User Score
8.2

Universal acclaim- based on 196 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Negative: 17 out of 196
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  1. Nov 21, 2011
    10
    I have seen all of Malick's films and have found them average and overated. However the thin red line stands alone. Malick captures human nature beautfully through war with intesnse and masterfully crafted war scenes. Malick's style has never worked so well in a film! One of the best movies of all time!
  2. Dec 16, 2012
    9
    For me The Thin Red Line is one of the best war movies every created. It is a meditation on life, death, God, nature and humankind...a meditation on life. My favourite movie from Terrence Malick.
  3. BenA.
    Jan 3, 2004
    10
    This is one of my favorite movies. If this bored you, it obviously wasn't a movie for you. Maybe dumb and dumberer or a stalone movie are more up your alley.
  4. TomM.
    Aug 29, 2002
    10
    The one movie I have seen where I do not want to change a thing. Absolutely brilliant.
  5. Jul 13, 2011
    9
    I saw someone earlier said "this and Apocalypse Now eliminate the need for anyone to ever make another war film." I couldn't agree more. Sean Penn's burned out performance is a must see. Don't compare it to Saving Private Ryan. Let the two exist in their own realms. Where Saving Private Ryan is a great war film, Thin Red Line is simply a great film.
  6. Nov 10, 2012
    9
    Holy **** i just read the negative reviews for this. I know this film is not for everyone but the reasons they gave to not like it and the tone of their reviews were awful. They shouldn't review films if they don't understand them, that's my one gripe with sites like this, they give the average retarded "movie-viewer" a voice which they believe to be important. Like god damn, how couldHoly **** i just read the negative reviews for this. I know this film is not for everyone but the reasons they gave to not like it and the tone of their reviews were awful. They shouldn't review films if they don't understand them, that's my one gripe with sites like this, they give the average retarded "movie-viewer" a voice which they believe to be important. Like god damn, how could people who are so juvenile in their film viewing mind set have the balls to review a film? Sorry for no actual review here and being a moan but those reviews really annoyed me. Expand
  7. FinC
    Sep 10, 2007
    10
    This isn't just a war movie. It's an existential examination of the nature of man's conflict within the context of nature, humanity, hierarchy and survival. The voice overs, the cinematography, the diaglogue, the acting, the tension, the brutality, the brotherhood....and who can forget the music. I could go on and on and on. A unforgettable cinematic masterpiece which gets This isn't just a war movie. It's an existential examination of the nature of man's conflict within the context of nature, humanity, hierarchy and survival. The voice overs, the cinematography, the diaglogue, the acting, the tension, the brutality, the brotherhood....and who can forget the music. I could go on and on and on. A unforgettable cinematic masterpiece which gets better with each extra viewing. There can be no higher recommendation for a literary deconstruction on the nature of man and conflict. Quite simply breathtaking. Expand
  8. NedK.
    Sep 25, 2002
    10
    This is a stunning and deeply moving film that far surpasses its genre contemporary "Saving Private Ryan" in both artistry and technical execution. The movie is based on the James Jones novel of the same title, but Terence Malik translates the book into a unique cinematic experience, distinct from the written version but still evoking the same powerful ideas and emotions. This film is NOT This is a stunning and deeply moving film that far surpasses its genre contemporary "Saving Private Ryan" in both artistry and technical execution. The movie is based on the James Jones novel of the same title, but Terence Malik translates the book into a unique cinematic experience, distinct from the written version but still evoking the same powerful ideas and emotions. This film is NOT going to please a large segment of the "mainstream" audience that wants to see the same simplistic and moronic narratives repeated over and over endlessly, like some never-ending Wednesday afternoon of "Charles in Charge." The Thin Red Line doesn't provide the viewer with all the answers or a comforting moral victory at its ending. It does explore the brutality of war and the psychology of the men engaged in combat, and it will make you think - provided you are still capable of thought and don't expect the screenplay to think for you. Expand
  9. JasonC
    Dec 30, 2005
    10
    Best film ever made.
  10. NicholasP.
    May 21, 2005
    10
    Quite a shame that it was overshadowed by the oscar friendly "Saving Private Ryan" in 1998. Possibly the best war movie ever made.
