KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- The FOX4 film critics were not impressed by "Red Sparrow," but they said Jennifer Lawrence made it more enjoyable.
1) RED SPARROW (R)
20th Century Fox
Oscar-winning actress Jennifer Lawrence has proven that she’s got the acting chops and personal charisma to elevate so-so material. That ability is sorely needed in the new spy thriller, “Red Sparrow."
It’s needed more than ever. I forget just how talented Jennifer Lawrence really is sometimes and she is by far the best part of “Red Sparrow” a lazily constructed spy thriller that’s all pretty on the outside but lacks depth.
All of the elements for success are there, including a great cast, sharp production values, exotic locales and a twisty, suspenseful plot. But “Red Sparrow” is undone by a languid and lurching pace and the lack of any on-screen spark between Lawrence and Edgerton.
The pace is way too slow and the payoff way too disappointing. The movie tries really hard to seduce but this bird never takes flight.
Lawrence is always watchable in this violent, sadistic and overlong thriller. But it’s just never gripping. “Red Sparrow” flutters, but never soars.
Which is too bad. “Red Sparrow” could have been something special. Instead it’s a showy mess.
RUSS: 2 Popcorn Bags
SHAWN: 3 Popcorn Bags
Also opening this week, “Midnighters” is a low-budget thriller about a partying couple who accidentally run over a man on New Year’s Eve. Things get complicated when they discover the man had intended bad things for them and their family. “Nostalgia” is a drama involving interconnected stories about loss and grief. Jon Hamm, Catherine Keener, Bruce Dern and Ellen Burstyn are among the cast members. The old Charles Bronson “Death Wish” franchise from the 1970s gets a reboot from horror director Eli Roth. Bruce Willis plays a vengeful father out for some vigilante justice after his wife and daughter are brutally attacked.
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