Generally favorable reviews - based on 33 Critics What's this?

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Generally favorable reviews- based on 235 Ratings

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  • Starring: , ,
  • Summary: Based on Cormac McCarthy's beloved, best-selling and Pulitzer Prize winning novel, Academy Award nominee Viggo Mortensen leads an all-star cast in the big screen adaptation of The Road, the epic post-apocalyptic tale of a journey taken by a father and his young son across a barren landscape that was blasted by an unnamed cataclysm that destroyed civilization and most life on earth. (The Weinstein Company) Expand
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 26 out of 33
  2. Negative: 1 out of 33
  1. 88
    In this haunting portrait of America as no country for old men or young, Hillcoat -- through the artistry of Mortensen and Smit-McPhee -- carries the fire of our shared humanity and lets it burn bright and true.
  2. Between the two performances there's not a false note. Between the father and son there's an unbreakable bond. Though civilization has ended, love and parental duty shape the course of this fable, which is otherwise as heartwarming as a Beckett play shorn of humor.
  3. Intense and, yes, depressing - and earns every minute that it rattles inside your head.
  4. 70
    John Hillcoat's The Road is an honorable adaptation of a piece of pulp fiction disguised as high art; it a has more directness and more integrity than its source material, the 2006 novel by Cormac McCarthy.
  5. There's enough foreboding in America right now to make sitting through a movie such as The Road seem like one more heavy burden that, frankly, no one needs.
  6. Reviewed by: Ty Burr
    Everything about the film is a welcome rebuke to the happy-face apocalypse of “2012,’’ a movie that turns mass extinction into the Greatest Show on Earth. In The Road, what has been lost is recognized as infinitely precious; what’s left is bitter and our due.
  7. 30
    Pale by comparison to an action thriller like "Children of Men" or gross out eco-catastrophe like "Land of the Dead," squandering its ready-made zombie scenario.

See all 33 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 76 out of 93
  2. Negative: 10 out of 93
  1. May 26, 2013
    What an amazing movie, I really felt for the characters, A good movie like this doesn't come around often enough. I would go as far to say this is in MY top 5 movies of all time. Expand
  2. QTip
    Dec 7, 2009
    Captures the tension and conflict of the book perfectly. Incredibly relatable, sad, inspiring, and terrifying all at the same time. I don't understand what all the criticism is about. Expand
  3. Jul 8, 2014
    Incredibly powerful, emotional, and it gives a very realistic feeling
    of what could happen to humanity under a worst case scenario.
    It rates
    far above other disaster films in its portrayal of the human
    experience and what we are capable of in dire circumstances.
    In effect it looks like a warning to us if we are not careful in how
    we conduct our society. It brings out feelings of sadness that few
    films could replicate and displays a full range of powerful emotions
    that emphasize what it means to be human.This is much more than
    a film to entertain you for a few hours; it is a message about the will
    to live, what it means to be human and about how unsympathetic
    this world could be. I could not tear myself away from it though I hadn't
    planned to watch all of it when I started watching it on TV. It is rare that I
    can relate with deep feelings to characters in a film but this one compels you
    to do so. The father-son relationship was so deep it forced me to think
    about my own deceased father and the relations I had with him. More than
    entertainment it is an insight into our souls.
  4. Aug 22, 2010
    I had no idea what this movie was really about (i knew post-apocalypse) and had not read the book. I was surprised by how intensely dark and frightening it was. It did, as one reviewer put it, rattle around in my head for several days. I thought it was not boring, but I like science fiction. I thought Viggo Mortensen was good and the kid, was pretty good. The tension created in the encounters with the 'bad guys' was incredibly intense. I went out and read the book immediately and thought that the screenplay actually improved the plot of the book in some ways. The post-apocalyptic imagery was good, but in these days of anything is possible CG, I thought they could have attempted some larger imagery - like when Cormac McCarthy in the book describes building "melted and then refrozen". But overall, intelligent, consistent, scary and thought provoking. No false notes. Expand
  5. Aug 2, 2014
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. Wow this was a fascinating movie to say the least unlike other apocalyptic movies this doesn't have any zombies or something like that this is what I would call a realistic post apocalyptic movie there's a reason this movie is rated r it shows what would probably be a real life post apocalyptic world when watching this movie you feel unsure of what's going to happen and nervous this movie shows what dark and terrible things mankind would do to stay alive and let me just say some of the things in this movie are absolutely despicable the only thing I found unrealistic was the ending I would have rather seen something along the lines of the kid ending up a survivor and getting his act together instead of just staying like a boy I think something like that would have been more believable and realistic than him finding a "good guy" to take Carr of him as dark as it sounds I rather would have seen him turn out like Ellie from the last of us than stay an inefficient boy. Expand
  6. RCR
    Dec 20, 2009
    This is a decent adaptation of the novel. On the surface, the music often overpowers rather than underscores and there are too many 'cameo' performances casted in a story that explicitly seeks to remove almost all familiarity of the known world from the audience. Viggo Mortensen offers great work in this film; Viggo's portrayal of a man who has witnessed a world lost and who struggles to protect and equip his son against the horrors that now threaten the new one provides equal measure intensity and subtlety. Thankfully, most of the horrific examples of desperation in McCarthy's novel are intact, but the sense of the passage of time between them is condensed to the point where they don't really exist. This is, understandably, an obstacle in the film medium. However, a story that features "starvation" as a strong thematic element requires attention to time and pacing. The story is simply better suited to the pacing afforded in novel form. Expand
  7. Aug 11, 2010
    I never read the book (even though I knew it was adapted before hand.) I actually was excited to see this one, boy was I disappointed. No wonder it only stayed in my local theatre for one week. It's a whole lot of boring. Don't get me wrong I like a psychological movie but this movie didn't really have a point. In any good story you need to create enough tension for you to at least care about what happens to the main characters. This is the first movie (other than the Twilight movies) I literally just turned off and say I'll finish this later. I don't know how this movie ends but from what I watch I got bored just waiting for something to happen. I only got as far as when Viggo's character meets Duvall's. And the grainy cinematography (while I understand why it was chosen, it does fit the film's subject matter) just made the film unwatchable on my wide-screen HDTV. Expand

See all 93 User Reviews