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6.6

Generally favorable reviews- based on 663 Ratings

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  1. AnthonyS
    Jun 6, 2005
    10
    Brilliant.
  2. FrankH
    Aug 22, 2005
    9
    Americans should not be allowed to comment on movies, but after this film I'm almost convinced they should still be allowed to produce them. Also, it would be really nice if you could see people's age here, as I'm sure alot of the harsher critics of the film on here are too young to actually know what a midlife crisis is. I rate this only 9/10 because the whole wine thing Americans should not be allowed to comment on movies, but after this film I'm almost convinced they should still be allowed to produce them. Also, it would be really nice if you could see people's age here, as I'm sure alot of the harsher critics of the film on here are too young to actually know what a midlife crisis is. I rate this only 9/10 because the whole wine thing was too emphasized for my tastes. Otherwise a truly brilliant and funny movie. Expand
  3. EC
    Nov 5, 2006
    10
    Possibly one of the smartest comedies thus far in this millenium. Anyone who doesn't like this movie is obviously too retarded to understand it.
  4. TonyB.
    May 30, 2006
    10
    i loved this movie i didnt see one thing wrong with it. I dont understand why people cant except realizm in movies this has excellent dialouge it was had some very funny moments i am glad i didnt listen to anybody when they told me this movie was bad, i enjoyed it greatly, deffinatly recommend for a viewing.
  5. MW
    Jul 31, 2006
    9
    I really enjoyed this film. I found my sympathies switching between all the characters sometimes loathing, laughing at or even finding them slightly lovable. The whole film felt so realistic and it was nice to see relationships that aren't sugar coated between beautiful people in the normal hollywood style. I didn't know that films this good and subtle were made outside of the I really enjoyed this film. I found my sympathies switching between all the characters sometimes loathing, laughing at or even finding them slightly lovable. The whole film felt so realistic and it was nice to see relationships that aren't sugar coated between beautiful people in the normal hollywood style. I didn't know that films this good and subtle were made outside of the EU and when I watched it got a buzz to know that not all films from the US have to be big budget, plotless romps. I plan now to see other Payne films and hope that I see more like this coming to the cinema soon. Expand
  6. NathanT.
    Aug 12, 2006
    10
    "Sideways" is inarguably the best film of our decade; a classic that can stand up to any great film from any era in cinema. [***SPOILERS***] This is film at its most intoxicating, its most poignant, and funniest. Paul Giamatti was screwed out of even being nominated for Best Actor, while Thomas Hayden Church and Virginia Madsen were justly nominated for their parts, even if they "Sideways" is inarguably the best film of our decade; a classic that can stand up to any great film from any era in cinema. [***SPOILERS***] This is film at its most intoxicating, its most poignant, and funniest. Paul Giamatti was screwed out of even being nominated for Best Actor, while Thomas Hayden Church and Virginia Madsen were justly nominated for their parts, even if they didn't win. The real genius of "Sideways" is that director Alexander Payne creates empathy for two guys that when you think about it, aren't really that sympathetic. Miles (Giamatti) is a grump, and usually drunk on wine from the night before. Jack is an aging sex addict. Not a lot of wiggle room to like these characters. But Payne makes us care and by the end of it they've both been through so many experiences that we can only hope they've learned. And the knock that ends the movie is pure bliss. Raise your glasses and treat yourself to a classic that is guaranteed to age better than "Memento" ever will. This is one that you savor. Expand
  7. FreddieL.
    Dec 1, 2007
    10
    To begin, this was a delightfully written and acted film. How anyone could not connect and feel for Paul Giametti's character astounds me. It saddens me how egotistical twerps attack this film, rating it badly simply on the grounds that it was rated highly by critics, though a films quality must always be percieved without the presence of a review, in my opinion. Therefore, I am To begin, this was a delightfully written and acted film. How anyone could not connect and feel for Paul Giametti's character astounds me. It saddens me how egotistical twerps attack this film, rating it badly simply on the grounds that it was rated highly by critics, though a films quality must always be percieved without the presence of a review, in my opinion. Therefore, I am slightly surpirsed by those who didnt enjoy the film for what it was; an intimate, warming tale of a man, whose life it seems can only genuinely be related to and understood by those with a conscious, and those who don't take life for granted. In conclusion, Sideways is a truly uplifting film which i recommend highly, regardless of the critics' reviews. Expand
  8. AlexM.
    Feb 11, 2007
    10
    One of the cleverest and funniest films that I have had a pleasure watching. A real delight, how all comedy should be - clever and edgy. All those who did not like this film are obviously lacking in intelligence and sense of humour!
