User Score
7.9

Generally favorable reviews- based on 162 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Negative: 5 out of 162

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  1. Nov 21, 2014
    7
    This film is solid. A very brilliant and thin Christian Bale is on display in this film. A mystery film at its best. The Machinist is going to keep you guessing, and it going to make you want to see it again.
  2. Aug 20, 2014
    9
    The Machinist is absolutely riveting. Anderson has create the type of movie where the viewer never knows what's real and what's not, and there is a reasonable doubt to everything. Once it is revealed why the situation is like it is, everything makes sense. Aside from that, Christian acts wonderfully and is obviously committed to the role with how much weight he had to lose. There areThe Machinist is absolutely riveting. Anderson has create the type of movie where the viewer never knows what's real and what's not, and there is a reasonable doubt to everything. Once it is revealed why the situation is like it is, everything makes sense. Aside from that, Christian acts wonderfully and is obviously committed to the role with how much weight he had to lose. There are subliminal messages, red herrings, and many hints expertly scattered throughout, as well as some meaningful themes and values. For those who like this genre, it's a must-see. Expand
  3. Nov 24, 2013
    8
    Interesting and extremely entertaining. The Machinist has you watching the entire movie in a way that you can't wait to see what happens next. Christian Bale does an excellent job in this part and his dedication to the role is amazing.
  4. Sep 20, 2013
    8
    What we have here is a disturbing, distracting but important thriller which explores the boundaries and broken states of not only the human body, but the mind as well, powerful as it is, it can also deceive to the point of self-destruction and doubt of oneself. Christian Bale is the almost unrecognisable lead in this sombre and dark piece, he plays a machine worker in a factory by day, andWhat we have here is a disturbing, distracting but important thriller which explores the boundaries and broken states of not only the human body, but the mind as well, powerful as it is, it can also deceive to the point of self-destruction and doubt of oneself. Christian Bale is the almost unrecognisable lead in this sombre and dark piece, he plays a machine worker in a factory by day, and sits in an empty airport cafe by night, trying to overcome his year long insomnia. When we meet him, he seems to be in an unhealthy yet manageable state, going about his life, but Bale cuts a gaunt and sunken figure, losing extreme amounts of weight to play the part if routine worker Trevor Reznik, a man who alienates his co-workers and does the exact same thing day in and day out, until something shakes his routine and he begins to experience horrific events that he cannot explain nor can he piece together. He turns to a call girl called Stevie (Jennifer Jason Leigh), the only real friend he has, to get a second opinion on his dilemma.
    The Machinist studies the effects of traumatic events and how one can choose to repress and forget, Reznik is an emaciated yet focused individual, living a life by black and white rules while also trying to keep on top of everything through sticky notes and cleanliness. While the film studies the emotional impact and aftermath of life-changing events, it often tries to hard to hide its predictable plot which begins to unfold, this definitely distracts what could have been a near flawless thriller, but the deliberate attempts to mask the unwinding story and the distracting appearance of Bale at a mere 121 pounds stop this from happening. But there is still a thrilling story and an excellent performance from Bale, who clearly throws himself into his work and commits to the experience, there are of course arguments about how much actors and actresses get paid, but this is a prime example of money well spent, while harmful to himself, Bale proves his loyalty and willingness to his work, the performance outweighs the sombre and often slow paced film, it has an overall decent approach, but inconsistencies and deliberate out of focus points towards the audience, stop it from being truly great.
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  5. Aug 29, 2013
    8
    When I watched this movie I actually realized that this is my first time I see Bale playing the role. I mean it was not just a guy with Bale's face (like in Batman or Terminator), he actually played that skinny insomniac Trevor Reznik, and he did it just great. The movie has a lot of catchy features, good atmosphere, nice picture with all that pale colors. Pretty decent and originalWhen I watched this movie I actually realized that this is my first time I see Bale playing the role. I mean it was not just a guy with Bale's face (like in Batman or Terminator), he actually played that skinny insomniac Trevor Reznik, and he did it just great. The movie has a lot of catchy features, good atmosphere, nice picture with all that pale colors. Pretty decent and original thriller to me. Expand
  6. Jul 8, 2013
    7
    The Machinist is most certainly one of the weirder movies I have seen. Christian Bale is great as usual and the surprise twist will really screw with your head. Good film, certainly keeps you interested.
