75

Philadelphia Inquirer

For a film that strives so hard to show the sheer messiness of real people's lives, Burning Plain does have an impossibly neat ending.
Full Review
63

Boston Globe

The best performance here comes from a Mexican child actress, Tessa Ia, as half of one of the fraught mother-daughter relationships.
Full Review
63

Chicago Sun-Times

By Roger Ebert
Told chronologically, it might have accumulated considerable power. Told as a labyrinthine tangle of intercut timelines and locations, it is a frustrating exercise in self-indulgence by writer-director Guillermo Arriaga.
Full Review
50

St. Louis Post-Dispatch

By Joe Williams
Initially, the puzzle structure and a pair of Oscar-winning actresses distract us from the dark vacuum at the center of this enterprise, but when it implodes, it doesn't reverberate.
Full Review
50

San Francisco Chronicle

The main drawbacks of The Burning Plain are its intentionally coy narrative and a zero-hour revelation that's ill-thought-out and generates some pretty chintzy psychobabble. It's the wobbliest element in an admirable, complex and frustrating movie.
Full Review
50

The Globe and Mail (Toronto)

By Stephen Cole
It's possible to admire the performances of stars Charlize Theron and Kim Basinger in The Burning Plain , even as you backpedal from the film, hoping the ponderous megasoap will just go away.
Full Review
50

The Hollywood Reporter

An ambitious, visually handsome production which fails to ignite.
Full Review
40

New York Daily News

By Joe Neumaier
All the actresses, especially Theron, are appropriately haunted, but let's hope Arriaga's love of echoes, fate and coincidence has run its mopey course.
Full Review
38

New York Post

By V.A. Musetto
Here the characters aren't compelling enough to ask viewers to give their brains a workout to determine exactly what's going on.
Full Review
33

Entertainment Weekly

By Lisa Schwarzbaum
The scenery (prettily captured by There Will Be Blood cinematographer Robert Elswit) is littered with heavy symbolism (fire! rain! dead birds!); the performances are merely heavy.
Full Review
45 out of 100
Mixed or average reviews
Metascore® based on all critic reviews. Scores range from 0 to 100, with higher scores indicating more favorable reviews.