User Score

Generally favorable reviews- based on 253 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Negative: 33 out of 253

Review this movie

  1. Your Score
    0 out of 10
    Rate this:
    • 10
    • 9
    • 8
    • 7
    • 6
    • 5
    • 4
    • 3
    • 2
    • 1
    • 0
    • 0
  1. Submit
  2. Check Spelling
  1. Apr 28, 2013
    Pain in Gain is what I consider to be the beginning of the big dumb summer films. While it is not as action pact or EXPLOSIVE as other summer films as well as other Michael Bay films, it is certainly one of the most crazy films I've seen in a while. It sounds like the dumbest plot ever until you are reminded that the story being told is based on actual events. The film is great for what it is and considering other Michael Bay films, this is definitely one of his better ones. Michael Bays "style" works well with this story and all the acting is good. Marky Mark does a fine job but the star in my opinion is Dwayne Johnson who is a riot. Besides a few dumb moments and some pacing issues I think this movie is extremely entertaining and funny. It's a shame it's not getting as much praise at it deserves because Michael Bays name is on it but overall, it is worth a watch. Expand
  2. Apr 28, 2013
    Pain & Gain is what it looks like when Michael Bay decides he wants to make a little movie, as opposed to another action epic. The director known for making bombastic action blockbusters has taken a step back to make a smaller film based on a true story, but it does not mean he put his signature style in check. Pain & Gain is very glossy film, gorgeous at times, and certainly not subtle. It is also an incredibly dark comedy, with a story so ridiculous that it has to be true, and it is. Based on a true crime story, this film does its best to depict what happens when seemingly good-natured crooks get in way over their heads and resort to drastic measures to achieve their American dream. While Bay's style can be grating for some, the mix of a strong cast and a messy, but compelling story makes this a film with a lot more going on than the standard Bay blockbuster. You want to be the same as they? make the dream a reality!
  3. Apr 28, 2013
    an undeniably entertaining movie with a great line of actors who all deliver. I found my self to be the only one laughing at times haha. overall the movie delivered and the ROCK is massive.
  4. Apr 29, 2013
    They had no likable characters in the film. The Rock was the comical relief as a born again christian. (not funny) It was like watching Dateline Murder Mystery where they were trying to make you route for the criminals. Yeah its a crazy true story, but should have never been made into a movie.
  5. Apr 26, 2013
    Pain and Gain is simply one of the best Micheal Bay films I have ever seen, the story is about Daniel Lugo a hotrod steroid muscleman who wants and deserves more in his life. This comic action film stars Anthony Mackie and Rebel Wilson along with a little spice of Dwanye Johnson. The film is awesome, the story is funny and thought provoking which is needed. The charecter of Mark Wahlberg Is very controversial and serious but when A Bay movie hits theatres he has some comedy in it. The plot is good but needs some help. The story is fresh and new. Pain and Gain is one of the best movies of the year. And I disagree with critics, how can you not like a badass movie like this?! Expand
  6. Apr 28, 2013
    nuff said....................................................................................................................................................................................................................
  7. Aug 14, 2013
    Not my usual genre of film, but this particular one deserves a higher score simply because it is based on a true story. You cringe, you laugh, and you cringe again. It left me in complete horror and disgust in a good way, if that makes sense. The acting was very convincing and really gave you a good perspective on the crime itself.
  8. May 2, 2013
    Good thing this movie is based on a true story: There are so many stupid decisions and preposterous plot turns, nobody could write it. Three bodybuilders (Dwayne Johnson, Mark Wahlberg, Anthony Mackie) decide to kidnap a man and claim his valuables. But these guys are fueled by testosterone, not brains and it's a disaster from the beginning. As for the film, it's a frantic, loud, jumbled mess…over the top and not in a good way. More humor would have helped (thanks to Johnson for the bit there is). There's no denying that director Michael Bay knows how to make movies, but he's trying too hard and it fails more than it succeeds. BTW, it's not cool to be homophobic anymore. Expand
  9. Apr 29, 2013
