The Poison Rose (2019) Poster

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First time Travolta & Freeman star together. Surprising, right?
trinaboice25 May 2019
Written by Richard Salvatore and directed by George Gallo, this film noir features an incredibly talented cast: John Travolta, Morgan Freeman, Brendan Fraser, Famke Janssen, Peter Stormare, and Robert Patrick. Surprisingly, this is the first movie that John Travolta and Morgan Freeman have ever been in together. With that much star power, this movie should have been excellent. Unfortunately, it's not.

The Good: It's a pleasure watching John Travolta and Morgan Freeman, even in bad movies. I was shocked when I first saw Brendan Frasier on the screen. I hadn't seen pictures of his recent weight gain and wondered if he did it intentionally for this film. He didn't but I thought his acting was outstanding in his role as the doctor. I've always been a fan.

I like Famke Janssen and thought she played a southern belle well. She looked like she had some new cheek implants done recently. Why do beautiful women in Hollywood mess up their original beauty?

It was great to see Ella Bleu Travolta star with her father in a movie. I felt bad that the script mostly had her crying during the entire movie. She was also in the movie Old Dogs with her dad. She is one of those rare teenagers who actually likes her parents and isn't embarrassed by them.

The music sounded like it came from a 1970's drama and set the right tone from the very beginning.

Some have criticized the Texas drawl that the actors tried to master but I thought everyone sounded fine.

The Bad: You can almost guess what happens by just watching the trailer. Even with a twist, it's predictable. What's the opposite of energetic? That's this movie. Everyone seemed very tired the entire time. The ending left me underwhelmed. The shoot-out scenes are a bit sloppy. Characters conveniently appear and disappear in the story, leaving messy holes that leave you wondering "What was the point of that?" It tries to be deep, but it's not.

You can read the rest of my review at Movie Review Mom
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It's worth more than it's rated
byron-11625 May 2019
Forget some of the film's flaws. It's an entertaining film-noir type of the 1940s. Travolta is not an ideal PI, but a joy to see him act with Morgan Freeman and Brendan Fraser.

If you like film noirs of the 1940s, don't miss The Poison Rose
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Predictable but entertaining.
Fella_shibby28 May 2019
The film starts like a typical Chinatown syndrome. The locations r gorgeous with those plentiful awesome greenery all around. It has some violent shootout scenes but the best is Freeman's screen presence, Fraser's laughable body shape n Travolta's cool act.
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Just enjoy
aadzwartepoorte15 June 2019
Nice atmosphere, much like old detective stories with an happy end we like to see sometimes. Of course it's predictable but sometimes we must not care to much and simply enjoy. Also nice to see those older actors.
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Entertaining alternative to typical Hollywood
AlabamaT25 May 2019
Despite several clunky scenes and some predictability in the storyline, it was an entertaining 2 hours, thanks in part to Brendan Fraser's hysterical performance and classic Morgan Freeman. John Travolta could use a few pointers on his southern-drawal, but he's still fun to watch. The slow, dim noir feel works, but who wouldnt recognize the fountain and gorgeous homes as Savannah not Galvaston. Overall worth a date night if looking alternative to the canned showboat superhero movies and shallow violent films with limited vocabularies.
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A sucker for a pretty girl with a sob story
CousinBagunca9 June 2019
What a long ride, even though the movie is only 93 minutes in length. The Poison Rose tells the chronicle of private investigator Carson Phillips, or he tells it himself, as he digs into a story of deceif and deception on his hometown in Galvestone, Texas.

Actually, he digs into a bunch of stories. As he keeps sniffing around, he keeps uncovering more s*** to investigate. Is everything connected? That's what keeps us going.

Carson hasn't been in Galvestone for 20 years and, being a small town, as it is stated sometimes, nothing is kept in secrecy. As he pokes around, everyone get to know something.

I like the slow pace of the movie. I actually like movies like this one. Travolta's persona is amazing and his slow pace, sarcastic, character sets this movie's style and rhythm. There's even some comedic relief for good measure. Fraser's character is likeable and, as he is now, he's perfect for the role (which kinda makes me sad). Nothing to be said about Freeman, Patrick and everyone else, they are fine.

With its twists and turns, I like this movie as it is. It's slow, I'll give it that, but for nowaday standards, I think it holds himself as a fine crime thriller. It has no mastermind plot or anything, it's just an entertaining investigation that unfolds.
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Oh dear, John
MooveeVu25 May 2019
My oh my where to begin? I can understand JT's attraction to this movie. It starts off as a classic old noir detective show (with JT as the narrator). Quite intriguing standard Maltese Falcon/Raymond Chandler style to begin with light tinges of Get Shorty and Pulp Fiction thrown in. I feel that this may be what attracted both John and Morgan initially. The doe eyed secretary and beautiful, mysterious woman waiting in his office when he escapes from the hitmen sent by (presumably) his bookie for outstanding debts. The lure of the dollars offered and a trip back to his hometown (with the bad memories) offers some interesting plot lines and, indeed, the film shapes up as having some potential. Morgan Freeman is introduced as the evil doer (who knows how he got there??) Then, (OMG THEN!!).....this movie rapidly spirals into self implosion worse than the Simpsons 3d episode!!! Seemingly rushing toward a timeframe ending with Keystone Kop like shootouts, ridiculous and implausible twists and turns and a finale that is blatantly obvious to even the most unobservant viewer (supposed twist at the end easily figured out way earlier!). The acting (from all) towards the end would embarrass a 7th grade school play lead. It seems as though everyone involved just wanted it to end asap (as did I). A real disappointment given that the start was quite good but it is a sad indictment on some of the potentially great actors of our time that, in the twilight of their careers, they are signing on for roles that are not only laughable but ruining their reputations and are certainly below the skillset, experience and expertise that they have achieved through out their long and illustrious professional working life. 3 points for a reasonable beginning, the rest is abysmal.
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It's not that bad
Gordon-1114 September 2019
This film tells the story of a private investigator who goes back to his hometown to investigate a case.

