User Score
6.2

Generally favorable reviews- based on 148 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 87 out of 148
  2. Negative: 51 out of 148
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  1. Dec 31, 2011
    3
    You got to be **** kidding me. What was Frank Miller thinking? Did really think if he used beautiful visuals over a screwed up story he could get like, what, a oscar? If he was, then man, he's thinking WRONG.
  2. LukeB.
    Jan 1, 2009
    1
    I never walk out on films. This obviously doesn't pass as a "film" because I walked out of whatever it is and demanded a refund.
  3. ElizabethG
    Jan 22, 2009
    2
    I went with a friend to see this movie, and it was ultimately made into an unintentional comedy. I do not recommend this movie for anyone who wants to see action, but i highly recommend it for anyone who wants a quick laugh. So 2 stars from my perspective, but I give it a 5 on the comedy aspect.
  4. Fantasy
    Dec 26, 2008
    0
    Right up there for the Razzberry worst movie of the year. Save your money.
  5. ChrisP
    Dec 27, 2008
    0
    I don't walk out of movies, but I did walk out of this one 30 minutes into it. Bad acting, bad scripting, bad everything. This movie had zero redeeming factors. Do not see it.
  6. ArjunS.
    Dec 30, 2008
    3
    The biggest problem with the Spirit was that it was a movie attempting to be a comic book. As shown through various cinematic flops, comics do not always transition to the big screen in a good way. The dialogue was corny and pretty bad. But mostly it was a lame story, from a man who was trying to make another Sin City movie. The movie fails in almost every aspect aside from the filming. The biggest problem with the Spirit was that it was a movie attempting to be a comic book. As shown through various cinematic flops, comics do not always transition to the big screen in a good way. The dialogue was corny and pretty bad. But mostly it was a lame story, from a man who was trying to make another Sin City movie. The movie fails in almost every aspect aside from the filming. Save your money, don't go. Expand
  7. EdzerS
    Dec 30, 2008
    1
    when this movie was screened after finishing, i'd love to meet that guy that said "yeah, this is a good film. good job gang!" I'd like to meet him, and punch him in the face. oh wait, someone just send me Frank Miller's address
  8. TomM.
    Jan 4, 2009
    1
    Even after all of the negative reviews I was still surprised at just how bad this movie was. I thought, as a sin city fan, I would at least appreciate the look and style of the film but it was a lot more Sky Captain than it was Sin City. I rarely walk out on a movie and I did make it most of the way through here buy ultimately I had to leave.
  9. CameronB.
    Jan 6, 2009
    0
    By far the worst film since Batman Forever. I thought because of its Sin City-esque appearance, as well as Frank Millers name stamped so gratuitously over the title that it would be really well done. I have never seen as much detail in a film in my life, but CGI and graphics do not make the acting, or script any better. They tried to spruce up the movie with a few A-list celebrities but By far the worst film since Batman Forever. I thought because of its Sin City-esque appearance, as well as Frank Millers name stamped so gratuitously over the title that it would be really well done. I have never seen as much detail in a film in my life, but CGI and graphics do not make the acting, or script any better. They tried to spruce up the movie with a few A-list celebrities but bad direction and a script that a dyslexic monkey could have written better made all the actors seem stiff and un-emotional. Long story short we walked out half way through. This drek should be dipped in acid and burned in hell. Expand
  10. TomB.
    Jan 8, 2009
    0
    Worst trash I've seen. Only movie I 've ever walked out of.
  11. AlexH
    May 8, 2009
    0
    I just want to ask Frank Miller one question... "What were you thinking?!"
  12. carol
    Dec 26, 2008
    0
    It doesn't get any worse than this.
  13. JohnP.
    Dec 28, 2008
    0
    One of the worst movies I have ever seen in my life... and I have seen thousands of them. It's a complete mess with bad directing, bad acting and a script that doesn't make sense at all. What a waste of time and money. I can't believe they put this on a movie theater... it should go not straight to DVD, but to VHS or to the trash...
  14. SulakoJ.
    Dec 31, 2008
    1
    Easily one of the worst-written, most boring, muddled flicks of the year. It shows me that Frank Miller should stick to making comic books and letting real directors direct.
  15. KL
    Jan 10, 2009
    2
    Very poor, the 2 points I awarded only because of the eye candy in Eva Mandes and Scarlett Johansson. Poor script, boring monologue tedious delivered by the hero. Even Samuel L Jackson can't save this movie from being "turkey of the year", even though we are only 10 days into the year it's a fairly safe bet that this will stil be "turkey of the year" come Dec 31!
  16. NoamB
    Feb 20, 2009
    3
