User Score
8.5

Universal acclaim- based on 158 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Negative: 4 out of 158

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  1. Mar 18, 2012
    8
    Good Will Hunting is one of the greatest American Movies of all time. It is both Robin Williams and Matt Damon's best performances, and Robin Williams won the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor. Good Will Hunting is both wise and deep. It really makes you stop and look at yourself and life.
  2. Aug 22, 2010
    10
    This is a great movie. I got out of it that it is a sham that without pushing that a life would be wasted and I can"t stand wasted lives. he wasn"t even on drugs. It also stresses the importance of getting your emotional stuff in order. Untill that was in order, he had no faith in himself. I guess your environment really really determines that. Great movie. you can learn so much from it. That is why I am not into action movies because I can"t learn much from them that I can"t use in life if you know what I mean. Collapse
  3. Feb 19, 2011
    10
    Brilliant script and great direction, Good Will Hunting is a must-see movie. Amazing performance by Matt Damon. The Greatest Math Janitor Film Of All Time
  4. Jul 8, 2011
    10
    It comes quite clear that the critics that gave the movie a negative review did not understand the excellence of the acting. Especially from Robin Williams, has he ver made a movie like this? No. The intelligence of this movie is outstanding, no fancy effects or crazy dramatic turns, just human life at it's peak. A beautiful movie, don't over analyze it, but do recognize how it makes you look deep into life. Expand
  5. j30
    Dec 1, 2011
    9
    Good Will Hunting is a dumbfounded wonder of a movie. With exceptional performances from Robin Williams, Matt Damon, and wait... Ben Affleck (oh and he co-wrote the movie with Matt Damon).
  6. Sep 3, 2010
    8
    Great performances & dialogue with Robin Williams in fine form as psychologist Sean Maguire.
    I still have a strong dislike for Ben Affleck though he did co-write this so fair play to him.
    Also nice soundtrack with lots of the late Elliott Smith featuring.
  7. Aug 28, 2010
    10
    Of the works of art I have experienced, this has struck a deep impression within me and remains to be my favorite film of all time. To begin with, the story is not only a wonderful concept but also devoid of idealistic cliché. It was the kind of story that carried itself through the journey; situations fabricated to nudge the plot along were very sparse. The entire movie flowed out smoothly, avoiding the impression of multiple disjointed scenes, instead following a cohesive line of thought, and yet integrated within was a well-paced emotional rampage. It balanced on the edge of fact and fiction, using â Expand
  8. Oct 5, 2011
    5
    I saw this movie for the first time last night and I'm sad to say it has not held up well. The audience is meant to believe that Matt Damon's character is smart because he writes mathematic gibberish on a black board conveniently placed in a walk way for a janitor to draw on, I was never convinced he was the genius the movie claimed him to be. The movie has good acting if you consider characters yelling and swearing at each other for 3 quarters of the movie for little reason and for nothing you will care about. In the end I never cared about the films characters nor did I find them relatable. Pass Expand
  9. Jun 7, 2012
    5
    The premise and Robin Williams are great, but the rest is utterly a disappointment.
    http://themoviefreakblog.com/2012/06/02/review-good-will-hunting/
  10. Feb 14, 2012
    10
    The complexity of the characters in Good Will Hunting is astounding with it taking multiple viewing to truly understand the depth of character (even for some of its more minor characters). Good Will Hunting tells the story of (believe it or not) Will Hunting, An underachieving genius who works as a janitor at MIT (Massachusetts Institute of Technology to us non Americans). When one of the professors (the always impressive Stellan Skaarsgard) notices him he suddenly finds his way out of his life but at the same time is sabotaging himself due to the problems of his past. The movie has a strong emotional richness as the film covers everything from love and family to abuse and heartbreak. The writing (by Matt Damon and Ben Affleck) is brilliant as it has the ability to be mundane and colloquial only to turn suddenly to something eloquent and articulate. The film has a tendency to give you speeches instead of conversations but they are so well written you cannot help but listen in awe as these characters wax lyrical. The cast is sensational with Matt Damon being a solid lead as Will. Stellan Skaarsgard portrayal helps us empathise with his character despite the fact he is incredibly arrogant. Even Ben Affleck whose early career has been peppered with terrible performances gives everything as Willâ Expand
  11. Oct 10, 2011
    10
    This one of my all time favorites movies.
    C'est un film original et qui traite de beaucoup de sujet tout en gardant de la fraicheur et de la surprise.
  12. Nov 23, 2011
    10
    This was superb. A best cast ensemble and a very planned out story from Matt Damon and Ben Affleck has made this film more favorable to the fans of Matt Damon and his films.
  13. Apr 22, 2013
    9
    A film that can easily be looked up to, Good Will Hunting is an underdog story in a sense, but its the battle within that is the most significant part of this fantastic film.
