Critic Reviews



Based on 35 critic reviews provided by
Chicago Sun-Times
There is one surprise in the movie, a decision having nothing to do with the reactor, that depends entirely on the ability of the characters to act convincingly under enormous pressure; casting stars of roughly equal weight helps it to work.
The movie gradually works its way, with quiet intelligence and apparent conviction, until there's no turning from it. An hour in, and we're on that boat.
A relentlessly serious action movie, characterized by, of all things, sorrow.
Philadelphia Inquirer
I don't think that a woman behind the camera necessarily affects the tenor of what is on screen, but never before have I seen a men-of-war film more notable for its psychology than its spectacle.
Bigelow gives this film edge, tension and something you aren't expecting: a woman's touch for teasing out the buried emotion beneath those stoic surfaces.
K-19 will not go down in the annals of cinema as one of the great submarine stories, but it is an engaging and exciting narrative of Man confronting the Demons of his own fear and paranoia.
New York Daily News
The Cold War isn't exactly a hot ticket right now, but K-19 punches up the timeless aspects of the story -- adventure, danger, teamwork, noble self-sacrifice and two forceful actors butting heads, even if you don't buy them as Russian for a moment.
Miami Herald
Despite its exciting moments, the film is too long.
Entertainment Weekly
What's really needed is a story with some sizzle, but Bigelow, in K-19, can't seem to decide whether she's making a shoot-the-works underwater rouser, like ''U-571'' or ''Crimson Tide,'' or a lofty historical message movie that hits us with the breaking news that the arms race was, in every sense, a poisonous game.
Though this saga would be terrific to read about, it is dicey screen material that only a genius should touch. With no genius in sight, K-19 might be headed for meltdown.
Wall Street Journal
Rarely has a major motion picture -- and this one is major by virtue of its misplaced ambition as well as its budget -- been afflicted by such flagrant dissonance between subject and style.

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