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Sleuth Review Critics


Dave White Profile

… Caine eats Law for breakfast … Read full review

Other Critics provided by

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

  • 3.0

    out of 100

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

  • 63

    out of 100

    USA Today Claudia Puig

    While the entire premise of Sleuth is a gimmick, having Michael Caine and Jude Law remake the 1972 adaptation of Anthony Shaffer's Tony Award-winning play heightens the gimmick quotient.

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  • 63

    out of 100

    Chicago Tribune Michael Phillips

    Caine and Law may not be playing human beings, but Pinter’s sense of humor is at least more interesting than Shaffer’s. Caine in particular appears to enjoy honing his cold-eyed stare.

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  • 70

    out of 100

    The Hollywood Reporter Ray Bennett

    Despite top-flight acting from Michael Caine and Jude Law, it loses its grip in the third act and let's the air out of what might have been a memorably gripping film.

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  • 75

    out of 100

    Entertainment Weekly Owen Gleiberman

    It's like "Deathtrap" crossed with "Cribs" as staged by Stanley Kubrick.

    Read Full Review

  • 75

    out of 100

    Chicago Sun-Times Roger Ebert

    Caine, who has never been much for the stage, is a superb screen actor, so good his master classes on acting for the camera are on DVD. Here, dry and clipped, biting and savage, he goes for the kill.

    Read Full Review

  • See all Sleuth reviews at

For Families provided by Common Sense Media

Iffy for 16+

Intense cat-and-mouse thriller is for adults only.

What Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that this sleek, adult-oriented thriller tackles mature themes -- infidelity, violence, murder -- from the get-go. Swear words (including "f--k") and other inflammatory language are hurled like weapons; later, actual weapons (including guns and knives) are brandished. It's clear from the beginning that main characters Milo and Andrew aim to annihilate each other. Even older teens may find the film's brutality uncomfortable: This is no cartoonishly violent video game, but an ugly, down and dirty obliteration.

  • Families can talk about infidelity. Can it truly drive people to extremes like the ones shown in this movie, or is that an exaggeration on Hollywood's part? Why is the media so fascinated by love gone awry? Why do you think the filmmakers choose not to show Maggie? Should they have? If you've seen the 1970s original, you can compare and contrast the two. How are they similar and different? Which do you like better? Why?

The good stuff
  • message true0

    Messages: The never-seen Maggie cuckolds Andrew and persuades Milo to see her husband. Cruelty rules the day, and both Andrew and Milo aim to humiliate the other. They do so by playing mental games, with the battles quickly turning violent.

What to watch for
  • violence false3

    Violence: Lots, though nothing gory. The main characters beat each other up quite brutally (and sometimes in close-up) and later brandish knives and guns (shots are fired). In one scene, Milo nearly strangles Andrew with a necklace. In many others, they threaten to kill each other. The ending is stunning in its cruelty.

  • sex false0

    Sex: No sex shown, but the acrimony between the two main characters stems from Andrew's wife leaving him for Milo. Later, sexual tension surfaces between the two men.

  • language false5

    Language: Includes uses of "bulls--t," "prick" and "f--k."

  • consumerism false0

    Consumerism: Heavy emphasis on high-tech gadgets (though labels aren't easily identifiable). The remote control for them looks like an iPod Nano.

  • drugsalcoholtobacco false3

    Drinking, drugs and smoking: Characters drink whiskey and other hard liquor; in one painfully humiliating scene, Milo guzzles alcohol straight from the bottle.