Mixed or average reviews - based on 35 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 14 out of 35
  2. Negative: 2 out of 35

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Critic Reviews

  1. Despite some of the sentimentality that is also Woo's stock-in-trade, I was moved and absorbed throughout.
  2. It's the best new battle film since "Black Hawk Down," a movie it surpasses in sheer feeling and bravura style, if not in nightmarish panic and suspense.
  3. 83
    Cage is superb as a hollowed-out, ferocious man of action chasing his demons recklessly with machine gun firing away.
  4. 80
    Well matched both to the material and each other, Cage and Beach capture Windtalkers' true struggle, the fight to hold on to values like honor, friendship, and tenderness in an environment that demands otherwise. This is as much a Woo trademark as the carefully orchestrated gunplay.
  5. 80
    Windtalkers is the best of Woo's American movies, and the one with the sturdiest and most direct links to his earlier pictures.
  6. The New Yorker
    Reviewed by: David Denby
    Even though we can see it coming, this gruff, inarticulate, half-embarrassed love between men, arrived at after many setbacks, is one of the stories that action movies never tire of telling and that many of us, even though we may laugh it off the next day, still find moving. [17 & 24 June 2002, p. 176]
  7. Imaginative and frequently thrilling, and the love-hate relationship of its protagonists is quite compelling; Woo is always at his best in portraying the complexities of male bonding under intense pressure and violence.
  8. Windtalkers blows this way and that, but there's no mistaking the filmmaker in the tall grass, true to himself.
  9. Baltimore Sun
    Reviewed by: Michael Sragow
    Woo's antiwar intentions and his talent are at odds. In Windtalkers, war is a beautiful hell.
  10. Reviewed by: Mike Clark
    Capably made and certainly impresses by carrying its length, but it doesn't expand 60 years of World War II screen literature by very much.
  11. 63
    The result is that the film comes across as preachy and clichéd. And, while the battle sequences are well executed from a technical point-of-view, they often seem repetitive and uninspired.
  12. 63
    The code talkers and their guardians - Beach and Cage, Willie and Slater - do the best they can with the oddly flat-footed script, but their dynamics don't really have a place in Woo's universe.
  13. While I don't always have the stomach for Woo's viscera or the heart for his pure, angelic heroes and impure, diabolical villains, I found myself responding to the context and subtext of Windtalkers while closing my eyes through what one might call its text. It's two-thirds of a great film.
  14. Windtalkers is to movies what Paris is to weather -- if you don't like the show you're watching, just wait a minute and an entirely different picture will blow into view.
User Score

Mixed or average reviews- based on 40 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 3 out of 17
  2. Negative: 5 out of 17
  1. PeterS.
    Sep 25, 2005
    Strange that a film with so much bloody carnage could be so unexciting.