The Lookout

User Score
8.8

Universal acclaim- based on 151 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Negative: 5 out of 151

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User Reviews

  1. Shsch
    May 1, 2007
    10
    I think a lot of the reviews here miss the point. This is not really an action heist movie although there is both action and a heist. Rather this is a character study of Chris Pratt who has to cope with the limitations of his life after suffering severe brain damage as a result of a car accident which he stupidly causes. I was intrigued by the ways he attempts to regain normalcy such as I think a lot of the reviews here miss the point. This is not really an action heist movie although there is both action and a heist. Rather this is a character study of Chris Pratt who has to cope with the limitations of his life after suffering severe brain damage as a result of a car accident which he stupidly causes. I was intrigued by the ways he attempts to regain normalcy such as the ability to sequence events and relate to others in a personal way. I think the gradual manner in which the plot reveals the important things you need to know about Chris's pre-accident life, and especially his family, was very effective in holding the viewer's interest. I also thought Isla Fisher was quite sexy and very effective as bait for Chris's attraction to his "new-found friends." I would highly recommend this film. I think you too will be drawn into the movie and hope that its main character Chris will somehow be able to conquer his limits. Expand
  2. Dec 31, 2014
    7
    The Lookout is certainly a very interesting film. Directed and written by Scott Frank as his directorial debut after a successful career as a screenwriter beforehand, this one is certainly very well written and he certainly directs it very well. The story is told nicely and it is fun to see everything all come together after being set up. Certainly a very emotional film, The LookoutThe Lookout is certainly a very interesting film. Directed and written by Scott Frank as his directorial debut after a successful career as a screenwriter beforehand, this one is certainly very well written and he certainly directs it very well. The story is told nicely and it is fun to see everything all come together after being set up. Certainly a very emotional film, The Lookout benefits greatly from strong acting performances by Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Jeff Daniels, and Matthew Goode. Also, Isla Fisher's beauty is another major strength of this one, haha. The plot and backstory of Gordon-Levitt's character is touching and very interesting, really hooks you right into the film as you want to see how everything plays out. However, in spite of the film's best attempts to avoid being a run-of-the-mill heist thriller, this one does wind up being that in a way even with the interesting back story and twists to the typical elements of the genre. Ultimately, this one is a very enjoyable film that is just extraordinary in any way, which is not necessarily a bad thing, but does prevent it from being rated higher. Expand
  3. PWeekly
    Apr 5, 2007
    9
    Honestly, anything Levitt is in is absolutely worth seeing.
  4. SallyS.
    Mar 29, 2007
    10
    The point is the multi-dimensional characters. the heist grabs us & leaves us wrung out because we care so much for Chris and Lewis. Even the villain & femme fatale are made real, not cardboard plot devices. Make sure you read the many excellent reviews, not just the tepid ones. None are really bad, just some wanting more action thrills who don't have the patience to see what'sThe point is the multi-dimensional characters. the heist grabs us & leaves us wrung out because we care so much for Chris and Lewis. Even the villain & femme fatale are made real, not cardboard plot devices. Make sure you read the many excellent reviews, not just the tepid ones. None are really bad, just some wanting more action thrills who don't have the patience to see what's happening here. Expand
  5. BillC.
    Mar 30, 2007
    7
    Feels similar to Fargo in some ways, but without the comedy undertones.
  6. JayC.
    Apr 2, 2007
    9
    Excellent acting, especially by Levitt and Daniels. While it seemed inevitible that Levitt's character would get him into such a jam, his determination to act on what he wrote in his notebook (that he had the power, and starting at the end of the story) were interesting plot devices. Keeps you on the edge of your chair during the last half of a just right length film.
  7. BilB
    Apr 7, 2007
    8
    I thoroughly enjoyed this one. I'm not really a fan of Jeff Daniels, but his performance was excellent and I have to give it to him.
  8. PatrickC.
    May 8, 2007
    8
    The movie isn't perfect. Sure Levitt is out of character at times and Daniels might not be blind but the movie is enjoyable. The movie has the right mix of suspense and drama to get you invested in the characters. At the end of the movie you'll be happy you went and even hopeful that Levitt with continue his film noir streak. Brick was great, The Lookout is good hopefully his The movie isn't perfect. Sure Levitt is out of character at times and Daniels might not be blind but the movie is enjoyable. The movie has the right mix of suspense and drama to get you invested in the characters. At the end of the movie you'll be happy you went and even hopeful that Levitt with continue his film noir streak. Brick was great, The Lookout is good hopefully his next film will be perfection. Expand
