The Book of Eli Reviews

  • A ponderous dystopian bummer that might be described as The Road Warrior without car chases, or The Road without humanity.

    Owen Gleiberman — Entertainment Weekly

  • Allen and Albert Hughes have created a plausible post-apocalyptic world.

    Manohla Dargis — New York Times

  • Despite the impressively atmospheric opening sequences the Hugheses allow their film to lurch into inspirational-literature territory - and it ends up dissipating the brooding, cryptic atmosphere of its opening scenes.

    Andrew Pulver — Guardian [UK]

  • Poetic psalms uttered amid stylized violence are disconcerting. Religion and bloodshed, though linked through much of history, make queasy entertainment partners.

    Claudia Puig — USA Today

  • A hyper-violent, post-apocalyptic Western in the mold of Mad Max that can't make up its mind whether it wants to be corny or misanthropic.

    Michael O'Sullivan — Washington Post

  • The Book of Eli is The Road with twice the plot, four times the ammunition, and half the brains; it'll probably make 10 times the money.

    Ty Burr — Boston Globe

  • The rest of the rote splatter-violence has Denzel whirlwind lopping off heads through philistine hordes, sequences only good for insight into what PS3 games the Hugheses were playing in pre-production.

    Nick Pinkerton — Village Voice

  • You'd want a guy like Denzel around when the end is nigh. Too bad The Book of Eli is so preachy it buries the subtlety he brings forth.

    Joe Neumaier — New York Daily News

  • While the religious content makes itself felt, sometimes strongly, the heavy action quotient -- the story of Eli the slasher -- tears feelings to tatters.

    Joe Morgenstern — Wall Street Journal

  • What strength and intensity the movie musters begins and ends with Washington.

    Tom Maurstad — Dallas Morning News

  • A stylish, gritty fantasy feature that wrestles with the agonies, joys and eternal wrinkles of faith and evil and the dangerous minuet they do.

    Lisa Kennedy — Denver Post

  • Your brain, and, yes, your soul, long for ... a film that walked either the straight and narrow path of righteousness or blazed some new trail instead of frustratingly sticking with such faith and fervor to the middle of the road.

    James Rocchi — MSN Movies

  • I'm at a loss for words, so let me say these right away: The Book of Eli is very watchable. You won't be sorry you went.

    Roger Ebert — Chicago Sun-Times

  • Shot on nimble, lightweight Red digital cameras, the film may traffic in familiar landscapes and archetypes, but it allows its cast the space and time to make the characters breathe.

    Michael Phillips — Chicago Tribune

  • The sepia-toned palette gets a little wearying, but the dialogue is hilarious, the violence is crunchy, and cameos by Tom Waits and topflight Brit character actor Michael Gambon are worth the ticket price alone.

    Cliff Doerksen — Chicago Reader

  • Washington, ever potent, brings to the role the full force of his thousand-mile stare and regenerative smile.

    Carrie Rickey — Philadelphia Inquirer

  • Travolta had his Battlefield Earth, Costner had his Waterworld and now Denzel Washington has his truly awful sci-fi epic, The Book of Eli.

    Colin Covert — Minneapolis Star Tribune

  • Truly, if one must wander a barren, post-apocalyptic landscape with somebody, who better to wander with than Denzel Washington?

    Bill Goodykoontz — Arizona Republic

  • Even after the action leads to a final series of revelations that render everything else preposterous, you will still feel the adrenaline. Boredom is not an option.

    Rex Reed — New York Observer

  • Iconically effective as a single-minded messenger with a mission, Washington's Eli is ultimately too confined by the man-of-few-words movie norms he's saddled with.

    Todd McCarthy — Variety

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