Mixed or average reviews - based on 33 Critics What's this?

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Generally favorable reviews- based on 79 Ratings

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  • Summary: Will is a 30-something Manhattan dad in the midst of a divorce whose 10-year-old daughter, Maya, starts to question him about his life before marriage. Maya wants to know absolutely everything about how her parents met and fell in love. Will's story begins in 1992 as a young, starry-eyed aspiring politician who moves to New York from Wisconsin to work on the Clinton campaign. For Maya, Will relives his past as an idealistic young man learning the ins and outs of big-city politics. He also recounts the history of his romantic relationships with three very different women. Will hopelessly attempts a "PG" version of his story for his daughter and changes the names so Maya has to guess which woman her father finally married. Is her mother Will's college sweetheart, the dependable girl-next-door Emily (Elizabeth Banks)? Is she his longtime best friend and confidante, the apolitical April (Isla Fisher)? Or is she the free-spirited but ambitious journalist Summer? As Maya puts together the pieces of her dad's romantic puzzle, she begins to understand that love is not so simple or easy. And as Will tells her his tale, Maya helps him to understand that it's definitely never too late to go back...maybe even to find a happy ending. (Universal Studios) Expand
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 20 out of 33
  2. Negative: 1 out of 33
  1. Reviewed by: Sam Toy
    Sweet, funny, simple, entertaining -- everything a good rom-com should be. Definitely...
  2. 75
    Put simply, the film excels most at not being awful.
  3. Reviewed by: Ken Fox
    A lot fresher and bit more sophisticated than the ordinary run of maudlin chick flicks and crude gross-out sex farces that now pass for romantic comedies.
  4. 63
    On the plus side, Definitely, Maybe has an appealing cast, some amusing scenes and at least tries to do something different.
  5. Reviewed by: Stephen Farber
    The film is far from a complete washout, and this is chiefly a tribute to its immensely attractive and appealing cast. Ryan Reynolds proves to have the stuff of a true leading. man.
  6. 50
    To sum up, Definitely, Maybe is crap with compensations.
  7. There's no maybe about its standing as romantic comedy -- definitely bad.

See all 33 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 23 out of 31
  2. Negative: 5 out of 31
  1. GeorgeK.
    Feb 26, 2008
    Ryan Reynolds is typically plays the roll of a funny character, but in this movie he was more than that. While including his funny one-liners, he was able to make an audience cry with his ability to be serious and romantic. Overall, this movie. compared to the other junk that comes out about romantic comedies, is the best one of its kind of the year by far. It would be stupid not to see this movie, but be aware that you will most likely leave the theater in tears it's that touching. Expand
  2. LauraV.
    Feb 17, 2008
    I saw this picture with a divorced father and his 12 year old daughter and both of them (and me) loved the movie. So I'm sure they looked at the movie if only daddy had picked a better girlfriend to marry since the daughter doesn't like the new boyfriend her mother currently has and she likes me. But I'm not an old girlfriend from the past. So that part didn't match the movie. so the daughter likes the fact that her daddy has a girlfriend that she likes too which seems to match the ending of the movie. Of course, another movie could be a daughter picking out a new girlfriend which is kind of what this movie is about except that the father looks in the past to get that next one since it seems he picked the wrong woman. Expand
  3. Sep 19, 2010
    I am a sucker for the romantic comedy, but there is nothing I hate worse than a cheesy one. Ok, so maybe they are all a bit cheesy, but I have fallen victim to the formula of watching two souls destined to be together and the story it takes to get them there. Wow...I just realized. I AM cheesy!

    And, thus, I have fallen hard for Definitely, Maybe. Unlike most romantic comedies, this one is centered primarily around the adorable young actress Abigail Breslin from Little Miss Sunshine, another one of my favorites. Abigail plays the precious young Maya, daughter of underrated hunky actor Ryan Reynolds (yes, I said it), who plays former Clinton-campaign worker-turned-ad-man Will Hayes, who wants desperately to make sense of her parents' divorce and to see her father happy. As with any little girl, the fantasy romance plays heavily in her belief-system about love, thus she begs her father to explain how she came to be, and how he came to marry the woman from whom he is obtaining a divorce. The movie weaves an intricate and pretty realistic set of scenarios (although all of them together seems a bit far-fetched) on how men and women decide to enter and eventually exit relationships.

    As the story moves its way through the film, the viewer is introduced to a myriad of attractive and unique female supporting cast members, played by Elizabeth Banks (Emily/Sarah), Rachel Weisz (Summer/Natasha) and the eventual owner of Will's heart, the immensely sexy Isla Fisher (April).

    The writing and directing of Adam Brooks sucks the viewer into the narration just as much as young Maya. I found myself trying to figure out where the story was going and making openly verbal guesses as to what would happen next. At no point did the story get old or boring. And, by the end, I found myself tearing up.

    Having come from a divorced family myself, and at times, nearing divorce in my own marriage, it's movies like this that do a very REAL job of expressing what questions and emotions children go through as their life changes through no fault of their own. It's heartbreaking. And Maya's quest to make sense of it all through this story is as much part of her own healing as it is Will's. And, in the end, they both do everything they can to find the happy ending. Like any good romantic comedy, the predictable happy ending does indeed come.