  11. DileepR.
    Mar 20, 2006
    10
    One of the great films of a great filmmaker. Patient, frightening, daunting. It best captures the random horror and pointlessness of war, sometimes the shock erupting from boredom. The context-less death. The meaninglessness of a 'mission' or any moral framework given to industrial murder, what we call war. It might even be necessary at times, but this is one of the few films One of the great films of a great filmmaker. Patient, frightening, daunting. It best captures the random horror and pointlessness of war, sometimes the shock erupting from boredom. The context-less death. The meaninglessness of a 'mission' or any moral framework given to industrial murder, what we call war. It might even be necessary at times, but this is one of the few films that isn't a hallmark card to the participants; it's a simulcrum of what they went through, the price of it all. No one who advocates war, especially those that want to beat their chests about the might of this nation, should do so without understanding what this film captures: the price of conflict, the horror of warfare. Expand
  12. JulianW.
    Aug 6, 2001
    10
    Everything "Saving Private Ryan" should have been.
  13. ShawnB.
    Jan 7, 2005
    10
    Simply the best movie ever produced. Challenge yourself.
  14. MarkW.
    Jan 1, 2006
    10
    Ethereal meditation on humankind's dual nature. Beautifully scripted, acted, and shot.
  15. Douglas
    Feb 10, 2006
    10
    "Heard melodies are sweet, those unheard are sweeter" - Keats. The most devastating (and devastatingly beautiful) moments in this movie happen in silence. It is so rare and wonderful to find such an brave and strangely intimate meditation on good and evil, beauty and horror.
  16. SimonM.
    May 7, 2007
    10
    Sublime, deeply moving work of beauty and redemption. A meditation on reality. This film is a spiritual experience. It is one of the greqtest films ever made.
  17. Stung47000
    Jan 20, 2009
    10
    So much more than a war movie, it's almost NOT a war movie so much that it is a movie about Men. Deep and meaningful. Unparalleled cinematography. I can watch this move again and again and it still moves me.
  18. PriceA
    Aug 4, 2009
    8
    Before watching, hear this: THIS IS NOT A WAR FILM. If you watch it for the action you will be totally disappointed. This movie much like Homer's The Iliad; the war is used as a setting for Malick to express his views on human nature in times of tribulation. The movie features pairs of corresponding characters. The cynical Sgt. Welch (Penn) corresponds to the optimistic Pvt. Witt Before watching, hear this: THIS IS NOT A WAR FILM. If you watch it for the action you will be totally disappointed. This movie much like Homer's The Iliad; the war is used as a setting for Malick to express his views on human nature in times of tribulation. The movie features pairs of corresponding characters. The cynical Sgt. Welch (Penn) corresponds to the optimistic Pvt. Witt (Caviezel). Witt is considered to be the main character, with his tranquility and hope opposing the basic feelings of ordinary soldiers. The soft-spoken and diligent Captain Staros oftens conflicts with the angry, bloodthristy Col. Tall (Nolte), and their confrontations play a major role in the film. A few other main characters include Pvt. Bell (Chaplin), a man who finds comfort through his love for his wife, and a lieutenant (Cusack) who leads a charge on a bunker. Flashbacks are used to emphasize the character's true emotions. and, when it is all over, the soldiers only realize that this was one island, all their sacrifice given for one island, in a war of many. Expand
  19. JayB.
    Aug 17, 2001
    10
    Brilliant! Malick's cinematography is magic. His masterfully created savage dreamscape is mind-blowing. The script remains very close to the Jones novel of the same title; what the writers add, particularly through voice-overs is incredible. Breath-taking filmmaking in every respect. My favorite movie of all time.
  20. RyanM.
    Mar 14, 2002
    10
    One of the three greatest films ever made. It is so far ahead of any other war movie that it almost negates the purpose of the genre.
  21. StevenB.
    Dec 19, 2003
    10
    No wonder it bombed at the box office...it is truly brilliant: the masses it was never intended for and I commend the studio for making it, and also not starring Ben Affleck in any role.
  22. Ramirez
    Oct 31, 2004
    10
    So much better and deeper than Saving Private Ryan, this phylosophical masterpiece of cinema takes you on an emotional trip into the human nature. And than there's that soundtrack who adds a great sphere to the stunning visuals.
  23. HanakoS.
    Feb 18, 2005
    10
    The greatest of all.
  24. andyw.
    Aug 10, 2005
    10
    Superb, thought it was slow the first time i watched it, but it aint its just so much more sutle that savin p r.