  9. AngusS.
    Apr 11, 2007
    9
    Superb comedy. Excellent characters. So much more to offer than the average 21st Century comedy.
  10. CraigP.
    Apr 30, 2007
    9
    Extremely funny movie about wine tasting!! Actually it's about alot more than that....wonderful performances as well.
  11. SvenS.
    May 16, 2007
    10
    One of the best movies I have ever seen...it's so fucking good!!! I don't understand why people dislike this movie... It made me feel very good!! And the humor isn't big like Naked Gun, but it's funny!!!
  12. NeilF
    Oct 19, 2009
    10
    Life-affirming. Anyone who doesn't get it has a black hole where their heart should be.
  13. DavidG
    Nov 12, 2004
    9
    The first truly great movie I have seen all year, and the first movie highly rated by this site that I think actually deserves superlatives. Funny, engaging, a touch of pathos, and a good story. I do think it is unlikely that either of the 2 major "romances" in the story are likely -- neither of the male characters (one of which an aging, neurotic, balding, flabby depressive) would The first truly great movie I have seen all year, and the first movie highly rated by this site that I think actually deserves superlatives. Funny, engaging, a touch of pathos, and a good story. I do think it is unlikely that either of the 2 major "romances" in the story are likely -- neither of the male characters (one of which an aging, neurotic, balding, flabby depressive) would attract such "catches", so believability suffers. But I consider this a minor complaint. Expand
  14. JimR.
    Nov 13, 2004
    10
    A real comedy. about real people, for real adults. loved the snowball rolling down a hill pace. give an 11 to the casting agent. i roared throughout.
  15. JerryK.
    Nov 20, 2004
    9
    Painfully neurotic. Made me cringe with angst - the discussions of wine hit every nerve that allowed a totally uncomfortable man the opportunity to speak with sensitivity and conviction. Painfully funny. Wanted so much to leap into the film and shake Giamotti and get him on track. Have to see it!
  16. DerekR.
    Nov 3, 2004
    9
    As a wine neophyte, i found the movie dazzling, -as some also lost in this crazy world, the movie was a bitter sweet companion.
  17. TCarson
    Dec 13, 2004
    10
    Thank God there are movies like this being made!
  18. BillyO.
    Dec 24, 2004
    9
    A very good film. One of the best of the year along with Eternal Sunshine. Very funny, yet very serious. An excellent character study. I highly recommend you see it!
  19. Jonathan
    Dec 30, 2004
    10
  20. SheldonG
    Dec 4, 2004
    10
    Most movies offer 90 minutes of escapism at best with more than a few making me wish I could escape the theatre. Once in a very long while a movie comes along that makes such an impression that days after viewing it I'm still remembering various scenes with great relish. I have not seen a better movie this year. Even as I write this I'm smiling as delectable moments from the Most movies offer 90 minutes of escapism at best with more than a few making me wish I could escape the theatre. Once in a very long while a movie comes along that makes such an impression that days after viewing it I'm still remembering various scenes with great relish. I have not seen a better movie this year. Even as I write this I'm smiling as delectable moments from the movie (of which there are many) come back to entertain me from my memory. This movie is about nuance, emotion, humour and pathos. To those other voters who gave this movie a one or zero I suggest they go back to their freightrains and 120 decibel explosions. Expand
  21. RubenH.
    Dec 7, 2004
    9
    On Sideways: Intelligently engaging Comment for those who?ve seen the film: In his novel, A Separate Peace, John Knowles writes: Gene writes: "I did not cry then or ever about Finny. I did not cry even when I stood watching him being lowered into his family's strait-laced burial ground outside of Boston. I could not escape a feeling that this was my own funeral, and you do not cry in On Sideways: Intelligently engaging Comment for those who?ve seen the film: In his novel, A Separate Peace, John Knowles writes: Gene writes: "I did not cry then or ever about Finny. I did not cry even when I stood watching him being lowered into his family's strait-laced burial ground outside of Boston. I could not escape a feeling that this was my own funeral, and you do not cry in that case??? The movie Sideways runs parallel to this novel (the above quote is used in the film), and like the novel, it describes a person(s) constitution and fallibility with equal precision and unabashed frankness rivaling that of the novels?. But that argument would be an essay, and I?m not here to bore you. Suffice it to say that the novel deals with ?adult? transformation, the transformation from adult codependency to self-dependency, and the inevitable internal war that?s brought about in said events. For our character, the transformation happens when the main character, Miles, realizes the consequences of his malicious, albeit ?mis?-directed, actions: the destruction of the peace he finds in others that he doesn?t find in himself. The character enveloping such qualities, Miles, finds himself isolated and remorseful; an internal conflict where self-loathing, fear, love and hate fight for dominance and control. The casualty of this film is Miles. He?s the character that refuses to identify the enemy within himself, unlike Jack at the end; to realize that his stance of non-assertion is nothing but a metaphor for his internal conflict. Expand
  22. AndrewT
    Oct 31, 2004
    10
    It's the greatest film of 2004 and will most likely not be surpassed.
