Up until now, Tom Holland’s career has largely consisted of one high-profile hit after another. The actor went from starring in some of the most famous Spider-Man films of all time to opening an “Uncharted” film that many felt financially underperformed due to Dutch star power. So the harsh critical response to his new Apple TV+ series “The Crowded Room,” which sees Holland play a man with dissociative identity disorder who is arrested for attempted murder, is a new experience for him.
In a new interview with The Hollywood ReporterHolland has been honest about the overwhelmingly negative response the series has received.
“It was a kick in the teeth,” Holland said. “Rolling around, looking at the reviews, and then all of a sudden I was like, ‘Wow. This is a bad review.’ Sometimes there’s a redeeming quality in there. There was not anything.”
While Holland clearly understands the initial negative response to “The Crowded Room,” the actor expressed optimism that critics will ultimately evaluate the series in a positive light.
“There will be good ones,” he said. “There will be. I try to have a sane view of all that kind of stuff and respect everyone’s opinion.”
Much of the criticism of the show has little to do with Holland’s performance (although he is also an executive producer on the series). Critics took issue with the show’s repetitive nature and inability to deliver a dramatic storyline that lives up to its ambitious premise.
“What limits and ultimately brings down ‘The Crowded Room’ isn’t just a bad decision,” wrote IndieWire’s Ben Travers in his review. “Overlong and visually repetitive, the 10-episode limited series starring Tom Holland and Amanda Seyfried lacks the dramatic clout to justify its length, nor is its storytelling carefully crafted to build momentum. Holland’s lead performance is solid, if hopelessly hampered by the structure of the story, and Seyfried’s is a bit sharper, though that may be because she’s able to do more with less. Her message—which I can’t even elaborate on for reasons I’ll divulge shortly—is meaningful and heartwarming, which makes the way it’s delivered wish it were that much stronger.