Pioneer 2013

Critics score:
54 / 100

Reviews provided by RottenTomatoes

Joe Morgenstern, Wall Street Journal: In a cast that includes Wes Bentley, Stephen Lang and Jonathan LaPaglia, it's Mr. Hennie who makes "Pioneer" worth watching ... Read more

Joe Leydon, Variety: Although involving on a scene-to-scene basis, Erik Skjoldbjaerg's '80s-set Norwegian thriller is curiously muted in impact. Read more

Boyd van Hoeij, Hollywood Reporter: Though technically quite an achievement and well-acted... [Pioneer] never [becomes] the character drama, white-knuckle thrill ride or -- even better! -- smart combination of both that the film clearly could be. Read more

Kenneth Turan, Los Angeles Times: A brooding psychological drama where everything that happens is open to multiple interpretations and figuring out who if anyone is on your side gets harder and harder to do. Read more

Ella Taylor, NPR: The underwater sequences stun and terrify - nothing says claustrophobia quite like two weeks in a pressurized diving bell with someone you can't necessarily trust - and there's almost as much moisture and terror on land to drive Petter round the bend. Read more

Jordan Hoffman, New York Daily News: "Pioneer" has the necessary parts for a finger-pointing thriller that could boil the blood if handled well. Alas, this story of workers wounded by corrupt oil industrialists and politicians sinks from drawn-out scenes and too few surprises. Read more

Nicolas Rapold, New York Times: Mr. Skjoldbjaerg, who also tapped Norwegian history with his bank robbery re-enactment "Nokas," doesn't convey a creeping atmosphere of moral rot so much as an irksome glumness. Read more

Walter V. Addiego, San Francisco Chronicle: Skjoldbjaerg is unable to make us care as much as we should, and gives the film a kind of muddy look that translates directly into the viewer's mood. Read more

Trevor Johnston, Time Out: Insomnia director Erik Skoldbjaerg knows his '70s conspiracy thrillers backwards. As a result, Pioneer delivers insidious, shadowy tension. Read more

Sam Weisberg, Village Voice: The tension never lets up. Read more