    I wanted to like this movie, but it just didn't give me a chance. I had to keep reminding myself not to take it too seriously and just enjoy it as entertainment...but if I have to consciously remind myself of that, something is wrong. For starters, Frank Miller imposed way too much of his sensibilities on the film. Too much Miller and not enough Eisner. It's the same look and I wanted to like this movie, but it just didn't give me a chance. I had to keep reminding myself not to take it too seriously and just enjoy it as entertainment...but if I have to consciously remind myself of that, something is wrong. For starters, Frank Miller imposed way too much of his sensibilities on the film. Too much Miller and not enough Eisner. It's the same look and feel used in Sin City--it works in Sin city because that's what the comic book looked like. The Spirit, on the other hand, had a very different feel. Less hard-boiled noir, more '20s humor--a distinctly lighter tone. Also, despite the cartoonishness of it, there was sophistication in the storytelling, which is completely lacking in the movie. Despite his prodigious talent, Miller really missed the mark with this one. I would have expected someone like him to have more reverence to the source material, but he utterly fails to capture its...well, spirit. Instead he imposes his own sensibilities on it, and the whole thing just sinks into the mud. I'm glad my friend was paying for the tickets. Expand
  17. DeanC.
    Feb 6, 2009
    3
    I'm a bit of a Frank Miller, but I found this movie a bit hot and cold. I'm not sure but I think the may have been better off useing a unknowen for the charture of Octupus, don't get me wrong I like Samuel L, but he brings his personality to the movie. The comic to reality crossover was more noticable in this movie than other Frank Miller movies. To rap up this review I I'm a bit of a Frank Miller, but I found this movie a bit hot and cold. I'm not sure but I think the may have been better off useing a unknowen for the charture of Octupus, don't get me wrong I like Samuel L, but he brings his personality to the movie. The comic to reality crossover was more noticable in this movie than other Frank Miller movies. To rap up this review I would like say that this movie may not have been twisted enough for me. Expand
  18. DreezyB
    Apr 14, 2009
    0
    I really just don't get it, this movie sucks plain and simple. I'm shocked the average is so high at 4.3. I give it a big fat zero.
  19. antwianf
    Apr 20, 2009
    3
    Watchable ok entertaining. very weak plot and why did sam pick this role. why did it come out on x-mas day. sin city is a cult classic and this is retarded. even eva mendes is too good for this.
  20. TannerJ
    Jun 5, 2009
    2
    The Spirit is a mess. Granted sometimes it is an entertaining mess. It's not funny, exciting, well acted(especially the lead guy) and the story is nonexistent.
  21. Colin
    Dec 26, 2008
    0
    Hmm. It's hard to explain my hatred for this movie unless youve seen it. Going into it, I thought it would be good. Frank Miller = awesome, and the trailer seemed very good. And in the first 10 minutes, I wasn't disappointed. The action was pretty good, and I was excited for the rest of the movie. After the first fight scene, an awkward pause ensued, which I thought was funny at Hmm. It's hard to explain my hatred for this movie unless youve seen it. Going into it, I thought it would be good. Frank Miller = awesome, and the trailer seemed very good. And in the first 10 minutes, I wasn't disappointed. The action was pretty good, and I was excited for the rest of the movie. After the first fight scene, an awkward pause ensued, which I thought was funny at the time and it made me think that the movie was trying to show what would happen in real life after a real superhero/villain fight. But then I realized it was just terrible writing. The whole movie the whole movie was a colossal letdown. Oh how the mighty have fallen, Frank Miller. I wish that I hadn't spent the money on that movie. I would have had a better time watching Bedtime Stories, for God's sake. Don't see this movie. Expand
  22. JerradD.
    Dec 25, 2008
    4
    The Spirit had so much potential. The only thing that shined was the beautiful art direction. Sadly, the acting, plot, and overall feel of the movie made me say, "Why did i waste my time seeing this?"
  23. Fletcher
    Dec 26, 2008
    4
    I am a big fan of super hero movies, and really enjoyed Sin City. I was disappointed in this film. The cinematography was the same as Sin City, but the story, characters, and yes, even the acting, were all a let down. Wait for this one to come out on dvd.
  24. TommyB.
    Dec 29, 2008
    0
    Bad. Very bad. Holocaust bad. Mere words can not describe how bad this movie is. Even seeing Eva Mendes naked could get this movie above zero.
  25. KaitlinD.
    Dec 31, 2008
    2
    Terrible. I wanted to leave 30 minutes into th movie. if you're looking for a good movie to see this weekend, i wouldn't recommend this.
  26. Dec 2, 2010
    0
    The visual style was done to death in Sin City and without the input from experienced co-directors Miller makes a film that the studio should have canned after test screenings instead of inflicting it upon the rest of the world. Worse than toothache.
  27. May 24, 2013
    4
    Coming hot on the heels of the fantastic Sin City and 300 I went into The Spirit expecting something of similar quality, unfortunately I was left disappointed.

