Generally favorable reviews - based on 28 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 20 out of 28
  2. Negative: 0 out of 28
  1. 100
    Has no ragged edges or bothersome detours, and flows from surprise to delight. At the end, when just desserts are handed out, it arrives at a kind of perfection.
  2. 75
    As a source of light pleasure and solid laughs, it delivers. This particular cookie may not fill the belly, but it goes down easy.
  3. 75
    Altman clarifies a convoluted plot with a magician's ease, creates an atmosphere that brims with the pleasures of the unexpected and explores character nuances.
  4. 50
    Despite some lovely performances (though, sad to say, Patricia Neal's isn't one of them) and charming moments, this meandering ensemble piece and its Tennessee Williams-ish finale is oddly out of character.
  5. Altman is one of very few directors who could have assembled such a superb ensemble, and he makes the most of it from first scene to last.
  6. Reviewed by: Claudia Puig
    Fortune is smiling down on veteran filmmaker Robert Altman with Cookie's Fortune.
  7. Meanders around Holly Springs, Mississippi, with the fuzzy benevolence of a Hallmark Hall of Fame presentation.
  8. Reviewed by: David Edelstein
    It's the work of an old master summing up. It sure feels that way. The screenwriter, Anne Rapp, has provided Altman with a blueprint not only for an ensemble comedy but also for a comedy that honors the very idea of an ensemble. It's no wonder Altman fell on it.
  9. Won't go down as Robert Altman's most memorable movie. But it's a pleasant affair, whose greatest assets are its unhurried, benevolent atmosphere and the quiet, gem-like moments that occur among its characters.
  10. Most of what transpires is low-key, affectionate comedy and a fair amount of fun.
  11. Reviewed by: Todd McCarthy
    May or not be Robert Altman's best film in years, but it is certainly his most pleasurable.
  12. 100
    Cookie's Fortune, which knows how to treat serious matters with humor, is to be treasured as an utterly distinctive work by one of America's finest filmmakers. [2 April 1999, Calendar, p.F-1]
  13. A trifle compared to Robert Altman's great films -- But it's a very assured trifle, and an unusually good-natured Altman film.
  14. An absolute delight, one of the most sheerly pleasurable movies Altman has ever made. It's wry, jokey and sexy, a tart and delectable entertainment. And, like most of Altman's best work, it's graced with a top-notch ensemble of first-class [9 April 1999, Friday, p.A]
  15. 50
    Long before it ends, its leisurely immersion in the Mississippi Delta has turned downright lukewarm and even chilly.
  16. Reviewed by: Richard Corliss
    The film mostly simmers.
  17. 50
    Not even Altman's loose-limbed shooting style can redeem Cookie’s Fortune, a bafflingly pointless farce that belongs more properly in the vaudeville halls than on the director's sporadically lustrous résumé.
  18. Seems to go sideways as often as it goes forward. Altman can't help noticing things more interesting than the story.
  19. 70
    Robert Altman, in a benevolent mood, has made a lovely ensemble comedy from Anne Rapp's original screenplay.
  20. None of the film is exciting, and, despite the preeningly smooth flow of the story, little of it is interesting.
  21. Altman has delivered a lot of surprises in his long directing career, and his new comedy, Cookie's Fortune, is one of the most refreshing -- not because it's so good, but because it's so sweet and affectionate.
  22. 70
    Southern Gothic lite -- with a bite.
  23. 70
    It's a strange, entertaining little film that derives its weird tension from a blend of comic and serious tones.
  24. 89
    Close is a true joy. Without question, she's the heart and soul of Cookie's Fortune.
  25. Reviewed by: Gillian Flynn
    In theaters, the lazy haziness of this Southern ensemble comedy made the story feel like it was stuck in the mud.
  26. Reviewed by: Joshua Klein
    Cookie's Fortune, for all its faults, is a welcome respite. In the uneven hands of Altman, you're better off with a flawed bit of fluff than an outright atrocity.
User Score

Generally favorable reviews- based on 9 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 1 out of 1
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 1
  3. Negative: 0 out of 1
  1. Jul 13, 2012
    Great actors, nice rural location, great music. Actors interact well. Many characters could easily be over acted, but were perfect. ChrisGreat actors, nice rural location, great music. Actors interact well. Many characters could easily be over acted, but were perfect. Chris O'Donnell's character is one where the acting could have gone wrong so easily, yet I love the way his character is, and I care for the character he plays. Full Review »