Ladder 49
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Baltimore firefighter Jack Morrison, making the transition from inexperienced rookie to seasoned veteran, struggles to cope with a risky, demanding job that often shortchanges his wife and kids. He relies on the support of his mentor and captain, Mike Kennedy and his second family--found in the brotherly bond between the men of the firehouse. But when Jack becomes trapped in the worst blaze of his career, his life and the things he holds important--family, dignity, courage--come into focus. As his fellow firemen of Ladder 49 do all they can to rescue him, Jack's life hangs in the balance.

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Rotten Tomatoes Score: 40%

Critic Reviews from Rotten Tomatoes

"A serviceable testament to the firemen who would bravely risk their lives to protect the safety of others, etc., etc."
‑ Ben Kenigsberg, Village Voice
"Even the best scenes feel canned, secondhand, packaged. We've seen this all before."
‑ Desson Thomson, Washington Post
"Except for Jack no one else in the film is very well defined, and it often falls back onto types. The actors are good, and make the best of what they've got, but what they've got is very thin."
‑ Joshua Starnes,
"It's slick and it honors firefighters as obviously as the first wave of WWII films paid tribute to America's fighting men and women."
‑ James Plath, Movie Metropolis
"Ladder 49 wants to honor firefighters for their courage and selflessness...yet at every turn [the film] undercuts itself."
‑ Mark Pfeiffer, Reel Times: Reflections on Cinema
"Ladder 49 might have been an oversized Hollywood dazzler. Phoenix keeps it firmly and modestly on a human scale."
‑ Stephanie Zacharek,
"The story of Jack Morrison (Joaquin Phoenix), a guy so emotionally uncomplicated and unquestioningly dedicated to rescuing people he might have been raised by Saint Bernards."
‑ Geoff Pevere, Toronto Star
"Unabashed love letter to firefighters everywhere."
‑ Nell Minow, Common Sense Media
"A well-crafted tribute to the many dedicated firefighters who risk life and limb to make our world a little safer."
‑ CT Staff, Christianity Today
"A moving tribute [to firefighters] and an excellent dramatic work."
‑ Forrest Hartman, Reno Gazette-Journal
"Offers audiences a real rarity in theaters these days: a good, honest cry."
‑ Ann Hornaday, Washington Post
"An action drama/weepie that's so busy telling us that its characters are heroes, it forgets that they should be people first."
‑ Moira MacDonald, Seattle Times
"A fairly routine firefighter drama, with burning-building sequences that more or less all look alike."
‑ Rob Gonsalves,
"...has about the same amount of depth as an article from 'Boy's Life.'"
‑ Uri Lessing,
"Heartfelt, predictable, and finally surprisingly poignant."
‑ Steven D. Greydanus, Decent Films Guide
More reviews for Ladder 49 on Rotten Tomatoes

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