Critic Reviews



Based on 12 critic reviews provided by
A courageous and serious film that explores the limits of the mythic American virtues of persistence, inventiveness, and rugged individualism.
Los Angeles Times
Weir's orchestrated The Mosquito Coast's action to match Fox's progressive mental state, from rage to explosion to squalls and finally to hurricane velocity; however, the film leaves us not with an apotheosis, but exhaustion. [26 Nov 1986]
It is hard to believe that a film as beautiful as The Mosquito Coast [adapted from the novel by Paul Theroux] can also be so bleak, but therein lies its power and undoing.
The Mosquito Coast is the only movie you'll see this season that has too much ambition for its own good - its subject, really, is nothing less than the American experience.
Chicago Reader
Peter Weir's 1986 adaptation of Paul Theroux's best-selling novel is literally that - an adaptation without much character of its own.
The movie has been directed and acted so well, in fact, that almost all my questions have to do with the script: Why was the hero made so uncompromisingly hateful?
What keeps The Mosquito Coast from being a great movie is too much caution.
The Globe and Mail (Toronto)
The Mosquito Coast is a work of consummate craftsmanship and it's spectacularly acted, down to the smallest roles (Martha Plimpton as a classically obstreperous preacher's daughter, for example), but its field of vision is as narrow and eventually as claustrophobic as Allie's. [28 Nov 1986]
The New York Times
In spite of its authentic scenery (it was filmed in Belize), this Mosquito Coast is utterly flat.
The problem is that the high-pitched whine of Allie's character finally vitiates not merely the viewer's sympathy for him, but sympathy for the movie he dominates, despite the care and courage that went into its making.

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