to think that I acctually sat through 2 and a half hours of it. Ewan McGregor was fine, but Scarlett Johanssen, good lord girl, I'm dissapointed. After impressive turns in films like "The Igrl with the Pearl Earring" and "Lost in translation", this is pathetic. She goes from playing intriguing and complex characters to the Mindless pap. Insulting to watch, and even more insulting to think that I acctually sat through 2 and a half hours of it. Ewan McGregor was fine, but Scarlett Johanssen, good lord girl, I'm dissapointed. After impressive turns in films like "The Igrl with the Pearl Earring" and "Lost in translation", this is pathetic. She goes from playing intriguing and complex characters to the standard summer blockbuster dough head blonde. And I have no problems with product placement in films, even if it's obvious - take "Minority Report" - whole lotta ads in there, but they made sense in terms of the world that they exsisted in. But for the love of Pete, can some one tell me why there would be Auqafina etched all over the place, and Xbox inside the clone facility? Where is the sense in that? In summation - one of the worst, if not THE worst film I have ever seen. Expand
  18. RachelL.
    Jul 27, 2005
    1
    Too awful for words.
  19. GaborA.
    Jan 18, 2006
    2
    Definitly not one of the worst movies of all time, perhaps the year, but undoubtadly one of dumbest. Simply too stupid for words to describe.
  20. MilaM.
    Mar 27, 2007
    1
    One movie shows the struggle between two people and their search for more knowledge. Reality is, the people really aren
  21. ShawnS.
    Mar 18, 2008
    2
    The very definition of a thundering bore. Briefly, there's a chase sequence that never engages us because it substitutes any real sense of hide-and-seek, or imminent discovery, for shots of people running, helicopters whirring, voices shouting... all editing, no intelligence. But here's how bad the movie is: it wastes a luminous Scarlett Johansson with a mannequin script. The very definition of a thundering bore. Briefly, there's a chase sequence that never engages us because it substitutes any real sense of hide-and-seek, or imminent discovery, for shots of people running, helicopters whirring, voices shouting... all editing, no intelligence. But here's how bad the movie is: it wastes a luminous Scarlett Johansson with a mannequin script. THAT's the real crime here. Expand
  22. Oenmeteenk
    Nov 26, 2005
    3
    Starts of interesting, but then falls deep in a mindless and plotless action flick, with a really cheesy ending. Too bad.
  23. Harry
    Jul 22, 2005
    1
    Another summer clunker which had promise and disintergrates before your very eyes. I am glad it is about cloning because it has stolen every idea from other movies it has cloned. What a joke. About thirty minutes too long when it gets totally ridiculous. Avoid at all costs unless you had a lobotomy or wish to check your brains in at the door.
  24. Luigi
    Jul 23, 2005
    0
    If you like this I would recommend a lobotomy.
  25. ibrahimC
    Aug 25, 2005
    2
    I've seen cadillac, puma, msn...advertisements, not a movie. I regret.
Metascore
50

Mixed or average reviews - based on 38 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 13 out of 38
  2. Negative: 4 out of 38
  1. Starts off an aggressively derivative sci-fi thriller, then morphs into an above-average chase melodrama.
  2. Reviewed by: Justin Chang
    60
    Frenetic actioner about refugees from a genetic cloning plant starts off intriguingly, burns up its ideas in the first hour and pads out the rest with joltingly repetitive action sequences.
  3. Reviewed by: Richard Schickel
    50
    For all the menace of its techno-prattle, its implicit boosts for humanism and its swell production design, the picture is finally a bore. Sci-fi was more powerful when its special effects were cheap and crude, its ideas simple but potently stated.