    This movie was very interesting. A blend of tragedy and dark comedy, it is one enjoyable film. The feelings for every individual character is evoked initially and changes as the movie progresses, for the better or for the worse, this movie is a must-watch.
  10. Apr 26, 2013
    Honestly the movie has a strange dichotomy with the comedic effect directed at real people and events involved with a brutal murder. That being said the movie was well done with superb acting and was pretty dang funny in the beginning. It became more "serious" in the second half but it was as if the director didn't realize that actual people were killed and tried to make it funny regardless. The result is a movie that felt wrong in some ways. In my opinion they should have tried to strike a more serious tone when the events started to turn for the worse or change the story slightly to not base it completely on real events... Alas I have no real say and just pay $11.50 to see it. I still recommend it though as it was a decent ride overall. Expand
  11. May 5, 2013
    Deservedly belongs on all worst movies of the year list! Guess it will appeal to all those who think crackheads/body dismemberment/homophobic/chauvinistic actions and attitudes are sources for humor but being offensive is hardly being "comedic." Went with high expectations knowing the cast; still angry the morning after that I spent $30.00 on this trash!
  12. Apr 26, 2013
    Its not doubt Michael Bay's best film to date, with an amazing score and messed up story. Pain and Gain is a hard film to rate though because you wonder about Bay's sexism in the movie and the characters are hard to root for, and when i say characters i mean evry last one. Strong performances came out this film and I am very proud with Bay for actually making a sensible film (or more like finally making a good film since The Rock). Expand
  13. Jan 3, 2014
    I have some truly amazing news. Michael Bay has made a movie which isn't total This has only happened once before in 1996 with The Rock. He's still one of the worst directors on the planet, but I did find Pain and Gain to be mildly enjoyable.
    Much like in the ridiculously popular Transformers movies the female characters are still used as a cheap way of attracting men. One woman is a
    stereotypical stupid stripper, another overweight and foul mouthed, the most amazingly sexist a huge breasted druggie with an exaggerated large ass and many bikini wearing extras at a gym swimming pool. All are mind blowingly offensive and unfunny, not that all of the other characters aren't just as insanely crude. By way of plot it's surprisingly good for a Michael Bay movie because it exists, which is more than you can say for some of his previous travesties. I could not believe my eyes when Pain and Gains three leads were actually played quite well. Wahlberg, The Rock and Mackie all give respectable performances and will not be nominated for any Golden Razzies like Shia La Douche. While it is quite obviously exaggerated for dramatic effect, despite a caption occasionally popping up saying: This is still true, the plot is very interesting and not like any other movie I have seen this year.
    Following directors tradition Pain and Gain has no inner message even if it tries to be philosophical, but in contrast to the directors tradition it is very exciting and not just moving pictures infront of your eyes which do not engage your brain
    Pain and Gain is the most surprising movie of the year even if it's not very good. I found it to be mildly enjoyable.
  14. Apr 26, 2013
    As most people know, director Michael Bay is most known for action and destruction (Transformers movies). But after watching this, it was somewhat of a relief to get out that alien/action and destruction side that never gets with the story. Yet, the movie does still contain the usually Michael Bay stuff you would normally see in some of his other movies. The storyline is a bit cross-eyed. I mean, trying to combine the actual true story with comedy only works 50% of the time. But the movie makes up for some of its stupid and unreasonable comedy with its rich and dark story. As far as acting it's really Mark (Daniel), Dwayne (Paul) and Ed (Ed) that tend to save the movie and keep up with its rich and dark storyline. But those like Anthony (Adrian) and Rebel (Robin) that make this movie loose its feel. I was also surprised that this movie wasn't as long as Michael's other movie's. I think it could be shorter if it took out its stupid "humorous" scenes. Overall, it's a Michael Bay movie that still contains some of his usual work, but also tries to change that in a more positive direction. Expand
  15. May 25, 2013
    "Pain & Gain" is true story of a gang of bodybuilders who kidnap a wealthy businessman in order to take all of his money and assets. It stars Mark Wahlberg, Dwayne Johnson, Anthony Mackie and Tony Shaloub.

