(I) (2001)

Critic Reviews

71

Metascore

Based on 33 critic reviews provided by Metacritic.com
88
Chicago Sun-Times
Penn and Nicholson take risks with the material and elevate the movie to another, unanticipated, haunting level.
88
New York Post
Not a film for all tastes, but it's a considerable artistic achievement.
80
Rolling Stone
In crafting a fierce, fragmented, downbeat film about a character who makes the wrong decision as a man by being right as a cop, Penn flies in the face of what sells in Hollywood. Godspeed.
75
Chicago Tribune
A rare thriller - and a rare American film - that centers on both dramatic and moral issues, crises of conscience. And thanks to a superb central performance by Nicholson as detective Black, it's a film that compels, thrills and ends up coming very close to tragedy.
75
Entertainment Weekly
Penn is a true talent, but there's just enough languid pretension to The Pledge to make you wonder if he's ultimately more interested in parading his promise as a director than in fulfilling it.
70
Short on action but heavy on ambiance, and the cumulative effect packs a whopper if you're willing to stop and think about it. Penn, never one to opt for action over thought, clearly expects that his audience will.
70
Slate
Fitfully haunting and impressive: a little less loitery and opaque and it might have been a classic.
65
TNT RoughCut
Luckily, Penn's attentive directing and Nicholson's layered acting render The Pledge's occasionally questionable story permutations secondary to enjoying this emotionally powerful film of rare and grave subtlety.
63
Miami Herald
The solemn, morose tone of The Pledge also guarantees a quick box office death: This is essentially a movie about bad things happening to good people, and if you have any interest in seeing this beautifully made bummer, don't wait too long.
40
Salon.com
Just a bad movie, with more bits of good acting and flashes of director's invention than you get in most bad movies.

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