(2010)

Critic Reviews

61

Metascore

Based on 36 critic reviews provided by Metacritic.com
100
Here is a gripping film with the focus of a Japanese drama, an impenetrable character to equal Alain Delon's in "Le Samourai," by Jean-Pierre Melville.
90
Anton Corbijn's The American looks and feels like a movie made by a filmmaker who hasn't been to the movies since the '70s - and I mean that as the highest compliment.
80
The American, a movie as coiled as a snake and as still as a sleepy villa, is the rare grownup thriller that knows the link between peace and danger and the tension that comes from both.
75
It does for hit men what "Up in the Air" did for frequent-flying corporate terminators, minus the comic tang.
75
Clooney has excelled in serious roles - notably in "Michael Clayton" and "Syriana." But his Jack, a brooding assassin seeking redemption, is a bigger departure, and he pulls it off well.
75
Heavyhearted without being heavy-handed, Corbijn's lyrical movie is about a man who has built his own cell and become his own jailer.
75
Corbijn makes the familiar strange, focusing on details other filmmakers would gloss over.
70
Wall Street Journal
With its retro pacing, its pretentious lapses and its narrow emotional range, this elegantly crafted existential thriller risks alienating its audience; at times it feels like a test for attention deficit disorder.
63
It's a tale so used, abused and broken you can hear it wheezing.
50
The role requires Clooney to dial down his charm to nearly zero, and frankly, he looks twitchy and uncomfortable without it.
50
Nothing really adds up, and the ending is downright absurd. You would like even the most austere, doctrinaire existential movie to earn its downbeat ending. This one fails utterly to do so.

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