Critics Consensus

Critics Consensus: 3 Days to Kill Misses the Mark

Plus, Pompeii is more campy than epic.

by | February 21, 2014 | Comments

This week at the movies, we’ve got an ailing spy (3 Days to Kill, starring Kevin Costner and Hailee Steinfeld) and a gladiator in love (Pompeii, starring Kit Harington and Emily Browning). What do the critics have to say?

3 Days to Kill


Plenty of action movies succeed despite (or, in some cases, because of) convoluted plotting, wiseacre dialogue, and gleefully over-the-top set pieces. Unfortunately, critics say 3 Days to Kill never quite gets that balance right, and the result is an uneasy mix between technically accomplished action sequences and an underdeveloped family conflict. Costner stars as a CIA agent with a lot on his plate: he’s dying of cancer, and he just wants to reconnect with his estranged wife and daughter in Paris. However, upon his arrival in the City of Lights, he’s tasked with eliminating two high profile targets, in exchange for an experimental serum that might extend his lifespan. The pundits say 3 Days to Kill has some exciting moments, but it’s ultimately undermined by thin characterizations and an over-reliance on jokey humor. (Check out this week’s Total Recall, in which we count down Costner’s best-reviewed films.)



Gladiators! A beautiful maiden! A legendary natural disaster! Pompeii has all the elements in place for a ripping sword-and-sandal flick. Alas, critics say this big-budget adventure lacks the energy and storytelling heft to amount to more than a guilty pleasure — though many note that the volcanic eruption is pretty cool. Kit Harington stars as a slave who becomes a celebrated gladiator; when he falls in love with a rich girl betrothed to a corrupt politician, our hero must rescue her and escape the fiery lava from Mt. Vesuvius. The pundits say Pompeii is pretty campy stuff, and while it’s by no means the epic it aims to be, it’s a decent enough melodrama if you don’t take it too seriously. (Check out our interviews with the stars of Pompeii, as well as our gallery of natural disasters on film.)

Also opening this week in limited release:

  • Elaine Stritch: Shoot Me, a documentary about the legendary Broadway actress, is at 100 percent.

  • The Romanian import Child’s Pose, a thriller about a woman who goes to great lengths to cover for her son after he kills a teenager in a car crash, is Certified Fresh at 93 percent.

  • Hayao Miyazaki‘s Oscar-nominated The Wind Rises, an animated drama about a young man obsessed with airplanes, is Certified Fresh at 88 percent.

  • Omar, a thriller about a Palestinian man who’s coerced into informing on a friend, is at 84 percent.

  • In Secret, starring Elizabeth Olsen and Oscar Isaac in a period drama about a scandalous affair in 1860s Paris, is at 39 percent.

  • Black Out, an action comedy about a retired criminal who’s framed in the theft of a large amount of cocaine, is at 38 percent.

  • Barefoot, starring Evan Rachel Wood and Scott Speedman in a romantic comedy about a troubled young woman who is invited by an ex-con to be his date to a wedding, is at 10 percent.