  23. JamesM
    Nov 19, 2005
    10
    It's hard to believe that films such as Sideways exist: films that make the viewer laugh and cry, be shocked and be out of breath, and make them horrified and simultaneously unable to control their laughter. It's a film that takes the viewer in for two hours and drains them of energy as the events that befall the characters become increasingly unpredictable, severe, and often It's hard to believe that films such as Sideways exist: films that make the viewer laugh and cry, be shocked and be out of breath, and make them horrified and simultaneously unable to control their laughter. It's a film that takes the viewer in for two hours and drains them of energy as the events that befall the characters become increasingly unpredictable, severe, and often hilarious. Sideways is a film that should be seen by everyone. Regardless of the fact that it was made merely a year ago, it is one of the greatest films ever made. Expand
  24. AllisonE.
    Jan 12, 2005
    10
    I loved this movie. It had complex characters, a simple story, was hilarious and at the same time deeply touching & profound. What a great film- It's going to be sweeping the award shows this year.
  25. JimmyS.
    Jan 13, 2005
    10
    Great movie! Don't listen to the negative reviews by the morally righetous. This movie depicts two charcters honestly. There might not be the "happy ending" (the bad guys in this film don't get their due turns), but life isn't like that.
  26. BradC
    Jan 13, 2005
    10
    Even though I don't drink wine, I could completely relate to this movie. I've a few friends who act exactly like both charcters and even though, I depise the way they act sometimes, I love them with all my heart. And I know, that's hard to grasp, loving someone whose certain traits you hate, but I suppose that's what true diversity is all about. I'm glad someone Even though I don't drink wine, I could completely relate to this movie. I've a few friends who act exactly like both charcters and even though, I depise the way they act sometimes, I love them with all my heart. And I know, that's hard to grasp, loving someone whose certain traits you hate, but I suppose that's what true diversity is all about. I'm glad someone tried making the lowlife the main charcter and showed him bumbling his way through the movie. I love that the supporting charcter didn't get in trouble for cheating on his woman. It's true to some people's life and I'm glad that people got to watch it on screen. I'm also glad that you got mad, but I'm sorry that you transitioned that anger into a negative rating. Expand
  27. PeterA
    Jan 14, 2005
    9
    I'm surprised this movie has faced backlash...if you go see it expecting nothing, you'll find this movie very disarming. POTENTIAL SPOILER ALERT: there's a scene when Giamatti is eating by himself and sneaks a drink from a bottle. I found myself suddenly breathless and weepy, not from any manipulation or tricks on the part of the director or actor, but from sheer good I'm surprised this movie has faced backlash...if you go see it expecting nothing, you'll find this movie very disarming. POTENTIAL SPOILER ALERT: there's a scene when Giamatti is eating by himself and sneaks a drink from a bottle. I found myself suddenly breathless and weepy, not from any manipulation or tricks on the part of the director or actor, but from sheer good storytelling and a very human moment. I'm surprised that on here people are saying its a movie about people that make bad decisions. I think its just a movie about human beings, their circumstances, and how they deal with them. I will say that people who tend to like summer blockbusters over all other types of movies may find this one a little slow, however. Expand
  28. joanm
    Jan 16, 2005
    10
    well acted/so funny so human! paul and thomas were the greatest team. have not enjoyed a movie so much in years. and touching to boot!! have a ball go see it!!! you will laugh on your way home. great talent!! need more movies like this!!
