After Earth is an underwhelming exercise in science fiction that barely registers as entertainment.
Julian Roman - MovieWeb
The movie takes off from a concept as basic as a videogame, and it sticks to that concept, without surprise.
Owen Gleiberman - Entertainment Weekly
Mr. Smith and his wife, Jada Pinkett Smith, are producers on "After Earth," which suggests that there was no one on the production who could really say no to him.
Manohla Dargis - New York Times
Though it's meant to be pulse-pounding, After Earth is a lethargic slog.
Claudia Puig - USA Today
The futuristic production design is blandly generic, the special effects, props and costumes cheap and slapdash-looking.
Michael O'Sullivan - Washington Post
A passably entertaining adventure best suited to 10-year-old boys.
Ty Burr - Boston Globe
Jaden is fine at running, jumping, fearful trembling, and affecting steely resolution. He doesn't yet have his father's charisma; perhaps to help him out, dad opted not to bring that charisma to the set.
Alan Scherstuhl - Village Voice
Summer 2013 has its first bomb, and sadly, it's landed right on Will Smith.
Joe Neumaier - New York Daily News
Is "After Earth" the worst movie ever made?
Joe Morgenstern - Wall Street Journal
As drama, After Earth offers no surprises; as action, it's rarely stimulating; as a parenting manual, it seems that Will has thrown Jaden into water that's a little too deep.
Richard Brody - New Yorker
It's no classic, but it's a special movie: spectacular and wise.
Matt Zoller Seitz - Chicago Sun-Times
"After Earth" won't change your world, but it's attractive ...
Michael Phillips - Chicago Tribune
Much of Will's dialogue consists of life lessons imparted to the boy, and they sound like a motivational seminar.
Ben Sachs - Chicago Reader
After Earth is refreshing in that it's not rife with fast-cuts, whooshing camera shots, and overblown visual effects.
Steven Rea - Philadelphia Inquirer
"After Earth" is a work of hubris magnified by multiple miscalculations, the kind of film that would cause Ed Wood to excuse himself and skulk to the exit.
Colin Covert - Minneapolis Star Tribune
It's just a somewhat mundane coming-of-age story with a terribly miscast lead.
Tom Long - Detroit News
Some of "After Earth" is intriguing, if you ignore the premise and the story and the direction and much of Jaden Smith's performance. Other than that...
Bill Goodykoontz - Arizona Republic
Shyamalan is clearly a director-for-hire here, his disinterest palpable from first frame to last.
Scott Foundas - Variety
Basically, this is Smith and his real-life son, Jaden (both affecting ridiculous mid-Atlantic accents) talking the audience to death for something like 90 minutes before the closing credits.
Lou Lumenick - New York Post
The only value in watching it is to see an expensive disaster slowly unfold.
Peter Howell - Toronto Star
The level to which 'After Earth' is a catastrophe is amazing.
Laremy Legel - Film.com
After Earth at least looks distinctive, and the movie's overall atmosphere of close-quarter jungle delirium is enhanced by the cramped, earth-toned interiors of spaceships, off-world colony condos and crashed cockpits.
Geoff Pevere - Globe and Mail
Even with his charismatic dad in his earpiece calling the shots, Jaden can't turn himself into a movie star by sheer force of Will.
Dana Stevens - Slate
The characters are emotionally neutered; the average viewer won't care about them. The pacing is plodding and uneven.
James Berardinelli - ReelViews
[A] disappointingly generic film ...
John DeFore - Hollywood Reporter
After Earth may lack the neck-swiveling awfulness of Shyamalan's The Last Airbender, but it quickly sinks in its logorrheic solemnity.
Richard Corliss - TIME Magazine
After Earth merits comparison with 2000's Battlefield Earth, John Travolta's godawful film tribute to the sci-fi novel by Scientology founder L. Ron Hubbard. Yes, it's that bad.
Peter Travers - Rolling Stone
There is no small irony that this sci-fi action adventure is about surviving a serious crash. The scorched earth left behind by "After Earth" is sure to leave a scar on everyone involved.
Betsy Sharkey - Los Angeles Times
It's not Shyamalan's fault -- he did his best with what he was given. He deserves another shot.
