Despite a suspenseful original concept and boasting one of the hottest stars in Hollywood, the big-budget sci-fi thriller “65” — written and directed by Scott Beck and Bryan Woods – failed to catch fire at the box office on opening weekend.

On a reported budget of $45 million, the 93-minute Sony Pictures film not only brought in just $12.3 million at 3,405 U.S. theaters. The Adam Driver-led vehicle also landed some harsh, eviscerating reviews from many critics. It’s been rated 37% (out of 71 reviews) on Rotten Tomatoes, with an audience score of 63%.

Directors Bryan Woods and Scott Beck at a special screening of “65” in New York City, March 7, 2023.

“You’d think a movie in which Adam Driver fights a bunch of dinosaurs couldn’t possibly be boring, but that’s exactly what ‘65’ is,” began critic Christy Lemire of

“There’s nothing to these characters, and the action sequences quickly grow repetitive and wearisome,” the review says. “There’s a jump scare, insistent notes from an overbearing score, some running and screaming, the gnashing of teeth, and maybe an injury before a narrow escape. Over and over and over again.”

In the 93-minute movie (at which Bettendorf natives Beck & Woods introduced Saturday, March 11, at a sold-out Davenport Cinemark show), after a catastrophic crash on an unknown planet, pilot Mills (Driver) quickly discovers he’s actually stranded on Earth — 65 million years ago. Now, with only one chance at a rescue, Mills and the only other survivor, Koa, must make their way across an unknown terrain riddled with dangerous prehistoric creatures.

Adam Driver in the new sci-fi thriller “65” (Sony Pictures).

Los Angeles Times critic Robert Abele penned a breathtakingly brutal take-down of “65.”

‘Is ‘65’ a hall-of-fame bad movie? No, and that may be its problem. It’s just pedestrian dumb and dull,” he wrote. “It drops humans from eons away and ago into an extinction-level event, and instead of being full-on weird and wondrous about it, prefers to be utterly imitative and complacent.”

Local 4 film critic Linda Cook was far more kind: “A raptor-ously wrought adventure that defies genre, ‘65’ is part sci-fi tale, part actioner, part thriller, and all fun,” she wrote.

Adam Driver and Ariana Greenblatt in “65” (Sony Pictures).

Elements of directors/screenwriters Beck and Woods’s “longtime affinity for themes of sacrifice, family, and their love for silent movies are here, just as they were in ‘A Quiet Place’,” Cook said, citing their literal monster hit from 2018.

“The finale is clever, uplifting and satisfying,” she wrote. “This is a solid, well-directed popcorn movie that may have a few elements that hearken to ‘Star Wars’ (including Driver himself) and ‘Jurassic Park,’ but never is it derivative.”

“65” likely will never scale the box-office heights of “A Quiet Place,” which starred real-life spouses John Krasinski and Emily Blunt, was produced for just $17 million, and grossed $340.9 million worldwide. Its opening weekend alone was $50 million domestically.

“A Quiet Place” (co-written by Beck & Woods with John Krasinski) grossed almost $341 million worldwide in 2018).

“A Quiet Place” also was nearly universally praised by critics, with a rating of 96% on Rotten Tomatoes (387 reviews), even above the audience score of 83%.

To learn more about “65,” visit the movie website HERE.