(1996)

Critic Reviews

41

Metascore

Based on 17 critic reviews provided by Metacritic.com
75
It's about change, acceptance and love, and it rounds those three bases very nicely, even if it never quite gets to home.
75
Christian Science Monitor
John Turteltaub directed the drama, which lapses into medical jargon and new-age clichés near the end, but it scores telling points with its respect for intelligence and optimistic view of human potential.
63
USA Today
Phenomenon is a fantasy about super-intelligence that works best if you can switch off your brain. Those who can will reach weepy nirvana. Those who can't will find this sticky-sweet wallow a bit, well, dumb. [03 Jul 1996 Pg.01.D]
63
The Globe and Mail (Toronto)
In a film that offers itself as a Gump-esque moral fable, Phenomenon could serve as a case study of When Smart Films Fail.
50
San Francisco Chronicle
But this soggy, sentimental tour through a rural dreamworld of salt-of- the-earth versus supercharged intelligence never quite gets deep enough to touch the soul -- or to make sense.
50
As always, Duvall is magnificent. Even in this small part, he manages to give one of the most stirring performances in the movie.
50
In time-honored Hollywood fashion, PHENOMENON suggests that smart people are friendless freaks who'd be far better off if only they were just as dumb as the rest of us.
50
ReelViews
Put simply, this movie is dumb.
42
Entertainment Weekly
Phenomenon (directed by Jon Turteltaub, the guy who sedated us with "While You Were Sleeping") would be pretty unbearable were Travolta not so consistently charming.
30
Phenomenon flails about in a search for direction: inspirational drama, romance, social study, government intrigue- nothing fits or is explored very deeply.

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