Rob Gonsalves - eFilmCritic.com
After Earth unfortunately still finds M. Night Shyamalan plodding through another dull, lifeless movie.
After a not very impressive crash sequence, the film settles into a running battle between young Master Smith and a series of CGI monsters, a schema that sounds tiresome, and is.
The dialogue is as wooden as the acting, and the plot is just silly. Truly, the only thing the film has going for it are some occasionally cool special effects.
- People Magazine
Shyamalan mostly stays out of the way, but he still makes himself known, and not in good ways.
Matt Prigge - Metro
The results are mixed.
Luke Mullen - Film School Rejects
Calling After Earth the worst film ever made may be overstating things, but it's a disaster zone of Chernobyl-esque proportions.
David Edwards - Daily Mirror [UK]
The effects are second-hand stuff from Alien and Star Trek, spliced with Shyamalan's regular homilies on Personal Growth.
Anthony Quinn - Independent
There's an extended animated sequence where atop a high hill, Kitai is surrounded by helix swells of grackles and blackbirds, and the camera turns to reveal waves and waves of burly bison. To the wonder, ho!
Does not enhance reputations or entrance audiences despite, or because of, pretentions to being larger than pure adventure.
Donald J. Levit - ReelTalk Movie Reviews
It seems proud of its predictability only because we should feel privileged to watch Will Smith and his son act in a second movie together.
Felix Vasquez Jr. - Cinema Crazed
Pompous, humourless tosh.
Dave Golder - SFX Magazine
Shyamalan's worst habits end up overwhelming the most formidable assets at his disposal: the Smiths.
Michael Dequina - TheMovieReport.com
As the story moves along with an almost medicating dullness, so antiseptic and square and insulated from any fun or spark or non-self-seriousness, the entire movie has that plastic-wrap feel of a hermetically-sealed Hollywood vanity project.
Brian Gibson - Vue Weekly (Edmonton, Canada)
The thinness of the story is its greatest undoing, culminating in an anticlimax that is distinctly unsatisfying.
Eric D. Snider - EricDSnider.com
...a step in the right direction for beleaguered filmmaker M. Night Shyamalan...
David Nusair - Reel Film Reviews
By any fair measure, After Earth is actually quite a nifty, pacy adventure film, even though it was directed by M. Night Shyamalan, who has not made a good film since his 1999 debut The Sixth Sense.
Jim Schembri - 3AW
Uneven father-son post apocalyptic space adventure still a minor comeback for the director.
Bruce Bennett - Spectrum (St. George, Utah)
The dejected Will Smith is forced to inject himself with pain relief. The label warns that the drug could cause extreme drowsiness and impaired vision. One can only imagine that Will was suffering from both when he agreed to film this daft script.
Brian Henry Martin - UTV
This movie... is about nobody's pleasure or deep vision. It is, instead, about positioning two actors in the power structure of the film industry.
Dave White - Movies.com
It is ironic that a film about a son following the legacy of his father has seen the Smith family shoot themselves in the foot in their second outing as a collective.
Matthew Pejkovic - Matt's Movie Reviews
Part Scientology tool, part extremely ill-conceived familial gift (wouldn't it be better to let your kid go to school than ask him to endure endless takes in a greenscreen studio?) and part blatant money-making attempt.
CJ Johnson - ABC Radio (Australia)
Stay home. Paint something. Watch it dry. It'll be more rewarding.
Tim Martain - The Mercury
Shyamalan mashes up the man-vs-nature journey with some post-apocalyptic sci-fi stuff, and neither manages to hold audience interest.
Simon Foster - Screen-Space
Visually impressive but sadly incredulous, "After Earth" is only redeemed by the performances of the Smith family.
Michael A. Smith - MediaMikes
At least it's a step-up on The Happening and The Last Airbender. Compared to those, After Earth looks like Citizen Kane. But that's not saying much.
Matt Neal - The Standard
It made me believe I'd been transported to a Hollywood studio backlot, where Smith family movies are made.
Michael Smith - Tulsa World
It makes Oblivion look like 2001 in comparison.
James Croot - Flicks.co.nz
At its core, the movie is a formulaic coming-of-age story about a precocious son trying to prove his worth to his overbearing absentee father, as well as a predictable tale of wilderness survival against the odds.
