User Score
8.6

Universal acclaim- based on 162 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Negative: 7 out of 162
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  1. matta.
    Dec 6, 2005
    4
    Predictable tripe for the most part. I could see the ending "twist" coming a mile away. Also, honestly do you really think that Cage would have reacted that way at the end? That calmly towards a person that totally manipulated hiim and stole all his money? Even if he is happy and content at that point, he wouldn't be that nice about it. Anyway, Lohman and Rockwell are pretty good and Predictable tripe for the most part. I could see the ending "twist" coming a mile away. Also, honestly do you really think that Cage would have reacted that way at the end? That calmly towards a person that totally manipulated hiim and stole all his money? Even if he is happy and content at that point, he wouldn't be that nice about it. Anyway, Lohman and Rockwell are pretty good and that helps the film from being a total waste of time. Expand
  2. JerryH.
    Sep 12, 2003
    6
    Great performances by Cage and Lohman and wonderful cinematography let down by a lame script. You might enjoy it or hate it but either way you can't help but feel ripped off.
  3. MaikuT.
    Sep 13, 2003
    5
    This movie started out really good. But the ending totally sucks. I feel SO 'con'ed by the ending ... Do yourself a favor and leave 20 minutes before the movie is over.
  4. XiongC.
    Oct 18, 2003
    6
    Entertaining at the start, went downhill fast, and eventually left me feeling ripped off.
  5. GregH.
    Mar 6, 2004
    6
    "Fight Club," "Sixth Sense," "Vanilla Sky," John Cusak's "Identity," "A Beautiful Mind," etc. I am really getting tired of being tricked, or in the case of "Matchstick Men," conned into watching one movie only to find out in the end that I've been watching some completely different movie. Ridley Scott pulls it off as well as any of them and I enjoyed the ride, but give me a good "Fight Club," "Sixth Sense," "Vanilla Sky," John Cusak's "Identity," "A Beautiful Mind," etc. I am really getting tired of being tricked, or in the case of "Matchstick Men," conned into watching one movie only to find out in the end that I've been watching some completely different movie. Ridley Scott pulls it off as well as any of them and I enjoyed the ride, but give me a good old fashioned straight ahead narrative any day. Expand
Metascore
61

Generally favorable reviews - based on 38 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 20 out of 38
  2. Negative: 2 out of 38
  1. The movie is moderately enjoyable, but it also makes you feel conned: It offers up a disturbing protagonist and then substitutes cuteness for character.
  2. Reviewed by: Todd McCarthy
    60
    Odd mixture of ultra-sleek visuals, psychological probing, "Paper Moon"-like father-daughter swindling, self-improvement efforts and abrupt tough-guy stuff keeps the picture percolating, even if it seems too artificial to genuinely convince on an emotional or dramatic level.
  3. Reviewed by: David Ansen
    60
    Scott's finesse can't entirely disguise the mechanical nature of Nicholas and Ted Griffin's script, which has one too many twists for its own good. Fun while it lasts, but it's a bit of a con job itself.