Want to See
Not Interested
Rate it ½ star
Rate it 1 star
Rate it 1½ stars
Rate it 2 stars
Rate it 2½ stars
Rate it 3 stars
Rate it 3½ stars
Rate it 4 stars
Rate it 4½ stars
Rate it 5 stars
EARTHWORK is the true story of real-life crop artist Stan Herd (played by Oscar nominee and Spirit Award Winner for "Winter's Bone" John Hawkes, in his first starring role), told through a single episode of his life. In 1994, Stan traveled from Kansas to New York City and risked everything to create a massive environmental artwork on land owned by Donald Trump. The multi-acre piece was made from soil, rock, plants and vegetation near an underground railway tunnel. Stan recruited a number of homeless individuals living in the tunnel as his crew. Over the months it took to complete… More
Rotten Tomatoes Score: 79%

Critic Reviews from Rotten Tomatoes

"The story has dramatic reversals, humor, suspense and plenty of colorful, eccentric characters."
‑ Colin Covert, Minneapolis Star Tribune
"John Hawkes brings a laconic soulfulness to this ultra-low-key, only mildly involving tale of artistic pursuit."
‑ Sheri Linden, Hollywood Reporter
"While we're grateful for Ordal's introduction to this atypical artist, the film's focus on the sentimental side of the story is at the expense of showing us enough of his terrestrial achievements."
‑ Alison Gang, San Diego Union-Tribune
"Ultimately, "Earthwork" poses an interesting question. Does the true value of art lie in its creation or the pleasure that others get while viewing it?"
‑ Eric Melin,
"The movie's numerous strengths include the cinematography by Bruce Francis Cole, the editing of extraneous material to 93 seamlessly flowing minutes by Brad Roszell and an upbeat, soothing guitar-heavy instrumental score by musician David Goodrich."
‑ Keith Cohen, Entertainment Spectrum
""Earthwork" takes an unexpected swerve but one that adds layers of meaning and emotion to a film that is as beautiful and wrenching as it is unassuming."
‑ Kevin Thomas, Los Angeles Times
"Directed, written and produced by Chris Ordal, "Earthwork" is best left to TV."
‑ V.A. Musetto, New York Post
"Hawkes is finally getting the great roles he has long deserved."
‑ Chris Hewitt (St. Paul), St. Paul Pioneer Press
"This is a movie about work and about the satisfaction that a person can find in accomplishing something."
‑ Ignatiy Vishnevetsky, Ebert Presents At The Movies
"Hawkes' performance reflects the gentle unaffectedness of Ordal's writing and directing. Earthwork hasn't any big bombastic moments. Instead it worms its way into your good graces slowly and thoughtfully until you're hooked."
‑ Robert W. Butler, Kansas City Star
"Character actor John Hawkes, his rural demeanor tailor-made for hick pics, breaks through typecasting stereotypes in his nuanced portrayal of crop artist Stan Herd in Chris Ordal's ambitious Earthwork."
‑ Ronnie Scheib, Variety
"Earthwork's narrative follows too-familiar templates, and its characters lack the careful detail of Herd's own art."
‑ Ian Buckwalter, NPR
"It's a rare film that makes viewers love a fellow who takes needless chances."
‑ Dan Lybarger, MovieMaker Magazine
"Writer-director Chris Ordal does something a lot of young filmmakers either can't do, or consciously try to avoid -- tell a simple story, simply, and without overindulging in stylistic gimmicks or emotional manipulation."
‑ Brent Simon, Shared Darkness
"Earthwork turns a potentially fascinating, infuriating story of failure into a dull, na´ve civics lesson."
‑ Chuck Bowen, Slant Magazine
More reviews for Earthwork on Rotten Tomatoes