    Although the previews for this movie make it appear to be a fun and action packed comedy, I found it to be highly disturbing, anti-climactic, and frustrating. The fact
    that this film was based on a true story is disheartening, mainly from knowing the fact that people can be so stupid in real life.

    The film started out pretty good, but as it progressed, it became more and more sickening and to be completely honest, I couldn't wait for it to be over.

    Everyone in the film did a good job and Tony Shaloub was, in my opinion, the best thing about it. Unfortunately, good acting can't make up for a story like this one. The cinematography was strange with odd camera angles and shaky shots that made it difficult to see what was taking place at times.

    I can't think of anyone to whom I would recommend this movie. I think maybe if you liked "Very Bad Things", you might like it (might).

    My grade for this film: D

    To view my grading scale, go to:
    To view my movie blog, go to:
  16. Jun 1, 2013
    I went to the movies hoping to have a fun, casual experience with some friends. I really had no idea what this movie was about, other than it was a comedy about some body builders. I discovered pretty quickly that this movie was pure trash. The majority of the "humor" in the movie was made at the expense of Christians and Jesus Christ. I left shortly after the Jesus bashing commenced, thoroughly disgusted. It's pretty shameful what the world is coming to, and what is now considered humor.
    Anti-christian humor aside, the other aspects of the movie were mind numbingly dull and boring. Watching this movie was about the equivalent of having a lobotomy. You may, however, enjoy this movie if your IQ is in the single digits, or if you are incredibly high while viewing it.
  17. Jun 9, 2013
    Had to say i had great time with this movie! Watched it on projection in Belgrade... had quite a laugh.. can't believe it's true story.. but people do crazy things.. Great cast crazy story... what else you need to watch a movie...
  18. Aug 31, 2013
    Good film. It's without any doubt one of Michael's best pictures. It was very funny and I would watch it again!! Great action film. I saw it when it first came out and I really enjoyed it!!
  19. May 7, 2013
    I actually liked Pain & Gain more than Iron Man 3. It didn't stay quite as strong in the end, but it was darkly funny the whole way through and focused on how dumb these 3 bodybuilders were.
  20. Jun 4, 2013
    "Talk about a bizarre true story. Pain & Gain is probably one of Micheal Bay's most visceral piece of filmmaking but not his best. It has its moments of humor sadly Pain & Gain eventually falls prey to it's different, weird and vibrant style of direction." B-
  21. May 21, 2014
    Definitely something out of the norm compared to Michael Bay's more recent movies. Rather than focusing on huge explosions and other large action set pieces, this one is largely focused on it's crazy story that is based on actual events. For a film that's part comedy, I found that the humor often failed to connect. Still, despite that this is one that is still worth a watch thanks to it's great cast and unbelievable story.

    As always Mark Wahlberg nails it. His performance, along with the rest of the cast, is excellent. However the real show-stealer here I found to be Dwayne Johnson. This is probably one of the craziest characters Johnson has ever played, and he plays it to darn near-perfection. As far as plot goes this is one of the craziest movies I have ever seen. There's a lot of crazy and shocking stuff happening on screen, and most of it because of how hilariously idiotic the characters are. Obviously there are differences from the actual events, but I was surprised to find out just how much was gotten right here. Honestly it might not be the best or smartest film out there, but it is quite entertaining. Especially when you consider that it's based on a true story.

    Overall it's a good movie. Not everything comes together perfectly in the end, and the humor never really connected for me outside of a few one-liners, but it's still worth a watch. It's one of the crazier movies I've watched in recent memory, and that actually makes it pretty fun despite the violent and disgusting stuff that often happens on-screen. My total score for the film is a 7.8/10=Good.
  22. May 7, 2013
    New film from the director of Transformer's films is well-told story based on real events. Film has very stupid protagonists, funny jokes and profound subtext (somewhere). "Pain & Gain" is not without flaws some inconsistencies in the story can spoil the viewing experience. But still, this is an interesting film that would have cost his view again.
  23. Jan 17, 2014
    Pain and Gain was a mediocre film that fell very short in many aspects it was not really a funny comedy as everyone said neither was it and action film I really cannot think what category Pain and Gain should be in but it definitely is not a comedy and by far not and action movie. Yes there was a few funny moments in the movie but unfortunately it was just not enough to make this a funny and hilarious comedy. The acting is what saved this movie from receiving a low score but it missed the plot of the genre and really cannot receive a high score either. Although it is based on a true story I believe it needed more time to perfect it Expand
  24. Sep 2, 2013
    As Michael Bay wants us to know, Pain and Gain is based on a true story, something mentioned twice during the film as to make the point that stupid things happen in this world, a point that seems so important to remind people of that Bay makes his characters stereotypical morons, even when things get serious. When personal trailer Daniel Lugo (Mark Wahlberg) discovers one of his clients is insanely rich he decides to kidnap him and steal his things. He enlists the help of evangelist Paul Doyle (Dwayne Johnson) and his friend Adrian (Anthony Mackie) to help him pull it off. While trying to be a true crime tale of three people doing horrific things it lacks any kind of fun but Pain and Gain is not a crime film, Sure it's a film about a crime and its story is definitely true but at its heart. Pain and Gain is a surreal comedy as the actions of this trio of idiots really do make toy laugh out loud. The inner monologues that writers Christopher Markus and Stephen McFeely have given each and every one of the three leads helps add context to this twisted tale but most of all it gives you a healthy wallop of hilarity as their inner most thoughts show them to be the dense yet oddly lovable people they are, with Dwayne Johnson being excellent as religious ex criminal Paul, a man who only really finds himself doing these things because of peer pressure (despite the quite obvious fact he is a grown man). Admiring these criminals for how far they got on limited smarts is part of the films charm but the film lacks an ending and the comedy peters off when things start hitting the fan and real people, as Bay has so subtly reminded us, start dying. Therefore the end isn't funny and it has no real resolution making Pain and Gain a rather pointless watch despite the hilarious first half, Expand
  25. Oct 13, 2013
    I didn't know if this movie was meant to be a comedy or not. But, I didn't find it funny. The beginning was the highlight of the movie, but half way through the movie. It fell apart.
  26. Sep 10, 2013
    Best thing I can say about this movie is that I've see worse. There's a couple of funny moments in it but for the most part it's just a bit of a mess. There're a lot of seemingly major events that just kinda happen without any point or purpose. There's not a lot of depth to any of the characters either, though that's more the fault of the writing than the actors themselves. The whole thing just seems very erratic and aimless. At the end of this film you'll be sat wondering what the hell just happened, go home wondering what the point was to the film you just watched and ponder over what else you could've done with that two hours (although it'll seem like you've been in the cinema for way longer). Expand
  27. Aug 21, 2013
    I really don't know where they were going with this movie. It was a terrible mixture of action, comedy, and drama that just did not work well together. The fact that the actors put far too much effort into their characters really ruined the like-ability of them. If Pain & Gain was intended to be a comedy then they really missed the mark on this one because it was not all. It was just really, really stupid, The kind of stupid where you laugh because you can not believe someone actually thought that was a good idea to put into a film. Not to mention the run time, 2 hours long, was absolutely brutal to sit through.

