Reviews provided by RottenTomatoes
The theme's familiar, but The Samaritan's stylish palette -- the colors of corruption and despair -- paints it new.
New York Times:
[Jackson's] doleful revenant is in almost every scene, and this hardworking actor seems to know that the film around him should be a light-footed caper instead of a grim noir with a side order of deviance.
Jackson seems only interested in cashing his paycheck, even if it's not an especially large one.
A rock solid Samuel L. Jackson adeptly anchors the twists and turns of this noir crime thriller.
It's not honest with its people, or its plot. And the only ones it really cheats are audience members.
New York Daily News:
Way too much psychosexual melodrama, portrayed in performances that range from utterly bored (Jackson) to embarrassingly broad (Kirby).
"The Samaritan" isn't a great noir, but it's true to the tradition and gives Samuel L. Jackson one of his best recent roles.
Globe and Mail:
A scripted cliche: the ex-con who wants to go straight until the plot kicks in.
Surely there were sheepish faces all round in Jackson's camp when they saw this?
Despite its exploitation ambitions, this Samaritan is good only for a last-ditch swerve into schmaltz.
Sets itself up as a crime thriller yet fails to deliver more than a twinge of surprise as it meanders toward a flaccid endgame swindle.
If anything, this Canadian production misses a great opportunity to dig into its setting and examine the dark side of seemingly pristine Toronto, even as the script by Elan Mastai and director David Weaver labors over a mostly boilerplate storyline.
Weaver's story slowly begins to buckle under the weight of its own self-seriousness and familiarity, concluding with a showdown and resolution marked by one implausible and unsatisfying been-here-done-that twist after another.