    It's not all bad of course. As with Frank Millers other comic book adaptations The Spirit is beautifully shot using the same techniques employed in Sin City and with the likes of Eva Mendes, Scarlett Johansson and Stana Katic on
    Coming hot on the heels of the fantastic Sin City and 300 I went into The Spirit expecting something of similar quality, unfortunately I was left disappointed.

    It's not all bad of course. As with Frank Millers other comic book adaptations The Spirit is beautifully shot using the same techniques employed in Sin City and with the likes of Eva Mendes, Scarlett Johansson and Stana Katic on show it certainly features one of the most attractive casts ever seen on the big screen. Gabriel Mecht is also entertaining in the title role making a refreshing change from the usual burdened superhero.

    For every positive however there is a negative. Frank Miller's decision to direct the movie himself (his feature film debut) can be seen as mistake from the very start. Poorly paced throughout the film never quite decides what it is trying to achieve. One minute it wants to be a 'wacky' comedy the next it is trying to recreate the gritty film noir style of Sin City. It is just about possible to piece together a plot but the film does its best to stop you and as a result it is very difficult to become invested in what is going to happen to any of the characters (other than rookie cop Morgernstern, but thats only because she is played by the always fantastic Stana Katic).

    The performances, even from well established actors such as Samuel L Jackson, are also incredibly uneven. Again the blame for this must lay at the feet of director Miller as the majority of the cast have proven their acting credentials on numerous occasions in other movies.

