Shanghai (2015)

This period drama concerns an American (John Cusack) in Shanghai who, through the investigation of the death of a friend, ends up falling in love while stumbling upon a political conspiracy. 1408 helmer Mikael Håfström directs. Gong Li and… More

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Rated: R
Running Time:
Release Date: October 2, 2015
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Critic Score: 4% Rotten Tomatoes™ Critic Reviews

Consensus: Shanghai is crippled by a weak story and fatally undermined by clunky direction, making for a period political drama that lacks all of its key components.

Glenn Kenny
New York Times

You might be forgiven for expecting either an unfairly squelched masterpiece or an unholy mess. The movie is neither, although it falls closer to the mess side of the table.

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Mark Jenkins
Washington Post

Director Mikael Hafstrom and a fine cast and crew have made a film that's elegant and gauche in roughly equal measure.

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Todd Jorgenson

The true-life historical background is more compelling than the fictional melodrama.

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Robert Abele
Los Angeles Times

Under Mikael Håfström's visually clunky, rhythmless direction, it's a snooze of epic sameness: choppy action scenes, a blankly stern Cusack, and too many allegiance shifts to count or care for.

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Ignatiy Vishnevetsky
AV Club

Håfström directs it like he's sucking too hard on a cigarette, in a quick, over-and-done-with style that results only in fitful coughs of smoke.

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Jeffrey M. Anderson
Common Sense Media

Written by the talented Hossein Amini and clearly inspired by spy and detective movies of the 1940s, this seems to have been a labor of love. But SHANGHAI is so convoluted that it eventually becomes lost.

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Tirdad Derakhshani
Philadelphia Inquirer

It is hampered by weak writing and a badly executed story line.

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Rex Reed
New York Observer

How many times does John Cusack have to prove he is no leading man? In Shanghai he comes off as Sam Spade with chopsticks.

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Katie Walsh
Tribune News Service

Cusack is halfway between Humphrey Bogart and Jimmy Stewart, and the result doesn't come together.

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More reviews for Shanghai

Flixster Audience Score: 37% Flixster User Reviews
familiar stranger
Set in the backdrop of World War II, this spy thriller is passable. It falters mainly towards the climax. You aren't taken aback when you find out… More
Phil Hubbs
What a cast!! Ken Watanabe, Chow Yun Fat, John Cusack and Li Gong in this almost epic 40's noir type mystery cross war flick set just before the Pearl… More
Steven Vincent Gee
I expected a lot with an international heavy weight cast like this one. All the way to the smallest characters are filled with great actors. The cinematography… More