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David Mamet writes and directs the political thriller Spartan. Respected Secret Service agent Robert Scott (Val Kilmer) is assigned to the kidnapping case of Laura Newton (Kristen Bell), the missing daughter of a high-ranking political figure. Scott is teamed up with rookie Curtis (Derek Luke). Aided by the FBI and the CIA, the team discovers a human trafficking operation that may lead to Laura's kidnappers. Meanwhile, political operative Stoddard (William H. Macy) refuses to cooperate with the rescue mission. Scott and Curtis are forced to quit the investigation when the media reports… More

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Rotten Tomatoes Score: 64%

Critic Reviews from Rotten Tomatoes

"The real violence, as is always the case with Mamet, lies not in the mayhem but in the thrusting rhythms of the dialogue."
‑ Peter Rainer, New York Magazine/Vulture
"Spartan is the same old stuff, but now it's been thoroughly Mametized, like a spray-on treatment you could spritz out of a can."
‑ Stephanie Zacharek,
"He'll always be writer first, but for a relentless entertainment with actual with wit and soul, Spartan may just be the best thing David Mamet has done, certainly the best he has directed."
‑ Joshua Starnes,
"A tight and engrossing mystery thriller."
‑ Russ Breimeier, Christianity Today
"Highly recommended."
‑ Garth Franklin, Dark Horizons
"Both technically accomplished and moderately entertaining."
‑ Andrew Sarris, New York Observer
"Not one character makes sense, there is no shred of craft, and the script sounds like it was written by a 6-year-old who has accidentally swallowed a microchip."
‑ Rex Reed, New York Observer
"Very violent movie ultimately just falls apart."
‑ Nell Minow, Common Sense Media
"A clinic for how this genre should be done."
‑ Bill Clark, FromTheBalcony
"Although the story deteriorates in the last act, most of the movie is of high quality."
‑ Robert Roten, Laramie Movie Scope
"Mamet's understanding of the essentials here and his skill in supplying them are not major achievements for him, but it would be wasteful not to recognize them."
‑ Stanley Kauffmann, The New Republic
"Is Spartan a perfect, or even a great, movie? Probably not. But in its prickly irascibility and deeply unsettling intelligence, it makes for a very, very good one."
‑ Michael O'Sullivan, Washington Post
"This political thriller is very much by its own definition, the tightly woven, creatively disciplined offspring of that old warrior spirit that is Mamet."
‑ Prairie Miller, WBAI Web Radio
"Barely memorable."
‑ Nick Schager, Lessons of Darkness
"... should become a staple of film writing courses for years to come. There's not an ounce of fat in this script."
‑ Jeffrey Overstreet, Looking Closer
More reviews for Spartan on Rotten Tomatoes