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We Own the Night Review

Movies.com Critics

3.5

Dave White Profile

… tense, violent, soaking in mood. 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
    59

    out of 100

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

  • 60

    out of 100

    The Hollywood Reporter Kirk Honeycutt

    A more accomplished film than "Yards." Yet it will fail to satisfy police movie buffs, as procedures are de-emphasized, and the drama is too perfunctory and obvious.

    Read Full Review

  • 67

    out of 100

    Entertainment Weekly Owen Gleiberman

    The story is too patterned and too contrived.

    Read Full Review

  • 75

    out of 100

    ReelViews James Berardinelli

    With a cast like this, one has a right to expect something amazing, so the fact that We Own the Night is merely "entertaining" might cause disappointment in some quarters.

    Read Full Review

  • 75

    out of 100

    Chicago Sun-Times Roger Ebert

    This is an atmospheric, intense film, well acted, and when it's working it has a real urgency.

    Read Full Review

  • 75

    out of 100

    USA Today Claudia Puig

    The movie really belongs to Phoenix, who gives a haunting performance with just the right degree of intensity.

    Read Full Review

  • See all We Own the Night reviews at Metacritic.com

For Families provided by Common Sense Media

Iffy for 16+

Well-acted but very bloody crime drama.

What Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that while young kids probably won't be interested, older teens who like crime dramas may be drawn to this Joaquin Phoenix-Mark Wahlberg film. Like most mob dramas, there's lots of strong language and a great deal of bloody violence and illicit behavior (drugs and alcohol are everywhere, especially nightclub scenes). In addition to the execution-style killings and police ambushes, there are a few scenes of a couple intensely making out and a shot of two topless, drunk women dancing at a club.

  • Families can talk about the appeal of mob movies. Why are these violent movies so popular? What's so compelling about characters with one foot in the criminal world and one in law enforcement? Kids: Was the violence too graphic, or was it appropriate for the subject matter? How realistic do you think the film is?

The good stuff
  • message true0

    Messages: A club manager with seedy connections refuses to help his police officer brother. A tragedy forces him to reconsider, and he becomes a driving force in helping his brother expose a major New York drug operation.

What to watch for
  • violence false5

    Violence: Lots of violence, including many bloody, gory scenes: Many characters are shot -- a couple of them at close range, execution style; one man has the back of his head shot off; a character slits his own throat rather than talk to the police; someone is beaten up by the police; a character jumps out the window and onto a fence; etc.

  • sex false5

    Sex: No sex scenes, but several scenes of Bobby and Amada making out/groping while clothed; two women dance topless on the club's bar; Joseph and his wife embrace.

  • language false5

    Language: Near-constant cursing: many, many uses of "f--k," "motherf----r," "s--t," "a--hole," etc.

  • consumerism false3

    Consumerism: NYPD, Sheraton hotel, Blondie's disco songs.

  • drugsalcoholtobacco false5

    Drinking, drugs and smoking: Clubgoers and major characters do an assortment of drugs, including snorting cocaine, taking uppers/downers, etc. Many scenes include characters taking/dealing drugs or drinking.

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