The Golden Compass
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A young girl embarks on a perilous journey to rescue her best friend and fight the forces of darkness in director Chris Weitz's adaptation of the first installment of author Philip Pullman's best-selling fantasy trilogy. Screen newcomer Dakota Blue Richards stars as young heroine Lyra Belacqua, Casino Royale star Daniel Craig appears as Lyra's ruthless adventurer uncle, Lord Asriel, and Nicole Kidman assumes the glamorous guise of the villainous Mrs. Coulter. ~ Jason Buchanan, Rovi

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Rotten Tomatoes Score: 42%

Critic Reviews from Rotten Tomatoes

"The Catholic League thinks it's anti-Catholic. Admirers of Philip Pullman's 1995 His Dark Materials trilogy think the film guts the backbone of the book. Me, I just think it blows."
‑ Peter Travers, Rolling Stone
"With its rushed, jargon-pumped exposition, surplus of quarter-baked characters, stray narrative strands and generously dropped hints of things possibly to come, The Golden Compass is a movie that wears its franchise ambitions on its sleeve."
‑ Geoff Pevere, Toronto Star
"The Golden Compass isn't bad, it's cast is too good and it's too well made, but something fundamental to good storytelling - heart - has been lost, leaving a final product as icy and impossible to care for as Mrs. Coulter herself."
‑ Joshua Starnes,
"I realize that when you make a book into a movie you cannot include every single detail, but it seems like Weitz purposely tried to take all of the magic out of the story."
‑ Adam Tobias, Watertown Daily Times
"...if I hadn't liked Pullman's books so much, I probably would have liked this movie version more than I did."
‑ John J. Puccio, Movie Metropolis
"Some of the material is wildly imaginative, some of it is just kinda silly. But it all looks good, and the kids are likable, [and] Kidman makes for an intriguing villain."
‑ Richard Roeper, Ebert & Roeper
"Weitz's movie remains ultimately remote. It ends mid-adventure, so blatantly setting the stage for a sequel that the whole thing suddenly feels like a preamble."
‑ Moira MacDonald, Seattle Times
"Excruciating pap"
‑ Fernando F. Croce, CinePassion
"This plot may sound somewhat ludicrous on paper, but Pullman has created a logical, well-thought-out world that Weitz has brilliantly translated to the big screen."
‑ Alonso Duralde, MSNBC
"Will it be enough to satisfy fans of Philip Pullman's widely read 'His Dark Materials' trilogy? Hard to say. But for the uninitiated this is an engaging adventure, even when Chris Weitz's screenplay lacks the compelling clarity of Pullman's prose."
‑ Rossiter Drake, San Francisco Examiner
"The Golden Compass is a blatant attempt to duplicate the success of the Harry Potter franchise. The only thing missing is richly imagined characters, a comprehensible story line, good acting, and satisfying special effects."
‑ Peter Rainer, Christian Science Monitor
"An aura of disappointment takes hold midway into Golden Compass and becomes undeniable by the finish."
‑ Mick LaSalle, San Francisco Chronicle
"An engaging fantasy adventure that, albeit no masterpiece, is hardly the disaster one might have imagined."
‑ Steve Biodrowski, ESplatter
"This kid film noir touching on magic dust substance abuse, cranky clerics, worrisome wizards, goth grownup child abusers and computer-generated homicidal polar bear throat slashers, is less likely to dazzle the senses than exhaust minds of all ages."
‑ Prairie Miller, NewsBlaze
"Sam Elliott shows up as a cowboy, who would normally be a pick-me-up, but with Golden Compass I just wanted to find my direction home."
‑ Jeff Bayer, The Scorecard Review
More reviews for The Golden Compass on Rotten Tomatoes

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