The Pelican Brief - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

The Pelican Brief Reviews

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March 30, 2009
This is a standard Grisham pot-boiler.
December 12, 2017
It all sounds thrilling enough. So why is it so dull? Chiefly because of a central flaw in Grisham's writing, which Hollywood is unable to smooth out -- its grinding pedantry.
August 29, 2002
Read More | Original Score: 2/5
January 1, 2000
An unnecessarily-long thriller that contains far more talking than action.
Full Review | Original Score: 2/4
July 26, 2002
| Original Score: 2/5
March 26, 2003
Bland, bloodless thriller.
Read More | Original Score: 2/5
February 9, 2006
An old hand at this sort of thing, Pakula goes through the motions, but not much more.
August 15, 2002
| Original Score: 2/5
January 1, 2000
With all this star power at their disposal, this is the best that the film makers could do?
Read More | Original Score: 58/100
January 1, 2000
A brightly wrapped, ketchup-drenched mush-burger, it slides down the Zeitgeist esophagus like a slippery McPelican. You pay, you swallow, you drive home. You're left with nothing except, possibly, heartburn.
February 10, 2009
You'd think that Pakula would be just the man to tease the intellectual and emotional depth out of a Grisham potboiler, but you'd be wrong. [Blu-ray]
Full Review | Original Score: 2/4
May 20, 2003
| Original Score: 2/4
September 2, 2002
Read More | Original Score: 2/5
January 1, 2000
Grisham's novel was no landmark of literary originality to begin with, but Pakula streamlines the story into a corner, and then lets it run 30 minutes longer than necessary.
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/5
January 1, 2000
Too many characters, too much plotting and not enough suspense to keep it all moving.
Full Review | Original Score: 2/4
January 1, 2000
An overlong, over-plotted, instantly forgettable entertainment sporadically enlivened by decent supporting performances.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/10
May 20, 2003
As the film piles on shovelfuls of further exposition, Mr. Washington and Ms. Roberts are left to look terrific and recite perfunctory lines.
Read More | Original Score: 2.5/5
June 24, 2004
| Original Score: 2/5
October 8, 2006
A curiously disappointing thriller from Alan Pakula, reaffirming the notion that John Gresham's best-selling novels are more fun to read (at the airport) than watch on the big screen, even if they star Denzel Washington and Julia Roberts.
Read More | Original Score: C
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