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Robert Pattinson, Juliette Binoche, Samantha Morton, Sarah Gadon, Mathieu Amalric ... see more see more... , Jay Baruchel , Kevin Durand , K'Naan , Emily Hampshire , Paul Giamatti , Patricia McKenzie , Philip Nozuka

New York City, not-too-distant-future: Eric Packer, a 28 year-old finance golden boy dreaming of living in a civilization ahead of this one, watches a dark shadow cast over the firmament of the Wall S... read more read more...treet galaxy, of which he is the uncontested king. As he is chauffeured across midtown Manhattan to get a haircut at his father's old barber, his anxious eyes are glued to the yuan's exchange rate: it is mounting against all expectations, destroying Eric's bet against it. Eric Packer is losing his empire with every tick of the clock. Meanwhile, an eruption of wild activity unfolds in the city's streets. Petrified as the threats of the real world infringe upon his cloud of virtual convictions, his paranoia intensifies during the course of his 24-hour cross-town odyssey. Packer starts to piece together clues that lead him to a most terrifying secret: his imminent assassination. -- (C) Official Site

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31% liked it

37,042 ratings


64% liked it

165 critics

R, 1 hr. 48 min.

Directed by: David Cronenberg

Release Date: August 17, 2012

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DVD Release Date: January 1, 2013

Stats: 1,570 reviews

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Flixster Reviews (1,570)

  • July 12, 2013
    A young financial genius is intent on taking his limo across Manhattan to get a haircut from his father's old barber, despite the fact that the streets are gridlocked due to a Presidential visit, "occupy Wall Street"-type protestors are rioting, and there is a credible death thre... read moreat against him. It's a talky, symbolic and obliquely philosophical movie, for sure, and it will turn most viewers off; but, in its confused way it does reflect our current psychology of income gap anger and financial apocalypse anxiety.
  • May 18, 2013
    Adapted from a work by Don DeLillo, this is a story set in near-distant future New York about Eric Packer- a 28 year-old billionaire currency speculator/asset manager who callously watches his world crumble before him during a 24 hour odyssey as he slowly cruises across town in h... read moreis limo on his way to get a haircut.

    His limo is tricked out and state-of-the-art. It's basically his own little microcosm he seals himself in to avoid the dregs of society outside. The story is rather surreal in tone, and feels otherworldly. Oddly though, it feels timely too, as some of the stuff Eric encounters parallel real world events. It seems odd that it would take him all day to get to his preferred barber, but the traffic jams he's caught in are the result of a presidential visit, the funeral procession of his favorite musician ( a Sufi rap artist), and anti-capitalist demonstrations by an Occupy-style group.

    Along the way, besides encountering said traffic slowing obstacles, Eric also conducts business in his limo, including trysts with a few women, a meeting with his new, albeit frigid and bored wife, meetings with co-workers and, a prostate exam with odd results. He also sees his business dealings falter, and learns someone is apparently out to assassinate him.

    This is all very troubling stuff, but he seems to be rather uncaring, if not welcoming of this ruin. The film concludes with a lengthy confrontation with the apparent assassin, highlighted by a very lengthy philosophical discussion.

    This seems like pretty perfect material for writer/director David Cronenberg. It's odd, thought provoking, and a real head trip at times. Unfortunately, it's also largely dull, if not really boring, ends anti-anticlimactically, and feels really under cooked, which makes sense given that Cronenberg wrote the script in like 6 days. It at least is shot well, looks great, and tries to do something meaningful, even if it falls short.

    I applaud Robert Pattinson for trying something different and ambitious, but I don't think this'll quite help him shed the long shadow cast by Twilight. He's backed by some interesting supporting players like Jay Baruchel, Mathieu Amalric, Samantha Morton, Juliette Binoche, and Paul Giamatti, but none of them really do anything spectacular or groundbreaking.

    I wanted to like this. It seemed like it would be really intense and gripping, and, while it does have its moments, it goes on for way too long, and proves to be largely 'meh' more than anything else.
  • May 10, 2013
    Elise Shifrin: Where is your office? What do you do exactly? You know things, I think this is what you do. I think you acquire information and turn it into something awful.

    I would have to say that enjoying this movie depends completely on your ability to understand Robert Patti... read morenson's character. If you can't, it's going to be hard to like this film. Cosmopolis is a movie of immense potential and incredible setup. What it lacks in though are the things that make movies easy to watch and get into. I was fully engaged the whole film because the thin plot had a lot of great ideas and philosophical meanings behind them, but it was missing everything from dialogue that sounded real to actors that seemed real. The only saving grace as far as acting goes was Paul Giamatti's scene at the end of the movie. Everyone else was dull and boring, as was the dialogue that was coming from their mouths. 

