Cast your mind back a few months, and you might recall that 's The Counselor was tipped for Oscar glory and garnished with a trailer that looked like one slick slice of greatness.
Novelist 's beautiful use of language, which seemed so suited to No Country for Old Men and The Road, was to be matched by a very famous cast comprised of , , , , and .
But perhaps - with dialogue so memorable and gorgeous scenery that grabs so much of the audiences' attention - Blade Runner and Alien director Scott has had a difficult time making his presence felt, because the first wave of reviews for The Counselor are in, and it's not looking too good with the critics.
Here's how the movie shapes up, according to early reviews.
Mr. Scott's seriousness isn't always well served by the scripts he films, but in Mr. McCarthy he has found a partner with convictions about good and evil rather than canned formula.
Manohla Dargis, New York Times
Cormac McCarthy's first original script is nearly all dialogue, but it's a lousy story, ineptly constructed and rendered far too difficult to follow.
Peter Debruge, Variety
Considering the deep bench of A-list talent involved, Ridley Scott's new Southwestern noir, The Counselor, is a jaw-dropping misfire.
Chris Nashawaty, Entertainment Weekly
Nearly every plot twist is telegraphed by reams of stilted dialogue provided by novelist Cormac McCarthy in his first original screenplay.
Lou Lumenick, New York Post
As cold, precise and soulless as the diamonds that figure briefly in its plot, "The Counselor" is an extremely unpleasant piece of business.
Kenneth Turan, LA Times
Plays like a parody of a Cormac McCarthy adaptation...It's derivative nonsense.
Mary F. Pols, TIME Magazine
Despite its scaldingly hot cast and formidable writer/director combination, The Counselor is simply not a very likable or gratifying film. In fact, it's a bummer.
Todd McCarthy, Hollywood Reporter
... Oh dear. And I reeeally wanted this to be good.
What do you think of these early reviews? Do the critics need to put their bongs down, step away from the keyboard, and at least try to appreciate the movie for the pictures?
The Counselor arrives in theaters today, October 25.