Todd Jorgenson - Cinemalogue.com
If you're going to engage the audience, you need someone who is strong and charismatic. Jaden Smith is not that.
Matthew Toomey - ABC Radio Brisbane
Less exciting or engaging than an old fashioned adventure and filled with wooden dialogue a father wouldn't (or shouldn't) use with his 13 year old son, After Earth is stodgy and rather meaningless
Andrew L. Urban - Urban Cinefile
Even the charismatic Will, given the restraints of his robotic character, cannot save his son - or the film. It's a sci-fi thriller, a father-son relationship film, a coming of age story and creature feature all rolled into one confusing package
Louise Keller - Urban Cinefile
a disappointing two-handed, hostile-planet adventure, that relies far too heavily on the acting ability of Jaden Smith, co-staring with father Will
Simon Weaving - Screenwize
Torco apenas para que Shyamalan anuncie sua aposentadoria e, com isso, se poupe de mais embaracos e pare de destruir seu ja fragil legado.
Pablo Villaca - Cinema em Cena
Clearly a vanity project, Smith perhaps imagines this plot device will signify to the world that he's ready to pass the action hero mantle on to his son, but it takes more than nepotism to make a movie star.
Alistair Harkness - Scotsman
It's dull stuff, indifferently staged, with heavy-handed references to Moby-Dick.
Philip French - Observer [UK]
Ultimately, the film is an ill-conceived and poorly executed star vehicle that doesn't possess the creativity or filmmaking prowess necessary to turn it into anything more.
"I wanna work with Mom," says Jaden at the close. It's not just his on screen Dad he's talking to.
Ed Whitfield - The Ooh Tray
The cinema posters have been bearing down on us for months - but now that this dreary, near-lifeless, suffocating excuse for a film is on the silver screen, few will be able to spot the difference.
Graham Young - Birmingham Mail
After Earth is dragged down by, yes, Will Smith's apparent desire to share his boring concerns about parenthood with a blameless audience.
Donald Clarke - Irish Times
The script basically has its legs broken as badly as Will Smith's.
Widgett Walls - Needcoffee.com
Writer-director M. Night Shyamalan, who hadn't made a truly great film since 2002, returns to form with this exciting and well-paced adventure
Forrest Hartman - Reno Gazette-Journal
It takes itself far too seriously, wasting Will's natural charisma and easy going screen presence.
Henry Northmore - The List
It's not often that a movie makes you think, Good riddance to humanity.
Margot Harrison - Seven Days
The problem is that the film is chockful of cliches and stymied by production design and CG effects that look as if the worst of the Star Wars series was being devoutly copied.
Derek Malcolm - This is London
This is Smith as you've never seen him before - a humourless bore.
Henry Fitzherbert - Daily Express
Apart from the odd effective sequence, this is nothing but a by-the-numbers survival story peddling contrived emotion, glittering sets and repetitive CGI peril.
Alan Jones - Radio Times
Bob Grimm - Reno News and Review
The dialogue is platitudinous and delivered in stilted accents. The structure is that of a very dull video game made by someone who once watched The Lord Of The Rings.
Christopher Tookey - Daily Mail [UK]
A sci-fi drama of such incredible boredom that your synapses will be turned to Bostik, featuring a triple-whammy of abysmal acting, directing and story.
It's [Shyamalan's] most bearable film in years: a meagre feat, perhaps, but one we might as well be honest about.
Tim Robey - Daily Telegraph
... the lame video game story line and nauseating narration of After Earth will certainly give you a queasy feeling that will make you grasp for an air sickness bag.
Elias Savada - Film Threat
It is all as predictable as Christmas, assuming your Christmases, like mine, start feral before turning cosy.
Nigel Andrews - Financial Times
While I understand the critical backlash towards Shyamalan, I disagree and found After Earth to be a solid movie, not great but good.
Lori Hoffman - Atlantic City Weekly
An unqualified disaster in the purest sense.
Adam Woodward - Little White Lies
Ultimately, it's a workmanlike sci-fi thriller that never really manages to erase the stain of Hollywood nepotism.
Tim Evans - Sky Movies
A Will Smith vanity project that never delivers the Will Smith type of entertainment we expect.
