Mixed or average reviews - based on 37 Critics What's this?

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Generally favorable reviews- based on 98 Ratings

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  • Starring: , ,
  • Summary: When a terrorist bomb detonates inside a Western housing compound in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, an international incident is ignited. While diplomats slowly debate equations of territorialism, FBI Special Agent Ronald Fleury quickly assembles an elite team and negotiates a secret five-day trip into Saudi Arabia to locate the madman behind the bombing. However, upon landing in the desert kingdom, Fleury and his team discover that Saudi authorities are suspicious and unwelcoming of American interlopers in what they consider a local matter. Hamstrung by protocol--and with the clock ticking on their five days--the FBI agents find their expertise worthless without the trust of their Saudi counterparts, who want to locate the terrorists in their homeland on their own terms. (Universal Studio) Expand
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 22 out of 37
  2. Negative: 3 out of 37
  1. 83
    Berg doesn't let up on the tension, even when the action is bloodless.
  2. 75
    Overall, the film is smart and engaging, and if it plays a little on our fears of the next big terrorist attack, it does so without feeling exploitative.
  3. Sensationally directed by Peter Berg, it’s a combination forensics detective movie (car bomb blows up secure American compound in Saudi Arabia--who dunnit and how can we stop him from doing it again?) and red-meat waste-the-terrorists action picture.
  4. Ultimately, this jingo-bingo action thriller squarely hits its target, then delivers a delayed-action message contrary to everything that has preceded it. Berg heroizes the plucky Americans, but in the closing scenes of his ripping action flick, sucker-punches them. It's as if this populist Syriana frags itself.
  5. Reviewed by: Stephen Farber
    Berg's movie is no more than an action movie with an exotic backdrop. That would be fine, if only the movie were more exciting. It succeeds neither as a pointed political commentary nor as a taut thriller.
  6. The Kingdom is a barely coherent compendium of Middle East fantasies, fears and doubts.
  7. 10
    At its core this is just another piece of big-studio nothingness. The characters are so underwritten they barely qualify as types, and the movie is badly paced, bookended by high-ordnance action sequences but painfully static in the middle.

See all 37 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 27 out of 49
  2. Negative: 18 out of 49
  1. Mar 23, 2011
    As I key this the score for this fine movie is 56....can you believe it. I guess it just shows that the smart among us don't write reviews. Good script, tight action, fine acting by foreign actors and a compelling ending make this one of the best action/drama made. Granted the story is balanced and thus fails to present the Red, White and Blue as all good, all knowing, but the balance of the tale is outstanding and is clearly superior to any other movie of this general type. Name one that you think is comparable, then ask how layered the plot is in your assumed favorite. Here we start with a massive bombing and move into cultural relationships, a clever cop/buddy movie, great action, and a story that makes sense almost all of the way. Good flick. Expand
  2. Oct 1, 2010
    A good movie that really shows what was going on in the Middle East at the time it was made.
  3. Apr 2, 2014
    The Kingdom is a taught thriller with some scenes of true suspense and intensity. It features some very well-made and well-crafted war scenes, almost bringing back memories of "Black Hawk Down". However, it doesn't have the same atmosphere as or feel to it: this film is very impersonal, while "Black Hawk Down" engaged our emotions more. It screams more "commercial blockbuster" than "engaging war film". Expand

See all 49 User Reviews