  9. BillyS.
    Mar 31, 2007
    8
    The Lookout is a great thriller very similar to Memento but it's much more involving because it's not played out in reverse and it moves forward with a smart character driven plot. The technical credits are all excellent especially the camera work of Alar Kivilo, but it's the cast that makes this one of those little gems you know nothing about and then thank the movie Gods The Lookout is a great thriller very similar to Memento but it's much more involving because it's not played out in reverse and it moves forward with a smart character driven plot. The technical credits are all excellent especially the camera work of Alar Kivilo, but it's the cast that makes this one of those little gems you know nothing about and then thank the movie Gods that you saw it in a theatre. Joesph Gordon Levitt is well on his way to be the next Johnny Depp. Starting out in t.v. then on to small intelligent independent features like Mysterious Skin and Brick, it won't be long before he's an A-list in demand actor, and rightfully so. Jeff Daniels continues his resurgence after The Squid and the Whale with another well developed role as the blind roommate and Matthew Goode is unrecognizable from his upper-crust Matchpoint role. It's a shame that movies like The Lookout don't get the promotion they deserve because this is a great movie. Come on, Blades of Glory will still be around next week, do yourself a favor and see The Lookout now! Expand
  10. DanaM.
    Mar 31, 2007
    9
    A slow buildup of tension through the first half of the movie leads to a thrilling finish. Difficult at times to determine what is real and what is imagined. Wonderful character development. Jeff Bridges plays a great role. Worth seeing but can be disturbing at times.
  11. PaulK.
    Mar 31, 2007
    9
    Joseph Gordon Levitt delivers another brilliant performance. See this at all costs.
  12. PatG.
    Mar 30, 2007
    8
    This movie held my attention from the very beginning. It is intriguing, and the characters are interesting. Gordon-Levitt does a believable, understated, and touching job of portraying a damaged character. One reviewer mentioned the interesting cinematography, and I second that. At one point I wondered if the exterior of a building was the main character's apartment. Then the neon This movie held my attention from the very beginning. It is intriguing, and the characters are interesting. Gordon-Levitt does a believable, understated, and touching job of portraying a damaged character. One reviewer mentioned the interesting cinematography, and I second that. At one point I wondered if the exterior of a building was the main character's apartment. Then the neon cross on a building across the street was reflected in a window. So I know it was indeed their building. Many similar touches add to the thoughtfulness of this film. I do recommend it. Expand
  13. RikS.
    Apr 2, 2007
    9
    If superb acting is what you require, Joseph Gordon-Levitt has got the chops in spades.
  14. FrankO.
    Apr 20, 2007
    9
    A very good thriller written by Scott Frank. I enjoyed the plot development and sympathized with the end character-Chris Pratt. Highly recommended for the "indy" crowd.
  15. ShawnC.
    Apr 6, 2007
    7
    Levitt is quite good, as are all the actors, which makes up for a decent if not exactly compelling plot with an unnecessarily contrived back story.
  16. A-FUNK
    Apr 7, 2007
    9
    Levitt is brilliant, the sitution he is put in in this movie just makes him shine!
  17. kingsXrulz
    Apr 8, 2007
    8
    The acting is strong; the story is pretty solid, if predictable in spots; the direction is good, especially the pacing.
  18. ChadS.
    Apr 8, 2007
    7
    Do we need another bank heist movie? Probably not, but "The Lookout"(in the first scene, you'll realize that the title is a bad pun), with its "Revenge of the Nerds"-like scenario(Gary wasn't a cool kid, nor was Luvlee; Matthew Goode and Isla Fisher) finds a way to make this tired genre seem fresh by focusing on the human drama instead of the crime itself. "The Lookout" is more Do we need another bank heist movie? Probably not, but "The Lookout"(in the first scene, you'll realize that the title is a bad pun), with its "Revenge of the Nerds"-like scenario(Gary wasn't a cool kid, nor was Luvlee; Matthew Goode and Isla Fisher) finds a way to make this tired genre seem fresh by focusing on the human drama instead of the crime itself. "The Lookout" is more interested in how thievery gives Chris(Joseph Gordon-Levitt) a new lease on life, rather than wow us with some elaborate plan to raid the vault in fetishistic detail. Chris suspects that his "friends" feel empowered by the table-turning switch for this ex-golden boy who used to rule the school and town. Chris should be paranoid. It's a truism that people like to tear their heroes down(you can tell that purchasing pity doughnuts for Chris stokes Deputy Ted's ego). "The Lookout" might've benefited greatly by knowing how Chris handled his big-man-on-campus notoriety. Should we feel sorry for him? But the film does have an ending that intrigues: Chris' success is the best you could possibly hope for a person with limited intelligence; however, if you were to foreground the crime element in "The Lookout", this happy ending feels bittersweet and ultimately disappointing because it subverts the genre(we're denied the vicarious thrill of...). Expand