    Overall, Don't even bother. Pain & Gain is a confusing mess that seems to drag on and on with no end in sight.
  28. Aug 16, 2013
    People need to realize this is based on a true story about one of the most bizarre cases ever! They made it weird and they way it was supposed to be. This isn't a typical movie.
  29. Apr 29, 2013
    A Michael Bay movie not featuring destruction of half a megalopolis, Pain and Gain is quite a thing. The whole plot and sequences feel strongly grotesque, but the movie doesn't forget to remind you once in a while that all of this is based on a true story, which is quite amazing. The utter stupidity of the main characters is sometimes outright hilarious, and sometimes pitiful. Pain and Gain is a movie about simple people who make bad decisions. Very bad ones. The main cast's performance is well-delivered, the visual side is flawless. but the pacing drops in the third quarter of the movie or so in my opinion. Anyway, it's a good movie, not without flaws, but certainly one of Bay's better ones. Expand
  30. Apr 27, 2013
    I went in ready to forgive and forget about Michael Bay's previous track record. But this thing has so many annoying slo-mo shots, so many close ups, it was just impossible to not get annoyed. The movie moves at a incredibly slow pace and every character except the Rock is an a-hole. This kind of movie has been done before. And done much, much better.
  31. Nov 15, 2013
    The story of stupid bodybuilders trying to get easy money and involved in a criminal story. The cast is great, the dumbness of characters seemed very convincing and fun. The movie seemed a bit long for me. Overall, worth watching if you like black comedies and yeag, this is based on a true story.
  32. Mar 14, 2014
    Pain and gain is one crazy mess.Not all bad, I did find some stuff pretty funny. It`s crazy, funny, strange, and dumb, all in one movie. I find some of this stuff hard to believe that it could be a true Story. I mean if you pick out any of the ridiculous stuff that happen I can believe it, but all in one wow! The Rocks character lol How did this guy not die by age 15.This was definitely original for me. Expand
  33. May 20, 2013
    What a surprising film out of nowhere, I honestly didn't expect much from this film and had it not been for a free ticket I wouldn't of caught this in theaters, but I'm so happy I did. It has that dark and quirky humor that keeps you laughing from start to finish. Each character does a great job in their respected role. Wahlberg and The Rock had me laughing at just about everything. This is surely one of the more entertaining films of the year so far in my opinion. I'm not sure if I enjoyed it as much as I did because I expected nothing, or Mark Wahlbergs dry humor just kept the movie continuously interesting and amusing. The trailer pretty much prepares you for a film that it is certainly not. I highly recommend giving this a shot, it's sad to see it not getting the credit I feel it deserves, but I believe that to be because of Bays reputation and people that couldn't look into the humor of it all. WATCH THIS MOVIE! Expand
  34. Apr 29, 2013
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. After seeing the trailer for this movie, I pretty much envisioned it to be a comedy. It turns out that the movie is actually a rather brutal depiction of a completely true story about a trio of bodybuilders who kidnap, torture, and kill people. I was honestly entertained by the movie, and I wanted to know what would happen next, but I knew that it would end poorly. Since I knew about the court rulings in real life, I knew what would happen at the end of the movie, and that made me somewhat lose interest in the movie. A major flaw of the film are its unlikeable characters. Marky Mark portrays Daniel Lugo, easily the least likable of the bunch, and he is nothing but a brutal criminal with big muscles. Luckily The Rock plays a much better role as a born again Christian, although he hits a rough spot once he becomes a cocaine addict. By the end of the movie, I felt bad for Victor Kershaw and those other two people who were killed. I honestly ended up liking Clint Eastwood as a minor character as a detective than I liked any of the three bodybuilders. This sounds like a lot of criticism, but at the end of the day I was still satisfied with this movie and I found it worth the price of admission. Expand
  35. May 18, 2013
    Despite Michael Bay, I honestly enjoyed this movie. It kept me interested the whole length of the movie, with laughs and crazy scenes. Another reason I enjoyed it so much was the fact that if I hadn't seen this movie, I don't think I ever would have heard of these guys and the true story behind the madness. I think Bay did a pretty good job keeping with the story and Marky Mark was excellent. The Rock also really surprised me here, playing his role very well and hilariously. It's not a film to break any molds but it's a fun one to be sure. Much more entertaining than most of the garbage coming out today and a pleasant surprise. Expand
  36. Sep 24, 2013
    Idiocy, and to a lesser extent, wonder. Truly that's what I took away with me. How there 3 criminals could be that confident and stupid made me wonder why they weren't caught sooner, people didn't suspect anything let alone how they performed it.

