Critic Reviews

60

Metascore

Based on 16 critic reviews provided by Metacritic.com
80
Thunder is exactly what it promises to be: Not Much -- but at dizzying speed, stripped down and free of wind-resistant subtlety. There's a certain integrity to that. A certain deafening integrity.
80
If "Top Gun" was a stylish bimbo of a movie, all cleavage, white teeth and aerodynamic flash, then Days of Thunder is its paradoxical twin -- a bimbo with brains.
75
And Cruise is so efficiently packaged in this product that he plays the same role as a saint in a Mexican village's holy day procession: It's not what he does that makes him so special; it's the way he manifests everybody's faith in him.
75
Chicago Tribune
Days of Thunder, the latest Tom Cruise movie, which is a flimsy but nonetheless compelling story of a hot-shot amateur race car driver who wants to make it in the big-time world of championship stock car racing. Good writing by Robert Towne and a host of strong supporting performances complement the on-the-track visuals of director Tony Scott in giving us a sense of the leap of faith that is required by drivers at this level. [29 Jun 1990, p.C]
70
Tony Scottmdoes his utmost to pump up the audience's adrenaline at all times, which means that the film's big moments - the races, the crashes, the news that someone needs brain surgery - don't seem that different from the small ones.
63
The Globe and Mail (Toronto)
Days of Thunder relies on charm, loud noise and a few racing sequences to print money with Cocky's visage on the bills: there can be no suspense because there can be no possibility Cocky will lose. [29 Jun 1990, p.C1]
50
Rolling Stone
Screenwriter Robert Towne has certainly not challenged his gifts -- the script is loaded with stock cars and stock characters -- but he does deliver what's necessary: a workable setup for exciting NASCAR racing footage shot on sixteen Winston Cup tracks from Daytona to Watkins Glen.
50
Christian Science Monitor
Days of Thunder wants to be an action drama, but it's really just a star vehicle of the most rudimentary sort, with nothing to offer Cruise except a chance to look pretty and chant time-tested punchlines. Ditto for the rest of the cast, which may be talented but gets little chance to show it here. [3 Jul 1990, p.13]
50
USA Today
This cliche primer is a bit more than bearable - even when it's literally and figuratively off the track. It's no Cocktail, but it's no Dom Perignon, either. [27 Jun 1990, p.1D]
20
Los Angeles Times
You can leave Days of Thunder feeling positively chafed. That clanking noise, however, comes from Robert Towne's tinny story and its malnourished characters. [27 Jun 1990, p.1]

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