First, let’s start with the positive. In a review for The Minneapolis Star Tribune, Chris Hewitt was critical of certain aspects of the movie but found plenty to praise. Of Kenji Tanigaki’s fight choreography he wrote, “it’s spectacular stuff, sometimes involving those swords, as well as daggers and improbably high jumps.”
Hewitt also lauded Golding’s performance and potential to carry more movies in the franchise. “[He] nails the combo of authority and low-key humor that the title role asks for,” he wrote, “suggesting that after using two different actors to play Snake Eyes in the previous two ‘G.I. Joe’ movies, they finally found their man.”
Brian Truitt of USA Today wrote that “Snake Eyes” is “a satisfying martial-arts action-adventure.” He was impressed with the ample serving of “lightning-quick swordplay” and especially enjoyed the chemistry between Golding and Andrew Koji, who plays Tommy Arashikage. Truitt called the pair “endlessly watchable together whether having a deep conversation or punching goons in the face.”
On the flip side, Simon Abrams of RogerEbert.com was left feeling like he’d watched “a dire checklist of clichés that were already gathering moss back in the 1980s …” He called the dialogue “dismally overproduced” and noted, “the action scenes are not only diminished by headache-inducing hand-held photography—don’t bother seeing this in IMAX—but also cribbed ideas from superior action films …”
And The Guardian’s Charles Bramesco wasn’t much of a fan, either. He called the movie “a largely interchangeable hunk of Hollywood product” with “terminally uncool dialogue …”
You can determine how you feel about the movie for yourself by checking out “Snake Eyes,” which hits theaters on July 23.