    Twice the audience is told this is a true story. It must be if were told twice because this surely could happen in the real world? But then
    you find out it was and I curiously looked it up after the movie to learn more. Wow.

    I'm not sure if it was intended but there is a message in this film: The American dream is not achievable for everyone, which means people will resort to any means to get it. Especially when you're a fitness freak with unlimited, zealous confidence and optimism. I left the cinema thinking all these positive messages out there are great but they too needs to be restrained. Otherwise we'd be like Daniel Lugo have an inflated sense of self worth, importance and direct all the energy into something wrong, stupid or bad. And that corrective thought is a good thing.

    It's a silly, funny, ridiculous ride with a serious ending to reaffirm that desires can make you do stupid things
  37. Sep 15, 2013
    to be honest i thought this movie is going to be a terrible one, i mean come on it's a movie by michael bay, but i found myself laughing and enjoying this movie pretty well, i actually found it so entertaining that i decided to watch it again, mark wahlberg gave a fantastic performance of being obnoxious, there are few mistakes in this movie such as you can see the camera man on the door mirror, and some scenes are just too weird, you keep finding yourself on a weird place again and again, but overall the movie is entertaining in a good way. Expand
  38. Aug 13, 2013
    Michael Bay directs this film in typical Michael Bay fashion with that said it is some what enjoyable. I thought the performances were strong and if Bay had shaved about thirty minutes off it may have been better. Overall this is worth at least one watch. B-
  39. Aug 16, 2013
    First off I just want to say I loved this film, fantastic story with twists, suspense, comedy and thrills. Mix in some brilliant acting, especially from The Rock and you've got yourself a fantastic film. It does help if you lift weights because you find it more relateable, but there's still much fun to be had if you don't. Well worth watching.
  40. May 4, 2014
    Surprisingly really enjoyed this and laughed along with the characters all the way. Great cast! It's Michael Bay, so my expectations were low to average, but I thought this was terrific and criminally fun. Mark Wahlberg and the Rock have always been those actors that you just like the minute they appear on screen!
  41. Apr 29, 2013
    This is Michael Bay begin Michael Bay and that is great because this movie kinda of reminds me of Bad Boys A fun Michael bay movie) If you are walking in this movie looking for The Town or Blow you should forget that because this is basically a FUN, and Exciting move Great movie Michael Bay
  42. May 4, 2013
    Pain and Gain is by far Michael Bay's best movie since The Rock. He directed a nearly perfect movie. The naysayers or this movie are probably still rapped up in the previous film by Michael Bay, Transformers 3. We can all agree that the third and hopefully final installment of the Transformers franchise was dissapointing. However, this is definitely a redemption, it was a perfect balance between funny and serious, with a little bit of action. This movie, in better terms, was a brilliant piece of art. Expand
  43. May 27, 2013
    one of the best movies I saw
  44. Aug 15, 2013
    Another example why you shouldn't listen to "critics" who lover scores because it's not silent, black and white, heart braking war story that either makes you sleepy or feel horrible inside. It's fast-paste dark comedy that would make you laugh at things you shouldn't. Just watch it and decide for yourself.
  45. Aug 13, 2013
    Pain & Gain received raging critic reviews, and honestly, some are well deserved. I did find flaws, such as the director making trying to make EVERY character likeable- the criminals, the victim, the private investigator, at the end of the movie I sat there, confused as to whom I am cheering for. The main character (or so it seems) isn't that likeable as well.

