(2004)

Critic Reviews

60

Metascore

Based on 34 critic reviews provided by Metacritic.com
100
The very best thrillers -- a select group to which The Clearing clearly belongs -- exploit subconscious fears that bubble up at vulnerable moments.
75
Chicago Sun-Times
The Clearing doesn't feel bound by the usual formulas of crime movies. What eventually happens will emerge from the personalities of the characters, not from the requirements of Hollywood endings.
75
The pleasures of this endeavor, directed with a keen eye for detail by Pieter Jan Brugge, come from what the actors bring to the material.
75
New York Daily News
Redford has rarely done this kind of intimate drama, effectively a two-character play on the mountain, and he's very convincing. As is Dafoe.
75
Redford gives one of his best performances ever in this taut, emotionally engrossing thriller.
75
The Clearing reminds us what a riveting presence he (Redford) can be.
67
Entertainment Weekly
The Clearing is what's known in the biz as an alternative for adult moviegoers. Which is to say the film is a performance-driven drama devoid of special effects and loud noises. On the contrary, it's a meditation on midlife weaknesses and compensation.
63
This is one of those moderately engrossing movies that seems to collapse all at once during the wrap-up, yet it's well-acted all around.
63
Philadelphia Inquirer
Classy but ultimately unsatisfying film.
60
The Hollywood Reporter
The real problem is that Brugge and Haythe fail to satisfactorily pull off either the thriller or the marital deconstruction.
50
Wall Street Journal
The Clearing has been directed by a successful producer. In this case it's Pieter Jan Brugge, who brings seriousness and intelligence to his newly chosen craft, but little verve.

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