  25. Jade
    Dec 12, 2005
    10
    A beautiful and oftentimes awe inspiring meditation on war and conflict. I found it to be one of the more spiritualy nourishing films I have ever seen. That said it clocks in at 3+ hours and probably not a good recomendation for those who don't have art/foriegn film leanings.
  26. JonathanM
    Sep 15, 2006
    10
    This film is heavily underated for it's coherent use of cinematography and silent timing. Not your average war film, conveys underlying theme throughout.
  27. AnnaZ
    Dec 23, 2007
    9
    A stunning movie made in a type of stream of consciousness manner. It is beautiful and mesmerizing, complex and simple, flowing and centres on various characters and their thoughts and changes each undergoes. Brilliant.
  28. Mar 15, 2012
    9
    If you want a superfluous fairy tale, spoon-fed sentimental narrative, watch Saving Private Ryan*. If you've got the balls to sit with silence in your head and can take a contemplative question or two, without fearing a lack of answers -- and want to see a film -- watch The Thin Red Line. Those who complain about not seeing the point, miss the point while demonstrating it.
    ||
    *Knocks go
    If you want a superfluous fairy tale, spoon-fed sentimental narrative, watch Saving Private Ryan*. If you've got the balls to sit with silence in your head and can take a contemplative question or two, without fearing a lack of answers -- and want to see a film -- watch The Thin Red Line. Those who complain about not seeing the point, miss the point while demonstrating it.
    ||
    *Knocks go only to the writing/moralized plot of Private Ryan; the rest of it was well done, I liked it.
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  29. Mar 2, 2013
    10
    The Thin Red Line is singularly unique amongst war films. In some ways, I don't really consider it "about war" as much as I consider the film to be about ordinary people in extraordinary circumstances. The question that shapes much of the film is stated by Pvt Witt at the beginning of the film when he reflects upon his mother's death and thinks, "I wondered what it would be like when IThe Thin Red Line is singularly unique amongst war films. In some ways, I don't really consider it "about war" as much as I consider the film to be about ordinary people in extraordinary circumstances. The question that shapes much of the film is stated by Pvt Witt at the beginning of the film when he reflects upon his mother's death and thinks, "I wondered what it would be like when I died. What it would be like to know, that this breath now, was the last one you was ever going to draw." The Thin Red Line defies many conventions, such as the typical convention for a film to have a single protagonist. The (thin red) lines delineating friend and enemy are cleverly blurred in many ways. Visually, by casting similair looking men in the three main American roles and casting distinct looking Japanese men as Japanese soldiers. In the voice-overs, Pvt Witt sees a continuum of life, rather than discrete beings ("What if all men got one big soul Another soldier wonders, "Who are you that lives in all this many forms?" Even the lack of a singular protagonist shows how identities are dependent upon each other.

    The Thin Red Line is not a typical war film. This film is not a celebration of how Americans used violence to defeat the Japanese on Guadalcanal. The scene that would be a triumphant climax in a typical American war film is emotionally climactic in Malick's The Then Red Line, but it is not a celebration. Rather, the raid on the Japanese bivouac and winning of the hill is upsetting.

    If you really pay attention to the voice-overs, then I think you have to come to a few conclusions. Some have criticized the film for being "heavy handed" and because the "director tells you what to think." I think these criticisms are far from the truth. If you actually pay attention to the film, you'll find that voice-overs contradict each other, or a voice-over contradicts what another character says or does at some point. The director is simply illustrating that different people have different, often contradictory, points of view. For example, while two soldiers get into a fist-fight, a voice over states that "war don't enoble men, it turns them into dogs, poisons the soul." However, anyone watching the film would clearly wonder whether Pvt Witt hadn't been enobled by the war. Would he really be such a wonderful person if he hadn't gone to war? Much of the film is ambiguous and contemplative. There are no easy answers. When Witt returns to the natives and finds them fighting, notices that they have disease and the skulls of other humans in their huts, the audience is left to wonder if it was Witt's contact with them that made them this way. Did contact with modern man corrupt these people? Or did Witt's contact with the violence of the war corrupt his idealization of these people? I prefer to think that Witt's earlier, idealized view of the natives is what changed, but there is no clear answer given in the film.

    Visually, The Thin Red Line is one of the most beautifully shot films I can ever imagine seeing. The soundtrack is fantastic. The sound effects are amazing. The action sequences are brilliantly done.