    BUT! The movie doesn't
    deserve an average of 44 on the Metascore, despite its flaws, the movie was fun and entertaining to watch. The acting was great, the story was very interesting and quirky and I found myself laughing here and there.

    Conclusion? Even with all its flaws, I liked this movie and would recommend it as something casual to watch.
  46. Jun 7, 2013
    I've never been on the Michael Bay bashing train and certainly don't plan to start now as his latest, "smaller" film is likely the most interesting piece of work he will ever put to film. Interesting being the key word here as the story Bay has chosen to recount is one of the most outlandish and absurd truths that has also likely even been put to film. I have been highly anticipating Pain & Gain if not for the chance to see the now solidified movie star of Mark Wahlberg make his next move as well as watching Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson continue to skyrocket towards superstar status, but for the opportunity to see Bay stretch his visual (and maybe even storytelling) muscles with something other than big CGI robots. It has been nearly six years since the first Transformers film and in the time that Bay has delivered two sequels he has also had the growing ambition for this kind of passion project and that comes through in the execution and style with which Pain & Gain is delivered. There have already been some pretty heavy accusations and criticisms of the film thrown out and while I can understand where some of these are coming from in regards to the family of the deceased feeling this is making light of their family members deaths, the film certainly isn't glorifying the main characters and if anything, the source of the comedy comes from how stupid and incompetent these lead protagonists are in their dim-witted schemes. There are plenty of words being thrown around like homophobic or misogynistic to describe the director and his film yet it has always been clear the world these characters lived in was a world of strippers and bodybuilders who'd do anything for their physique yet likely oppose anything even the least bit gay. Those complaints are rendered mute by the fact those attributes are what create the atmosphere and the actions of the characters are so off-putting and the story so strange that it is also becomes extremely engaging.

    read the whole review at
  47. Oct 8, 2013
    Pain & Gain is a movie that critics and movie goers seem to dislike a lot. If people didn't know that Michael Bay directed it, audiences would be more open-minded in my opinion. Once people see Bay's name they automatically assume that the characters won't have depth, and there is going to be bloated action sequences. This just isn't the case with Pain & Gain.

    The Rock and Mark Wahlberg
    deliver one of the best performances that I have seen from them. I haven't been a fan of their work, but here they do a great job. Ed Harris and Rebel Wilson do fantastic in their minor roles. The action scenes in this movie need to get praise also. Unlike most of Bays work, the action seems really focused and you can comprehend what's happening onscreen. It's not an overload of explosions and special effects.

    The comedy in here I liked. It was dark comedy for sure, and isn't a laugh-out-loud comedy, but it has its funny moments. Anthony Mackie is easily the funniest, and he adds a lot of humor to this movie. The humor is morbid, but it works.

    I do have problems with the movie though. Voice-overs are used way too much. Slo-motion is also a bit overused, but it works more than the voice-overs do. Being that this is a Michael Bay production, its running time is too long. Even though this movie is fast paced and not dull for the first 90 minutes, the last 30 to 40 minutes slow down the pace drastically. Some scenes are crucial to the story, while others should have been left out entirely.