The story is actually quite engaging and suspenseful. The fear of the king of the small town is palpable. It is much better than the rating suggests. It's not that bad at all.
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m-arsic07082 June 2019
Boring, predictable, boring, laughable, and boring again. and pitiful. people really should know when to say no to a pathetic script especially after doing great ones in the past.
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Jamie_Seaton25 May 2019
This is possibly the worst film I've seen in 2019 thus far. Who's idea to try and attempt a noir style film with this cast is beyond me. It fails on all fronts! Right from the get go with it's poor editing and cliche'd filled madness it's a no brainer the film needs to go in the nearest bin!

Big fan of noir so maybe that also helped in my vote! Avoid at all costs
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Sure it had it's flaws, but still undeserving of the low rating
TheTopDawgCritic2 October 2019
I didn't expect much going into this from its low rating, but saw it anyway as I had nothing else to watch, and I'm a fan of Travolta and Freeman.

I actually enjoyed it! The casting and performances were excellent, by all - Travolta, Freeman, Famke and Fraser who was hilarious, and the directing was decent. But the editing was terrible and the writing by amateur writers (this film their first writing credit) Luca Giliberto and Richard Salvatore was ok for newbs, but to have such talented actors, you'd think the producers would at least have the screenplay looked over by a seasoned screenwriter. There were many plot and technical issues. Had the pacing been faster and/or the 98 min runtime trimmed down to about 85 mins - which it could have easily been with proper editing and better writing, this film would have been a hit. The cinematography was on point, and the score very fitting for this Hitchcock-style crime noir. I'm not sure why the critics hated this film, but I think it's well worth a watch. It's a well deserved 8/10 from me.
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Neo-Noir Mystery
MycroftHolmes8 September 2019
I'm a sucker for Film Noir and this is a pretty good tribute to them. Hard boiled private eye, shady mobsters, dames, twists and turns. If you're a fan of the genre you will probably like this one.
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An interesting and exciting film.
silvermistvio8 September 2019
According to IMDB, The Poison Rose is supposed to be some thriller, but I found that it wasn't thrilling, it's more like a mystery. The film is kind of a detective story. I love detective stories, so, I'm glad that I chose to watch this film. It's about finding out who is the murderer, so, it's so interesting.

It started off with a mystery. The missing woman and the murder, I feel like it's on fire. And there are some secrets, so, it's very interesting. Some scenes are actions, some scenes are dark. Thus, this film really has a lot of things inside.

As for the casts, Famke Janssen is a great actress. Her performance is amazing and very good. I totally love her. Before I watched this film, I didn't know she was in it. I was kind of amazed to see her in this film, but I was happy to see her in this one because she's one of my favourite actresses. And also the actors and actresses, they are really good. That's why this film turned out to be a good one.

What I don't like is the way it ended. Did Carson leave his girlfriend and daughter again? If they showed it clearly, it'd better. And also they should have let Doc lose for once. Thus, I don't like how they've done with that scene either. If it turned out to be different, I'd like it more.

All in all, The Poison Rose is so interesting even though the plot is quite simple. It's like some other detective stories, finding who is responsible for the murder. But it's like a mystery packed into a single place. I like how they present. Although it seems to be very simple film, but as I've mentioned before, it's so interesting and very good to watch. I totally liked this film. Hence, I'd say it's very worth to spend time with.

(P.S. I know that my review is going to get a lot of disagreements, but this is what I think. So, I'm not againsting or something like that.)
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Solid performances.
badrobsugar27 September 2019
Ignore the bad reviews. Solid performances all around. A bit predictable but If you enjoy old noir flicks this fits the bill. I was actual surprised I liked Travolta in this. He's so hit or miss but I enjoyed his performance as the grisled PI.
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I enjoyed it.
goatbilly27 May 2019
Very modern 'Marlow-ish' in colour. Travolta is at his best playing the more serious role. Brendan Fraser certainly looked different but played his role well as a camp 'mad doctor'. Not a bad film for the Generation X.
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aurasbob28 May 2019
A sad ending to a long acting career. I'm surprised Morgan Freeman would lower himself. A laughable story, mediocre acting & terrible directing.
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the gravedigger
ops-5253524 May 2019
I once used to try to dig john travolta, but unfortunately , for each flick i see him in he is keeping on digging himself his own grave, and have soon dug himself to china, to try financing his future products ,full stop.