Jackie K. Cooper - jackiekcooper.com
Will Smith is the very embodiment of movie star charisma and Jaden might be a chip off the old block, but here, they're obliged to be po-faced and just plain un-cool. This is Earth, but not as we know it.
Stella Papamichael - Digital Spy
[Shyamalan's] best film since The Village, which would be a really mean thing to say about anybody who wasn't the auteur behind Lady in the Water.
Tim Brayton - Antagony & Ecstasy
Alas, M. Night Shyamalan's 'After Earth' is obvious and unoriginal, a science fictional meditation on excess by way of exceptionalism, loss by way of triumph.
Cynthia Fuchs - PopMatters
Unforgivably dull, disappointing Sci-Fi thriller that fails thanks to a tedious script, poor performances, some dodgy CGI effects and repetitive, badly directed action sequences.
Matthew Turner - ViewLondon
Most disappointing is the film's lack of ambition, as what could have been a sparky mainstream space opera becomes just another tedious jungle chase movie.
Tom Huddleston - Time Out
If you thought the Smiths had a hard time of it in their last movie, heaven knows they're miserable now.
Andy Lea - Daily Star
For anyone who ever wanted to see a Will Smith summer blockbuster where Smith does nearly all his acting sitting down while his miscast, out-of-his-depth offspring does all the work, After Earth is the movie for you.
Diva Velez - TheDivaReview.com
The critical problem with After Earth is that Smith Jr's whiny character has all the likeability of an anal fissure.
Jordan Farley - SFX Magazine
Bad movies are real. Seeing this one is a choice.
Scott Nash - Three Movie Buffs
For all its mealymouthed dialogue and often comical solemnity After Earth at least delivers consistently diverting entertainment ...
Neil Smith - Total Film
From its opening montage to its closing shots, "After Earth" comes across as an extremely generic effort written by an elementary school student.
Jeff Beck - Examiner.com
Prepare to cringe and snicker whenever the characters are talking, but gasp when Shyamalan just shows amazing stuff.
Kim Newman - Empire Magazine
a solemn, self-congratulatory flick showing all the symptoms of a vanity piece run amok
Andrea Chase - Killer Movie Reviews
Nepotism has always been part of the Hollywood firmament, but it's sunk to a new low with Will Smith's vanity vehicle for his 14 year-old son Jaden.
Susan Granger - SSG Syndicate
A character notes that Earth is now overrun by all manner of frightening creatures, but those expecting the thrills of King Kong's Skull Island will be sorely let down -- heck, even those expecting the thrills of Vacation's Walley World will feel cheated.
Matt Brunson - Creative Loafing
Nevermind M. Night Shyamalan's cumulative global box-office grab of $2.5 billion on total production budgets of $665 million. Numbers lie. "After Earth" is a wasteland riddled with cinematic trash.
Adam Fendelman - HollywoodChicago.com
How could species evolve over the course of a mere thousand years to get a serious hate on for human beings, when *no humans have been on the planet that entire time*?
Pete Vonder Haar - Houston Press
M. Night Shyamalan's malformed ode to father/son bonding in the year 3000 on an abandoned planet known as Earth is frighteningly bungled from the very first pedestrian shot.
Brandon Judell - CultureCatch
Smith Family Lost in Space
James Verniere - Boston Herald
It's a bit of a bounce back for Shyamalan, who's reconnecting with what worked in "The Sixth Sense."
Gary Thompson - Philadelphia Daily News
Jaden Smith has screen presence, but he is not an accomplished actor, no matter how hard his father wills it. Carrying a big-budget movie by himself at this stage in his career is asking too much.
Daniel Eagan - Film Journal International
A dull sci-fi survival flick that crashes and burns under the inept direction of M. Night Shyamalan.
Frederic and Mary Ann Brussat - Spirituality and Practice
After Earth is the sort of picture the Mystery Science Theater 3000 gang would salivate over.
Tyler Hanley - Palo Alto Weekly
"After Earth" is a clunky sci-fi tale that is surprisingly dull and filled with a lot of unfortunate creative choices.
Mathew DeKinder - Suburban Journals of St. Louis
Willie Waffle - WaffleMovies.com
Will Smith is a fun and funny guy. So why is Smith's sci-fi thriller screaming for a sense of humor?
