The Circle (2017) - SPOILER-FREE Review


Directed by: James Ponsoldt

Starring: Emma Watson, Tom Hanks, John Boyega, Patton Oswalt, Bill Paxton, Karen Gillan, Ellar Coltrane

Runtime: 110 min

Mae Holland (Emma Watson) is able to get a job in the world's biggest tech and social media company (a real-life Google+Facebook+Everything) through her friend, Annie (Karen Gillan).

As she climbs up in The Circle's ranks, Eamon Bailey (Tom Hanks), the company's founder, offers her an opportunity to be part of a very public experiment. It pushes every boundary, ethics and the privacy of herself, her friends and her family, who now have to live dependent on her decisions.

You know, if a movie lets me down because of its plot, direction or characters, it's fine, I never get mad or angry at it. However, when a film has all of that and it still tries to trick me and every fan to go to the cinema by using a famous movie star (like, for example, Tom Hanks or John Boyega) on the main poster and trailers, for to only show them in four or five scenes ... Now that gets me frustrated!


The Circle is not only a very bad film but also had a marketing campaign extremely dishonest. I really feel bad for the cast because it has some brilliant actors in it. Tom Hanks is a legend, even if he only appears in a few scenes, he's incredibly charismatic and elevates his character. John Boyega (Kalden) is also great for a couple of moments that he's on the screen, but his character has nothing going for him. Emma Watson, well ... She's good. She's not brilliant nor perfect like she was in Beauty and the Beast, but she doesn't have a defining scene, a moment where she's truly able to shine.


Both Mae and the story have a similar route throughout the runtime. Both of them have a very interesting concept/premise, but their execution is horrible. Mae seems to be a regular girl, but the changes that her personality goes through are too extreme for me to buy them. The movie's plot follows that same path by having a really intriguing story that is taken to so unrealistic and implausible levels, that by the end, it can only be described as too dumb and stupid to be true.


The first act runs smoothly and it actually introduces its characters well, but the second and third act drop to a sleepy slow-burn, full of speeches in front of an annoying audience and with both plot and character development that doesn't make any sense. The ending has no resolution at all. There's barely a conflict throughout the film! They all agree with everything and when something goes wrong, they just go "well, it's fine, let's move on".


It's a very monotone movie since there's nothing happening, ever. I can only remember of ONE moment of stress or tension, whatever you want to call it. The rest of the film is just hearing people talking about some absurd stuff and watching them go absolutely crazy. It's filled with heavy exposition scenes, it's horribly edited (there's a bathroom scene that becomes cringe-worthy) and the script is just horrible.

I don't even want to write anymore ... Not that I have that much more to say. Apparently, we can have BILLIONS of people connected at the same time watching a live stream ... BILLIONS. Yap ...


The Circle is one of the worst movies of the year and on top of that, it tried to lie to its audience by bringing in Tom Hanks to serve as poster and trailer's bait, even though he's just on the screen for barely a few scenes. The cast and the film's concept are the only reasons why it doesn't get an F rating. The plot's execution (script, editing and direction) is horrible. It's sleepy boring, it's incredibly monotone and its characters have nothing going for them. The ending is as dumb as the rest of the film: too stupid to be true.

|  A+  : 9.3-10 |  A : 8.7-9.2 |  A-  : 8.0-8.6 |  B+  : 7.3-7.9 |  B : 6.7-7.2 |  B-  : 6.0-6.6 ||  C+  : 5.3-5.9 |  C : 4.7-5.2 |  C-  : 4.0-4.6 |  D+  : 3.3-3.9 |  D : 2.7-3.2 |  D-  : 2.0-2.6 |  F : 0-1.9 |

| A+ : 9.3-10 | A: 8.7-9.2 | A- : 8.0-8.6 | B+ : 7.3-7.9 | B: 6.7-7.2 | B- : 6.0-6.6 || C+ : 5.3-5.9 | C: 4.7-5.2 | C- : 4.0-4.6 | D+ : 3.3-3.9 | D: 2.7-3.2 | D- : 2.0-2.6 | F: 0-1.9 |