    In the end while The Spirit may be a visual feast it is just too much of a mess to be thought of alongside the best comic book adaptations of recent years.
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  28. Aug 12, 2012
    1
    I'm not denying that Frank Miller is extremely talented at telling a story on the page, but he has no talent whatsoever at telling any kind of story on film, especially when he can't lean on a talented filmmaker like Robert Rodriquez. Nearly every key cast member is either wooden (Gabriel Macht and Eva Mendes) or looks hugely embarrassed (Samuel L. Jackson), the script such as it is, is anI'm not denying that Frank Miller is extremely talented at telling a story on the page, but he has no talent whatsoever at telling any kind of story on film, especially when he can't lean on a talented filmmaker like Robert Rodriquez. Nearly every key cast member is either wooden (Gabriel Macht and Eva Mendes) or looks hugely embarrassed (Samuel L. Jackson), the script such as it is, is an appalling, indistinct mush of puns and cliches, and the action is laughably cartoony. It's also one of the campest films I've ever seen, not in a fun, self-aware kind of way, but in a clumsy, tone-deaf and unintentionally hilarious kind of way. For much of the film it feels like Miller is mercilessly parodying himself, but doesn't seem to have realised it. At least Scarlett Johansson and Stana Katic in their supporting roles seem to have realised that he film is utter garbage, so over-act their socks off as an evil secretary-from-hell and a stiff but passionate rookie cop respectively, which is kind of fun to watch. It may well be the worst comic book movie of all time - worse than Elektra, worse than The Fantastic Four and worse than Batman & Robin, in fact worse than an amalgamation of all three. If Frank Miller insists on stepping behind the camera again, then he should at least have the decency to ruin his own intellectual property rather than someone else's, as he did here with Will Eisner's comic from the 40s. I implore you, Mr Miller, step away from the camera before you do any real damage. Expand
  29. Jun 12, 2011
    1
    This movie was a convoluted **** hole of bad writing sub par acting and bad directing. None of the characters are remotely likable, the attempts of humor fall miles short. This first 45 minutes of the movie are just a series of 1 liners. The only thing that helps this movie is the 1 second you get to see Eva's back side. I full heartedly thank god I only spent $3 on this movie becauseThis movie was a convoluted **** hole of bad writing sub par acting and bad directing. None of the characters are remotely likable, the attempts of humor fall miles short. This first 45 minutes of the movie are just a series of 1 liners. The only thing that helps this movie is the 1 second you get to see Eva's back side. I full heartedly thank god I only spent $3 on this movie because anymore and I would have had to punch a baby. If you have the option to see this movie or be stabbed to death, think twice about life. Acting 3/10 writing 1/10 directing 1/10 Overall 1.5/10 Expand
  30. Aug 25, 2011
    1
    In one scene in The Spirit, Samuel L. Jackson and Scarlett Johannsson (the only two actors in this movie who are at least having fun with their performances) appear decked in Nazi uniforms, while the movie's hero is strapped to a dentist's chair, and a Turkish-style belly dancing, moves around him. While I don't remember Turkish-style belly dancers from Marathon Man, but I do rememberIn one scene in The Spirit, Samuel L. Jackson and Scarlett Johannsson (the only two actors in this movie who are at least having fun with their performances) appear decked in Nazi uniforms, while the movie's hero is strapped to a dentist's chair, and a Turkish-style belly dancing, moves around him. While I don't remember Turkish-style belly dancers from Marathon Man, but I do remember dentist Nazis, so I understand the relation between those seemingly random props. What do I not understand? Well, what does Marathon Man have to do with a crime-fighting superhero, and what in the movie lead up to this? You could make an entire three season game show on why scenes in The Spirit are the way they are. All this is is Frank Miller masturbating to his own sense of self-interest. While Miller attempts to advance his strengths and recapture the excellent work he did in his early days as a comic book writer, he is too fascinated with his own desire to have women dress in revealing outfits and have his hero spew out pretentious narration about the city turns him on. Frank, I loved The Dark Knight Returns, but you have lost it! You're just trying to every conceivable idea for style that floats into your head, paying no respect to the source material (I never read The Spirit, but I think that it is important to honor your source material), and just assuming that if you merge it with this needlessly dark, half-joking, over-sexualizing bullcrap, it will be great. Expand
  31. Aug 14, 2013
    3
    The noir atmosphere is nice to look at, but a weak script stuffed with cheesy dialogue and prosaic characters, make this film a tragic misfire for the mastermind behind Sin City, Frank Miller.
  32. Dec 18, 2014
    1
    i know frank miller isn't on best form these day but after seeing this you really have to ask what was going through his head when this project came up. It takes everything bad about frank millers writing in one excruciating film with some of the worst dialogue and cinematography i have ever encountered and frank clearly can only direct when he has support which wasn't present here. thisi know frank miller isn't on best form these day but after seeing this you really have to ask what was going through his head when this project came up. It takes everything bad about frank millers writing in one excruciating film with some of the worst dialogue and cinematography i have ever encountered and frank clearly can only direct when he has support which wasn't present here. this really should be in a lot more worst comics lists than it is right now Expand
Metascore
30

Generally unfavorable reviews - based on 24 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 2 out of 24
  2. Negative: 15 out of 24
  1. It is truly a mess.
  2. Reviewed by: Justin Chang
    30
    Plunges into a watery grave early on and spends roughly the next 100 minutes gasping for air.
  3. 50
    There are good things to be said about The Spirit, but not enough of them to outweigh the bad.