no, i did see this film because i like morgan freeman, 82 yrs of age, even a bit older than me, and well he does not impress either.

its a film about a small time private detective that sets out on a mission to find a little ol lady in a dull texas gulf coast town, and as three is a lucky number it is his beloved town where he was born and raised 20 years everybody is so happy to see him and shadows or shadows away from him, as he is like good old colombo, making people dizzy and frustratedby the talk and walk as an intrusive threat. he finds a lot of errors in the community and sets out to clear up everything before returning to sunny l.a..

its a boring flick, i smiled at 2 occasions, and its neither dramatic or thrilling, and the shootouts are so bonanza like that tuscon city took his tux-on and took hi ho silver to bed.

the story,plot and point of this story,are just as meaningless as this review, so dont bother read it and dont bother watch the film, its not good.
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yerlo27 May 2019
As usual, Travolta dominated the screen. He is excellent. He has said he enjoys creating characters. He chooses hair style. He came up with the in Pulp Fiction do, now iconic. He is a good mimic. He studies his subjects. Really a brilliant talent. Who knew where he would go from Welcome Back, Kotter. I loved his likeable private eye character here. Not over the top with booze and sleaze as so many "down and out" PI characters are. He was more like down to earth. Would not mind seeing a series of Carter Phillip Film Noir films. I liked that there were very few F bombs, nothing worse, and no porn. Sorry, that's what so much film has become. That, and liberal social issues which is BOOOORRRRRING and insulting. That stuff screams, "I have no writing talent."

I noticed how fit he is. He does not walk or run like a 65 y/o, and he is trim. He may not be the fitness buff that Tom Cruise is, but he obviously takes care of himself.

The score was very good and fit well. I fault it only for being too loud in some places. Same with the loud annoying ambient jarring noise that steps all over the dialogue. Watch old movies. Actors were taught elocution. You always could hear and understand them. No muttering, no dropped voices, no blasting background noise that becomes the foreground focus. Time to relearn that lesson, Hollywood. Are the writers so bad you have to cover their characters with noise? Heavy accents are the same flaw. If I can't easily hear and understand the actors, I lose interest. I've dumped many a TV show for that.

No words for Brendan Fraser and his character. Could not take my eyes off him. It's like you have to watch a train wreck but you enjoy it.

Travolta's Daughter deserves honorable mention. Smallish but critical role. She did her Dad proud!

The others were all good, but none will be memorable like Travolta character will be. He was a force of nature in GOTTI, too. Well, OK, Brendan's character may live on. Just don't have a good enough description for it.

Travolta is still good looking. He is aging well like Clint Eastwood. They really need to do a movie together.

I love Film Noir and this one holds up well. I think it will have a cult following and endure.
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Sweet scenes with father and daughter
nairip26 May 2019
A thriller that keeps you interested and guessing who done it. John Travolta and Morgan Freeman are great in whatever they do. Young Bella is natural and sweet and inviting. This was a great little role to introduce her to audiences. She's got all the potential and natural skills.
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And excellent performance of John Travolta as always
aromaticamente21 September 2019
I haven't all the movies where he participated, however the ones I did saw were always spectacular. Morgan Freeman deserves also a compliment for to me he is a major actor. Congratulations to you both and your film.
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Worth more than the critics of ignorants
maxforamont25 May 2019
Nice film with great actors and a great dilemma. Travolta and Freeman on an stunning combination.
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What a waste of time
binaries2 June 2019
Good cast. Spoiled by poor screenplay and feeble direction.
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Awesome Thriller
ajmosley-1384125 May 2019
Very entertaining movie with a great all star cast. Movie will keep you guessing and on your feet. John Travolta and Morgan Freeman outstanding performance.
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Terrible directing and awful music- b movie
filmtravel10129 May 2019
Warning: Spoilers
I like john travolta and love Morgan Freeman but this b movie script is so poorly directed that it took 3 directors. George Gallo directed Middle Men which was fantastic so a bit odd this film was so poorly made. Camera angles are off and in strange places, the piano music is terrible almost laughable in some parts. But I agree with most that Brendan Fraser steals the show. Hard to imagine it's the same guy from the Mummy and Tarzan yet he still has that charm. JT unfortunately has sunken to a Nicolas Cage low b movie status - and what compelled MFreeman to do this film. The outfits and cigars? Savannah?

The script was perfect for a low b movie that just does not work unfortunately esp with this cast that was all over the place probably due to terrible directors

A 3 stars mostly for Brendan acting is hysterical.
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Good Old Haggard Looking, Goes For The Script As Well
davidsask25 May 2019
My how the once mighty have fallen! It's one of those I took it for the pay cheque, or nepotism in Travolta's case as daughter in it. Brendon Fraser just gives me nightmares looking at him. is so sad. When John does a terrible accent with narration from start, That should be all signs to peace out there! Not a rose you wish to see, This one smells dead on grave stone 2/10
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