    Matt Damon delivers a spellbinding performance as Will Hunting, a working class kid from Boston, and also a janitor, who, in his spare time of course, is a mathematical genius. The problem with this is that Will
    seems very reluctant to be noticed for his remarkable talents, but famed lecturer Gerald Lambeau (Stellan SkarsgÄrd) takes it upon himself to mentor the young but flawed genius, who has a knack for getting into countless fights and all other forms of bad behaviour with his best pals Chuckie (Ben Affleck), Morgan (Casey Affleck) and Billy (Cole Hauser).
    As Lambeau attempts to put Will through therapy, Will makes a mockery of the process, so Lambeau decides to send him to a longtime friend, Dr. Sean Maguire (Robin Williams), a roommate Lambeau's younger years. Sean immediately notices the similarities that he and Will share in regards to family life and past problems.
    Written by Damon and Affleck, Good Will Hunting tells a trial and error story of how our pasts most definitely matter and make a difference to how our futures may take shape. Will is frightened to let anybody into his life, even giving up his remarkable abilities just so he can remain with people he trusts, and not get hurt again the way is troubled and horrific past show.
    But the film is also cleverly funny, with the chemistry between Damon and Williams electrifying, bouncing off each other in fast-paced successions of dialogue and humour.
    Robin Williams gives a magical and emotional performance as Will's eventual therapist, he holds troubles quite dear to himself that he could never speak about until this kid came along, something that certainly taught both characters a lesson.
    The film does play out in a very predictable and often feel-good manner, but this isn't a bad thing, Will's character needed to develop and evolve to the new people in his life, including a girl (Minnie Driver) a student who falls for Will. With an Oscar for Damon and Affleck for their screenplay and a well-deserved Oscar for best supporting actor in Robin Williams, Good Will Hunting has all the ingredients of a well crafted, gifted and defining piece of cinema that still goes down as one of the best films of all time.
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  14. Jan 8, 2012
    7
    Although the film does have a very depressing back story and the film suffers from awkward mood changes, Good Will Hunting is entertaining, emotionally rich and benefits from powerful performances from Williams, Damon, and Driver. I give this movie 71%.
  15. Mar 22, 2012
    8
    i dont like robin williams but his performances here is worth commending. he played his character perfectly about man in pain very naturally. the movie is about will (matt damon), facing his trials and tribulations in his life despite being a genius. good acting from the cast too.
  16. Nov 11, 2013
    9
    Undeniably genius. This movie is true to its core, lacking pretense. It brings you to an emotional roller coaster too. Thanks to the brilliant and phenomenal actors, it pulled off a great storyline. It's been a while since I get speechless by good movies, but this movie is just one of them. It's mind blowingly good, not to mention a good moral lesson to be learnt.
  17. May 28, 2012
    10
    Incredibly well written and well executed piece of art. Feel good movie on the level of the story but also on the level that there are still true writers and films out there that don't need lame special effects and corny action to compensate for the terrible script.
  18. May 26, 2013
    10
    Absolutely marvelous. Matt Damon and his cast of friends, Robin Williams, and every other actor turned in outstanding performances. At many points, you're not entirely whether you're rooting for or against the kid seemingly determined to ruin his life. However, the movie had numerous good messages, such as pushing through your hardships to reach your potential. Fantastic directing and writing here, just a feel good kind of film. Expand
  19. Sep 19, 2013
    8
    Very emotional movie. Great performance by Matt Damon and Robin Williams, pretty complex characters with their own stories. One of the movies which makes you look at life from a different angle.
  20. Nov 28, 2012
    10
    Ample with truly heartwarming themes and chock full of some supremely well-written dialogue, "Good Will Hunting" is a modest, yet undeniably faultless drama.
  21. Jan 7, 2014
    9
    Everything a drama should be. Well written, charming characters, dialogue that ranges from impressively authentic to strikingly smart, and a very satisfying ending all add up to one of the best films I've seen in a long time. The screenplay is smart, the direction is sensitive, and the performances are all very good. I really liked how natural all of the relationships between the characters seemed. They gave the film a very easygoing and comfortable atmosphere. I can't stress how important that is for this genre. Needless to say, I think every film lover needs to see this movie. Expand
  22. Mar 28, 2013
    8
    one of the best writing i have ever watched in a movie sure Ben affleck acting skills wasn't in the place but some how that worked he look like a shy guy who take care of his friends i loved Casey affleck performance they gave him an awesome character and since then I'm into his movies overall great movie and astonishing performance by robin Williams
  23. Apr 25, 2013
    3
    I recently had the opportunity to see Good Will Hunting for the second time. I had not seen it since its video release in 1997. It's funny how 15 years can change your opinion about a movie. I was lukewarm to the film back then, but now 15 years wiser I see it in a new light.

