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Red Lights Review Critics


Dave White Profile


Other Critics provided by

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

  • 2.0

    out of 100

    Generally unfavorable reviews
    based on a weighted average of all
    critic review scores.

  • 38

    out of 100

    Chicago Tribune Michael Phillips

    The storytelling proceeds in such a halting manner, with De Niro's speeches going on and on and on, that before long you'd kill for an easy scare.

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  • 50

    out of 100

    USA Today Claudia Puig

    It's mystifying how such a muddled and silly movie drew the talented cast it did.

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  • 63

    out of 100

    Chicago Sun-Times Roger Ebert

    Red Lights also shows a director who knows how to construct a story and build interest, but at the end, it flies apart. I wonder if there was an earlier draft. I suspect most audiences would prefer a film with an ending that plays by the same rules as the rest of the story.

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  • 67

    out of 100

    Entertainment Weekly Owen Gleiberman

    As a sinister ESP showman, Robert De Niro is corny and fun.

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For Families provided by Common Sense Media

Pause for kids 15 & under

Horror/thriller about psychics has violence, language.

What Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that Red Lights is a thriller about paranormal researchers investigating a famous psychic who may or may not be legit. It has some horror elements and some scary stuff, as well as fighting, arguing, a little blood and gore, and characters dying. And there's a general uneasy, tense feeling throughout the movie. Language is the other major issue, with strong words like "f--k" and "s--t" (though they're used relatively infrequently). An older character is seen popping unidentified prescription pills.

  • Families can talk about Red Lights' violence. Even though there are no shootouts and few actual scenes of explosive violence, how do the filmmakers create a general mood of tension?
  • Is the movie scary? Is it any less scary when the "ghosts" aren't real?
  • Do you believe in psychic phenomena? Did the movie change your mind in any way? Does it matter whether Red Lights definitively answers the question about psychics being legitimate?

The good stuff
  • message true0

    Messages: Red Lights' main theme is the idea of faith: whether or not to believe in something despite the absence of proof. It doesn't necessarily comment upon this positively or negatively, but it does suggest that people who do offer proof are frauds and are only negating the very concept of "faith." On a subtler level, the movie is about belonging.

  • rolemodels true0

    Role models: Characters work to solve problems, but each person's motivation seems to be selfish and/or based on revenge -- not to mention that the problems they're working on may be unsolvable.

What to watch for
  • violence false3

    Violence: Some violent and/or disturbing paranormal events, such as angry "ghosts" shaking the furniture, birds suddenly smashing into windows, or lights exploding. There are also some scary sequences, such as nightmares. Main characters die. There's a bloody fistfight in a bathroom. Some blood and gore is shown. Graphic photos are seen. Characters often argue or engage in tense discussions. A character performs a gruesome magic trick that makes it look as if he has pierced his bottom lip with a pen.

  • sex false0

    Sex: Two central characters seem to be on the verge of some sexual tension, but it doesn't go anywhere.

  • language false4

    Language: Language isn't constant but includes words such as "f--k," "s--t," "crap," and "ass," plus "oh God" and "Jesus Christ" (as exclamations).

  • consumerism false0

    Consumerism: Not applicable

  • drugsalcoholtobacco false1

    Drinking, drugs and smoking: One character is seen popping some kind of prescription pills.