User Score
6.3

Generally favorable reviews- based on 152 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Negative: 21 out of 152
Watch On

Review this movie

  1. Your Score
    0 out of 10
    Rate this:
    • 10
    • 9
    • 8
    • 7
    • 6
    • 5
    • 4
    • 3
    • 2
    • 1
    • 0
    • 0
  1. Submit
  2. Check Spelling
  1. Jul 8, 2014
    7
    While the first half of 21 is interesting, fresh, and gives us a glimpse into the minds and everyday lives of this card-counting team, the second half resorts to melodramatics, Hollywood clich├ęs, and a very "movie-like" ending. The one saving grace of the movie is, of course, Kevin Spacey. In fact, he's the reason I watched it in the first place.
  2. Nov 28, 2012
    6
    It's definitely interesting, but It desperately lacks an element of relatability within its lead and supporting characters.
  3. Nov 13, 2013
    6
    21 has a few tricks up its sleeves.
    The movie is smart, interesting, and inventive. The acting is poor, but the script is pretty good. I could have wished for a better ending, but the film is sound.
  4. Mar 27, 2012
    10
    This film is so interesting, the trama, characters, story, is wow, a bigger sorprise the performance of Kevin Spacey is amazing, I think that this film is like the others. 21 is a classic.
  5. Dec 15, 2011
    4
    Interesting enough to watch but it didnt do well to hold interest through out and it got really boring. Acting was ok but I expected better from the experianced cast. Just wasnt that good.
  6. Sep 3, 2010
    4
    If you think the plot of "21" sounds as if it was slyly brushed out of screenplay purgatory, just wait until you see how bland the movie actually plays out. For being a group of renegade college students, the characters really aren't very interesting at all and the actors constantly allow Kevin Spacey to steal the scenes, even when he's in the next room getting coffee. Props to JimIf you think the plot of "21" sounds as if it was slyly brushed out of screenplay purgatory, just wait until you see how bland the movie actually plays out. For being a group of renegade college students, the characters really aren't very interesting at all and the actors constantly allow Kevin Spacey to steal the scenes, even when he's in the next room getting coffee. Props to Jim Sturgess for giving some especially bad narrating, too. If anything, though, the movie's effective editing does do a good job of capturing the excitement and tension of counting cards as a team. Expand
  7. Oct 11, 2011
    5
    This movie is simply average. The acting isn't really mind blowing even though Kevin Spacey does do a very good job. A lot of the scenes are also very well shot but when it comes down to it the story was actually very predictable and the romance between Ben and Jill seemed very forced. The movie is worth checking out if you catch it on TV or can borrow it from a friend but don't spend aThis movie is simply average. The acting isn't really mind blowing even though Kevin Spacey does do a very good job. A lot of the scenes are also very well shot but when it comes down to it the story was actually very predictable and the romance between Ben and Jill seemed very forced. The movie is worth checking out if you catch it on TV or can borrow it from a friend but don't spend a lot of money buying the DVD. Expand
  8. Jul 3, 2011
    8
    A well story based on true events (although changed for obvious reasons). The MITs students do a good job and Kevin Spacey is showing his acting skills again in this film. Overall a suspensful film!
  9. Sep 25, 2010
    8
    This true story is not only an intelligent movie, it also has a great cast, especially Jim Sturgess, playing the main character. It has a great twist ending, and deserves better critical recognition. It proves that a bunch of nobodies (and Kevin Spacey) can make a great movie. However, it's nothing like the book, which was a little disappointing.
  10. Feb 27, 2011
    1
    Someone should remake this film. The book was amazing, but the movie didn't seem real, too Hollywood. Was the end slow walk shot with all the characters really necessary. It also seemed to ignore the whole part that he was still a student while this was going on.