    Supporting cast members Elizabeth Banks, Rachel Weisz and her lover, the perfectly-cast Kevin Kline, do a tremendous job giving depth to the story and providing a realistic view of how all of us migrate through our 20s and early-to-mid 30s beginning as enthusiastic, yet naive, adults to realistic and somewhat cynical thirtysomethings. Being one myself, I was taken aback by the transformation of each character as they become more mature, having gone down their own individual paths, eventually leading Will and April back together.

    I have been waiting for the rest of the world to realize just how great Ryan is since the first episode I saw of Two Guys, A Girl and a Pizza Place. I was convinced he was Jim Carrey's younger brother. Now, I realize he is not only good looking on screen, but also deadpan funny (see Waiting, Harold and Kumar Go to White Castle and Just Friends)and superbly believable in dramatic (or non-funny) roles, as evidenced in Definitely, Amityville Horror and Blade:Trinity. When I saw the trailers for Definitely, Maybe, I thought (pardon the pun), maybe Ryan had finally found the vehicle, the writer/director and the supporting cast to show the rest of the world just what a phenomenal talent he is. Alas, the movie did ok, but this wonderful movie didn't receive the accolades it so richly deserves.

    While there is no need for a sequel, I encourage you to rent or buy this film on DVD to not only see a great film, but financially support future films like this.
  4. ChadS.
    Feb 15, 2008
    Political demagoguery, it's in the genes of this seemingly harmless romantic comedy called "Definitely, Maybe", a film that definitely wants to you to join the anti-Hillary army come this November, maybe even before the Democratic nomination for the presidency is wrapped up(the Derek Luke character might be a Barack Obama stand-in). Will Hayes(Ryan Reynolds), a campaign worker for Bill Clinton's 1992 nomination bid, comes to work everyday dressed in a suit and tie. Although formal wear isn't a uniform exclusive to the Young Republicans, Will's ignorance of that cultural Zeitgeist that was "grunge" music(he doesn't know who Kurt Cobain is), makes you wonder what he and his friends were listening to during the year punk broke. Red and blue are ubiquitous colors in "Definitely, Maybe", most notably when Will fixes lunch for his daughter Maya(Abigail Breslin). There are two colanders; a red and a blue one, Will chooses the red sieve(he's also a University of Wisconsin grad; red is the dominant school color). Later in the film, Will shouts, "What am I doing here?" while performing the work of a grunt at Clinton headquarters. Most notably, he's the lone Clinton dissenter at a party where the Monica Lewinsky scandal is discussed amongst his former colleagues. Will harps about the lie, the sanctity of the Oval Office, in other words, the same song and dance we heard from conservative pundits like Ann Coulter. His friends would vote again for Bill in a heartbeat(read: they'd vote for Hillary). Not Will; that's because he's too moderate, like Hillary, who often distances herself from the liberal side of her party. "Definitely, Maybe" reminds voters of the moral baggage that Clinton's husband brings to the table, and how the former-first lady is neither true blue nor dead red-right. Where Michael Moore failed, "Definitely, Maybe" was released to persuade potential voters to either vote for the republican candidate, or for Barack Obama, who political analysts believe would have a lesser chance of beating his challenger in the general election. Expand
  5. JesterM.
    Jul 23, 2008
    The movie was very entertaining, and I would like to forward the motion that we don't allow right wing nutjobs to post reviews on Metacritic anymore. These conservative crazies shouldn't be afforded the same rights as us good freedom loving Americans. I doubt this will get posted as there is a double standard which allows the right wingers to get cart blanche when it comes to peddling crazy whereever they want, but when a good old fashioned liberal wants to enter the fray he gets shut down. Now, I know whoever the arbitrator of posting things on this site is, they are for sure a liberal.... so allow me to ask you friend... what are you prepared to do about it :) Expand
  6. JayH.
    Jun 20, 2008
    Cute comedy romance, but it didn't "wow" me. Appealing performances, great cast with Isla Fisher standing out. Ryan Reynolds is quite good as well. It's a light and entertaining movie. It has some slow parts, but I never lost interest. Expand
  7. AndyC.
    Feb 14, 2008
    I go see this movie and what do I get? Well the crappiest movie I have ever seen thats one thing. Definitely Maybe has several issues, one, its title. Definitely Maybe my ass, what does this title have to do with the story huh? And surely enough as a romantic mystery all of the characters are dull, and the storytelling is weak, VERY weak. It s flimsy, and not even sexy, the guy is so freekin ugly, and the mom plays an absolute terrible performance. Which gives Ryan Reynolds not one chance to succeed either. Its a quirky and incredibly stupid film, it leads nowhere. Whats the point to this story anyway? Nothing in this movie made any sense to me at all. The flashbacks and thematic elements are drearily and gloomily looked at, and I was surely bored right in the instant. What a bag this film was, I have no good remarks to say, this movie sucked and I am never going to see it ever again, nor am I ever going to mention it to anyone, because trust me, it sucked, and it sucked bad. Expand

See all 31 User Reviews