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Lone Survivor Review

Movies.com Critics

3.0

Dave White Profile

In memoriam Read full review

Other Critics provided by Metacritic.com

Critics scores range from 0 to 100, with higher scores indicating more favorable reviews.

  • 3.0
    60

    out of 100

    Metascore®
    Mixed or average reviews
    based on a weighted average of all
    critic review scores.

  • 70

    out of 100

    The New York Times A.O. Scott

    It is a modest, competent, effective movie, concerned above all with doing the job of explaining how the job was done.

    Read Full Review

  • 70

    out of 100

    Variety Justin Chang

    Berg’s blunt, pummeling style offers few nuances and makes no apologies, but his broad brushstrokes have clearly found an ideal canvas in this grimly heroic rendering of hell on earth.

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  • 70

    out of 100

    The Hollywood Reporter Todd McCarthy

    The film is rugged, skilled, relentless, determined, narrow-minded and focused, everything that a soldier must be when his life is on the line.

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  • 75

    out of 100

    Chicago Sun-Times Richard Roeper

    Lone Survivor is primarily about the unflinching bravery of SEALs executing their mission and looking out for one another, even as they’re coming to grips with the reality of how this thing is going to end.

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  • 75

    out of 100

    USA Today Scott Bowles

    Survivor is a pummeling, frenzied ride, one of fall's most charged action films. The gunfights and rocket-propelled grenades are palpable, and Berg manages to make the chaos followable.

    Read Full Review

  • 75

    out of 100

    Chicago Tribune Michael Phillips

    Wahlberg remains one of our most reliable and least actorly of movie stars, innately macho but vulnerable enough to seem like a human being caught in an inhuman situation.

    Read Full Review

  • 80

    out of 100

    Los Angeles Times Betsy Sharkey

    Berg, who wrote and directed, is more interested in how men deal with battle than the ideals or the politics that put them there. What the movie achieves, with a gruesome energy and a remarkable reality, is a firefight.

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  • 80

    out of 100

    Wall Street Journal Joe Morgenstern

    All four performances are first-rate, and the action is staged with shattering intensity.

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  • See all Lone Survivor reviews at Metacritic.com

For Families provided by Common Sense Media

Pause for kids 17 & under

Brutal, powerful, ultimately moving true Navy SEAL story.

What Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that Lone Survivor tells the true story of a 2005 Navy SEAL mission in Afghanistan gone terribly wrong. It features brutal, bloody violence, with guns, shooting, gory wounds, and many deaths, including major characters. The men use some sexual innuendo, as well as very strong language, including "f--k," "s--t," and "c--k." The movie is very intense, yet also very moving. It shows training footage and photos of real SEALs, including the real participants in this story. It also goes into a little detail about the Afghani tribe that rescued the last survivor, despite the danger they faced in doing so. Some parents won't mind bringing teens to this movie to demonstrate the bravery, heroism, and teamwork of the SEALs, but other parents may be worried that teens will want to head to the recruiting office afterward.

  • Families can talk about the movie's intense, brutal, bloody violence. What effect did it have? Did it seem realistic? Was it necessary in telling this story?
  • How does this movie make the Navy SEALs look? Do they come across as warriors or regular people? Does it make you want to join them? Do you think that's the intention of the movie?
  • Would you say that this movie is an anti-war movie or a pro-war movie, or somewhere in-between? Why?

The good stuff
  • message true1

    Messages: The movie wrestles with a profound moral quandary and viewers can decide what's right and wrong for themselves. War is depicted as ugly and brutal, but the Navy SEALs also show the considerable courage, strength, and dedication it takes to make the team, which makes them seem highly admirable. While some parents will find the patriotism, sacrifice, and heart the soldiers display incredibly moving, others might be concerned that war and the military appears in too positive a light, and might come off like a recruitment movie.

  • rolemodels true1

    Role models: The characters themselves are strong, brave, and work together, but they're just as flawed as anyone. The movie introduces us to a group of Afghan Pashtun villagers who protect one of the Americans in spite of the danger to themselves. Their laws of hospitality and protection go back generations, and are highly admirable.

What to watch for
  • violence false3

    Violence: The relentless battle violence is brutally realistic, shocking, and horrific. The battle does not go as it might in a normal war movie. Characters are shot in every conceivable part of their bodies, sprain their ankles, fall from cliffs, lose their fingers, bash their heads, and pass out. The fight is chaotic and desperate, with a great deal of blood and many bloody wounds. A character digs bloody shrapnel out of his wounded leg. Many characters die. A helicopter explodes, killing a number of men inside.

  • sex false2

    Sex: We hear plenty of sexual innuendo ("pushing peter," etc.) among the men during the movie's first half, before the fighting starts.

  • language false3

    Language: Language is very strong and constant, including "f--k," "s--t," "c--k," "balls," "crap," "bitch," "hell," "shut up," "muff," etc.

  • consumerism false0

    Consumerism: Not applicable

  • drugsalcoholtobacco false0

    Drinking, drugs and smoking: Not applicable

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