  29. RileyB.
    Oct 19, 2005
    10
    The problem with 'Sideways' is not the acting, story, direction, or production. But it's all the positive reviews that it's getting. Traditionally, when a movie gets a great review - regardless of the topic - John Q runs out to see it. Then John Q hates it because it (the film), even though it was great, was not his sort of movie. Feeling let down by the critics - and The problem with 'Sideways' is not the acting, story, direction, or production. But it's all the positive reviews that it's getting. Traditionally, when a movie gets a great review - regardless of the topic - John Q runs out to see it. Then John Q hates it because it (the film), even though it was great, was not his sort of movie. Feeling let down by the critics - and having wasting so much money - John Q rips the movie to shreds in his own mind, badmouthing it whenever he gets the chance. This happened to 'Sideways'. I have many friends who went out saw, rented, or bought this movie - based on Metacritic and other review sites. They aren't exactly ones to sit through a movie like this, and I told them that. But no, they didn't want to read up on the plot or anything else about the movie. They went and watched it, and hated it. Now they rant about how "ghey" it was. I saw this film and loved it. Why? Because I like movies like this. This was a grade 'A' film with a great story. What I'm trying to say is read up on a movie before you see it, if you've never sat through a movie like this before - just because it gets good reviews doesn't mean you can sit through this one. It a matter of education, that's the only reason this movie has a 6:9 (+/-) ratio with critics to readers. A matter of education. Oh, and Richards - hate to bother you and all but I'm not a natural borne "American" nor do I follow "American" humor (I despise films like 'Eurotrip', childish s...). But, I loved this film. So go ahead and ostracize me from your chic-Euro-click. Expand
  30. PhilipJ.
    Dec 11, 2005
    10
    Original and entertaining, i can't see why people give this film below 6.
  31. LoriV.
    Jan 28, 2005
    10
    This was a masterpiece of total delight!! Loved it from beginning to end.
  32. KenK.
    Jan 29, 2005
    10
    This film is a beautiful collision of humor and poignancy. All of the actors deliver compelling performances, but Giamatti's effort transcends the medium of "acting" as he simply becomes, "Miles", the central character in this drama. It is unconscionable that the Academy overlooked Giamatti for a Best Actor nomination.
  33. BobB.
    Feb 19, 2005
    10
    "This film was offensive"... "should have been an NC17" ... "totally inappropriate" .... You people make me sick! This was a GREAT movie and deserves a much higher score than most of you conservative wackos gave it. In the future, please do us all a favor and abstain from tarnishing the image of wonderful movies because of your own personal insecurities. I highly recommend this movie. Two "This film was offensive"... "should have been an NC17" ... "totally inappropriate" .... You people make me sick! This was a GREAT movie and deserves a much higher score than most of you conservative wackos gave it. In the future, please do us all a favor and abstain from tarnishing the image of wonderful movies because of your own personal insecurities. I highly recommend this movie. Two thumbs up! Collapse
  34. JoseM.
    Feb 23, 2005
    9
    Real acting... Real script... NO TRICKS.
  35. MarkB.
    Feb 24, 2005
    9
    How would you like to be the manager of a major league baseball team and have Alexander Payne in YOUR lineup? With writing partner Jim Taylor, Payne has slammed it out of the park every time he's been at bat, and if you think it's not that difficult to maintain a solid .1000 with only four efforts, just ask Wes Anderson and David O. Russell, who both stumbled badly this past How would you like to be the manager of a major league baseball team and have Alexander Payne in YOUR lineup? With writing partner Jim Taylor, Payne has slammed it out of the park every time he's been at bat, and if you think it's not that difficult to maintain a solid .1000 with only four efforts, just ask Wes Anderson and David O. Russell, who both stumbled badly this past year with THEIR films, just how difficult maintaining 4 out of 4 can be. Much has already been said about Payne's deeply poignant, hilarious and insightful road movie about two very unlikely buddies on the loose in search of wine, women and a final series of pre-nuptial oat-sowings, so just to summarize: Paul Giamatti wuz robbed AGAIN (note to Academy: yes, he once played a character nicknamed 'Pig Vomit' in a Howard Stern movie. Get over it!) Sandra Oh, as a feisty pickup the boys encounter en route, was equally deserving of a nomination if only for her hugely satisfying response to having been lied to. Thomas Haden Church, as said liar and groom-to-be, is so goofily likable that his brazen infidelities before marrying what seems to be a perfectly nice woman inspire a certain amount of empathy if definitely not forgiveness. And the tremendous, career-rejuvenating response given Virginia