The Hollywood Reporter

By Michael Rechtshaffen
While by no means a masterpiece of the form, John Carpenter's The Ward is an economical period piece that still effectively demonstrates what a skilled technician can accomplish in a single location with a compact cast and sturdy old-school effects.
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Entertainment Weekly

By Owen Gleiberman
At least Carpenter the spook-meister knows how to goose you.
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By Michelle Orange
The story's obvious and various potential is left to stand on its own, and the scares are largely uninspired.
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Slant Magazine

By Ed Gonzalez
Its ostentatious sense of horror -- think later-day Argento -- is far from suggestive, though some of its queasier moments effectively tap into our fears of not-so-bygone forms of invasive physical therapy.
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Boxoffice Magazine

By Steve Ramos
Typically, Carpenter thrives on modestly budgeted films like The Ward, but this one comes off as an amateurish misstep due to unoriginal storytelling from fledgling screenwriters Michael and Shawn Rasmussen.
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By Scott Tobias
The Ward feels less indebted to cinema's past than a desperate attempt to keep up with the present. Carpenter has made his approximation of a cheap, twisty, shock-filled modern horror movie, and he has lost all but faint sighs of his minimalist swagger in the process.
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New Orleans Times-Picayune

By Mike Scott
In the end, Carpenter offers a reasonably nice payoff to this whole misfire.
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Boston Globe

By Wesley Morris
Even by the standards of mental-institution-movie misogyny, what an accidental but predictable creepshow this is.
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New York Post

By Lou Lumenick
A dull, by-the-numbers psych-ward horror thriller that's sadly a lot closer in quality to "Sucker Punch" than "Shutter Island."
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New York Daily News

By Joe Neumaier
Carpenter's economical but mundane chiller is possessed more by previous ghoul-friend flicks than it is by his better work.
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38 out of 100
Generally unfavorable reviews
Metascore® based on all critic reviews. Scores range from 0 to 100, with higher scores indicating more favorable reviews.