Rampart Reviews

  • Rampart won't be for everyone, but it's the work of a major directorial voice. It's a thriller on fire.

    Owen Gleiberman — Entertainment Weekly

  • "Rampart" tells a familiar story with such visual punch and hustling energy that it comes close to feeling like a new kind of movie, though it's more just a tough gloss on American crime stories past.

    Manohla Dargis — New York Times

  • It's a testament to the direction of Oren Moverman and the script he co-wrote with James Ellroy that we care what happens to such a despicable character.

    Claudia Puig — USA Today

  • "Rampart" doesn't tell a coherent story as much as swirl the drain with Dave, as his increasingly desperate efforts to save himself simply result in a cascade of self-inflicted wounds.

    Ann Hornaday — Washington Post

  • Something to see and little to remember, an acrid character study undone by narrative implausibilities and its own lack of purpose.

    Ty Burr — Boston Globe

  • Much like Ellroy's noir classics The Black Dahlia and American Tabloid, Rampart is an imaginative work of historical crime fiction using invented characters to reanimate a specific time and place.

    Karina Longworth — Village Voice

  • Harrelson makes Dave Brown fascinating even as writer-director Oren Moverman - who also made "The Messenger" - allows the film, from a James Ellroy screenplay, to become a sprawl.

    Joe Neumaier — New York Daily News

  • With Mr. Harrelson, Mr. Moverman has created an antihero of epic proportions and indiscretions.

    John Anderson — Wall Street Journal

  • The movie's got some strong moments, and Harrelson's work here is so committed that many might feel his character's journey is worth sitting through for that alone.

    Glenn Kenny — MSN Movies

  • Harrelson is an ideal actor for the role. Especially in tensely wound-up movies like this, he implies that he's looking at everything and then watching himself looking.

    Roger Ebert — Chicago Sun-Times

  • "Rampart" patrols some familiar streets, but this jarringly intimate study of a dirty Los Angeles cop sliding, crazily, down the drain has a distinctive new-cliche smell, pungent and alive.

    Michael Phillips — Chicago Tribune

  • He insists on "keeping the family together" with the same irrational devotion he applies to his job.

    J. R. Jones — Chicago Reader

  • Where's it all go? Nowhere, really, just down a dirty, disappointing hole. Harrelson deserved better.

    Tom Long — Detroit News

  • Brown is a sick man, but Harrelson makes him so interesting, so charismatic, so ... watchable, that you can't look away, even if his actions make you want to (and they will).

    Bill Goodykoontz — Arizona Republic

  • An unnerving warts-and-all portrait of a man staggering around in circles of arrogant self-deception.

    Rex Reed — New York Observer

  • While the film is drenched in atmosphere and packs a verbal and visceral punch, its relentless downward spiral makes for an overdetermined, not entirely satisfying character study.

    Justin Chang — Variety

  • It takes on a throbbing, sick monotone. This isn't a concert, it's a bass guitar solo, all thumping blackness.

    Kyle Smith — New York Post

  • This isn't your average out-of-control character, and Harrelson has to work against a narrowly defined screenplay that is short on specifics.

    Peter Howell — Toronto Star

  • Harrelson both relishes the conviction with which Dave continually acts out and sells the tumult that follows when he has no one left to hate but himself.

    William Goss — Film.com

  • Using an improvisatory method built around Harrelson's fiery performance, Moverman -- showing incredible range in jagged contrast to the understatement of "The Messenger" -- foregrounds Date Rape Dave's commitment to a lost cause.

    Eric Kohn — indieWIRE

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