Madsen's thoroughly lovely, lived-in turn as a world-weary waitress and possible new lease on life for alcoholic would-be published writer Giamatti, just narrowly aces Fahrenheit 9/11's #1 box office debut as 2004's most gratifying piece of movie-related news. Working for the first time with a setting outside his beloved Midwest, Payne displays his remarkably specific gift of minute observation and detail as powerfully as ever--if any American filmmaker's work deserves to go into a time capsule so that generations in future centuries can learn as specifically as possible just how we lived our lives and did everything we did, it's Payne. (As with Citizen Ruth, Election and About Schmidt, Sideways is crammed with literally hundreds of wonderful idiomatic touches in set design, background and dialogue; obviously too many to list, but my favorite here was the little wave that serves as a trademark logo for the low-rent apartment complex we see Giamatti living in during the early scenes.) I don't see why a small contingent of moviegoers continue to believe that Payne patronizes his characters and their milieu: all four of his films are certainly critical of his characters' flaws but elso extremely affectionate toward them as well. I don't think Payne and Taylor have ever created an all-out villain yet; even the biker couple that terrorizes Church and Giamatti near the end obviously enjoys their bizarre sex life so much that the most negative emotion I felt toward them was utter bemusement. The filmmakers know that Giamatti's overfondness for and dependence on the grape and Church's needless womanizing are deserving of sympathy because both are the actions of scared men who are terrified that certain doors are closing for them forever. (One of 2004's most-discussed TV phenomena was Desperate Housewives; you could retitle Sideways Desperate Middle-Aged Single Guys.) The futility of their attempts to deal with this are revealed in 2004's single funniest sight gag: both Giamatti and Church staggering through the traumatic consequences of their actions covered in different kinds of red stuff. And as in About Schmidt (which also deals with a trip of self-discovery taken by a deluded character headed to a wedding that probably shouldn't occur), Sideways ends with a crystallizing moment of clarity for the main character that's so simultaneously sharp, tender and hopeful it just breaks your heart. Again, Payne proves himself that rarest of birds and most precious of jewels: a truly compassionate satirist. Expand
  36. DaniellaD.
    Mar 12, 2005
    10
    The best movie of the year for me...When is it out on DVD as I will be first to buy. Great acting and in my opinion deserved to win all the Oscars! See it now if you have not.
  37. Nick
    Mar 25, 2005
    9
    An excellent movie, on occassion the vino speak was a little over-saturating, but as a whole this is one of the better movies you could see, although its speed is slightly slow for some viewers it kept my interest, and if you dont like watching characters that would actually exist in real life then you wont enjoy this, there is no candy coated image - it is what it is, and its great.
  38. KateC.
    Apr 11, 2005
    10
    Just a great movie!
  39. Sonja
    Apr 14, 2005
    10
    One of those movies that's so good, you wish you could keep on seeing it for the first time!
  40. evert
    Apr 14, 2005
    9
    It seems like theres a lot of morons here that went the wrong way and ended up watching sideways instead of Alexander.
  41. J.RyanG.
    May 23, 2005
    9
    A perfect little movie. It is about a critic, which is what draws the critical type into its gentle, simple narrative. And what makes us love the movie is that the critic character--who is a tight bundle of failures, weaknesses, and pain--is ultimately deserving of love. Paul Giamatti plays the greatest alcoholic in the history of the cinema. He is a drunk in each and every scene, though A perfect little movie. It is about a critic, which is what draws the critical type into its gentle, simple narrative. And what makes us love the movie is that the critic character--who is a tight bundle of failures, weaknesses, and pain--is ultimately deserving of love. Paul Giamatti plays the greatest alcoholic in the history of the cinema. He is a drunk in each and every scene, though he is not always drunk. His dependency can be concealed until he bursts, and then it shows itself as a big red devil during moments when, to the sufferer of the malady, there is no such thing as self-control. Alexander Payne writes (with Jim Taylor) and directs the best film of his career. His 1999 film "Election" is one of the most underrated films of the last twenty years, but 2002's "About Schmidt" is one of the most overrated. This is a swift, graceful, uncomplicated movie, and one that hurtles like a brilliant meteor in the right direction. Expand
  42. Harry
    Jul 14, 2005
    9
    A touching, humorous, and fair film. It is a believable portrayl of four interesting characters and how they interact. Good flick!
  43. JamesE.
    Oct 12, 2006
    10
    Fantastic. Alexander Payne is one of the best filmmakers alive.