    Cosmopolis follows a rich, young man who we assume works on Wall Street. The economy is beginning to collapse and all around the city are protestors who want blood. They want Eric Packers blood too. He is constantly being updated by his bodyguard of the impending situation. Eric doesn't seem at all fazed by it though, as he drifts around the city in his limousine, talking with other people, and just trying to make it to get his haircut. Like I said, the plot is thin. There's not much in the way of action either, as it is mostly weird, dull dialogue. 

    Cronenberg is still one of those directors that I fail to understand. As with Lynch, I love his ideas and I like his complete dedication to his projects, but he fails to present it in an interesting way at times. This wad the case here with Cosmopolis. It's not completely his fault though, as Pattinson made his character almost impossible to listen to, with a soft, boring voice and so little emotion, I wondered if he was alive at times when he wasn't talking. 

    This isn't something I liked, but I do have a certain respect for it. It has a feel all its own, as every Cronenberg film does. The cinematography is extremely well done and the movie is obviously made with the intent to make the audience think. It did manage to do that, but the more I thought about it, the more I realized; I didn't like what I was watching.
  • March 23, 2013
    David Cronenberg is a director that's full of surprises. The biggest surprise about Cosmopolis, his new film based on the Don DeLillo novella, is how shockingly terrible it is. This may be Cronenberg's worst film. It's certainly one of the worst films of 2012.

    Eric Packer (Rob... read moreert Pattinson) is a mega-millionaire currency trader. He's got so much money he wants to outrightly buy a church just because. We travel with Eric over the course of one day as he travels through New York City in his stretch limo. Along the way, he hosts a colorful array of characters and fears that his high-stakes wagers will be adding up. He becomes more and more self-destructive and looks for new and exciting ways to waste money, talent, and time.

    I hesitate to even use the term film with Cosmopolis because it's truly more of an endurance test in didactic, pretentious art house masturbation. The script is really a collection of self-indulgent scenes with very little to connect anything together. Each new scene feels like the movie is starting over. Worse, the dialogue is painfully elliptical, stilted, and monotone, reeking of pseudo intellectual intent, lingering in ambiguity like it's poetic. It's not, it's irritating and obtuse and character talk in circles without ever really saying anything. It's the kind of dialogue that reminds me of a pompous student play, something where the particulars involved think they're making Artistically Daring Statements about Things That Matter. It's such a mannered way of speaking, so labored in its affectations and superficially drawn to the mistaken belief that obtuse and redundant equals philosophical and thought provoking. The only thoughts I was thinking were of the murderous variety. I felt so pained that I had to check the time and only eleven minutes had passed. It felt like I had spent three times that amount. I stuck it out for you, dear reader, but otherwise I would have bailed. Here are a handful of dialogue samples to give you an idea:

    "Why do they call them airports?"
    "I have an asymmetrical prostate. What does that mean?"
    "Try putting a stick of gum in your mouth and not chew it."
    "Where do limos go to spend the night?"

    I feel like I'm even doing a disservice to calling the people onscreen as characters. They?re really more just talking heads, mouthpieces for cluttered ideology. The plot introduces new characters but they only last for a scene and then it's time for someone knew. This would be acceptable if it ever appeared that these interactions had any effect, positive or negative, on our protagonist. As it stands, it's just a gloomy guy running into one meaningless encounter after another. Oh, and if that was the point of the whole exercise, then shoot me now. I literally cheered when the movie was over. Well, right after incredulously barking, "That's it?"

    Plot is another term, much like characters, that has next to no meaning for Cosmopolis. The plot is a wealthy guy who wants to get a haircut. Yes, that is the inciting incident. He stays in his limo as it slowly drifts down the bumper-to-bumper New York City traffic. He has encounters with people, sure, but mostly it's the story of one man in his pursuit of a haircut. And you know what dear reader, spoilers be damned, but he gets that haircut too. The final half hour of the movie, almost a third of the whole running time, is spent with Paul Giamatti, an intense and angry man who wants to kill Eric. At least Giamatti's performance kept me awake. The plot, much like the characters, is really a vehicle for the script's ideas, so it becomes exasperating when the movie tries to pretend, at points, like now all of a sudden we should care about Eric and his journey. The ideas, as presented, are either on-the-nose or impenetrable. For every confusing conversation about death, you'll get a capitalism = rats metaphor.

    Pattinson (Breaking Dawn Part 2) seems like an apt choice as well as a craven marketing ploy for Cronenberg to get his weird arty movie greater exposure and financing. Pattinson gives a rather cold and detached performance, which I'm sure is also the point but it's not exactly an outlet to showcase any potential range. I'm sure Pattinson leaped at the chance to work with Cronenberg, but he should have checked out his emotionally vacant character first. Oh I get it that Eric is a guy who seemingly has it all but now feels empty, and I get how it's meant to be an analogue for the Wall Street set that?s hijacked our capitalism markets (rats!). I get it. It's just lousy, and Pattinson could have been replaced with just about any young Hollywood hunk. The only enjoyable aspect of this whole movie, and this is simply a theoretical extension, is that plenty of diehard Twilight fans are going to watch this movie and be very very confused.