  11. Nov 30, 2013
    10
    this movie was good and interesting.But it does some miss directing.but Jim Sturgess i liked his acting.So,I gave it ten because i liked it very much and i dazzled me
  12. Mar 5, 2014
    6
    As far as true story gambling movies go, it is pretty good. Even though the plot is predictable and a little dry, the acting and the direction is well done. The explanation of exactly how the counting cards system works is helpful in understanding what is going on in the movie. Overall, the movie doesn't pretend to be anything that it isn't. Kevin Spacey is excellent and Jim Sturgess doesAs far as true story gambling movies go, it is pretty good. Even though the plot is predictable and a little dry, the acting and the direction is well done. The explanation of exactly how the counting cards system works is helpful in understanding what is going on in the movie. Overall, the movie doesn't pretend to be anything that it isn't. Kevin Spacey is excellent and Jim Sturgess does a good job playing an innocent youth that is corrupted for the first time. Expand
  13. Feb 9, 2012
    8
    21: Jim Sturgess stars in a stacked tight cast in this delightful, thoroughly entertaining, mysterious dramatic film experience alongside Kate Bosworth, Laurence Fishburne, Kevin Spacey and Aaron Yoo. A math professor, Mickey Rosa, takes 5 M.I.T students under his wing to count cards to make some money in Las Vegas. Remember, it is not illegal, it is only frowned upon. When a brilliant21: Jim Sturgess stars in a stacked tight cast in this delightful, thoroughly entertaining, mysterious dramatic film experience alongside Kate Bosworth, Laurence Fishburne, Kevin Spacey and Aaron Yoo. A math professor, Mickey Rosa, takes 5 M.I.T students under his wing to count cards to make some money in Las Vegas. Remember, it is not illegal, it is only frowned upon. When a brilliant student has to earn cash to find his way to Harvard Med, he takes a chance on the elite mathematician team. Lucky enough for him, a spot has just opened up. With ruthless casino bosses, ignorant teammates and romantic flares, all make for a great story of luck, romance, betrayal, impulse and of course genius capabilities. What would you do to get into Harvard Medical School? Expand
  14. DaveR
    Apr 10, 2008
    4
    Not like the book, which was excellent. Fun to watch if you just let your mind go for a while and take what comes. The comments about racism? Give me a break. I lived in Asia for over 9 years, a place where you can see some real racism. The producers can be accused of selecting poor actors, but I do not see racism in Hollywood (After all is that not where the ever so enlightened ones live Not like the book, which was excellent. Fun to watch if you just let your mind go for a while and take what comes. The comments about racism? Give me a break. I lived in Asia for over 9 years, a place where you can see some real racism. The producers can be accused of selecting poor actors, but I do not see racism in Hollywood (After all is that not where the ever so enlightened ones live and work?....and tell us how to live and think?) Anyway it is a fun movie if you are willing to open your mind and use your imagination....and yes I read the book as well Expand
  15. KindredPaul
    Apr 30, 2008
    7
    I liked this movie because it wasn't some stupid thing like other movies, it was different, and i truly never expected the ending, it was a curve ball
  16. GregoryR.
    Apr 5, 2008
    7
    Strays pretty far from the book, but gives you enough twists to serve it's purpose.
  17. ChristineD.
    Mar 28, 2008
    3
    A vanilla movie. For starters, the MIT campus looks just like Boston University (since the campus scenes were shot there) and many of the Asian kids from the original MIT crew have been replaced by normal white kids. So much for realism. But the movie just throws too much Vegas "glitz" at the viewer as the movie teeters down this predictable path as if it's saying, "Did you think A vanilla movie. For starters, the MIT campus looks just like Boston University (since the campus scenes were shot there) and many of the Asian kids from the original MIT crew have been replaced by normal white kids. So much for realism. But the movie just throws too much Vegas "glitz" at the viewer as the movie teeters down this predictable path as if it's saying, "Did you think that scene was predictable? Well, here is a casino with a beautiful blonde woman. And look: money--lots of it. Oooh" Someone should have aimed higher here. It will be a decent DVD rental some day. Expand
  18. Jack
    Mar 29, 2008
    7
    This movie is fresh, witty, and has good acting from kevin spacey. it may be a cliche vegas scene, but the fact that it overdoes the glitz is to show the chaos of their situation. not to mention its not predictable. its worth 9 bucks, but is it amazing? no
  19. BobK.
    Mar 31, 2008
    9
    Good flick, it required a little suspension of disbelief but it was twisted enough to be enjoyable. Kevin Spacey was excellent, but the rest of the cast could have used some improvement.
  20. CozmikMonkey
    Mar 30, 2008
    5
    I see all the user reviews giving this movie high ratings--saying things like the movie is steady and the critics are simply wrong. These comments, in fact, are fairly inaccurate. The movie is the absolutely predictable, it can't decide who is good or bad, and there are simple, though ultimately trivial, plot wholes. If you think the movie is great, you need to watch real film. It I see all the user reviews giving this movie high ratings--saying things like the movie is steady and the critics are simply wrong. These comments, in fact, are fairly inaccurate. The movie is the absolutely predictable, it can't decide who is good or bad, and there are simple, though ultimately trivial, plot wholes. If you think the movie is great, you need to watch real film. It can have it's moments, but this movie which started out as having cheap thrills, ended with having nothing but the typical, everyone is happy ending. Expand
  21. Jackie
    Mar 30, 2008
    7
    Overall I definitely enjoyed the movie. I have never played blackjack in my life, but I found myself interested in the game while watching the film. Ive head complaints about character development and complaints about how the students are supposed to be smart and not make stupid decision. BUT--this is a game theyve never played before until they got swept up in the money--they may have Overall I definitely enjoyed the movie. I have never played blackjack in my life, but I found myself interested in the game while watching the film. Ive head complaints about character development and complaints about how the students are supposed to be smart and not make stupid decision. BUT--this is a game theyve never played before until they got swept up in the money--they may have brians but that doesnt mean they're not gonna be naive--they dont have the life experience. i wasnt concerned about the lack of character deveopment because i thought they set a good enough stage for Ben (sturgess). I thought it was kind of obvious what each character's personality was like--to have to spell it out would have been tedious. Sorry critics! I liked it! Expand
  22. Asingles
    Apr 3, 2008
    6
    Escapist fun, but not much else. I didn't expect better because the book it's based on didn't impress either. Great story, just poorly executed. Also, many of the original team from MIT were NOT asian, so cool your jets before you play the racism card.