Gary Wolcott - Tri-City Herald
... neither a terrible sci-fi'er nor a very good one. It's a capably handled escape with above average CG effects. Adolescent boys looking for a Saturday afternoon time-killer could do worse.
Glenn Lovell - CinemaDope
Compared to the wackadoo ramblings of The Happening or the stark-raving silliness of Lady in the Water, this film is a more generic failure.
Ethan Alter - Television Without Pity
Is there a more satisfying career implosion than that of M. Night Shyamalan?
Jeff Meyers - Metro Times (Detroit, MI)
Not since John Travolta kicked the tires on Battlefield Earth and pronounced it good to go has there been a big-name flameout as disastrous as this.
Kurt Loder - Reason Online
Jaden carries himself well in this futuristic adventure, which was filmed in a variety of lush locations around the globe.
Leonard Maltin - Leonard Maltin's Picks
After Earth is not as bad as The Last Airbender. Yes, you heard it here first: After Earth is not as bad as one of the worst big budget films ever released. So, better than bad? It still ain't good.
Matthew Razak - Flixist.com
no better than Rebecca Black's "Friday" video. It's a bought-and-paid-for vanity piece for a spoiled teenager
Kevin Carr - 7M Pictures
Too bad, too, that the CGI creatures in the film look as fake as the monkeys in Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull.
Rene Rodriguez - Miami Herald
After Earth is an extremely uneven and flawed film, but for moviegoers who are intrigued by the initial premise, it's not the throwaway disaster that some might claim.
Ben Kendrick - ScreenRant
The problem is that Jaden Smith is a truly, deeply limited actor. When you call on him to do THIS much on screen, it's not good. In fact, it's painful. (Complete Content Details for Parents are also available)
Teddy Durgin - Screen It!
Think The Happening, plus bloodthirsty baboons.
Matt Patches - Hollywood.com
Jaden Smith (who was actually good in THE KARATE KID) winds up looking like a nervous child who, forced to play baseball by his father, strikes out with the bases loaded.
Steve Biodrowski - Cinefantastique
As the story of a son desperate to please a perfectionist celebrity father, 'After Earth' may be more worthwhile for future Smith family biographers than for action fans.
John Beifuss - Commercial Appeal (Memphis, TN)
Here's one of those instances where a little mystery surrounding the scenario and characters could be of benefit...
Mark Dujsik - Mark Reviews Movies
A film in which the text and subtext-an effortlessly gifted father presses his less-talented son to follow in his footsteps-are in perfect alignment. Alas, only in one of the two does the story end happily.
Christopher Orr - The Atlantic
It had a great premise, solid special effects and decent direction, but the film's potential is derailed by some truly atrocious acting, especially from Jaden Smith.
Austin Kennedy - Film Geek Central
After Earth is the cinematic equivalent of Rebecca Black's "Friday" - a parent-funded vanity project gone horribly wrong and thrust out into the world for the rest of us to not enjoy.
Mike McGranaghan - Aisle Seat
Though a scant 100 minutes long, After Earth feels longer and slower than your average PBS pledge drive.
Rob Vaux - Mania.com
I suppose we should be grateful that there isn't a half-buried Statue of Liberty or an empty, deteriorated football stadium.
Jeanne Kaplan - Kaplan vs. Kaplan
At least people won't be shelling out extra cash for 3-D glasses for this 2-dimensional bomb.
David Kaplan - Kaplan vs. Kaplan
All the neat visuals on Earth can't cover up that this is a movie Will Smith is hoping will make Jaden a star.
Kristian Harloff - Schmoes Know
it may not be the complete return to form of Shyamalan, but "After Earth" has all the goods necessary for an entertaining summer ride.
Mark Ellis - Schmoes Know
Exciting sci-fi action and warm father-son bonding.
Common Sense Media Editors - Common Sense Media
For a father-son film project, there's strangely little emotional connection between the pair onscreen.
Kirk Baird - Toledo Blade
By the standards of M. Night's Shyamalan's recent films, After Earth is surprisingly not horrible.
It's impossible to take this movie seriously, certainly not as seriously as it takes itself.
Peter Rainer - Christian Science Monitor
With "After Earth," Smith can't even save himself, his film, or his director
Justin Craig - FoxNews.com
Weak performances, a pathetic protagonist, and an overuse of flashbacks make After Earth more painful to choke down than the air of the quarantined planet.