  44. EricG.
    Aug 27, 2006
    10
    This movie brings out the emotion of the everyman. The ups and the downs of life crashing and rising one day to the next.To understand this movie would take nothing more than knowing the compassion of mankind.
  45. BenW.
    May 23, 2007
    10
    Its totally unfair to complain about this movie. I loved it!!!!! it was just so great all the way through. Im only 16 so i dont know if that has anything tgo do with it but its really fantastic
  46. SamS.
    Nov 17, 2004
    9
    The movie is great. I don't know what the "0" and the "3" reviewers were expecting when they went to see an Alexander Payne movie but those scores are akin to vandalism. Were they having bowel cramps during the scene where Miles and Maya talk about why they love wine? That great scene with the connection between the actors has not been in Payne's movies before this.
  47. StanleyJ.
    Nov 27, 2004
    10
    Reviewers are absolutely right, film just leaves a good taste in your mouth. No cheap movie stuff here, just a good simple story with great actors. Well done.
  48. ThomasM.
    Nov 28, 2004
    9
    What a surprise! I sat down to watch "Sideways" knowing nothing about the film, other than Payne's pedigree and the presence of Giamatti, enough to expect something well above average. Nonetheless, I was blindsided by what may be the best film of the year. Some of the dialogue was absurdly hilarious, and then suddenly, there would be a verbal exchange more real, more beautiful than What a surprise! I sat down to watch "Sideways" knowing nothing about the film, other than Payne's pedigree and the presence of Giamatti, enough to expect something well above average. Nonetheless, I was blindsided by what may be the best film of the year. Some of the dialogue was absurdly hilarious, and then suddenly, there would be a verbal exchange more real, more beautiful than anything I'd come across in a long while. QUESTION--How long will Giamatti's considerable talents go relitively unappreciated. I've watched him steal scenes from Kevin Spacey, Samuel L. Jackson, and Jim Carey, but still, most would not recognize his name. Hopefully, this is about to change. Cheerio! Expand
  49. JoeyM.
    Nov 29, 2004
    10
    I went into this movie with low expectations. From what I had been told by friends, the critics were wrong - it was long and dull. of course, these are friends who liked "Garfield," but I was willing to give them the benefit of the doubt. Anyhow, turns out, my opinion of the movie matched the critics more closely than my negative friends. "Sideways" is a movie, IMO, about dealing with the I went into this movie with low expectations. From what I had been told by friends, the critics were wrong - it was long and dull. of course, these are friends who liked "Garfield," but I was willing to give them the benefit of the doubt. Anyhow, turns out, my opinion of the movie matched the critics more closely than my negative friends. "Sideways" is a movie, IMO, about dealing with the disappointments of middle age as seen through the adventures of two guys who haven't really fully grown up. Over the course of the film, we see that the kind of adolescent games they probably used to play when they were freshmen year roommates in college have some pretty major real world repurcusions when played by adults. Paul Giamatti is typically excellent as Miles, a writer and alchoholic who has found himself stuck in a mind numbing job with only a failed relationship and unpublished novel to show for his 30 odd years of life. I have rarely empathized so much with a character in a movie. Howver, I think many people will have had to have experienced what he is experiencing to feel the same way. Outstanding performances by all the leads made for some scenes I found unforgettable - notably one where Giamatti has to recover a lost wallet. Sure, the movie won't be for everyone - what movie is? None-the-less, I found it to be one of the finest I've seen this year. Expand
