Tenderness (2009) - Crime, Drama, Thriller

Hohum Score



A policeman works to figure out whether a violent teen murdered his family.

IMDB: 5.5
Director: John Polson
Stars: Russell Crowe, Jon Foster
Length: 101 Minutes
PG Rating: R
Reviews: 17 out of 51 found boring (33.33%)

One-line Reviews (49)

As the movie progressed I found myself reassured by some emotionally provoking cinematography, strong performances, and an intriguing story.

Unfortunately I can't review more than the first hour of the movie, because I ended up falling asleep at 6pm, which never happens to me.

It tries to be very character driven, but you really don't give a toss for any of them because the subject matter is so boring.

The movie is just not engaging what so ever, I nearly fell asleep multiple times while watching this, my brother who was watching this with me left mid way through it cause nothing freaking happens.

but again like most of the film it is contrived and comes from a completely abstract and unnecessary direction..Dull. TV Movie at best.

He gives the lie to the label of "psychotic" by the intense pain he suffers over Lori's death.

There must be a stronger grudge between the men, than a mere obsession; it remains a rather flat and uninteresting part.

While the narrative has some really thought provoking themes; a man who can only feel tenderness by releasing life from victims, a girl vacant as the apathetic family she fled who craves tenderness, and a road trip of discovery it is only in the hands of a hack such as john polsen that such a film could simultaneously feel both so derivative and boring.

Though an initially intense and interesting film, Tenderness directed by John Polson (who previously made Swimfan and Hide and Seek) remains a rather uneventful and often unconvincing crime thriller.

Very slow moving.

It's like a simplified version of the style of "The Talented Mr Ripley" or Woody Allen's "Cassandra's Dream" Recommended for those of you who enjoyed slow suspense, character driven thrillers.

Ponderous, Prententious, Drab .

It's a turgid and sometimes confusing story.

Will this be a reason for Erik to murder his unexpected guest or Det.

Everything about the plot is drawn out and there isn't anything psychologically thrilling about it, despite what the DVD cover may say, also nothing is deep about it either.

The movie teases us with instances where it appears he is attempting to murder Lori, touches that are totally out of character for the movie and surely resulted from someone heavy-handedly screwing around with the script in a dimwitted attempt to make it more exciting.

He is good looking, but bland and anti-social.


Uninteresting and very damaged .

This is just a stupid horrible film and a waste of time.

Eric went to prison for these crimes, never connecting the young girl who became obsessed with him, scrapbooking his case ardently in an attempt to escape her mundane, working-class life.

I just didn't care about any of the characters even by the end of the movie, and certainly got no plot closure.

The opening with Sophie Traub has a couple of compelling moments.

You're on the edge of your seat ready to press eject at any given moment if something doesn't happen very soon.

However, the pace is PAINFULLY slow for a thriller.

Merely pretentious and trying to show some intelligence where there isn't, "Tenderness" is not a good film and it doesn't deserve half the attention it might get.

But the film is worth viewing for its compelling script and the three excellent performances by Russell Crowe, Jon Foster, and Sophie Traub.

The film is a roadtrip where nothing happens except stupidly plotted, badly acted, terribly directed narrative exposition.

At first he tries to get rid of her, he even offers her $20 to get back home, but she is intriguing and stays with him.

Nothing happens...

What passes for thoughtful in indie land,its lesson seems to be this: some people are literally dying to get killed by really boring and charmless sociopaths.

Waste of time.

SPOILERS: this movie was very tedious to watch, having a deaux ex machina incident every 10 minutes.

Overall, a slow paced film with which very little happens, which in a way makes you more likely to want to see the film through, as you anticipate something might happen.

There are still some intense scenes that work well and the tender moments between Eric and Lori and Cristofuoro and his wife

Despite being a little too predictable, the ending did saviour some respect for this film.

First off, it is clear from the outset that Jon Foster killed his parents but had that crime expunged from his record, so Detective Cristofuoro's relentless pursuit of him is altogether pointless.

Very predictable ending.

John Polson's 'Tenderness' starts off interestingly with the promise of being an intense thriller.

I suspect the book does a better job of explication of motive, but the themes of isolation and yearning that run through the film are compelling enough to carry the story forward to its bittersweet conclusion.

Certainly there are a number of fascinating questions asked; such as why this teenage girl is unconcerned by the dangers of this lunatic and why Cristofuoro himself is to obsessed with his own pursuite, surely not just because of his instincts and his proper sense of the law.

Could they have cast a more boring lead character to play the killer if they tried to?

Dreary and slow.

It was understated and cerebral, reminded me a bit of the feel of Nightcrawler or Mr. Brooks at first, so I was on the edge of my seat waiting for something to escalate or some mystery to be uncovered; kept waiting, kept waiting...

Sophie Traub as 'Lori' has the most intriguing story here, and she delivers.

It's an indie, slow moving, full of tristesse and dysfunctional people.

But it's well acted, holds the attention and cannot be accused of being predictable.


The story had to be slow paced, it's a history about a boy named Eric who was condemned to prison, judged as a kid for killing his fathers.