Alexander Lowe - We Got This Covered
After Earth smacks of [Shyamalan's] worst tendencies - performances hamstrung by awkward and stiff dialogue, and a bloated sense of self-importance.
John Serba - MLive.com
A forgettable slice of cinematic nepotism.
Jason Buchanan - TV Guide's Movie Guide
What do you give the kid who has everything? His own summer action-adventure blockbuster, of course ... Well, it certainly beats a cake and a card, but considering what a well-crafted bore After Earth turns out to be, perhaps not by much.
Cary Darling - Fort Worth Star-Telegram/DFW.com
At least Shyamalan has clawed his way from terrible back to so-so.
Jeffrey Westhoff - Northwest Herald (Crystal Lake, IL)
This would be a difficult film even for the charismatic Papa Smith to carry. That he spends nearly the entire movie in a chair doesn't help matters.
Mike Scott - Times-Picayune
What undoes the film is its rather rancid parent-child sentimentality (a Shyamalan staple, admittedly) and a charisma-free performance from the younger Smith that suggests the apple has fallen very far from the tree, indeed.
Keith Uhlich - Time Out
Had the ad mentioned him, it probably would have said, 'An M. Night Shyamalan film. Sorry.'
Matt Pais - RedEye
The truly sad thing is, this wouldn't be a bad story if you stripped away all the sci-fi flash and psychobabble.
Stephen Whitty - Newark Star-Ledger
Well, it's not as bad as Wild, Wild West.
Daniel M. Kimmel - Sci-Fi Movie Page
A simplistic, father-son morality play strictly for little kids and diehard Will and Jaden Smith fans. Destined to be added to the pantheon of inadvertently-funny blaxploitation flicks with a devoted cult following.
Kam Williams - AALBC.com
Roger Moore - Movie Nation
The art of storytelling is both of distinct narrative interest and personal issue in the latest payload of calcified nonsense from one of modern cinema's oddest would-be auteurs.
Chris Cabin - Slant Magazine
Shyamalan's sensibility may not be enough to turn After Earth into a great (or even very good) film, but it does yield interesting-and at times strikingly realized-results.
Ignatiy Vishnevetsky - AV Club
one big fat fiasco
Bill Gibron - Film Racket
This is not the same M. Night Shymalan who gave audiences a reason to shriek in fright one minute and uncontrollably weep the next. Where has that artist gone? "After Earth" bears the mark of a work-for-hire who has all but given up.
Every bit as bad as you'd fear of a movie from the writer of 'The Book of Eli' and the director of 'The Last Airbender.' Where are the guys from Mystery Science Theater when you need them?
Frank Swietek - One Guy's Opinion
After Earth is no Titan A.E.
William Bibbiani - CraveOnline
A disastrous father-son endeavor about a calamitous father-son expedition, After Earth doesn't play to the strengths of any of its major participants.
Mark Jenkins - NPR
A trite sci-fi adventure that's probably too intense for younger viewers and not sophisticated enough for adults.
Tim Grierson - Screen International
The twist to M. Night Shyamalan's After Earth is that there is no twist, unless you count (all) personality being drained from Will Smith.
Steve Persall - Tampa Bay Times
Director Shyamalan gets the most out of the Smiths, sometimes simply staying out of their way. He also keeps things moving briskly with a story that eschews exposition in favor of flashback glimpses.
Jon Niccum - Kansas City Star
"After Earth" isn't just chaotic and desperate -- and grindingly slow -- it's also lazy.
Rafer Guzman - Newsday
It's an admirable YA adventure, a moderately engaging piece of sci-fi storytelling, a return to respectability for Shyamalan and a welcome departure for an aging Will Smith.
Sean O'Connell - CinemaBlend.com
it's better than M. Night's last couple of movies. At times it actually comes close to being relatively decent movie. Sadly, those moments are all within the first twenty minutes.
Chris Bumbray - JoBlo's Movie Emporium
Nobody on-screen has much fun with "After Earth." And neither do we.
Chris Hewitt (St. Paul) - St. Paul Pioneer Press
Whatever budget was spent on After Earth did not go into the effects.
Rebecca Murray - About.com
Not only derivative of and beholden to the original "Star Trek" but has the as-told-to quality of a vaguely Scientology-like parable.