  50. VinceH.
    Dec 13, 2004
    10
    I am a huge Alexander Payne fan (all his previous films have been on my Top Ten lists each year I saw them) and he continues a remarkable streak of films that are so humane and warm and funny and real and adult that any filmgoer should thank their lucky stars Payne is making movies for us to enjoy. Don't get me wrong, there are many great American filmmakers currently at work, but I am a huge Alexander Payne fan (all his previous films have been on my Top Ten lists each year I saw them) and he continues a remarkable streak of films that are so humane and warm and funny and real and adult that any filmgoer should thank their lucky stars Payne is making movies for us to enjoy. Don't get me wrong, there are many great American filmmakers currently at work, but none as consistent as Payne. He has yet to make ONE SINGLE WEAK film yet. He has not made many, granted, but they are all good. There are so many miracles contained within this film that an in-depth review would take up this whole page, so I will just say that it is one of the best movies of the year and one of the best movies ever made about male friendship. I'd recommend this movie to anyone who has had a close male friend for a long time and dare them not to walk away from this film having not related to either Jack or Miles. Payne perfectly capture the frustration, jealousy, anger, love, appreciaton, and dependence that two friends can have. Jack and Miles are the two fully realized male characters portrayed in a film in years, and it would be a TRAVESTY if this didn't win the Oscar for Best Adapted Screenplay (no other movie comes close, and if Marber wins for "Closer" I will kill someone). All the acting is great, but top honors go to Thomas Haden Church who is FANTASTIC every moment here, as well as Virginia Madsen and Sandra Oh. This is clearly the best ensemble acting of the year for sure. Enough from me, just forget about "Alexander" or "Christmas with the Kranks" or "Blade: Trinity" and find a local indie theater playing this. You won't regret it. Expand
  51. Boybees
    Dec 14, 2004
    10
    This is a beautiful, wry, evocative film. It radiates more humanity than any film I?ve seen in quite a while. The reviewers below who have given it ?1? and ?0? are idiots, plain and simple. I?d like to see an IQ comparison between those who appreciate this film, and those who label it a ?mess? and a ?bore?. There?d be a huge gap, favoring the former group.
  52. JohnA.
    Dec 16, 2004
    9
    Endearing film in which we feel compassion and understanding for the foibles of the characters.
  53. PatrickC
    Dec 17, 2004
    9
    There is so much to this movie that goes unnoticed because of the fact that is is boring as hell. Though never really drags, it is so steady that you find yourself just going through the motions of a slight chuckle every 5 minutes or so, and a sign here and there. The the film can not escape the fact that the comic relief is in a creepy unlikeable character, and the main character is a There is so much to this movie that goes unnoticed because of the fact that is is boring as hell. Though never really drags, it is so steady that you find yourself just going through the motions of a slight chuckle every 5 minutes or so, and a sign here and there. The the film can not escape the fact that the comic relief is in a creepy unlikeable character, and the main character is a downer who never reaches redemption. And when you finally think that something could possibly go right for him, the movie ends. YET, once you get over the fact that you have to wait until Saturday for it to end, it is actually a wonderful piece of art. The movie's wine theme is actually pretty interesting and not only do you learn about all sorts of wine, each character takes on their own type. The movie refers to the patience and hard work that needs to be put into "pinot" to truly extract its true potential. That is exactly what needs to happen for someone to appreciate this film. Oh, and what is it with Payne always putting naked old people in his movies? Expand
  54. JoeA.
    Dec 25, 2004
    9
    A funny, slightly off-beat comedy that really hits on some poignant human elements. The performances are quite wide in range. A good ending too that fits the movie and its intentions.
  55. ChadS.
    Dec 26, 2004
    10
    So how did these two guys end up being friends? When(Miles) tells us, I thought to myself, of course. It's a perfect detail, one of many in this "Odd Couple" for the millenium. "Sideways" is cathartic. The laughs this film elicits are genuine. You have to laugh, unlike other films where you laugh just to prove you're not humorless. "Sideways" is the rare film that has characters So how did these two guys end up being friends? When(Miles) tells us, I thought to myself, of course. It's a perfect detail, one of many in this "Odd Couple" for the millenium. "Sideways" is cathartic. The laughs this film elicits are genuine. You have to laugh, unlike other films where you laugh just to prove you're not humorless. "Sideways" is the rare film that has characters who are knowledgable about something. Even if it has to be wine, it's great to eavesdrop on other people's passions. "Sideways" is vaguely similar to "Almost Famous". Like the Crowe film, there's a road movie element and Payne has a lot to say about the decline of contemporary culture in its secondary narrative. Almost by default, "Sideways" is the best American film of 2004. Expand
  56. JoeB
    Dec 22, 2005
    10
    This is what movies should be: well-acted, well-directed, and with great pacing. Though not laugh-out-loud funny, it had subtle humor for the real thinker. Not the 'every man's movie,' but the best movies never are. Certainly worthy of its reviews. An excellent character study.
Metascore
94

Universal acclaim - based on 42 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 41 out of 42
  2. Negative: 0 out of 42
  1. Reviewed by: Todd McCarthy
    90
    A beautifully observed, small-scale study of personal foibles, romantic uncertainty and two sides of the sadly predictable male animal.
  2. Hysterically funny yet melancholy comedy.
  3. Reviewed by: David Ansen
    100
    In Sideways, Payne has created four of the most lived-in, indelible characters in recent American movies. This deliciously bittersweet movie makes magic out of the quotidian.