While some critics are calling Stop-Loss, Kimberly Peirce’s long-awaited Boys Don’t Cry follow-up, earnest and, at times, riveting, none of them seem to see it as the definitive Iraq war film. But the picture, about some GIs who’ve completed their tours of duty only to be told they’re being sent back to the front, still “strikes a universal chord that transcends politics,” writes Peter Travers in Rolling Stone.
The Seattle Post-Intelligencer ’s William Arnold hails the film for its strong camerawork—particularly during early scenes set overseas—and performances. “But the movie has little punch,” he writes. And, as the setting shifts from Middle Eastern to US soil, Stop-Loss devolves into “a soft, unfocused story about the moral strain of making difficult choices,” writes Lisa Schwarzbaum in Entertainment Weekly.