    Some have criticized the voice-overs as being "unrealistic," on the basis that combat soldiers don't have time to think such thoughts as expressed in the voice overs. I think these crticisms are misguided. The voice-overs used in the film are expressing the thoughts that soldiers in combat have to repress for pragmatic reasons, but these are the important thoughts. Sure, in combat, soldiers are probably more worried about not getting killed rather than pondering the nature of evil, but the film is about those important thoughts.

    One thing that strikes me about the film is how similar it is to the books, especially From Here to Eternity and The Thin Red Line. Both are excellent books and indeed some of the lines in the film are taken exactly from the books. The characters are very similar to those depicted in the books and I think the film captures the spirit of the books very well.

    I think people too often say about films that "you either love this film or hate it" but it largely seems to be true of The Thin Red Line. That being said, I dont believe that people rating it 1/10 genuinely believe it deserves to get a 1/10 rating. Rather, I believe they are being spiteful and want to bring the rating down to what they think is the "proper" rating. I, however, do genuinely believe this film deserves 10/10.
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  30. May 2, 2014
    10
    This film is cinema poetry and in my opinion, Terrence Malick's best film. Often overlooked, especially because it came out the same year as Saving Private Ryan, which, like nearly all Spielberg films, gives you all the answers and little to go home and think about. The Thin Red Line is infinitely superior and in terms of war films, is only second to Apocalypse Now.
  31. Paul
    Mar 9, 2002
    10
    Poetic, cerebral, and ultimately optimistic, The Thin Red Line is a challenging watch. Almost the perfect opposite of the visceral and gritty "Saving Private Ryan" (comparisons are inevitable), The Thin Red Line is presented via a complex narrative style. The narration and action switch from character to character, creating a textured mosaic. Following the strands is difficult and has no Poetic, cerebral, and ultimately optimistic, The Thin Red Line is a challenging watch. Almost the perfect opposite of the visceral and gritty "Saving Private Ryan" (comparisons are inevitable), The Thin Red Line is presented via a complex narrative style. The narration and action switch from character to character, creating a textured mosaic. Following the strands is difficult and has no doubt put many viewers off the film, but it does have the benefit of giving the soldiers an unprecedented level of depth and emotion, and, as such, dignity. Indeed, this is an oft-overlooked area in the war genre (case point: the cardboard character-types in "Saving Private Ryan"...). By shunning a more conventional method of presentation, Malick has created hauntingly hypnotic impression of war. I have little doubt this will go down as a classic. Expand
  32. ChrisC.
    Sep 5, 2004
    7
    I liked this movie a lot because it wasn't an action/war movie it was more like just a war movie, they showed the reality of World War two, and the realities of any war for that matter.
  33. PaulV.
    Mar 23, 2005
    10
    Sublime.
  34. [Anonymous]
    Jun 30, 2005
    8
    Good portrayal of the dark side of war, great performances, and decent realistic action scenes and introspective thoughts, but the pacing was probably what prevented this flick from universal acclaim. THere's mostly talk all the time, and people could fall asleep before they got the full message. Somewhat lackluster WWII flicks like windtalkers and pearl harbor sucked, but they Good portrayal of the dark side of war, great performances, and decent realistic action scenes and introspective thoughts, but the pacing was probably what prevented this flick from universal acclaim. THere's mostly talk all the time, and people could fall asleep before they got the full message. Somewhat lackluster WWII flicks like windtalkers and pearl harbor sucked, but they succeeded at one thing: FX laden action that pins you to the seat. Just a few carefully placed, 4-10 minute CG/FX enhanced dogfights or battleship duels, and maybe an extra land battle would keep the audience more awake and alert, without taking too much from the film's central purpose. Expand
  35. DaveC.
    Sep 24, 2005
    8
    Malick might only make films once in a blue moon, but this is yet another jewel in his crown. The plot and structure might leave much to be desired but Malick demonstrates what he does best here. Capturing the awe-inspiring beauty and using it to provide context for a morality play. If you fancy an alternative to the condescending, sentimental approach of Spielberg in Saving Private Ryan Malick might only make films once in a blue moon, but this is yet another jewel in his crown. The plot and structure might leave much to be desired but Malick demonstrates what he does best here. Capturing the awe-inspiring beauty and using it to provide context for a morality play. If you fancy an alternative to the condescending, sentimental approach of Spielberg in Saving Private Ryan as I did, I recommend this film highly. Expand
  36. JayH
    Jun 19, 2009
    8
    Technically it is ingenious. The cinematography is magnificent, the editing, sound and score as well. Skillfully directed by Malick and it has an incredible cast of great performances. Brutally realistic, thought provoking and unforgettable. It's main flaw is it's staggering length.