  7. Jul 5, 2013
    7
    This film makes you feel uncomfortable, but that's the point. Christian Bale is, once again, outstanding. You are with him throughout the film, believing his plight, asking the same questions his character does. The ending did, and at the same time didn't shock me by the end of it you get the feeling that you should have seen it coming!
  8. May 19, 2013
    5
    Brad Anderson's "The Machinist" had a lot of hype but ultimately left us feeling underwhelmed. From the first twenty minutes, the film continued in a predictable manner. With a main character who was frankly clueless and showed absolutely no prior thought behind his actions, it made me feel uncomfortable to watch him try to figure out the mystery that unfolded. Although the end of theBrad Anderson's "The Machinist" had a lot of hype but ultimately left us feeling underwhelmed. From the first twenty minutes, the film continued in a predictable manner. With a main character who was frankly clueless and showed absolutely no prior thought behind his actions, it made me feel uncomfortable to watch him try to figure out the mystery that unfolded. Although the end of the movie wasn't necessarily unexpected, it wasn't surprising, and almost came out of the blue. This film wound up being a desperate attempt at the avant-garde, and didn't really work as well as it could have. Expand
  9. May 11, 2013
    8
    Both emotionally and physically, Bale nails the character he portrays: Trever Reznik, an man that hasn't slept due to unknown events. As the movie progresses, you get dragged into it, realising what is what, how everything is starting to make sense, and a satisfying conclusion to leave you with. The most interresting thing, however, is Bale's appearence. As he is most known in recent daysBoth emotionally and physically, Bale nails the character he portrays: Trever Reznik, an man that hasn't slept due to unknown events. As the movie progresses, you get dragged into it, realising what is what, how everything is starting to make sense, and a satisfying conclusion to leave you with. The most interresting thing, however, is Bale's appearence. As he is most known in recent days as the muscled Bruce Wayne/Batman, his skinny and rather surprislingly slender body makes you frown from compassion, feeling not only sorry for Reznik, but also admiring Bale's acting. Expand
  10. Dec 14, 2012
    7
    Machine shop worker Bale is deeply troubled; he hasn't slept in a year, rapidly losing weight and looks like a walking skeleton. Mysterious notes begin to appear on his fridge and he's talking to a co-worker who doesn't appear to exist. Sinister, disturbing yet a strangely compelling psychological thriller divinely constructed by director Brad Anderson. Christian Bale's physicalMachine shop worker Bale is deeply troubled; he hasn't slept in a year, rapidly losing weight and looks like a walking skeleton. Mysterious notes begin to appear on his fridge and he's talking to a co-worker who doesn't appear to exist. Sinister, disturbing yet a strangely compelling psychological thriller divinely constructed by director Brad Anderson. Christian Bale's physical transformation for the role is unreal as well as his marvelous performance as tortured individual on the brink of insanity. Expand
  11. Jun 7, 2012
    8
    Christian Bale seems to be the reason for most The Machinist hype, and their's a good reason for that. Bale's portrayal of , insomnious, Trevor Reznik is something he really devoted to doing. Still with Bale's great acting, as well as the supporting cast's, are not the delivering factor. The cake goes to Scott Kosar for this amazing script. The Machinist delivers all the suspense andChristian Bale seems to be the reason for most The Machinist hype, and their's a good reason for that. Bale's portrayal of , insomnious, Trevor Reznik is something he really devoted to doing. Still with Bale's great acting, as well as the supporting cast's, are not the delivering factor. The cake goes to Scott Kosar for this amazing script. The Machinist delivers all the suspense and thrills a great movie in this genre need. Expand
  12. Oct 1, 2011
    8
    Director Brad Anderson's "The Machinist" provides a great script with precise dialogue. However the film mostly succeeds in shocking the audience by the amazing performance of Christian Bale.
  13. Sep 5, 2011
    8
    Christian Bale is scarily good in this.Amazing dedication to his craft.He just completely inhibits the role.Suspenseful and intriguing.Top notch psychological thriller.
  14. Aug 22, 2011
    8
    Sometimes a little slow but brilliantly asphyxiating, stressful and intriguing. You can't stop feeling bad for Trevor's behaviour and even though you know he's completely paranoid, a part of you still wants him to be right.
Metascore
61

Generally favorable reviews - based on 32 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 20 out of 32
  2. Negative: 2 out of 32
  1. Reviewed by: Don R. Lewis
    80
    The Machinist is so brave and visually impressive, it should demand an audience.
  2. Reviewed by: Duane Byrge
    90
    A brilliantly honed tale of dementia, starring a skeletal Christian Bale as a tormented insomniac wasting away and terrorized by his irreal existence.
  3. 75
    Director Brad Anderson tightens the screws of suspense, but it's Bale's gripping, beyond-the-call-of-duty performance that holds you in thrall.