Metascore
62

Generally favorable reviews - based on 31 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 20 out of 31
  2. Negative: 3 out of 31
  1. Reviewed by: Gemma Files
    90
    Sweet and hilarious, a classic crowd-pleaser which elevates rather than eviscerates the homespun eccentrics who make up its cast of characters.
  2. Anybody with a soft spot for fakers, who either identifies with them or just admires their chutzpah, is going to get a kick out of Happy, Texas.
  3. 75
    This is one of those comedies that doesn't pound us on the head with the obvious, but simply lets us share vast amusement.
  4. The performances are first-rate, with the always inventive Macy a standout as the hopeful, tormented Chappy, and Zahn a scream as the lovably imbecilic Wayne.
  5. If we had a story we could believe, we'd be in stitches.
  6. A hoot, a hilarious comedy that's smart and caring, yet sexy and ingenious enough that it just might stir up some of that elusive "Full Monty"-style box-office appeal.
  7. So full of winning performances and so disarmingly uncynical in its affection for its characters, it manages to leave you with a Texas-size grin on your face anyway.
  8. So soft-hearted it wouldn't hurt a fly.
  9. Reviewed by: Emanuel Levy
    70
    Steve Zahn shines throughout Mark Illsley's feature debut, Happy, Texas, elevating this eccentric small-town comedy a notch or two above its level of writing.
  10. 30
    Sputters to a dead halt right out of the gate. One labored scenario follows another.
  11. Reviewed by: Scott Kelton James
    20
    Screwball mistaken-identity crapfest...it's just utterly plain, a confection so bland you don't even care that it doesn't really make any sense at the end.
  12. 75
    Zahn's dazed and confused, droopy-mustached dude steals every scene he's in...a movie that will make you smile and put a lump in your throat.
  13. It's a funny and occasionally poignant movie.
  14. Reviewed by: Jay Carr
    75
    I can't imagine anyone not feeling entertained by Happy, Texas.
  15. Don't expect a lot, and you'll probably enjoy Happy, Texas, as I did -- mostly. At the very least, Steve Zahn will make you laugh.
  16. It's soft-edged fun that loses direction (or, given the scattershot plot, directions).
  17. 50
    All the right elements for a rollicking farce, except one: The movie isn't funny.
  18. Illsley's fine cast, with a riotous contribution from William H. Macy as the sheriff who falls for Harry, plays out the comedy without condescension.
  19. 50
    Thank heaven for William H. Macy, whose portrayal of Happy's sheriff strikes the only honest note in a film that earns its laughs the cheap way.
  20. Reviewed by: Mike Clark
    38
    Neither the actors nor their characters engender much affection.
  21. Reviewed by: Ken Fox
    60
    A wonderful premise that delivers solid laughs and has a heart as big as the state in which this farce unfolds.
  22. 50
    A humble comic fable, puttering along with a sunny grin, a goofy sentimentality, and not much else.
  23. A fresh, well-written comedy that doesn't lag, casts its actors against type and has a real love for its characters.
  24. A comedy of '90s sexual inclusiveness as effervescent as a cold sody pop -- and about as intoxicating.
  25. Reviewed by: Richard Corliss
    90
    An easy charm, a cleverly unforced sense of humor and a benignity toward all its genially oddball characters. If moviegoers skip this one, they'll be missing a real treat.
  26. 80
    Keeps the laughs coming, and a dynamo named Steve Zahn is the cheif reason why. It's a one-joke movie, but the cast knows how to sell it.
  27. 70
    A very cynical exploitation of the current Hollywood vogue for things queer. Still, the film is a must-see.
  28. 70
    Along with a lot of 10-gallon laughs, Happy, Texas rustles up plenty of goodwill for its larcenous, sexually ambiguous leading men.
  29. 60
    What makes the film ultimately successful, though, is the outstanding comic talents that inhabit it, especially Zahn and Macy.
  30. 50
    Its charm and humor will be overshadowed for some by the exploitation of gay stereotypes--which is ironic, since their arch usage ultimately allows the movie to be progressive, if only slightly.
  31. Reviewed by: Bill McLochlin
    65
    Zahn, however, is definitely the star of the film, with his quirky portrayal of Wayne Wayne Wayne Jr. getting all of the laughs, and none of the credit.

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