    Cronenberg keeps us locked in that limo, at least for the first half of the film. We get to watch Eric host an array of guests. He gets serviced by a middle-aged woman (Juliette Binoche). He gets a prostate exam while conducting a meeting. He gets up-to-the-minute reports on the millions of dollars he?s hemorrhaging, and he doesn't care. Money has lost all known value when everything is given to you. Look, I can make vague, self-important statements too. I'll credit Cronenberg with finding creative ways to play around within the confined space of the limo, making the film less hermetic than it by all means should be. However, bad green screen effect work really proves distracting, so that you're given another reason to check out when characters drone on as they do.

    Strictly put, this was not a story that needed to be turned into a movie. I'm sure DeLillo's novella has its own weight and power, but the big-screen adaptation of Cosmopolis is all flaccid pontification, empty verbal masturbation, and crushing dead weight. It was a Herculean effort for me to watch this meandering movie to the end and I know I can't be alone in this regard. If only the characters were really characters, or the plot had any minute sense of momentum, or that the dialogue was less purposely obtuse, or if the movie felt like it was at least going somewhere or had some small recognizable shred of purpose. I won't go as far to say you should be worried if any of your friends gush to you about how great this movie is, but you should probably keep an eye on them or see if they bumped their head. This movie is more like an insufferable lecture by the most boring people who confuse cerebral with impenetrable. If you're not going to supply me any significant means of entry to engage with your art, then I'll just go play with somebody else. Cosmopolis feels like the worst and most pretentious student film you'll ever see. The rub is that a great director like Cronenberg made it.

    Nate's Grade: D
  • fb100000145236770
    February 26, 2013
    I'm a fan of what my wife calls "weird movies". Ones that are very different, and offer something original compared to a lot of the regular Hollywood fare. But every now and then I watch something that just makes me scratch my head and say "damn that sucked". "Cosmopolis" is o... read morene of those films. Directed by David Croenberg("History of Violence", which is awesome) and starring Robert Pattinson, comes a movie that makes absolutely no sense. All I can say is it's about a rich asshole(Pattinson) in a limo on the way to get a haircut, and his day goes from bad to worse. He's completely un-relateable, and he speaks in these stupid monologues that are all over the place. At one point in the movie he is rambling about violence, and shoots himself in the hand. Made no sense, was out of nowhere, and didn't really have any impact on the movie whatsoever. Pattinson, to me, is a terrible actor. He's been in a couple decent movies("Remember Me" and "Water for Elephants" were both just ok), but he was bad in those also. He is wooden, has no charisma, and is overall boring. When the movie started I thought maybe, just maybe this would be the movie where I go "Ok, I get it. I see why people like him." But when it was over, I said "nope, he still sucks". Paul Giamatti shows up towards the end in another stupid role, where he just talks to Pattinson about a whole lot of nothing. I usually love Giamatti, but here, he is just as bad and looks like he doesn't wanna be in this movie whatsoever. This is easily one of the worst movies of 2012, and something I wish I could just forget. Don't waste your time on this. But if you do, and you like it, please let me know what you liked about it. Other than one song that is played between scenes, I can't think of anything I liked in this at all.
  • November 14, 2012
    Cosmopolis is now the third film I have watched and then watched all over again straight afterwards. Needless to say I'm dog tired this morning after staying up well past my bed time but it was worth it. Don DeLillo's post modern Jazz-like style of writing is pretty abstract but ... read morehis exploration of modern themes; consumerism, corruption, the media and the diseases of society are brilliantly written and have been brilliantly visualised by Cronenberg. DeLillo's work has been criticised as being overly stylised and intellectually shallow but then not everybody likes Jazz. Cronenberg has been similarly criticised over the years, although in my opinion his best films have been overlooked and his worst has been shockingly overpraised. It's hard not to compare this film to Naked Lunch, a cult novel that also wasn't highly regarded upon release but soon gathered recognition. Cronenberg truly did film the unfilmable and yet the film remains a cult favourite and is relatively unwatched by younger viewers. The stories are different but they share similarities, existentialism, abstract expressionism and both provoke and manipulate. They certainly see the world in a different way, the only difference is that DeLillo wasn't on drugs, he knows what he's saying as does Cronenberg. Cronenberg has taken another brave step in adapting this film which was always going to be misunderstood and dare I say poorly marketed. I have no doubt it's a future classic and a strong piece of intellectual thinking. I'm going to be honest though, it's at times a little dull and at times a lot dull but perseverance is key, the explosive scene of brilliantly written dialogue between Robert Pattinson and Paul Giamatti is great cinema and worth watching for alone. It is abstract but at the same time it's a very savvy look at society that is hard,and would be stupid to ignore. I dig it but it's all about the book for me, my rating is based on good acting, some smart visuals but mainly because of Cronenberg's balls/guts and original cinema.
  • October 22, 2012
    A misfire. emotionally and intellectually impregnable.
  • October 19, 2012
    Everything is barely weeks. Everything is days. We have minutes to live.