Duane Dudek - Milwaukee Journal Sentinel
"After Earth" is a Smith-family vanity project, a home movie foisted on an unsuspecting and gullible public. Maybe next time Will and Jaden want to connect, they should just build a treehouse.
Bob Bloom - Journal and Courier (Lafayette, IN)
[Shyamalan's] grasp of film fundamentals is so tenuous that this hot-air balloon gets blown into the rarefied air of the worst movies ever made.
Joe Williams - St. Louis Post-Dispatch
A beautiful bit of world-building that - if you're not chronically opposed to Will Smith and his kid - will transport you to the kind of adventure that I know I imagined in the backyard when I was younger than Jaden Smith.
Luke Y. Thompson
M. Night Shyamalan is branching out, coming up with new ways to make bad movies. His plan must be to exhaust all possibilities, so as to eventually come full circle and make a good one by accident.
Mick LaSalle - Hearst Newspapers
Will Smith has done to Jaden with this movie what Rebecca Black's parents did to her with "Friday."
Nell Minow - Beliefnet
... the film offers some very knowing examples of the way both parents and children have to adjust their thinking over the course of their relationship, wrapped up in a visually dynamic world that simply makes the stakes feel more urgent...
Drew McWeeny - HitFix
Any tension is lost in the director's achingly slow pacing.
Rick Bentley - Fresno Bee
Watching "After Earth" is not only akin to watching someone playing the old "E.T." game that Atari put out back in the day but it is one of the few entertainment experiences that compares unfavorably to that legendary betrayal of audience goodwill
Peter Sobczynski - eFilmCritic.com
While it's entirely possible that 14-year-old Jaden Smith will develop into a serious actor or a dashing leading man (or even both), his superstar dad Will has done him no favors by giving him the lead role in "After Earth."
Marc Mohan - Oregonian
After Earth might have worked as an episode in the Star Trek series, circa 1966-69. As a big Hollywood sci-fi adventure for the summer of 2013, it just seems uninspired, tired and sometimes ridiculous.
Bruce Kirkland - Jam! Movies
One tries not to get cranky about bad science in sci-fi blockbusters, but this is a staggeringly dumb idea.
Joe Gross - Austin American-Statesman
After Earth tells the story of an inexperienced boy trying desperately to please his father while making one mistake after another, and as such, it becomes an uncomfortable metaphor for itself.
You don't have to wait too long in the sci-fi adventure After Earth to get the uneasy feeling that you're going to be in for an awfully long 100 minutes.
Jay Stone - Canada.com
They set out to make a sci-fi film with the power to change the way you look at your fellow man. And they made one that just made me want to leave this planet that much sooner.
Brian Tallerico - HollywoodChicago.com
Given the talent involved, one hoped for so much more.
Louis Black - Austin Chronicle
Bits of the plot, including the environmental science of the new Earth, make no sense. The dialogue is leaden. And the special effects are surprisingly unconvincing ...
Charlie McCollum - San Jose Mercury News
M. Night Shyamalan has directed movies that are surprising, hokey, suspenseful, sentimental, clever, touching or cheesy. But until After Earth, he hadn't made any that are dull from end to end.
Lawrence Toppman - Charlotte Observer
I can't lie and say I didn't enjoy this asinine movie.
Jordan Hoffman - ScreenCrush
This is one of those movies where you suspect that more thought was given to coining cool, futuristic names than to plot development.
Chris Knight - National Post
The movie spent a lot of time teetering on the verge of failure but both Smiths pull it back and make it fairly enjoyable. Jaden Smith proves that he is a star. Haters gonna hate.
Michelle Alexandria - Eclipse Magazine
You'll spend much of your time waiting for it to be after After Earth, waiting for that respite brought about by the damn thing finally getting to its silly, telegraphed point.
After Earth is completely watchable genre entertainment, but it would have been nice to have had more to recommend the film than simply announcing that Shyamalan hasn't laid another egg.
Jim Vejvoda - IGN Movies
It's really the helmer's iffy creative decisions that keep After Earth more of a wince-inducing drag than the heart-squeezing, mind-blowing sci-fi adventure it desires to be.
Brian Orndorf - Blu-ray.com