  19. StuartM
    Apr 25, 2009
    10
    This is a wonderful character development movie with enough action in the plot to make it work. You get a great understand of the characters and it really draws you in. Plus the advanced scout team got this movie all wrong. It was about dealing with brain trauma, and not a revenge of the nerds type movie. The movie shows how Chris is completely fine yet can never have his old life again. This is a wonderful character development movie with enough action in the plot to make it work. You get a great understand of the characters and it really draws you in. Plus the advanced scout team got this movie all wrong. It was about dealing with brain trauma, and not a revenge of the nerds type movie. The movie shows how Chris is completely fine yet can never have his old life again. It is about Chris' dealing with his accident and how cruel, ruthless, and manipulative people can be. Expand
  20. JimmyK.
    Apr 12, 2007
    10
    A top-notch thriller with another great preformance Joseph Gordon-Levitt.
  21. HalB.
    Aug 19, 2007
    8
    A breath of fresh air amidst the usual summer rehashing of action-thrillers. A bank heist movie that is about so much more than a robbery. A character-driven plot with an excellent script, cast, locations and photography. This little gem should not be missed, except by numbskulls simply looking for another cheap thrill. Gordon-Levitt and Matthew Goode are superbly cast in the leads; with A breath of fresh air amidst the usual summer rehashing of action-thrillers. A bank heist movie that is about so much more than a robbery. A character-driven plot with an excellent script, cast, locations and photography. This little gem should not be missed, except by numbskulls simply looking for another cheap thrill. Gordon-Levitt and Matthew Goode are superbly cast in the leads; with great supporting turns by Isla Fisher (remember her from Wedding Crashers?) and Jeff Daniels. Even MadTV's Alex Borstein has a nice little part... And watch out for "Deputy Doughnut"! Expand
  22. NickA.
    Aug 21, 2007
    9
    In 1998, George Clooney co-starred alongside then-pop-diva, Jennifer Lopez, in 'Out of Sight,' a film by Oscar-winning director Steven Soderbergh. The film was hailed by critical masses as one of that year
  23. DaveN.
    Aug 21, 2007
    8
    Slow, but effective. The acting, script and cinematography are all superior. Somehow, this movie got almost no "buzz" when it came out, but it's worth seeking out as a rental.
  24. Nov 28, 2012
    8
    A solidly shot, reasonably well-acted crime thriller, featuring some truly intriguing characters in play.
  25. Feb 12, 2014
    7
    A Solid and at times exceptional film. The performances, particularly Jeff Daniels' as Levitt's constantly captivating blind friend, are all very good - accompanied by some unique and well-executed writing.
    While I totally enjoyed the film, small detractors include (without spoiling) certain plot elements that lack sufficient explanation or elaboration as well as characters with overly
    A Solid and at times exceptional film. The performances, particularly Jeff Daniels' as Levitt's constantly captivating blind friend, are all very good - accompanied by some unique and well-executed writing.
    While I totally enjoyed the film, small detractors include (without spoiling) certain plot elements that lack sufficient explanation or elaboration as well as characters with overly murky motives.
    Of course, intentionally withheld information or deliberately raised questions is often desirable - but it's hard to shake the feeling when such gaps in the story give off more of a sense of laziness rather than method or intention.
    Aside from this occasional lack of coherence, the film itself is quite worthwhile - providing a small-scale but captivating character-focused drama.
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Awards & Rankings

Metascore
73

Generally favorable reviews - based on 33 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 27 out of 33
  2. Negative: 0 out of 33
  1. 88
    The Lookout is Frank's show. He's crafted a haunting and hypnotic film that transcends pulp by creating characters that get under your skin.
  2. Reviewed by: Joe Leydon
    80
    A stealthy neo-noir drama that isn't afraid to take its time developing characters on the way to the payoff of a neatly designed caper scenario.
  3. Frank's writing is razor-sharp, his filmmaking whistle-clean. As a fan of sharp razors and clean whistles, I enjoyed The Lookout--yet I did feel let down by the climax, which ought to have been blunter and messier and crazier and more cathartic.