  23. EmileF.
    Apr 4, 2008
    9
    A really good movie. There is all the things that I like: -Nice girl -Cool guy -Action -Blackjack -And it's a true story Better than those Jumper or Golden compass creapy things...
  24. FredG.
    Apr 4, 2008
    5
    Movie is too shallow to be taken for anything more the 2 hours of escapism. It could have been so much more if it didn't get diverted from it's main story. I can't recommend it for more than a rental.
  25. PaulR.
    Jul 23, 2008
    0
    Really sad that they felt they had to change the story to make it marketable. And yes, most of the original MIT blackjack team on which these characters were based was indeed Asian American, save for like two people. Leave it to Hollywood to turn that ratio inside-out. It's not playing the race card to say that. It's just fact.
  26. JayH.
    Jul 8, 2008
    6
    Jim Sturgess is terrific, but getting tired of Kevin Spacey in the same cold and heartless character. It's getting old. Good story, not great, but good. It held my interest at least. Well made, good score.
  27. TylerD.
    Aug 31, 2008
    8
    A very entertaining movie. The ending was extremely clever and presented in a great way. 21 entertained throughout with its multiple twists and turns, great acting, and interesting plot. Highly recommended!
  28. [Anonymous]
    Mar 28, 2008
    9
    Despite what the critics say, this film is actually really good, at least imo. It may be somewhat predictable, but it still is interesting to see how the plot twists turn out. It definitely has a great deal of character, and the cast gave remarkable performances, esp. Jim Sturgess, Kate Bosworth, Laurence Fishburne, and the always-engaging, Kevin Spacey. Definitely check this out, you Despite what the critics say, this film is actually really good, at least imo. It may be somewhat predictable, but it still is interesting to see how the plot twists turn out. It definitely has a great deal of character, and the cast gave remarkable performances, esp. Jim Sturgess, Kate Bosworth, Laurence Fishburne, and the always-engaging, Kevin Spacey. Definitely check this out, you won't be disappointed! Expand
  29. RobertM.
    Mar 29, 2008
    10
    Great movie... Entertaining and captivating the whole way through. The critics are simply wrong.
  30. Michaelr
    Mar 31, 2008
    1
    The biggest travesty is people will see this and think they know the story of the MIT blackjack team. Everything after the training was completely fabricated. Imagine the movie without the beating, Lawrence Fishburne character, and surprise ending because none of it ever happened. I think people are responding so well to the movie because they are assuming it is a true story. Had I not The biggest travesty is people will see this and think they know the story of the MIT blackjack team. Everything after the training was completely fabricated. Imagine the movie without the beating, Lawrence Fishburne character, and surprise ending because none of it ever happened. I think people are responding so well to the movie because they are assuming it is a true story. Had I not read the book I probably would feel the same however I did read the book and remember thinking how amazed I was they could ruin such an amazing story. The casinos fought back but in LEGAL ways. No one got beat up or had their money stolen. Jeffrey Ma made and kept over a million dollars but he gets audited routinely thanks to the casinos. Amazing true story, too bad the producers decided to be more inspired by Oceans 11 than the book Bringing Down The House. Read the book. Expand
Metascore
48

Mixed or average reviews - based on 29 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 6 out of 29
  2. Negative: 2 out of 29
  1. 75
    21 drags itself to a climax that puts credulity in splints. So what? In a multiplex of dumb-luck hits, it's a kick to watch Spacey and a gifted young cast use smarts to deal audiences a winning hand.
  2. 60
    Spacey's engaging for a while in one of his patented double-edged, sharky roles.
  3. Reviewed by: John DeFore
    70
    Escapist moviegoers happy to live out a flashy fantasy get a brief comeuppance and still walk away from the table with a little something in their pockets.