Civil War Reviews Are All Saying The Same Thing About This Sci-Fi Thriller Epic

By TeeJay Small | Updated

Alex Garland’s Civil War finally arrived in theaters this weekend, with a host of positive reviews highlighting the many exceptional qualities of the politically charged thriller. Social media is abuzz with reactions to the Kirsten Dunst-led film, while Rotten Tomatoes currently lists a 93 percent certified fresh score. With all these glowing reviews, it seems clear that Civil War will be a major hit before its tenure at the box office comes to an end.

United States In A Civil War

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The film centers on a team of journalists who travel across the United States as a civil war rages on, causing them to encounter significant hostility and danger along the way.

Needless to say, Civil War highlights a number of real-world issues that plague the political landscape of America today, though several reviews articulate that the project manages to retain a largely apolitical stance.

As we race toward another tumultuous presidential election this November, this may be the perfect time for a movie like this to hit the big screen.

Current Political Climate

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Most Civil War reviews highlight the excellent characters, performances, and story details, though some go even deeper, centering the pathos of the film as a well-crafted deep dive into the current political climate.

The Daily Telegraph’s Robbie Collin eloquently states that “Civil War moves in ways you’d forgotten films of this scale could – with compassion for its lead characters and a dark, prowling intellect, and yet a simultaneous total commitment to thrilling the audience at every single moment.”

Trailers for the film inspired a great deal of buzz online, though it seems that Civil War has surpassed all expectations on opening night.

Scope Of The Battlefield

One major surprise packed into the film’s hour and 49-minute runtime is the sheer scope of the battlefield, which takes place within a deeply fractured America that has split into numerous factions.

Inverse reviewer Siddhant Adlakha poetically highlights this detail, calling the film “An upsetting sensory experience accompanied by thundering cacophonies and paralyzing scenes of war and savagery so vast, intense, and overwhelming that you can practically taste the gunpowder lingering in the air.”

Multiple Civil War reviews concur with this reading of the film, including Katie Smith-Wong of Movie Marker, who states “Unlike adrenaline-fuelled war films, Civil War will stir profound conversations about the necessity of conflict.”

Not Unanimous Praise

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Not every Civil War review is unanimous in its praise, however, as some publications were quick to point out flaws that prevent the movie from being a 10/10. One review from The Curb’s Nadine Whitney reads “Civil War is not an insignificant film.

However, Garland’s script commits to little. It becomes determinism masquerading as a wake-up call. Despite the colossal technical achievements, Civil War is a spectacle allegory.”

Whitney still listed the film as certified fresh, calling it a good movie, while lamenting certain details that could have elevated the project to that of a great movie.

Civil War Budget

What many Civil War reviews seem to be referencing without outright stating, is that the film accomplishes a great deal with very little.

Viewers who caught opening night screenings of the Alex Garland-led spectacle movie may be shocked to learn that it only cost $50 million to produce, making the effects and coordination presented in Civil War some of Garland’s finest work.

Garland previously helmed several other well-reviewed sci-fi films, including 2014’s Ex Machina, 2018’s Annihilation, and 2022’s Men.

Praising Alex Garland

Garland’s direction of Civil War was specifically praised in a number of reviews, including those written by YouTube critic Perri Nemiroff and Austin Chronicle’s Richard Whittaker, respectively.

Nemiroff elucidated “Alex Garland’s latest is wholly consuming. An epic but deeply intimate piece that uses the experience and motivations of a group of military-embedded journalists to highlight the deeply chilling reality of living in a world that never learns.”

Whittaker held similar praise in his review, stating “Garland’s masterful and shocking script is counterbalanced with his quiet, mannered direction.”

Wide Audience

Clearly, Civil War has a lot to offer viewers of any political affiliation, if the reviews are anything to go by.

Those interested in catching the box office smash on the big screen can do so today in theaters across the country.

Just be sure to scrape the political bumper stickers off your car before entering the theater, or you may be targeted in the political upheaval.

Source: Rotten Tomatoes