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61

Generally favorable reviews - based on 32 Critics What's this?

User Score
8.1

Universal acclaim- based on 195 Ratings

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  • Starring: , ,
  • Summary: Trevor Reznik has not slept for a year. His every waking minute has become an unremitting nightmare of confusion, paranoia, guilt, anxiety and terror - each of which is part of an escalating series of clues that will lead to the source of his mysterious affliction. (Paramount Classics)
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 20 out of 32
  2. Negative: 2 out of 32
  1. 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.
  2. Reviewed by: Don R. Lewis
    80
    The Machinist is so brave and visually impressive, it should demand an audience.
  3. Bale gives a near-great performance as a man with all the symptoms of paranoid schizophrenia and the film weaves an ingenious psychological web.
  4. Never gives us the nuts and bolts of mental illness and guilt, just the sight of cooped-up steam escaping from a valve that’s about to blow.
  5. May be an expertly manipulated exercise in psychological horror, but that's all it is. Don't look for the kind of metaphoric weight you'd find in a movie by David Lynch or David Fincher.
  6. Reviewed by: Kim Morgan
    50
    In a way, though, it’s all Bale's show. Withering down to an alarming 120 pounds, he delivers a deeply obsessed performance that leaves us both fascinated and sickened.
  7. 30
    Unrelentingly dreary, and seemingly destined to be remembered, if at all, as that movie Christian Bale lost a full third of his body weight for. It doesn't deserve any better.

See all 32 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 36 out of 42
  2. Negative: 4 out of 42
  1. CraigA.
    Apr 26, 2007
    10
    Hmmm... critics divided. General public not. This is an awesome film. Fight club meets Memento directed by Alfred Hitchcock. Watch it immediately.
  2. FredR
    Nov 16, 2005
    10
    This is a visually beautiful movie and I'm sure I will watch it a few times, and I'm someone who usually only watches a movie once. This is a visually beautiful movie and I'm sure I will watch it a few times, and I'm someone who usually only watches a movie once. I still can't figure it out but I'll have fun trying. Don't compare this to any other movies, it's truly one-of-a-kind. If Christian Bale and Jennifer Jason Leigh don't get nominated for academy awards then I don't know what the academy is looking for. I love jb young's review here, I can't really add much to that one. Bale and Leigh and the entire supporting cast should expect great things from the reception from this movie, it will grow in popularity for years to come. Congratulations to director Brad Anderson and writer Scott Kosar. It's a masterpiece. Expand
  3. 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 thereThe 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
  4. 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,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 and thrills a great movie in this genre need. Expand
  5. 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.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. Expand
  6. 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 toThis 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. Expand
  7. Printninja
    Dec 1, 2005
    2
    I picked The Machinist up out of curiosity, after hearing the hoopla concerning Bale's dramatic weight loss to get the part, and seeing I picked The Machinist up out of curiosity, after hearing the hoopla concerning Bale's dramatic weight loss to get the part, and seeing the positive reviews. After Batman Begins it thought it would be intriguing to see what a "skeletal" Bale looked like, but it turned out to be about the same as seeing one of those poor starving dogs on a change can at the checkout counter in a convenience store. You look, you feel sorry for the dog, but you really don't care to know much more. Feed it, or put it out of it's misery. That's what I wanted to do to Bale's character in this movie. Instead, I had to sit through a plodding telling of a pretty boring tale. As provocative as the hallucinatory/psychotic effects from a year of sleep deprivation were, they just didn't make up for the flat, tedious story. Yeah, we knew SOMETHING big happened to make this guy so screwed up, and if the ending delivered that something big, I could have forgiven the rest of the movie for being so lifeless. Unfortunately, the satisfying ending I was expecting didn't happen. Nope. All in all, the Machinist left me hungry for something more... like a good story. Expand

See all 42 User Reviews

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