Parents' Guide to


By Nell Minow, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 15+

It really is almost impressive how bad this is.

Movie PG-13 2002 98 minutes
Abandon Poster Image

A Lot or a Little?

What you will—and won't—find in this movie.

Community Reviews

age 16+

Based on 2 parent reviews

age 18+

Painfully sloppy w/ gaping holes left bowing in the breeze and in my face!

no positive role models whatsoever--strictly humans connecting at lowest denominator. 'Katie' independent-seeming (college/exceptionally smart & pursued by BIG-TIME corporation--and ultimate message defies introduction wherein she becomes obsessed, vulnerable and worst of all-- murderous ! Her 'dark side' unfortunately is her most interesting side -- and all these people leave me absolutely cold-no character development past personality disorders -- all assortments of selfish, greedy, 'entitled' EXCEPT the cop--he's the only person I like in this movie. If any message at all it is that NOTHING is what it seems, you can't trust what appears on the outside because inside is a dark and menacing soul ... NOT for kids because what is too deep to engage young ones is also done as badly and provides amplification of dysfunctional people feeding off of other dysfunctional people .... shallow and could be the stuff nightmares are made of since young kids won't be able, necessarily, to see just how BAD this movie really is and may only take to bed with them the idea of a smashed rock on not one but two...possibly a 3rd 'coming soon' bloodied heads. Lousy and disjointed sloppy -- nothing crisp or complete in plot that assumes the viewer isn't paying attention (in other words, 'the gun is NOT put in the killer's hand ...' or paraphrasing what I heard once about a good whodunnit or mystery where the writer MUST put the gun in the killer's hand yet this film skips over reality into nonsense.

This title has:

Too much swearing
age 13+
Poorly , poorly, poorly executed film. I expected so much more from Stephen Gaghan! You'd think with all the talent in this movie that they could have at least made it decent, but no. Very predictable with sub par acting, this movie is a no.

Is It Any Good?

Our review:
Parents say (2):
Kids say (2):

Abandon is one of those movies that depends heavily on bonehead plot twists in which people behave inconsistently and idiotically. Included is that oldest of movie plots -- characters showing up alone in eerie and isolated locations for assignations with potential murderers. There are many shadowy hallways, crumbling walls, and dripping pipes. There are gratuitous scenes of college kids at a debauched party (a throwback to writer/director Stephen Gaghan's scene of teenagers taking drugs in Traffic) and of Holmes changing her clothes. The missing boyfriend is supposed to be talented, arrogant, and electrifyingly seductive, but the flashback scenes of their encounters are clumsily handled. The surprise ending is telegraphed halfway through the movie.

Given the talent involved, it really is almost impressive how bad this movie is. The direction is poor, and the screenplay is awful. Cinematographer Matthew Libatique, whose work in "Requiem for a Dream" was brilliantly innovative, manages to make Katie Holmes and Benjamin Bratt look so unattractive they should consider a defamation lawsuit.

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