    Not a great movie!vUltimately, I understand that Cronenberg tries to make a lot of statements here but unfortunately, the message doesn't get across. It's the kind of movie that drags on and on, but doesn't... read more accomplish a single thing.

    Riding across Manhattan in a stretch limo in order to get a haircut, a 28-year-old billionaire asset manager's day devolves into an odyssey with a cast of characters that start to tear his world apart.
  • October 6, 2012
    'Cosmopolis'. A day of gradually building self-destruction from the inside-out led commandingly by Robert Pattinson. A cold, off-beat film that takes on the GFC via a very different perspective.
  • August 19, 2012
    I dozed off about 15 times during "Cosmopolis," which wins my vote for worst art-house film of 2012 so far. I'm sure there are interesting ideas somewhere in this film by director David Cronenberg (based on a novel by Don De Lillo). But the film is directed so poorly that it's al... read moremost impossible to listen to the dialogue.

    Every scene is directed the same way. Two actors sit across from each other and have a conversation. The camera almost never moves; the actors almost never move. It is inert and monotonous.

    This kind of material would normally be right up my alley. I loved Cronenberg's 'Naked Lunch' and 'Crash,' which were also based on avant-garde novels. I find De Lillo a very interesting writer and was very excited when I heard Cronenberg was going to take him on. If this film can't even reach its target audience (me), then I'm sure it will disappear very quickly.

    I don't know what's going on with Cronenberg today. His last film, "A Dangerous Method," was pretty dull. And he follows that up with this crushingly lifeless piece of work, which it seems he directed in his sleep. Yikes.

Critic Reviews

Joe Williams
September 6, 2012
Joe Williams, St. Louis Post-Dispatch

The rapid dialogue is dry and mannered, like a David Mamet play, there's virtually no story and Cronenberg's visual scheme is cold and claustrophobic. Full Review

Stephanie Merry
August 24, 2012
Stephanie Merry, Washington Post

It feels like each and every moment bursts forth with urgent dialogue, and yet what does anyone actually say? Full Review

Mick LaSalle
August 23, 2012
Mick LaSalle, San Francisco Chronicle

There's not really a movie there, nothing that sustains itself from scene to scene and nothing that's worth watching from beginning to end. Full Review

Colin Covert
August 23, 2012
Colin Covert, Minneapolis Star Tribune

The film is all too faithful to its un-cinematic source. Full Review

Moira MacDonald
August 23, 2012
Moira MacDonald, Seattle Times

"Cosmopolis," because of its allegiance to the book's mannered, offbeat language, feels like it never wakes up. Full Review

Mark Feeney
August 23, 2012
Mark Feeney, Boston Globe

Poor Pattinson does the best he can. He's not terrible. But he's definitely out of his element, if not beyond his depth, an altar boy in a bishop's robes. Full Review

J. R. Jones
August 23, 2012
J. R. Jones, Chicago Reader

The story seems to cleave into cerebral disquisition and primal sex. Full Review

Rene Rodriguez
August 23, 2012
Rene Rodriguez, Miami Herald

The movie isn't for everyone. But if it grabs you, prepare for it to stick in your head for days. Full Review

Roger Ebert
August 23, 2012
Roger Ebert, Chicago Sun-Times

A flawlessly directed film about enigmatic people who speak in morose epigrams about vague universal principles they show no sign of understanding. Full Review

David Denby
August 17, 2012
David Denby, New Yorker

Despite the constrictions, Cronenberg keeps the space handsome and active. For long stretches, Cosmopolis is dreamy and funny, in an off-centered way. Full Review

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    • Eric Packer: This man, the man behind me, he is examining my prostate.
    • Jane Melman: I should find this situation, what? Awkward? Repulsive? But no, we are in a David Cronenberg movie, and so everything must turn me on, even moldy dog vomit is a powerful aphrodisiac, this fact is true. And so, I am furiously aroused, we should fuck.
    • Eric Packer: First, the loudest club in this city, I must go to it, perhaps I have parked my haircut there for the night.
    • Benno Levin: There is nothing in the world but other people.
    • Shiner: Is there a reason why we're in the car instead of the office?
    • Eric Packer: What makes you think we're in the car instead of the office?
    • Elise Shiffrin: Love the world and trace it in a line of verse.
    • Eric Packer: You're forcing me to be reasonable. I don't like that.
    • Benno Levin: Everything in our lives, has brought us to this moment.

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