Wednesday star Jenna Ortega's new movie gets some pretty harsh first reviews

(Image credit: Paramount)

The first reviews for Finestkind, starring Jenna Ortega, have arrived – and they're not exactly positive.

Per the official synopsis, the film follows two brothers, Tom (Ben Foster) and Charlie (Toby Wallace), from opposite sides of the tracks who reunite as adults. Desperate circumstances force them into a deal with an organized crime syndicate in Boston, and a young woman (Ortega) gets caught in the middle. Tommy Lee Jones also stars. The drama is written and directed by Brian Helgeland (L.A. Confidential, Mystic River), with Finestkind being his first directorial venture in five years. A first draft of the script was completed 25 years ago, with the role of Charlie reportedly being offered to Heath Ledger (H/T The Hollywood Reporter).

Collider called the film an "unremarkable blend of different ideas, wildly escalating stakes, and full of actors who deserve better". The Hollywood Reporter stated that: "Not even Jenna Ortega and Tommy Lee Jones can Keep Brian Helgeland’s clichéd maritime drama afloat."

Per RogerEbert:"It doesn’t help that the script gets weighed down with clichéd dialogue as it gets more melodramatic. So much so that lines meant to be powerful were greeted by unintended laughter at the screening. Maybe it will work better at home."

Film Inquiry had a similar opinion: "You can see from an outline point of view that the film has several good story elements and nearly all the pieces are in place. It's just a shame that on execution, it's all over the place, ranging from being uneventful to being unintentionally funny."

Deadline's review was a bit kinder, writing, "For an hour, Finestkind is the kind of movie they don’t make anymore, and just when you’re starting to adapt to its gentle, circadian rhythms (which is about halfway through), it becomes the kind of movie they make all the time." Variety also gave it a kinder review, saying that the film "is just so-so" but praising Wallace and Foster's "magnetic" performances.

Finestkind is set to hit Paramount+ in November. For more, check out our list of the most exciting upcoming movies in 2023 and beyond.

Lauren Milici
Senior Writer, Tv & Film

Lauren Milici is a Senior Entertainment Writer for GamesRadar+ currently based in the Midwest. She previously reported on breaking news for The Independent's Indy100 and created TV and film listicles for Ranker. Her work has been published in Fandom, Nerdist, Paste Magazine, Vulture, PopSugar, Fangoria, and more.