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REIGN OF FIRE


"What a vast enterprise has been marshaled in the service of such a minute idea...We cannot believe what happens in the movie, and we cannot believe that the movie was made...One prays for a flower or a ray of sunshine as those grotty warriors clamber into their cellars and over their slag heaps. Not since 'Battleship Earth' has there been worse grooming...I'm wondering, why, if civilization has been destroyed, do they have electricity and fuel? Not supposed to ask such questions. They're like, how come everybody has cigarettes in 'Waterworld'?" --Roger Ebert, Chicago Sun-Times

"Dragons have the best lines in 'Reign of Fire,' and they don't say a word. All they have to do is breathe...the fire snorters in this futuristic story are admirable creatures, way more convincing than the puny humans arrayed against them...Though 'Reign of Fire's' concept of a humans-versus-dragons smackdown is a good one, the way it's worked out on screen is more silly than compelling...If Bale is simply unconvincing as the sporadically mighty Quinn, McConaughey is so excessive as super-macho Van Zan he seems like a graduate of Jon Voight's Anaconda School of Acting." --Kenneth Turan, The Los Angeles Times

"... for much of its running time, 'Fire' is loads of fun. It has a jamming B-picture buzz--the kind of swift filmmaking and high spirits that have been missing from movies for a while...'Fire,' which feels like a nightmare version of 'Dungeons and Dragons,' has a quick, horror-movie punch...The movie is ingratiating and loose--mythology on the run--for a good spell...But for all its sprightly touches, the picture finally runs out of notions... the picture is as much fun as a great run at a slot machine: even when your luck runs out, you're losing only pocket change." --Elvis Mitchell, The New York Times

"It strains belief that nuclear weapons couldn't kill off the dragons, but three people with crossbows could. But then 'Reign of Fire' defies logic even in the terms of the creature-feature genre. Nor does it help matters that it's often hard to understand the dialogue--not only because of the movie's dreadful sound quality, but because the dragons seem to have killed everyone in Britain who doesn't have a heavy cockney accent." --Jonathan Foreman, The New York Post

"'Reign of Fire' is basically one great set piece surrounded by thickets of iron filings, oily hair and knotty-pine acting...You believe in the dragons more than you do in the people...Bale is, once again, the most heroic performer in a hopeless cause. But too often here, he sounds as if he's talking with his mouth full. As for McConaughey, let's just say that, for all his experience, he still doesn't seem quite old enough to suck on that unlit cigar his character is compelled to carry." --Gene Seymour, Newsday