'The Day the Earth Stood Still' Critic Reviews

68%
MovieWeb:   37 reviews
21%
Rotten Tomatoes:   197 reviews
  • Owen Gleiberman Entertainment Weekly (Top Critic)
    34
    The original Day the Earth Stood Still had a paranoid poetry that lifted the audience up even as it warned the world to come together. This one is so dour it just comes off as a scolding.
    Full Review » 6 years ago
  • A.O. Scott New York Times (Top Critic)
    40
    After Wall-E and I Am Legend and the dozens of apocalypse flicks since the last Day the Earth Stood Still we can surely do better. Even Klaatu looks bored and distracted, much as he did back when we knew him as Neo.
    Full Review » 6 years ago
  • Peter Bradshaw Guardian [UK] (Top Critic)
    20
    Keanu Reeves stars, giving the kind of torpid performance that lesser beings can only approximate by necking a hundredweight of Temazepam. The lights are on at the top of the spaceship, but there's no one at the controls.
    Full Review » 6 years ago
  • Claudia Puig USA Today (Top Critic)
    50
    A good portion of this sci-fi disaster movie is unintentionally comical. And the parts that aren't funny are just plain dull.
    Full Review » 6 years ago
  • Ann Hornaday Washington Post (Top Critic)
    Solemn, sober and efficient, The Day the Earth Stood Still gets the job done and moves on.
    Full Review » 6 years ago
  • Ty Burr Boston Globe (Top Critic)
    50
    The new Day the Earth Stood Still lacks the courage of its own eco-pessimism, and the final scenes play like a rushed, embarrassed concession to our need for happy endings, no matter how far-fetched.
    Full Review » 6 years ago
  • Luke Y. Thompson Village Voice (Top Critic)
    The problem here is that there are none of the big ideas that have kept the 1951 film in the public consciousness
    Full Review » 6 years ago
  • Joe Neumaier New York Daily News (Top Critic)
    40
    The stone-faced silliness in this new TDTESS at first seems like an homage to old-fashioned '50s watch-the-skies movies, until it becomes clear it's just newfangled bad filmmaking.
    Full Review » 6 years ago
  • Joe Morgenstern Wall Street Journal (Top Critic)
    Where the original film was unpretentious, this version, with Keanu Reeves as Klaatu, is insufferably full of itself, an X-Files episode pumped up to pseudo-cosmic proportions.
    Full Review » 6 years ago
  • Joe Leydon Houston Chronicle (Top Critic)
    25
    Arguably the worst reconstitution of a '50s sci-fi classic since the ghastly Godzilla remake, The Day the Earth Stood Still is a stunningly misconceived folly that is bearable only for as long as it remains a fair-to-middling chase movie.
    Full Review » 6 years ago
  • Tom Maurstad Dallas Morning News (Top Critic)
    17
    This movie is as clunky and unappealing as the space-saving acronym being used to avoid its endless title -- TDTESS.
    Full Review » 6 years ago
  • Lisa Kennedy Denver Post (Top Critic)
    50
    "The Day the Earth Stood Still" doesn't lack heart. It's surprisingly sincere. No, the human quality it could use a bit more of is humor.
    Full Review » 6 years ago
  • David Edelstein New York Magazine (Top Critic)
    The remake of that fine old fifties alien-invasion picture The Day the Earth Stood Still comes to a standstill about an hour before the Earth does in the wilds of New Jersey.
    Full Review » 6 years ago
  • Roger Ebert Chicago Sun-Times (Top Critic)
    50
    All this is presented in an expensive, good-looking film that is well-made by Scott Derrickson, but to no avail.
    Full Review » 6 years ago
  • Michael Phillips Chicago Tribune (Top Critic)
    50
    In one eye and out the other, the sullen remake of The Day the Earth Stood Still airlifts certain story details straight from its source material.
    Full Review » 6 years ago
  • J. R. Jones Chicago Reader (Top Critic)
    The original movie's climax, an endearingly corny homily about the necessity of peace, has been replaced by a pointless tsunami of digital effects.
    Full Review » 6 years ago
  • Carrie Rickey Philadelphia Inquirer (Top Critic)
    63
    An entertaining rethink of the 1951 classic.
    Full Review » 6 years ago
  • Colin Covert Minneapolis Star Tribune (Top Critic)
    50
    Neither offensively bad nor particularly good, The Day the Earth Stood Still may be best remembered for the clumsiness of its intrusive product placement.
    Full Review » 6 years ago
  • Tom Long Detroit News (Top Critic)
    42
    Despite all the fog machines and giant glowing spheres and TV actors excited to be in a big-budget movie, this remake of the 1951 sci-fi classic that gave baby boomer kids chills simply fails to strike any sparks.
    Full Review » 6 years ago
  • Bill Goodykoontz Arizona Republic (Top Critic)
    70
    Better to just sit back and enjoy The Day the Earth Stood Still for what it is: a fair amount of fun.
    Full Review » 6 years ago
  • Todd McCarthy Variety (Top Critic)
    This botched remake of The Day the Earth Stood Still seriously dishonors the seriously fine 1951 sci-fi landmark on which it's based.
    Full Review » 6 years ago
  • Lou Lumenick New York Post (Top Critic)
    50
    Unless you've seen Robert Wise's original semi-documentary The Day the Earth Stood Still (1951), you'd never suspect the utterly generic remake was based on a seminal sci-fi classic.
    Full Review » 6 years ago
  • Roger Moore Orlando Sentinel (Top Critic)
    60
    This Earth could have moved if they had embraced the heart of Starman. Too bad they settled for a half-hearted Independence Day.
    Full Review » 6 years ago
  • Peter Howell Toronto Star (Top Critic)
    25
    The only awe this movie inspires is realizing how well the original stands up, and how little we puny Earthlings have learned in the past 57 years.
    Full Review » 6 years ago
  • Christine Champ Film.com (Top Critic)
    34
    Full Review » 3 years ago