Generally favorable reviews - based on 37 Critics What's this?

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Generally favorable reviews- based on 229 Ratings

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  • Starring: ,
  • Summary: Paul Thomas Anderson's fourth film features Sandler as a lonely man with serious emotional issues. As he concocts a scheme involving frequent flier miles and copious amounts of pudding, he finds himself both falling prey to a phone-sex scam and falling in love with his sister's colleague.
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 33 out of 37
  2. Negative: 2 out of 37
  1. With its feverish, percussive soundtrack and bravura cinematography, is like a bolt from the blue, chock-full of unexpected delight.
  2. 90
    Something we haven't seen before: a manic-depressive romantic comedy that aspires to the soul of a musical. It's a new-fashioned love song.
  3. An Adam Sandler movie with class, and if that sounds like an oxymoron, so be it. The movie is a happy nightmare of silly-smart movie comedy that defies category - and challenges expectations involving Sandler and his pictures.
  4. Reviewed by: David Ansen
    Punch-Drunk Love is one dark, strange-tasting sorbet, its sweetness shot through with startling, unexpected flavors. It’s a romantic comedy on the verge of a nervous breakdown.
  5. 80
    It's funny, too, though marked by an uneasy humor that's usually difficult to achieve. Anderson handles it with expert ease: At this point in his career, he moves the camera like a skilled dance partner, investing the smallest gesture with significance.
  6. One of the most inventive offerings so far this season.
  7. 25
    Essentially a weird series of nonsequiturs. I'd rather be watching a sequel to the much-maligned "Little Nicky" -- a Sandler film that was at least trying to do something interesting -- than this failed experiment in fusing high and low culture.

See all 37 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 71 out of 118
  2. Negative: 41 out of 118
  1. DrewD.
    Jan 10, 2009
    It is really a testament to the sadness of America that half of them cannot appreciate a film like this. Most of them just think it is dumb--they say it is "disjointed" or that the leads have "no chemistry". This is what doing nothing but watching TV and standard Hollywood films does to your brain: you can't understand real human relationships (which are not "explainable" and are in fact "random", at least for most of us), you can't empathize with those who clearly have some sort of disorder, and can't figure out the unity of an actually pretty straightforward film, by artistic cinematic standards. Then, perhaps even worse, there are a group who recognize that they can't understand the film, but are too proud to admit it and accuse the film of being "pretentious" and full of "fake symbolism". I am not surprised though, that those who were expecting a standard Adam Sandler film, where you are supposed to laugh at someone who is different, didn't like this film, where you are supposed to feel for someone who is different. A shame. Expand
  2. Jun 16, 2012
    If you didn't like this move you probably shop at wal-mart, loved transformers, and probably don't have much depth. This is probably one of Adam Sandlers best performances as an actor and will always be one of my favorites. "Hey Barry, remember when we used to call you Gay Boy?" hahaha, great film. Expand
  3. Sep 11, 2013
    Whimsical, Nietzschean, Beautiful. Jon Brion's score is the perfect complement to this story of a man coming into his own. Paul Thomas Anderson has an eye for shots and cinema all his own. Loved it. Expand
  4. TheCurseOfGilbertMulroneycakes
    Dec 6, 2002
    Lucy L: you didn't see it from the start, nimrod. Everyone else who gave it a yellowred score I imagine would be previous Sandler fans angry that he's decided to make a subtle, intelligent movie aimed at more than him and his friends. Hey, I respect Sandler - I don't like his work, but many many do, and he makes them all happy in a wierd sort of way, so kudos. Also he seems a lovely, wonderfully self-deprecating sort of a bloke - but the rut of dumb gross-out after dumb gross-out had to be broken sooner or later. And it has been, with the help of Paul Thomas the Anderson. It's not quite his third masterpiece (after Boogie Nights and the ultra-Sandlerfan-alienating Magnolia) but it's close. And Sandler's great. Shame he made Mr Deeds and Eight (sigh) Crazy Nights immediately afterwards. Still, at least he has this. At least we know he can do it. Expand
  5. Sep 25, 2013
    The first time I saw this movie I absolutely loved it. After seeing it a couple of times after the effect isn't as strong but I still love it. Any doubters on Adam Sandler and his acting ability haven't seen this film. This would have to be the best performance I've seen from him. Not much happens in the first half hour but after that it becomes so interesting. It's not always funny but there are some very funny bits. The romance between the two I loved so much, they get along so well and they're not the perfect specimens. This isn't Bradley Cooper and Jennifer Lawrence these are two average and kinda weird people. Paul Thomas Anderson has some really interesting cinematography and music. I can understand why people wouldn't find it that great or if they didn't get it at all but I really enjoyed it. Expand
  6. Jul 14, 2012
    Another excellent film from Paul-Thomas Anderson, i thought the chaos and awkwardness of the lead was developed excellently leaving me feeling his pain and anxiety. The chemistry between the two leads was good, however i didn't think the chances of Barry actually getting the girl were realistic. Overall a great film. Expand
  7. RyanG.
    Apr 26, 2006
    Worst Movie Adam Sandler Ever Made.

See all 118 User Reviews


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