Generally favorable reviews - based on 37 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 27 out of 37
  2. Negative: 0 out of 37
  1. Reviewed by: Phil Hall
    Paltrow gives the performance of the year, and perhaps of her career, in this extraordinary and powerful dissection of genius, jealousy, madness and serenity.
  2. 100
    An extraordinary thriller... The film centers on two remarkable performances, by Gwyneth Paltrow and Hope Davis.
  3. It's so fluid and cinematic that it's hard to even envision how the piece worked on stage.
  4. Reviewed by: Richard Corliss
    Proof is on the side of the lost, blessed souls. Paltrow, as alluring and reassuring as ever, emphasizes the blessedness in the isolation of genius, giving a new dimension to a complex role. New, true and thrilling--she is the Catherine that Proof was waiting for.
  5. 88
    The material is intellectual, but the treatment is not. Proof is a stirring motion picture that challenges our views on a great many things about life, some of which we take for granted. And, by opening up the play, Madden has made it less talky and more cinematic without losing the quintessential elements that made it such a success on stage.
  6. 83
    Tasteful, thoughtful fare that entertains without ever speaking down to the audience.
  7. Reviewed by: David Rooney
    But despite less-than-ideal casting of the male roles, and a tendency to soften the Pulitzer Prize-winning work's thorny humor with a more sober tone, director John Madden has woven together an elegant, intelligent drama of a breed increasingly rare in mainstream American movies.
  8. Against considerable odds and despite a shaky start, Proof proves itself in every area.
  9. But at its highest level of ambition, Proof fails to deliver. The film becomes a psychological whodunit where Catherine is shown to be either a martyr to her father or else his intellectual equal. None of it is terribly convincing.
  10. Reviewed by: Claudia Puig
    Proof proves undeniably that the intimacy of a stage play can be re-created powerfully on screen.
  11. Reviewed by: Ken Fox
    Hopkins plays "Hopkins," and the buff, terribly miscast Gyllenhaal will be convincing only to viewers who've never set foot on a university campus. What makes it worth seeing, however, is the extraordinary chemistry between the atypically raw and unguarded Paltrow and Davis, a fabulously talented actress once again testing her range with a performance unlike any she's given in the past.
  12. Reviewed by: Christine Dolen
    Very, very faithful to Proof the play.
  13. Once you get past that golden swag and curtain of hair, Paltrow's performance is devastating, cutting to the pith and marrow of parent-child relations. The other actors in this stagebound movie fare less well.
  14. Reviewed by: Ty Burr
    Proof is proof that you can drain most of the juice out of a play and still have an enjoyable night at the movies.
  15. 70
    Hopkins' increasing disconnection with his fellow actors and the material nearly sabotages Proof, an otherwise-respectable adaptation of David Auburn's Pulitzer Prize-winning play.
  16. The source material has undergone some sentimental softening, though Hope Davis, as the heroine's sister, does a swell job of making sanity seem obnoxious.
  17. Reviewed by: Nelson Pressley
    Paltrow is pretty commanding, even if Madden pushes things toward airlessness by keeping the camera so tight.
  18. Its characters are complex and engaging, its central mystery pulls the action forward at a clip, and the performances by Paltrow and Davis are excellent. At the same time, it's a little too slick.
  19. To play for an audience of one that is only a few feet away is different in concentration and shade from playing in the theater, and Madden, though the script lags a bit, has nonetheless helped his actors to render what were once theater scenes as film sequences.
  20. Gwyneth Paltrow is triumphant in this somewhat derivative and overly stage-bound film.
  21. In Proof, Paltrow plays yet another young woman who is being gnawed at by termites of instability, only this time out, her performance, rather than startling, is merely competent: earnest and overly familiar.
  22. 67
    You never believe that Paltrow's character is insane, even when she herself does. She has too sturdy a core.
  23. 67
    Loses something in its translation to celluloid.
  24. Who knew a drama about numbers could be so thrilling?
  25. Reviewed by: Kyle Smith
    Proof will put a lot of viewers right back where they left off in 12th-grade calculus: asleep.
  26. The result, like so many stout travellers from stage to screen, is respectable. Stolidly, bloodlessly, yawningly respectable.
  27. Reviewed by: Anna Smith
    Paltrow does an excellent job as the shy loner, affecting youthful, sulky mannerisms without resorting to stereotype. Anthony Hopkins, meanwhile, brings both gravitas and dark humour as Catherine's mentally ill father, while Jake Gyllenhaal makes for an effective, if buff, maths geek.
  28. 50
    Madden directed Paltrow in the play on the London stage, but he does his "Shakespeare in Love" goddess no favors by filling the screen with big close-ups that betray the theatrical origins of the piece and drain the movie of life and urgency. Proof hasn't been filmed at all -- it's been embalmed.
  29. 50
    What ensues is a devout communal effort, tricked out with various hops through time and space, to make us forget that it was a piece of theatre in the first place. Needless to say, the attempt is in vain.
  30. 50
    John Madden's competent, monotonous film version, not exactly stagebound but hardly freewheeling, only underscores its mechanical nature.
  31. Reviewed by: Glenn Kenny
    The image of Gwyneth Paltrow looking anguish-stricken has become such a cinematic meme that it hardly bodes well for Proof that it opens with this sight.
  32. 50
    Proof isn't just a movie about mathematics; it's a mathematical movie. The scenes may as well have been laid out by diagram.
  33. Reviewed by: Michael Phillips
    Madden honors the play's roots; he has not made the mistake of opening it up with a lot of obvious visual expansions. But the story's genial unpretentiousness has been darkened and weighed down, and what's left is less than prime.
  34. A goopy Gwyneth Paltrow movie.
  35. I wish I could report the arrival of an impressive movie, but this one, for all its ostensibly big ideas about mathematics and wounded minds, struck me as an elaborate pretext for a synthetic love story.
  36. It's funny how movies about smart people often play so dumb.
User Score

Generally favorable reviews- based on 41 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 19 out of 21
  2. Negative: 1 out of 21
  1. Dec 30, 2013
    Una pelicula brillante, enigmatica y muy bien planeada para mantener al espectador pendiente de lo que iva a suceder. Muy buenas actuacionUna pelicula brillante, enigmatica y muy bien planeada para mantener al espectador pendiente de lo que iva a suceder. Muy buenas actuacion esteleres en especial de Gwyneth Paltrow y Anthony Hopkins Full Review »
  2. May 29, 2011
    Great actors in a movie out of standard due to its excellent script, where Mathematics is the relation that binds the peculiar characters ofGreat actors in a movie out of standard due to its excellent script, where Mathematics is the relation that binds the peculiar characters of the plot. Although I am suspect to say because Mathematics is my least exact science! I recommend it though! The main three characters did a spectacular job with the script which has been given to them. "The future of cold is infinite. The future of heat is the future of cold". Full Review »
  3. 2Roads
    Jun 3, 2007
    A must see story for those living in the metaphorical house of quandary while caretaking a loved one. "How many days have I lost?