  37. JaredH.
    Feb 8, 2003
    9
    This is not a "war film". It is a serious attempt to view the realization of sin and salvation. Look for the Gospel message in the Melanesian natives and the myriad (yes it is an appropriate use of that word) biblical quatations and prayers. I'm not sure why Travolta was in it either but that's why I took off one star. I am glad Malick came back to do this film.
  38. PatC.
    Jan 14, 2004
    8
    This movie said everything it had to say in the intro and battle for the hilltop. Deftly. Brilliantly. With terror in the windy waves of grass of a color too green to be seen. Perfect music score. Startling visual composition. Fearsome action. Actual fear, adrenaline, pain and rage in the faces of the soldiers of both sides to a man. Awesome performance by Nolte - he should have been a This movie said everything it had to say in the intro and battle for the hilltop. Deftly. Brilliantly. With terror in the windy waves of grass of a color too green to be seen. Perfect music score. Startling visual composition. Fearsome action. Actual fear, adrenaline, pain and rage in the faces of the soldiers of both sides to a man. Awesome performance by Nolte - he should have been a general, not an actor. Held its own with the concurrently-released Saving Private Ryan by applying an extra dimension, the battlefield as the underlying battlefield of the mind. The juxtaposition to natural quiet and peaceful scenes didn't hurt the film at all, though some viewers didn't appreciate the diversion. The melancholy for the faithful but soon to be wayward wife was over the top, but touching nonetheless. It was a 10 movie. Then it was half over. Crimony, the film didn't know when to stop. This energizer bunny was home free. But it just kept going and going and going, restating itself with more life and more death until it became a dissertation of the obvious and a casualty of its own truth. There's a reason they give Oscars for Editing - the most rigorous and overlooked art involved in filmmaking. Even the critics got sidetracked. There's nothing wrong with Malick's grandiose ideas any more than any other idea that ever induced placing an image on film. Just put it out there. No need to elaborate. Then, if your work speaks for itself, don't interrupt. Expand
  39. YoonC.
    Sep 21, 2003
    9
    Ambitious and thoughtful but far too academic and archly conceptual, it fails to connect on a visceral level. Perhaps, that's the intention, to convey a sense of the oversoul, to tap into that transcendental state where boundaries between man and nature, between nationalities are mere illusions, manifestations that we often mistake for permanent truths when in fact they all rise from Ambitious and thoughtful but far too academic and archly conceptual, it fails to connect on a visceral level. Perhaps, that's the intention, to convey a sense of the oversoul, to tap into that transcendental state where boundaries between man and nature, between nationalities are mere illusions, manifestations that we often mistake for permanent truths when in fact they all rise from and dissolve back into some unfathomable source. Rewarding and thoughtprovoking but it is still a war movie and as such doesn't satisfy. Expand
  40. BobB.
    Dec 2, 2006
    9
    I completely agree with Dileep R. This movie is very underrated.. not only is it well-written, well acted, and well-filmed, on beautiful islands with awesome imagery, it also tackles the morality and harsh reality of war. Even Spielburgs "Saving Pvt. Ryan" failed to do that. The only film I'd say does that as well is "Flags of our Fathers". This is a must see for every person who I completely agree with Dileep R. This movie is very underrated.. not only is it well-written, well acted, and well-filmed, on beautiful islands with awesome imagery, it also tackles the morality and harsh reality of war. Even Spielburgs "Saving Pvt. Ryan" failed to do that. The only film I'd say does that as well is "Flags of our Fathers". This is a must see for every person who comes across it. We owe it to our veterans to at least acknowledge what they went through, and that is, the insanity of war. Or, as Dileep R. put it, "industrial murder". Good phrase. Expand
  41. Nov 4, 2010
    10
    There are movies like The Shawshank Redemption, The Godfather, and The Empire Strikes Back that are so good you donâ
  42. Dec 9, 2013
    10
    Beautiful, surreal and thought provoking. The Thin Red Line is inarguably one of the finest war movies ever made and succeeds in answering some of the primal questions about the need for war and our conspicuous disconnection from nature.
  43. Dec 29, 2012
    10
    A beautiful, haunting and epic war film. The Thin Red Line shows the battle of Guadalcanal as the sum of its parts, rather than the strict "good vs evil" depicted in other war films. A tremendous score and great cinematography add to the experience.
