(1998)

Critic Reviews

46

Metascore

Based on 26 critic reviews provided by Metacritic.com
75
It's got unpredictable plot twists and unexpected laughs coming out of dark corners. The sharp-edged film also looks terrific.
70
Washington Post
Upon this fine mess shines Janeane Garofalo like a ray of sarcastic sunlight as FBI agent Shelby...With her gift for sweet bile, the sardonic Garofalo makes every second on screen a treasure to be cherished.
63
Chicago Tribune
The movie seems so convinced of its own entertainment value that it has neglected to factor in the elements that make a comedic thriller more than just a facile exercise -- i.e., suspense, tension, heart. Being amused by plot turns is not the same as caring, and Clay Pigeons never inspires you to grab your armrest or catch your breath. [25 Sept 1998]
63
The Globe and Mail (Toronto)
Where it stumbles is in the script by Matt Healy, which is often clever, but never quite takes hold.
63
Chicago Sun-Times
Within Clay Pigeons is a smaller story that might have involved us more, but it's buried by overkill.
63
The cast's control and Dobkin's assured pacing keep most of the funny things funny and make most of the scary things scary - while maintaining the tricky balance between humor and fear.
60
Film.com
An OK debut effort, but like so many "Pulp Fiction" wannabes, it lacks freshness and energy.
60
Salon
I wanted to take these two characters somewhere else and make a real movie about them...But Vaughn provides so many spooky, hilarious, unhinged moments, you won't mind sitting through it.
40
The A.V. Club
Perhaps this will seem fresh and interesting years down the road, when the self-aware-thriller genre has long played out, but for now, it's a tired horse that should have been put down in the pitch meeting.
25
Entertainment Weekly
It's young-Hollywood-driven business as usual in this derivative, nasty, and ultimately empty drama.

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