The Phantom of the Opera (2004)
"Where in all of that did Schumacher see in Butler the potential to play a sensitive, wounded man who obsesses over a singer?"
"As the Phantom, troublesome actor Gerard Butler is game to run around, foaming at the mouth, screaming Christine's name to the heavens."
"I can easily imagine a more dashing, charismatic Phantom than Butler's. A shouter, he lacks mystery, and without it the love triangle with Christine and Patrick Wilson's ardent Raoul is a non-starter."
"Butler is capable of belting out the big tunes of the piece, but his register isn't as sophisticated as the role requires, and when he hits those high notes in 'Music of the Night,' one cannot help but cringe. Butler is seriously miscast; a fact that becomes more and more frustrating as he's given more songs to perform."
P.S. I Love You (2007)
"Every time Swank and Butler kiss, you feel the earth move. But that's only because you're watching two tectonic plates press hard against each other."
"Butler, though puportedly attractive, gives a chipmunk-chipper performance that can only be described as supremely annoying."
"The story plods along in such a predictable manner that I kept expecting that there was some giant twist on the horizon–maybe the messages from Gerry would have reminded Holly that perhaps he wasn’t the idealized version of a perfect mate that formed in her mind after her passing. Of course, my thoughts may have drifted in this direction because of the simple fact that the Gerry that we get to see in the various flashbacks never struck me as anything other than a colossally annoying ass (and as embodied by the relentlessly drab Butler, an uncommonly boring one to boot)."
The Ugly Truth (2009)
"The only surprise Butler offers is listening for which words in his dialogue will betray his Scots accent, with 'psycho-babble' and 'you' being the most diverting examples."
"A few funny lines work their way in there, and from time to time Heigl and Butler settle into a rapport that helps you forget how abhorrent their characters are. But when it comes time for these people to fall in love, connecting over a shared affection for tap water and literally nothing else, the whole charade falls apart."
"Imagine a cross between a pale imitation of the Tom Cruise character from 'Magnolia' and 50% of the beer commercials that have aired in the last few years."
The Bounty Hunter (2010)
"Butler and Aniston are allegedly canoodling in real life, which seems incredible, because on screen they generate as much electricity as a pile of gravel. Butler comes off as a real jerk — a smarmy, disheveled creep, puffed up on his own tarnished vanity."
"The boorish Butler seems to have shed his charm along with his Scottish accent."
"Three films into his romantic comedy career Gerard Butler has finally reached 'watchable.'"
"One obvious omission: Butler's Scottish accent. You take away the brogue, you cut his charm in half. That's how it works."
Playing for Keeps (2012)
"The most interesting thing about Gerard Butler is that he has spent his career as a Hollywood star avoiding any roles that even remotely resemble the one that actually made him a star."
"The clock may be running out on Gerard Butler’s window as a viable leading man, as his scruffy charms wear thin in the romantic comedy 'Playing for Keeps.'"
"The only thing standing in his way seems to be his actual films; after sitting through the likes of 'The Ugly Truth,' 'Chasing Mavericks,' 'The Bounty Hunter' and 'Law Abiding Citizen,' I began formulating conspiracy theories involving a shadowy cabal of Hollywood suits who were determined to destroy his career after Butler flirted with some studio head’s wife at a party or cut someone off at the valet stand at a Beverly Hills bistro."
"At some point you hope the actor will find a movie that will give him the right material to make hearts truly beat faster. Until then, it appears we'll have to settle for films with more flaws than his characters."