Metascore
69

Generally favorable reviews - based on 11 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 7 out of 11
  2. Negative: 0 out of 11
  1. Reviewed by: Owen Gleiberman
    Feb 7, 2013
    91
    Soderbergh is able to execute his games without pigeonholing his characters. He has made that rare thing, a modern-day noir with feeling.
  2. Reviewed by: Jay Carr
    Feb 11, 2013
    88
    Soderbergh's sleekly malignant Underneath is a nasty little winner. [28 April 1995, p.81]
  3. Reviewed by: Michael Wilmington
    Feb 11, 2013
    88
    Soderbergh pretty much failed in trying to evoke a noir-like nightmare world in the 1919 Prague of "Kafka," his 1991 terror film. But here, he dazzlingly hews out a noir landscape in more unlikely territory: modern-day Austin, Texas. [28 April 1995]
  4. Reviewed by: James Berardinelli
    Feb 7, 2013
    75
    The strengths of The Underneath -- its atmosphere and character-centered basis -- are also its weaknesses.
  5. Reviewed by: Joe Brown
    Feb 11, 2013
    70
    Soderbergh soaks the screen in moody, swimming pool hues to suggest the characters' murky motivations, and uses different textures of film stock to distinguish between the multiple layers of flashback. [28 April 1995, p.N44]
  6. Reviewed by: Todd McCarthy
    Feb 7, 2013
    70
    On its most successful level, the film represents a slashing dramatic essay on the dismaying human tendency not to accept full responsibility for one's actions.
  7. Reviewed by: Roger Ebert
    Feb 7, 2013
    63
    By the end of the film the 1949 film noir sources are plainly in view, but earlier, Soderbergh seems more interested in personality quirks than double-crosses, and those are the more interesting scenes.
  8. Reviewed by: Kenneth Turan
    Feb 7, 2013
    60
    The Underneath doesn't add up. Made with polish and assurance, capably acted and intricately constructed, its overall impact is less than these parts would indicate. It is good but, against all logic, it is not good enough.
  9. Reviewed by: Caryn James
    Feb 7, 2013
    60
    The Underneath is too chaotic to work as a thriller. The suspense kicks in too late and blends uneasily with the rest of the film. But the movie has other sorts of appeal. At heart, it is not a lurid, noir story but a study of characters caught in an emotional disaster.
  10. Reviewed by: Rene Rodriguez
    Feb 11, 2013
    50
    From a purely cinematic standpoint, The Underneath is Soderbergh's most daring work yet, full of elliptical flashbacks and fast-forwards; ominous camera angles and cinematic tricks. But Soderbergh's movies (sex, lies and videotape, Kafka, King of the Hill) have always been cunningly smart, and The Underneath is not. [28 April 1995, p.5G]
  11. Reviewed by: Steven Winn
    Feb 7, 2013
    50
    Skillful as many of its elements are, however, The Underneath doesn't have the taut storytelling and intriguing characters to make this film noir make-over truly compelling.

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