Critic Reviews



Based on 36 critic reviews provided by
A shock ending may be the best hope for this film, a convoluted mystery that thinks it's way smarter than it is.
By the end, it reveals itself as too pat, too absurd and -- as a polemic against capital punishment -- philosophically self- defeating.
Miami Herald
There's no real artistry to this: It's as though Parker has just seen "Seven" and suffered some sort of David Fincher flashback.
Soon, the audience feels its own sense of despair -- for a movie that might have worked but didn't.
Punches the expected buttons without being entirely convincing.
The film's greatest asset is Linney, whose prickly, finely calibrated performance as the doomed Harraway makes her loss resonate more powerfully than any of the point-counterpoint rhetoric.
Film Threat
The film doesn't have anything but bad news for Spacey fans anxious for the actor to break a stinky streak.
Boston Globe
Positively reeks of self-importance -- the jokey, ham-fisted, pseudo-socially relevant, punch-pulling kind. It reeks worse of acting -- the Jack-Lemmon-in-a-coma Kevin Spacey kind.
Film Threat
Bad movies are easy to make, but as this overheated and self-defeating propaganda piece shows, it takes a genuinely talented group of people to come up with the most astonishing botch jobs.
Chicago Reader
A new low for director Alan Parker, this trite mystery thriller does for capital punishment what his "Mississippi Burning" did for civil rights: with its muddled message, liberal piety, and slick Hollywood plot mechanics.

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