Charlie Wilson's War

User Score
6.9

Generally favorable reviews- based on 119 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 79 out of 119
  2. Negative: 8 out of 119

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User Reviews

  1. StephenS.
    Apr 30, 2008
    5
    If you can turn your brain off, its something funny and soap-opera great. If you can't you soon realize it's nothing more than a good comedy about the actions that lead to 9/11.
  2. OliverC.
    Jan 9, 2008
    5
    Suffers from its lack of poignancy. When did Hoffman become such a beast? His acting is awesome to watch (Unfortunately, his make-up is not). This movie has no idea what its trying to say and ends up pulling out some kind of meaning out of nowhere in the final scenes. It celebrates war, womanizing and good old irresponsibility only to reprimand the viewers at the end. Forgive me for Suffers from its lack of poignancy. When did Hoffman become such a beast? His acting is awesome to watch (Unfortunately, his make-up is not). This movie has no idea what its trying to say and ends up pulling out some kind of meaning out of nowhere in the final scenes. It celebrates war, womanizing and good old irresponsibility only to reprimand the viewers at the end. Forgive me for wanting more in a political comedy. Expand
  3. AlexB
    Jan 10, 2008
    6
    You could spend a worse 90 minuntes for sure - Roberts and Hanks are reliable, Hoffman is wonderful. The events are simplified, but then its not a documentary, so people should get over that. My only real criticism is that I felt all the charicters were fairly two dimensional charicatures - the socialite, the playboy, the CIA man - none of them seemed very real and Hanks can't help You could spend a worse 90 minuntes for sure - Roberts and Hanks are reliable, Hoffman is wonderful. The events are simplified, but then its not a documentary, so people should get over that. My only real criticism is that I felt all the charicters were fairly two dimensional charicatures - the socialite, the playboy, the CIA man - none of them seemed very real and Hanks can't help but put a comedy twist on everything - even a chronic alcoholic in charge of a $1 billion dollar arms budget. Expand
  4. nickg.
    Jan 2, 2008
    6
    Tom Hanks is always watchable, but the story is told in totaly exposition. Few laughs. Little new insight.
  5. Kevin
    May 18, 2008
    4
    This movie is horrifically overrated. The acting was at times diabolical, direction was very poor....script was almost as cheesy and cringe inducing as Bobby. I seriously don't understand the praise this is getting, sure the subject matter is VERY interesting, but deserves a much more intelligent piece of work than this. Poor.
  6. RichR.
    May 3, 2008
    5
    Is Tom Hanks supposed to have a Texas accent in this? What a joke. He sounds like Robert E Lee.
  7. JayH.
    Apr 16, 2008
    6
    What a great cast, with a very fine performance by Philip Seymour Hoffman. Good story, but was surprised at some rather slow moving stretches. Well produced, fine score. A good, but not great movie.
  8. TonyB.
    Jun 24, 2008
    5
    I wasn't bored, but I could hardly believe much of it. even though we're told the basic facts are true. Tom Hanks is out of his element, and Julia Roberts is seriously miscast. It's no surprise that the great Phillip Seymour Hoffman steals the show. The film ends too quickly with an almost casual brush off of the significance of the consequences of Charlie's adventure. I wasn't bored, but I could hardly believe much of it. even though we're told the basic facts are true. Tom Hanks is out of his element, and Julia Roberts is seriously miscast. It's no surprise that the great Phillip Seymour Hoffman steals the show. The film ends too quickly with an almost casual brush off of the significance of the consequences of Charlie's adventure. Mike Nichols did much better with "Primary Colors." Expand
  9. Feb 23, 2013
    4
    When I sat down to watch Charlie Wilson's War, I thought it would be a can't miss. A true story, covered up by the government, starring Tom Hanks and Julia Roberts!? How could that be bad!? Well, for a change, Tom Hanks isn't playing a likeable character. Charlie Wilson is portrayed as a sex addicted man whore, who follows his dick more than his brain. As for the film, it was just soWhen I sat down to watch Charlie Wilson's War, I thought it would be a can't miss. A true story, covered up by the government, starring Tom Hanks and Julia Roberts!? How could that be bad!? Well, for a change, Tom Hanks isn't playing a likeable character. Charlie Wilson is portrayed as a sex addicted man whore, who follows his dick more than his brain. As for the film, it was just so confusing to me, they jump from scene to scene so quickly and introduce a ton of characters so fast, that by the time they got to Julia Roberts, I was already sick of the film. I didn't even get through the whole thing to be completely honest with you. It's an unbelievable cast and a pretty cool story, but I was not happy with the way the movie was done. It was not easy to sit through or follow. Expand
  10. Sep 3, 2014
    6
    Tom Hanks and Julia Roberts are meant to be. Charlie Wilson's War is a fun, political addition to Mike Nichols' impressive catalogue of films. Although, not Nichols' finest achievement, this one is worth watching for Phillip Seymour Hoffman alone.
  11. May 31, 2014
    4
    "Charlie Wilson's War" is nothing more than an ok film. First and foremost, Philip Seymour Hoffman kills it and really is the brightest star here. In a small role, Amy Adams is also quite good. I cannot say the same for Tom Hanks or Julia Roberts, however. For some reason, Hanks' performance here was not up to snuff for me and I am not typically a fan of Roberts and this film was no"Charlie Wilson's War" is nothing more than an ok film. First and foremost, Philip Seymour Hoffman kills it and really is the brightest star here. In a small role, Amy Adams is also quite good. I cannot say the same for Tom Hanks or Julia Roberts, however. For some reason, Hanks' performance here was not up to snuff for me and I am not typically a fan of Roberts and this film was no difference. Both seemed to be out of their league compared to a talent such as Hoffman. As for the film, the story was...eh. The parts surrounding the operations in Afghanistan were interesting, but far too much time was spent on establishing Wilson as a drug addicted womanizer, rather than focusing on, you know, the story the film was trying to tell. So much time is devoted in fact that by the end, you are left wondering how this one was an hour and a half long since it feels like so little was truly covered. The depth it goes into on the issues in Afghanistan is cursory at best and it really feels as though we got maybe half of the story at best, which is really too bad. However, there are positives. As mentioned, Hoffman turns in a stellar performance and, in addition, when the film focuses on the main story, it is very interesting. It is even more interesting considering what we know now and how all of the events here wind up hurting us later (as hinted to by Hoffman towards the end). In terms of its attempts at satire, most of the time it hits and you find yourself laughing, which is obviously a plus. Overall, this one feels as though far too much was cut and we are instead left with some interesting pieces that do not add up to what they should. Expand
Metascore
69

Generally favorable reviews - based on 39 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 33 out of 39
  2. Negative: 1 out of 39
  1. In this film, directed by Mike Nichols in one of his most satirical moods and scripted by Hollywood's most politically astute writer Aaron Sorkin, a womanizing, alcoholic, easily tempted bachelor gets elected in a Texas district that doesn't care what he does as long as he brings home the bacon.
  2. Reviewed by: Todd McCarthy
    80
    Charlie Wilson's War is that rare Hollywood commodity these days: a smart, sophisticated entertainment for grownups.
  3. Reviewed by: David Ansen
    70
    Of course, hanging over this ironic tale is the deeper historical irony--that many of the "good guy" rebels Charlie is funding (and we're cheering) will become our mortal enemies...It's as if "Titanic" ended with a celebratory shipboard banquet, followed by a postscript: by the way, it sank.