Tag Cloud

Paramount Plus laika WGN Watching Series wonder woman Year in Review criterion Hulu Thanksgiving History a nightmare on elm street prank mcc Chernobyl sequels Lucasfilm Anna Paquin international political drama indie hispanic heritage month debate Spectrum Originals remakes DirecTV comic book movies Turner Classic Movies PaleyFest politics TCA Winter 2020 hidden camera ITV CBS All Access archives dceu Exclusive Video news festivals adventure versus Adult Swim Holidays Starz Netflix book adaptation rotten movies we love interviews TLC See It Skip It Binge Guide ViacomCBS Travel Channel science fiction Epix 4/20 BBC America christmas movies Indigenous SXSW 2022 comics Fox Searchlight LGBT live action worst movies SXSW rt archives summer preview directors Tags: Comedy japan anthology Creative Arts Emmys FXX Geeked Week 79th Golden Globes Awards boxing BBC One Musical cars dragons Marvel docuseries spider-man Warner Bros. YA 2020 teaser scene in color series best Comedy Central Spring TV CW Seed TCM Rock Certified Fresh black space Comic-Con@Home 2021 rt labs First Reviews Martial Arts The Walt Disney Company TIFF South by Southwest Film Festival Best Picture USA Amazon Studios tv talk Image Comics PlayStation Mary Poppins Returns 72 Emmy Awards cinemax parents Polls and Games spider-verse mockumentary Valentine's Day heist movie period drama Black History Month ghosts halloween aapi stand-up comedy godzilla TV movies Peacock suspense documentaries scary movies medical drama Country 45 rt labs critics edition Netflix Christmas movies Prime Video popular fast and furious witnail Tumblr APB films adaptation Spike RT History biopic Reality Competition ID king kong American Society of Cinematographers Countdown Kids & Family Crackle doctor who reboot E! 21st Century Fox dc President animated strong female leads Discovery Channel chucky razzies Dark Horse Comics scene in color film series binge Fantasy Pop TV technology elevated horror supernatural vs. young adult The Arrangement free movies jamie lee curtis Best Actress HBO Go Mindy Kaling venice Awards Best Director New York Comic Con Winter TV scene in color screen actors guild war Sci-Fi Cosplay Stephen King dogs new zealand Hallmark The Witch Infographic Cannes Emmys adenture Paramount TV Set visit hispanic sports franchise nature lord of the rings obi wan TNT thriller kaiju Amazon dreamworks kids movies book golden globe awards hist cops spy thriller Best Actor blaxploitation Amazon Prime Pride Month cancelled television richard e. Grant DC streaming service ABC Family romance AMC comic First Look Music Star Wars 2021 Amazon Prime Video true crime YouTube Television Critics Association james bond TruTV social media marvel cinematic universe Arrowverse Writers Guild of America mutant vampires Superheroe OneApp Grammys Mystery target scene in color Brie Larson stoner pirates of the caribbean TV Land Pirates spinoff Classic Film reviews toy story psycho movie quibi Women's History Month Comics on TV Sundance MGM Endgame DC Comics crime casting summer TV serial killer die hard screenings HBO Legendary El Rey Marvel Television game show Pacific Islander E3 what to watch The Walking Dead nbcuniversal TBS miniseries comiccon WarnerMedia blockbuster Character Guide Oscar trophy streaming Trivia facebook renewed TV shows werewolf saw video on demand obituary Academy Awards Disney+ Disney Plus FX on Hulu 94th Oscars The Academy Chilling Adventures of Sabrina Ovation anime HFPA Lifetime Christmas movies halloween tv National Geographic YouTube Premium justice league docudrama slasher Britbox Ellie Kemper Nat Geo Pixar sopranos Mary Tyler Moore cancelled Fall TV zero dark thirty Universal Disney Plus independent spain Walt Disney Pictures target Red Carpet Super Bowl universal monsters scorecard broadcast biography police drama Reality Turner Universal Pictures Premiere Dates Nominations Opinion 24 frames critic resources action-comedy PBS DC Universe 007 Musicals Quiz GoT satire Avengers Pop DGA breaking bad sitcom summer TV preview dexter feel good Shondaland south america romantic comedy sag awards BET Focus Features cartoon fresh football Crunchyroll 2019 Star Wars Celebration telelvision Trophy Talk Christmas revenge AMC Plus name the review Syfy Oscars Animation Family ABC Signature Disney streaming service Apple Elton John Hallmark Christmas movies YouTube Red Acorn TV Box Office Columbia Pictures psychological thriller Black Mirror Instagram Live basketball diversity zombies 2018 Tokyo Olympics historical drama Esquire Disney Channel HBO Max discovery GIFs black comedy VH1 new york award winner CNN crime thriller Baby Yoda Film Festival 99% Horror series Sony Pictures green book zombie rom-coms Television Academy Summer Extras NBA spanish language Logo dark Awards Tour game of thrones video critics Rom-Com Film Mudbound IFC FX Neflix CMT Sony mob The CW Fox News 2016 Comic Book gangster concert Teen harry potter Wes Anderson disaster NYCC TCA Awards mission: impossible A24 golden globes TCA 2017 documentary Freeform cancelled TV series Tomatazos streamig Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt Rocketman IFC Films Pet Sematary Disney singing competition olympics crime drama Paramount Pictures Tarantino Sundance TV MCU Marvel Studios cancelled TV shows unscripted Podcast Food Network batman comic book movie Alien BAFTA FOX slashers BBC Bravo 73rd Emmy Awards The Purge deadpool theme song scary Lifetime worst transformers 1990s Paramount Network 90s cats Cartoon Network Drama crossover VICE comedies latino Masterpiece Shudder Biopics king arthur TV One San Diego Comic-Con superman robots based on movie emmy awards monster movies Superheroes Nickelodeon 93rd Oscars hollywood Song of Ice and Fire ABC jurassic park CBS Sneak Peek Holiday all-time Emmy Nominations canceled know your critic Hear Us Out SundanceTV royal family Fargo Interview USA Network Toys cooking Marathons dramedy foreign boxoffice Hollywood Foreign Press Association women rotten posters asian-american TCA natural history talk show Trailer Western VOD finale Mary poppins spanish 71st Emmy Awards BET Awards Native 2017 superhero composers Ghostbusters live event 78th Annual Golden Globe Awards joker child's play Calendar australia ratings Election leaderboard ESPN MSNBC aliens Action GLAAD high school travel X-Men nfl trailers TV renewals children's TV Best and Worst Apple TV Plus NBC sequel Star Trek A&E italian 20th Century Fox SDCC RT21 blockbusters Captain marvel Comedy Sundance Now indiana jones classics french marvel comics comic books Funimation kong cults MTV canceled TV shows Vudu genre art house Lionsgate Rocky 2015 Heroines LGBTQ Broadway toronto twilight television Video Games Apple TV+ Winners Tubi japanese festival OWN stop motion streaming movies Showtime Photos Schedule new star wars movies IMDb TV legend