  44. uuu
    Dec 27, 2012
    10
    Being a combat marine this is the closest depiction of many diverse lives being thrown into the gauntlet of war and the reactions to same. the brave, the cowards, the religious etc. but more importantly thin red line is the ONLY film i have seen that even cracks the expanse of the human mind of combat personnel. What emotions we felt, what our minds gravitate too during times of immenseBeing a combat marine this is the closest depiction of many diverse lives being thrown into the gauntlet of war and the reactions to same. the brave, the cowards, the religious etc. but more importantly thin red line is the ONLY film i have seen that even cracks the expanse of the human mind of combat personnel. What emotions we felt, what our minds gravitate too during times of immense stress and emotional pain and what we do to maintain some sort of relationship with sanity. Many films in my opinion have tried to accomplish what Malick has so eloquently scratched the surface of. No other film has threw me back into the grinder like thin red line...i cried for hours after......9.5/10 Expand
  45. Sep 20, 2013
    9
    Probably the best war movie of all time. One war told through the words of many. Famous voice over scenes are probably some of the best scenes in movie history. I would highly recommend this movie to anyone. However what really makes this movie brilliant is its strong message. Brilliant!
  46. Jan 19, 2015
    10
    This movie gets a lot of hate for some absurd reason, I can't imagine why. I think its just as good as Apocalypse Now if not better. It's a meditation on human behaviour and the psychological impact of war on humanity as a whole. It questions the underlying origins of hate and villainy and whether we're just flawed beings who're inherently bestowed with a tendency to fight and kill. MalickThis movie gets a lot of hate for some absurd reason, I can't imagine why. I think its just as good as Apocalypse Now if not better. It's a meditation on human behaviour and the psychological impact of war on humanity as a whole. It questions the underlying origins of hate and villainy and whether we're just flawed beings who're inherently bestowed with a tendency to fight and kill. Malick uses some of the most profound imagery that in themselves speak volumes. It's more than an experience. Expand
  47. May 17, 2014
    10
    "I like you captain, and I'd just want you to know that, we're in this thing together" growls Lt. Col. Gordon Tall early in what has to be one of the most innovative war films ever made, and that is truly how the audience feels, as if they are it with the characters. The perfect cinematography and directing create such immersion, that we really feel as though we are one of Charlie company,"I like you captain, and I'd just want you to know that, we're in this thing together" growls Lt. Col. Gordon Tall early in what has to be one of the most innovative war films ever made, and that is truly how the audience feels, as if they are it with the characters. The perfect cinematography and directing create such immersion, that we really feel as though we are one of Charlie company, fighting alongside them. This practically first person view contributes to this being possibly the most visually stimulating war film ever made, and this allows the audience to really picture the horror of combat. When combined with fantastic performances from the likes of Nick Nolte, whose deranged persistence is a highlight of his career, the film is as thought provoking as the best of all war films, Apocalypse Now, and a comparison to that shows how brilliant a film Terrence Malick has created. Expand
  48. Dec 30, 2011
    7
    The Thin Red Line is up there with the greatest WWII movies of all time. It has incredible visuals that blow you away, and realistic war "gameplay." The Thin Red Line also offers the strangest insights into life lessons, mostly spoken by Witt. Ferociously suspenseful, The Thin Red Line is Terrence Mallick's masterpiece, and was a high contender at the 1999 Oscars.
  49. TimH
    Aug 8, 2009
    10
    This and Apocalypse Now eliminate the need for anyone to ever make another war film. Deep, surreal, poetic, and stunningly beautiful.
  50. Oct 25, 2011
    8
    Along with the realistic portrayal of a battlefield and its fighting soldiers, Terrence Malick's "The Thin Red Line" is a WW2 masterpiece that derives from other movies like "Saving Private Ryan". The film, surrounded by strange tranquility, demands us of why war is fought and how humanity will overcome adversities of their own agenda in a time of despair and blood. A effectivelyAlong with the realistic portrayal of a battlefield and its fighting soldiers, Terrence Malick's "The Thin Red Line" is a WW2 masterpiece that derives from other movies like "Saving Private Ryan". The film, surrounded by strange tranquility, demands us of why war is fought and how humanity will overcome adversities of their own agenda in a time of despair and blood. A effectively clandestine movie that definitely is worth to watch. Expand
  51. ConradR.
    Jul 9, 2001
    8
    Everything a war movie should be made of - just an inch short of matching "Saving Private Ryan."
