'The Lovely Bones' Critic Reviews

86%
MovieWeb:   17 reviews
32%
Rotten Tomatoes:   233 reviews
  • Lisa Schwarzbaum Entertainment Weekly (Top Critic)
    50
    In Jackson's simplified, sweetened, and 
CGI-besotted telling, The Lovely Bones is a sad-but-hopeful, dramatic-but-gentle fairy tale intentionally made less upsetting for teens.
    Full Review » 5 years ago
  • A.O. Scott New York Times (Top Critic)
    80
    A victim obsessed with the lives that go on without her is at the center of The Lovely Bones.
    Full Review » 5 years ago
  • Peter Bradshaw Guardian [UK] (Top Critic)
    40
    Instead of a compelling nightmare, he has created a bland, girly-sparkly dream.
    Full Review » 5 years ago
  • Xan Brooks Guardian [UK] (Top Critic)
    40
    So infuriatingly coy, and so desperate to preserve the modesty of its soulful victim that it amounts to an ongoing clean-up operation.
    Full Review » 5 years ago
  • Claudia Puig USA Today (Top Critic)
    50
    The movie strikes clashing tones, veering from lightheartedness to heavy-handedness.
    Full Review » 5 years ago
  • Ann Hornaday Washington Post (Top Critic)
    25
    Tone is the first thing sacrificed in this shapeless, overlong, mawkishly muddled pop-up illustration of a movie.
    Full Review » 5 years ago
  • Ty Burr Boston Globe (Top Critic)
    25
    The miscalculation on almost every level is perversely thorough. It's as if the filmmaker, faced with an endless series of daunting creative choices, proudly took the wrong road each and every time.
    Full Review » 5 years ago
  • J. Hoberman Village Voice (Top Critic)
    Part Disney's Alice in Wonderland, part Fritz Lang's M, the movie is horrific yet cloying, alternately distended and abrupt, sometimes poignant and often ridiculous.
    Full Review » 5 years ago
  • Joe Neumaier New York Daily News (Top Critic)
    20
    Jackson is too enamored with the idea of mixing heaven and the heebie-jeebies, so he's made the skeevy equivalent of a Mitch Albom book with some pulp fiction pressed between its covers.
    Full Review » 5 years ago
  • Joe Morgenstern Wall Street Journal (Top Critic)
    The result is dumbfounding and ludicrous in equal measure, a too-muchness that makes the excesses of What Dreams May Come seem downright spartan.
    Full Review » 5 years ago
  • Chris Vognar Dallas Morning News (Top Critic)
    70
    This is a distractingly busy movie, so in love with its own considerable craft that it can't stay still long enough for anything to settle in.
    Full Review » 5 years ago
  • Lisa Kennedy Denver Post (Top Critic)
    63
    The movie is often wise.
    Full Review » 5 years ago
  • James Rocchi MSN Movies (Top Critic)
    40
    Jackson's film takes us on a journey of loveliness, but without the hard, stark strength of bone beneath it to give it the direction and purpose Sebold used to drive her story into the heart.
    Full Review » 5 years ago
  • David Denby New Yorker (Top Critic)
    The Lovely Bones has been fashioned as a holiday family movie about murder and grief; it's a thoroughly queasy experience.
    Full Review » 5 years ago
  • Roger Ebert Chicago Sun-Times (Top Critic)
    38
    The Lovely Bones is a deplorable film with this message: If you're a 14-year-old girl who has been brutally raped and murdered by a serial killer, you have a lot to look forward to.
    Full Review » 5 years ago
  • Michael Phillips Chicago Tribune (Top Critic)
    50
    Sometimes a major director becomes enthralled with the cinematic prospects of material for which he is not ideally suited.
    Full Review » 5 years ago
  • Andrea Gronvall Chicago Reader (Top Critic)
    Peter Jackson's adaptation of Alice Sebold's best-selling novel hovers just this side of Ghost Whisperer kitsch but remains compulsively watchable.
    Full Review » 5 years ago
  • Steven Rea Philadelphia Inquirer (Top Critic)
    38
    Tonally, visually, conceptually, The Lovely Bones is all wrong.
    Full Review » 5 years ago
  • Colin Covert Minneapolis Star Tribune (Top Critic)
    88
    Rarely has a film launched by a killing seemed so insistently alive.
    Full Review » 5 years ago
  • Tom Long Detroit News (Top Critic)
    59
    Understand, the film still has power, just not as much as it should.
    Full Review » 5 years ago
  • Bill Goodykoontz Arizona Republic (Top Critic)
    50
    It's a competently made movie -- in Jackson's hands it could hardly be anything but -- yet rarely a moving one.
    Full Review » 5 years ago
  • Rex Reed New York Observer (Top Critic)
    The New Zealand director's trademark recipe of fantasy, realism and computerized visual effects turns The Lovely Bones into a thrilling adventure.
    Full Review » 5 years ago
  • Todd McCarthy Variety (Top Critic)
    Jackson undermines solid work from a good cast with show-offy celestial evocations that severely disrupt the emotional connections with the characters.
    Full Review » 5 years ago
  • Kyle Smith New York Post (Top Critic)
    63
    Color me relieved. There is no need to fear death, even the most horrifying kind of murder. Because the afterlife is exactly like the album cover for a 1970s progressive-rock band.
    Full Review » 5 years ago
  • Roger Moore Orlando Sentinel (Top Critic)
    63
    Jackson overwhelms the thoughtful, introspective nature of the material with whistles and bells -- heavenly effects that scream "overkill."
    Full Review » 5 years ago
AVG. RATING 4.0 GREAT
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