    Pain & Gain for me is a very entertaining movie. The story is very well told and probably Bays best storytelling movie. It isn't going to win an Oscar or anything, but it does a great job telling a painfully true story.
  48. Oct 18, 2013
    A sad, disturbing movie with some really fun actors doing great satire. Like Fargo or Burn After Reading but much better. More than just a comedy saying "People are stupid", the finger here is pointed squarely at masculinity and the "American Dream".
  49. Jun 14, 2013
    Was ready for it to be over halfway through. The characters get annoying quickly and it feels like the movie is stuck in the mud early on. The stab at humor is ridiculously lacking. Michael Bay being Michael Bay, basically.
  50. Aug 30, 2013
    This movie is basically what spring breakers would have been if it had male protagonists, was a true story and was somewhat decent. Same idea: main characters want to improve their lives so they turn to crime, get in deeper and deeper, so on and so forth. Visually pleasing as you'd expect from bay, but more creative and artsy than i was expecting. It's definitely a strange one, but worth the watch. You're kind of grow to like the characters and then towards the end you have a realization that they are just terrible terrible people. Expand
  51. Aug 4, 2013
    The story telling was unique, it was a dark comedy that was marketed as Hangover type experience which is why you see people not liking the film, that and Christian people who can't take a joke. I would say it should have been marketed as more of a crime movie which is what it ends up being. Overall good movie with dishonest marketing.
  52. Aug 19, 2013
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view.'s definitely the best Michal Bay movie I've seen...but that's not saying much. The story is cool because it's based on a true story (and the true story is pretty insane to begin with so not much Bay did seemed that nuts compared to what really happened). The problem with this film (other than Michael Bay's ADD style of filmmaking) is the movie doesn't know if it wants to be a comedy with a violent edge or a violent film with a comedy edge.

    The film jumps back and forth from being brilliant and annoying constantly but the one thing that holds it all together is The Rock. Dwayne Johnson is constantly hilarious and made the film for me.
  53. LTR
    Sep 15, 2013
    I'm having trouble on what I think of this film.I like the story and idea,but the fact that these people actually did this,you can't really like the characters even though the movie wants you to.
  54. May 25, 2014
    Yah lets make a movie about true story of murders but let's put a comedy feel to it so we try to make root for the bad guys. The movie overall is entertaining but nothing special i wouldn't recommend that watch this expecting it to anything other then another Michael Bay movie. The editing is weird is it supposed to a comedy or is it a dark comedy either way Michael Bay can not due comedy simple as that. The film is so choppy and there is no one main character. Everyone has their own voice over about what's going on and so it just seems all over the place with no structure.

    The characters all were good Dwayne Johnson was my favorite though it was great seeing Tony Shalhoub in baller status. Ed Harris is a bad ass detective he has a minor role in the film but when he is on the screen it's great

    Overall i give it a 5.0 the trailers did makes this look good and i was hoping for a god Michael Bay film but i guess that will not happen
  55. Aug 27, 2013
    So Michael Bay returns to his Miami roots with an action packed, humorous look into a shocking true life story about the lives of three misguided body builders trying to make a big score. Personally I enjoyed the fact that Bay's back to classic action, with a very witty, comical script, which boast a lot of twists and shocking turns. The lead role portrayed by the boisterous Mark Wahlberg is executed with great conviction, as you almost feel for this bone-headed thug in his naivety of achieving the American dream. His co-stars are also very convincing, and Dwayne Johnston's portrayal of the simple minded ex-con is hilarious. Its great too see that at least one WWE star has a little more to offer than a set of impressive muscles. The movies great, although it does run a bit long and could have be done in about 15 minutes less. Bay's directing hasn't lost it, and he still has a few good innings left to produce some "pumped" up action. Let's just hope that he sticks to this kinda "Bad Boyish" style and has put the alien robots behind him for a while. Forget Transformers 4....Let's see Bad Boys 3 already!!!!....Will where are you?!!! Expand
  56. Aug 14, 2013
    What a terribly painful movie. With every passing minute you feel like your brain is dying a little bit more.
    The biggest problem is probably that the movie tries so hard to be edgy that it passes by every chance of reflection which would have been necessary to make it watchable. If it wasn't for the pinches of humor mixed in by Dwayne Johnson's character this would be a 0.
    predictable, disgustingly misogynist and, worst of all, seriously dumb. Expand
  57. Sep 4, 2013
    This was a decent movie. I thought that it was a lot better than the reviews give it credit for. There was a lot of over-the-top violence, and I thought that it was disturbing that they presented this true murder in a comedic tone, and it would have been better if it was a drama, not a comedy. This was good, but way over-the-top.
  58. Sep 7, 2013
    Holy crap....The Rock can actually act?