  52. MarcD.
    Apr 3, 2001
    10
    Beautiful.
  53. diegoa.
    Mar 20, 2005
    9
    A very poetic look at war.
  54. SimonR.
    Apr 29, 2003
    10
    Not only one of the greatest war movies ever made, along side in modern times Speilbergs' 'Saving Private Ryan, but arguably one of the most poignant films to date about humanity. Quite simply, a masterpiece.
  55. GaborA.
    Jul 27, 2004
    7
    Characters, imagery, theme, metaphor, emotion, message. Check. Story. Not so much. All this movie needed was a premise behind the beauty.
  56. SusanM.
    Dec 7, 2005
    10
    Stunning.
  57. FionaW
    Dec 23, 2007
    10
    This is probably my favorite film ever made, excepting possibly A Clockwork Orange or the equally stunning and poetic Russian "indie" war film Come and See, but prospective viewers must be warned that, if the dictionary ever began covering oft-used phrases in addition to words, this would be listed in the example section of the entry for "love it or hate it." One of the most truly This is probably my favorite film ever made, excepting possibly A Clockwork Orange or the equally stunning and poetic Russian "indie" war film Come and See, but prospective viewers must be warned that, if the dictionary ever began covering oft-used phrases in addition to words, this would be listed in the example section of the entry for "love it or hate it." One of the most truly divisive movies I've ever seen - some absolutely despise it, as you can see in this review section, and some, like myself, cherish it as a work of art. Consider yourself warned. Expand
  58. Aug 20, 2014
    7
    The Thin Red Line is an interesting war film with some great 'nature as innocence' symbolism and photography. There are one or two nagging problems, though. One is the film is significantly overlong and has too many endings. Another is that the amount of famous actors that pop up in the movie actually distracts and detracts from the message. But great stuff non-the-less.
  59. Jun 24, 2015
    9
    Wow is all I have to say. After laboring through the other films by Terrence Malick and seeing the potential for a great film if he could ever figure out how to write a damn film, this one brings it all together. Featuring his trademark brilliant cinematography, The Thin Red Line is brilliantly written and beautifully acted turning this one into one of the best war films ever released andWow is all I have to say. After laboring through the other films by Terrence Malick and seeing the potential for a great film if he could ever figure out how to write a damn film, this one brings it all together. Featuring his trademark brilliant cinematography, The Thin Red Line is brilliantly written and beautifully acted turning this one into one of the best war films ever released and one of the strongest films of the 1990s. A character driven film, The Thin Red Line relies upon love, brotherhood, and other true human feelings and emotions rather than blood and carnage to tell the tale of its many characters. The script is beautifully poetic with so many moving lines they are impossible to count. The cast is huge and features many past and current stars in great turns, such as Jim Caviezel, Sean Penn, Elias Koteas, Ben Chaplin, Nick Nolte, Dash Mihok, John Cusack, Woody Harrelson, Jared Leto, John Travolta, George Clooney, Tim Blake Nelson, Larry Romano, and many, many more. This is one of the best examples of a film in which every seen features somebody you know and have seen in many different films and it really puts them together for a phenomenal cast. The score to the film is also beautiful and is the last touch to what is really one of the most poetic and brilliant war films ever. Though it gets lost in the shuffle of 1998 due to the release of Saving Private Ryan, The Thin Red Line is fantastic in its own right. Expand
  60. Feb 2, 2015
    7
    This is definitely not a movie for everyone, it has a very select audience, but for those who liked it, "The Thin Red Line" is enjoyable. Although the film lacks a general focus and is way too long, the narrative must be praised, as well as the acting, score and battle scenes.
Metascore
78

Generally favorable reviews - based on 32 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 29 out of 32
  2. Negative: 0 out of 32
  1. Reviewed by: Tom Keogh
    90
    Misshapen but magnificent vision of a soulful quest -- in the thick of misery and fear -- for the meaning of our lives.
  2. 75
    The movie's schizophrenia keeps it from greatness (this film has no firm idea of what it is about), but doesn't make it bad. It is, in fact, sort of fascinating: a film in the act of becoming, a field trial, an experiment in which a dreamy poet meditates on stark reality.
  3. 80
    An intensely internalized portrait of external pandemonium, a slippery, insidiously haunting work of poetry rather than brilliantly realized pulp.