• Released
  • January 14, 1981
  • R , 1 hr 42 min
  • Science Fiction
    Horror
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80

Variety

Scanners offers at least one literally eye-popping moment and another that can only be called mind-blowing.
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80

Time

By Richard Corliss
Cronenberg delivers.
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75

TV Guide

Scanners is a memorable and absorbing genre entertainment.
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63

Boston Globe

By Jay Carr
The film is more interesting as a phenomenon than as a movie. [27 Feb 1981]
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60

The New York Times

By Vincent Canby
Unfortunately the plot thickens so rapidly and so lumpily that one very soon loses interest in spite of the quite stunning and gory special effects.
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60

Chicago Reader

By Dave Kehr
One of the most technically proficient of David Cronenberg's early gnawing, Canadian-made horror movies, though it lacks both the logic and the queasy sexual subtext that made his still earlier work - "Rabid," "They Came From Within" - so memorably revolting.
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50

The Globe and Mail (Toronto)

By Jay Scott
The larger budget has given Scanners a high-gloss Hollywood look, the editing is occasionally elegant and the special effects, which consist mostly of imaginative ways of turning actors into meat, provoke from the audience the desired response ("Oh, yuk]"), but he is careful to keep the violence within currently accepted boundaries. [19 Jan 1981]
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50

Chicago Sun-Times

By Roger Ebert
Scanners is a new horror film made with enough craft and skill that it could have been very good, if it could find a way to make us care about it.
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60 out of 100
Generally favorable reviews
Metascore® based on all critic reviews. Scores range from 0 to 100, with higher scores indicating more favorable reviews.