Metascore
81

Universal acclaim - based on 16 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 14 out of 16
  2. Negative: 0 out of 16
  1. 88
    Has the sort of headlong confidence the genre requires. Russell finds the strong central line all screwball begins with, the seemingly serious mission or quest, and then throws darts at a map of the United States as he creates his characters.
  2. 88
    Not as corrosive as Russell's debut feature, "Spanking the Monkey," it's just as wild, just as strange, and even funnier.
  3. A buoyant, picaresque farce that hums with goofy energy and mines enough ideas, jokes and setups for three movies of this description.
  4. A comedy that surfs from beginning to end on a wave of high spirits. The tone is young but not juvenile, sexy but not cynical, optimistic but not stupid. [22 April 1996, p.28]
  5. Mr. Russell's wonderfully mad odyssey of a movie, in which a man sets out to find his biological parents and winds up meeting more weirdos than Alice found down the rabbit hole.
  6. Reviewed by: Richard Schickel
    100
    Upon all these folks, writer-director David O. Russell turns a bland, almost anthropological eye. Nothing surprises him and nothing outrages him, except for bed-and-breakfast lodgings, about which, at last, his movie tells the terrible truth. [1 April 1996, p. 72]
  7. Flirting With Disaster, like that Energizer Bunny, keeps on going. But in this case, the perpetual motion is a deliciously hysterical rush.
  8. 90
    Writer-director David O. Russell's exhilarating follow-up to "Spanking the Monkey," is even wilder, giddier and more unpredictable than that irreverent debut.

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