Movie Review: ‘The Counselor’ a Bleak Waste of A-List Talents [Video]

Director Ridley Scott, writer Cormac McCarthy and the first-class cast failed to turn ugliness into a good movie.

Despite famous in Hollywood names like Brad Pitt, Cameron Diaz, Michael Fassbender and Penelope Cruz, Cormac McCathy’s movie appeared not going well with critics, who’ve granted The Counselor a 34% approval rating on Rotten Tomatoes.

Kenneth Turan calls it “a bleak waste of A-list talent.” “As cold, precise, and soulless as the diamonds that figure briefly in its plot, The Counselor is an extremely unpleasant piece of business,” he writes for the Los Angeles Times.

For Bloomberg, Greg Evans and Craig Seligman write that McCarthy gives audiences “unrestrained indulgence” that “may be remembered only for Cameron Diaz’s amazingly limber depiction of car sex. … Overwrought soliloquies about auto eroticism, snuff films, and mechanical strangulation devices do not a Hamlet make.”

“Considering the deep bench of A-list talent involved, Ridley Scott’s new Southwestern noir, The Counselor, is a jaw-dropping misfire,” claims Chris Nashawaty at Entertainment Weekly. “The dialogue is laughably pretentious, the plotting is virtually nonexistent, and the performances are so broad and cartoony that you keep wondering if it’s all some sort of prank.”

Peter Travers of The Rolling Stonewrites: “The Counselor [is] a droning meditation on capitalism in the form of a thriller about cocaine trading on the Tex-Mex border. Oddly, the published screenplay – while far from McCarthy’s top-drawer – reads better than it plays.”

He went on, adding: “Director Ridley Scott gets in some fierce action in the film’s final third. But the emphasis on talk leaves the words no room to breathe, much less resonate.”

Travers conludes: “McCarthy’s name has attracted a starry cast of chatterboxes. Michael Fassbender plays the title role; no one calls him anything but “Counselor.””

“He naively signs on to expedite the importing of cocaine from Colombia to Chicago in a septic-tank truck. His reason for breaking bad? The girl of his dreams (Penélope Cruz). In the opening scene, they talk dirty to each other. “You have the most luscious pussy in all of Christendom,” he says. “Oh, God,” she says. A religious allegory? Let’s hope so. As eroticism, it’s, um, unconvincing.”

Kirk Baird of Toledo Blade claims of ‘The Counselor’: “The Counselor is a minor drama about characters masquerading as a painfully slow thriller and an unfortunate waste of talent on both sides of the camera.”

“There’s no snap or impetus in Scott’s direction nor in McCarthy’s script. But at least it looks and sounds impressive,” he adds.

Lawrence Toppman of Charlotte Observer writes of the picture: “The endlessly enigmatic conversations and continual introduction of characters who never get defined for us (let alone fleshed out) finally make the movie arid, repetitive and hollow.”

However, as proverb claim, as many people as much opinions. Thus, Richard Roeper writes of the movie: “Sexy, complicated, smart, violent. Cool.”

His opinion appearsa to be shared by the other critic, Ethan Alter of Television Without Pity says: “All but certain to irritate general audiences and crater at the box office, The Counselor is nevertheless perversely fascinating – half misfire and half inspired.”

Share This article

We welcome comments that advance the story directly or with relevant tangential information. We try to block comments that use offensive language, all capital letters or appear to be spam, and we review comments frequently to ensure they meet our standards. If you see a comment that you believe is irrelevant or inappropriate, you can flag it to our editors by using the report abuse links. Views expressed in the comments do not represent those of Coinspeaker Ltd.