    I had initially dismissed this film as a two hour study of a bunch of unlikeable and unbelievable people. But
    now it is evident that Matt Damon deserved his Oscar nomination for his portrayal of the title character, the good Will Hunting.

    Damon does a yeoman's job making us believe in someone who is not only a math genius with a photographic memory, but a barroom-brawler, cynic, janitor, lover, and all-around down-to-earth working-class Joe. Damon and his compadre Ben Affleck also deserved their Oscar screenplay win for creating a character more fantastic than any from the mind of J.R.R. Tolkien.

    Robin Williams also deserved his Oscar win for having us buy his interpretation of an all-knowing beard-sporting eye-glinting joke-cracking-but-no-nonsense psychologist.

    Affleck, director Gus Van Sant, and the rest of the cast merit mention as well for trying to get us to like and accept all the unappealing and implausible characters who populate this fantasy world.

    All this leads me to believe that I should revisit films like Showgirls, The River Wild, Divine Secrets of the Ya-Ya Sisterhood, and The Greek Tycoon. Maybe I was a little too harsh in my initial assessment of these as well.
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  24. Aug 11, 2013
    7
    I thoroughly enjoy this movie along with its characters. Robin Williams steps into a more serious role where he delivers a very strong performance. I mloved watching the interactions between many of the characters, especially Damon's and William's.
  25. Aug 24, 2013
    9
    Marvelously original, and bolstered by a strong performance of Damon, and a equally strong, sarcastic, and cynical role by Robin Williams. Minnie Driver is interesting in her role, playing this half-sophisticated, and half-normal character, one who can go to Stanford and still make a joke about a blow-job. Ben Affleck and everyone else helps give the film it's stance. Love this movie
  26. Jan 9, 2014
    9
    Good Will Hunting is a very endearing movie; you can really feel Will's internal struggle, and every emotional scene in the film feels authentic rather than sappy. Bravo.
Metascore
70

Generally favorable reviews - based on 28 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 23 out of 28
  2. Negative: 0 out of 28
  1. 90
    Intelligently written, sharply directed, and beautifully played.
  2. Reviewed by: David Ansen
    80
    Gus Van Sant, working from the tangy, well-written script, gets so much humor, grit and emotional truth out of this tale that the familiar formulas behind it simply fall away.
  3. 91
    With its sweet soul and sharp mind, it's one of the most heartening films of the year.