    I will admit, I had low expectations coming into this, but I found myself laughing and genuinely enjoying every second. It was a bizarre, action packed, dark comedy that is definitely worth a watch.
  59. May 18, 2014
    pain & gain is a comedy by Michael Bay about a murder case (based on a true story) where the killers are our protagonist that we are suppose to root for, while the victim is a rich jerk who is mean to everyone and deserves to be kidnapped, and robbed. And since this incident took place fairly recently, the (real) family members of the victims get to watch as their loved ones be portrayed in a bad light; as if killing them wasn't a bad enough. What kind of sick, twisted person makes a movie to poke fun at a horrible event in an attempt to make everyone laugh at it by turning it into a comedy. Now I understand that laughter can be a great cure for sadness, but you don't do it by trying to justify what the murderers did by orchestrating events that didn't happen in an attempt to make them likable in a film that's suppose to be based on a true story. I can't even imagine how the family members of the victims must feel to have someone close to them die then have a movie made to basically tell them that they deserved to die in a comedy. Let's not forget the survivors who have to watch themselves be degraded in the movie after what they went through. They even make the deaths accidental to help yo to sympathize with the murderers. The movie not even funny. Sure there are a few chuckles here and there, but the film really isn't funny. The humor basically revolves around either racial jokes or sex jokes (mainly gay-sex jokes) which come off as being either stupid or offensive (sometimes both). Expand
  60. Dec 3, 2013
    Simply a crazy movie. About a lot more than just moving iron up and down.It's about motivation, perseverance, and a will to rise above yourself.
    The music they had in the movie was hilarious, and they had they same theme playing for a long time. It was very different and moving, Also it has comedy, babes, and action, what more could a guy want.
  61. Oct 16, 2014
    This will always be Michael Bay's best film, and I really don't like his films. You can tell from the first 5 minutes this is a great movie. The only reason this movie is not perfect is because it was done on a very low budget, but it still looks great. Sure they could have re-tried some acting scenes, and the movie has pacing issues, as well as a hard time making this dark comedy actually funny. But guess what? People will be talking about Pain & Gain a lot longer than Transformers 2. Pain & Gain turns the mirror on America in the best way a Hollywood movie can, and it has a lot to say.

    And that music....
    "I'm big....
    ...I'm HOT!"

    Interesting note: Michael Bay's favorite movie is "Raising Arizona", and this is unbelievable until you've seen this movie.
  62. Nov 11, 2014
    after you watch A Micheal film you feel like crap and you hate it. I have BIG expectations when i see Micheal Bay's movies my expectations are having no stereotypes also no more sexy girls , cut out the dumb humor But the humor was great in this movie; the fact that it is Based on the true story which well it does describe that the killer's were plan old dumb but they were smart at times This movie is not an " A + " performance by the actors and the film itself There was only one stereotype in this movie Micheal Bay's casting choices for Sexual girls now the strip club scene was awesome and sexy but Bar Paly can not act she had a terrible backround story of her life , she can not act she is not beautiful she's Micheal Bay's worst girl yet since megan fox since the Transformers. Bay you are a good director you returned to your genre fim since ' Bad Boys' and well you made a worst version there is no explosions which a cime genre like this should obviously have an explosion scene. Grade B Expand
  63. Jul 26, 2014
    This film is too over the top and very crazy, it's not as explosive as Michael Bay's action flicks but it's just another crime film that tries to get out of the action range but Ed Harris puts on a nice performance.
  64. Mar 15, 2014
    Desolante e vuota thriller/commedia amara filmata Michael Bay. Al di là della sciatteria della messa in scena e della regia anche il film non diverte mai e dopo i primi 30 minuti già mi ero pentio di averlo iniziato a guardare. Michael Bay non ne azzecca mai una, tutti i suoi film sono scialbi e noiosi, ma forse, nell'era in cui si dice che Kubrick è noioso, ci meritiamo registi di questo calibro. Expand
  65. chw
    Oct 4, 2014
    The critics simply did not like this movie obviously because the director is Michael Bay, just like the I Hate Metacritic video by I Hate Everything. This, and The Hobbit, were good movies in which the critics gave them mixed scores. Watch this, and if you like it, mention it in your own review of the film.
  66. Jun 21, 2014
    A True story that was not all that true, makes for a pretty unentertaining movie. It just bored me throughout most of this film. Sub par acting and action scenes that just didn't stick with me made for a underwhelming movie.
  67. Oct 5, 2014
    Michael Bay makes good movies that's right. Me one I liked this movie. True, it's very crazy, but it makes one really nice. American Dream ... Great action movie.

Mixed or average reviews - based on 42 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 12 out of 42
  2. Negative: 10 out of 42
  1. Reviewed by: Peter Bradshaw
    Sep 2, 2013
    The movie needed some more detachment – and brevity – but Wahlberg shows once again he has the comedy chops.
  2. Reviewed by: Tom Huddleston
    Aug 27, 2013
    The ever-present air of madcap, goofball insanity carries it through. A seriously guilty pleasure.
  3. Reviewed by: Mark Dinning
    Aug 26, 2013
    Michael Bay goes back to a Bad Boys budget and a big boys’ rating, for a true-life crime story that’s inconsistent and frenetic, but also funny and wilfully outrageous.