Fox Searchlight Pictures | Release Date: October 22, 2004
7.0
USER SCORE
Generally favorable reviews based on 450 Ratings
USER RATING DISTRIBUTION
Positive:
295
Mixed:
69
Negative:
86
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7
SpangleAug 19, 2016
A journey of discovery, Sideways is a slice of life film from Alexander Payne that does not quite reach the heights of his other works due to some iffy pacing at times, but is still funny, romantic, touching, and thoroughly depressing. PaulA journey of discovery, Sideways is a slice of life film from Alexander Payne that does not quite reach the heights of his other works due to some iffy pacing at times, but is still funny, romantic, touching, and thoroughly depressing. Paul Giammati and Thomas Haden Church are terrific in this wine-obsessed film that uses wine and literature as expertly hidden exposition as to who these two characters are. Truly brilliant writing on the part of Payne brings these men to life, along with all of their hidden motivations and baggage without a series of monologues to accomplish the same thing. As mentioned, however, the film does slack at times and can be slightly off-putting by focusing on some detestable main characters. Due to this, Sideways is held back a bit and not as good as Payne's other works. That said, nobody captures the true essence of his characters like Payne and Sideways is entirely character driven. Overall, it packs a lot of emotion and will really hit hard if you let it. Expand
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9
night4Apr 5, 2016
If you need lots of action, you shouldn't watch this movie.

If you want to see a real, believable human story, then maybe you should. I imagine if you like "Better Call Saul", where each scene is simply bursting with non-verbal
If you need lots of action, you shouldn't watch this movie.

If you want to see a real, believable human story, then maybe you should. I imagine if you like "Better Call Saul", where each scene is simply bursting with non-verbal communication and subtext, you'll like this movie. Or vice versa.
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9
EpicLadySpongeFeb 25, 2016
Some people don't know real comedy when they actually see one lying just right there on their faces. Don't get away with giving this a negative rating, users. I know this is actually the best comedy I've ever seen in 2004.
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10
hanneguacamoleJun 4, 2015
This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. The way I see Miles and Jack is as Sideways in their own lives. At a point where it's kind of a midlife crisis, but they're both at completely different relationship places, with an impending wedding and a semi-recent divorce. Their story is told in such a way that they both seem pretty screwed up. This is Payne's way – telling the most screwed-up story possible with it still being funny and he definitely succeeds once again this time around.

One of the most striking relationships to me was that of Miles and his mother. He only went to visit her to steal her money and she was more interested in his washed-out actor friend than her own son. Mutual disinterest? Anyway, Miles seems to use wine as a crutch in his friendships, his relationships, and he's so obsessed that this is the way Payne shows the humor. Jack's humorous side is the constant desire to ruin the real relationship in his life by multiple different affairs right before his wedding. They're screwed up and we all know it. Miles's "relationship" with Maya is so odd because neither of them is straightforward to talk about anything other than wine, yet they both want it. This transpires throughout.
Miles is so into his wine, that we kind of see this parallel between life and wine (or Pinot) because there is a peak, a certain complexity to each bottle, and an eventual decline. It reminds me of Miles's life, but everyone else's as well. There's really only one thing that Miles wants other than Pinot. That's to get published. But it ends up that it doesn't work out and "The world doesn't give a **** what I have to say. I'm unnecessary." Same. And what else should we expect with Alexander Payne – everything that can go wrong will go wrong. Stephanie finds out about the wedding, Jack gets his face busted up, Miles has a mental breakdown. They're just trying to survive and get their consolation prizes. A wedding (built on lies) and a call from Maya, yet the ending is uncertain, just like the end of his book.

I think Sideways was impeccably executed, the cinematography was gaudy and accurate, and the characters were unique and intriguing. As always, intelligently funny & exactly my sense of humor.
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10
niaspeedMar 29, 2014
One of my all time favorite movies, and for some people on here to say it was the worst movie ever, watch Lost in space, or the Black Hole. People are so ridiculous. Sideways is a classic.
0 of 2 users found this helpful02
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9
Halo_InsiderNov 16, 2013
The central quartet is fantastic to behold, and this remains one of Alexander Payne's best films. It's a fantastic piece of work aided by an engaging and bittersweet script.
0 of 2 users found this helpful02
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10
worleyjamersJun 8, 2013
A special film, the kind that stays with you days after watching it. The word that comes to mind when I think about this movie is, rich. Each scene is so perfectly constructed and full of so much heart and soul; the characters are fullyA special film, the kind that stays with you days after watching it. The word that comes to mind when I think about this movie is, rich. Each scene is so perfectly constructed and full of so much heart and soul; the characters are fully realized, well developed, and perfectly portrayed by an amazing cast. Payne's direction is brilliant, this is easily his best film he's ever done. And the script is fun, charming, interesting, real, and resonant. Expand
0 of 2 users found this helpful02
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10
pHrfoFeb 17, 2013
A movie that does not underestimate the public, like most of the comedies nowadays. A lot of its drama is undisclosed, but perfectly understood, thanks to the flawless performances of Giamatti and Church. Payne's view of marriage, friendshipA movie that does not underestimate the public, like most of the comedies nowadays. A lot of its drama is undisclosed, but perfectly understood, thanks to the flawless performances of Giamatti and Church. Payne's view of marriage, friendship and life is fascinating. The direction is outstanding: it allow us to enter the story in so many layers that we feel on a road trip, drinking wine. A real masterpiece. Expand
0 of 2 users found this helpful02
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9
MackeyJan 5, 2013
"Sideways" is a insightful movie about friendship, love, a lot drinking, bad habits and moral weaknesses of man. However it leaves delight after seeing, and chaotic adventure of main characters breathes in us hope that life is much more"Sideways" is a insightful movie about friendship, love, a lot drinking, bad habits and moral weaknesses of man. However it leaves delight after seeing, and chaotic adventure of main characters breathes in us hope that life is much more pleasent that it sounds. Expand
1 of 3 users found this helpful12
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10
cameronmorewoodNov 18, 2012
Payne directs the film so meticulously that you can't help but be intrigued by what he's showing you. He and Giamatti create and character with vast depth and sneakily subtle idiosyncrasies.
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10
john24Jun 25, 2012
I loved it .
0 of 2 users found this helpful02
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10
pkgadersonsJun 10, 2012
I love the acting in this movie, i also like the drama and it has comedy too, that is great, i do not get why people doesnt like it much its of my favorite ones
0 of 2 users found this helpful02
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10
anothercoolguyJun 10, 2012
I really like Paul Giamatti and Thomas Haden Church, I think Thomas should won that oscar this movie is really entertaining, pretty good in my opinion, i specially liked it by the acting but still good
0 of 2 users found this helpful02
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9
HorlanMay 8, 2012
Sideways makes you believe that the story written by Alexander Payne is true. It is fresh, smart and as sophisticated as a good, old wine. All four actors are full of emotions, especially Paul Giamatti gives an unforgettable performance.
1 of 3 users found this helpful12
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10
ScraperDec 28, 2011
Giamatti's character's dimensions are written with such care that it makes him tangible and engaging. He's both fragile and explosive. When set against Haden Church's aging jock it creates a great story with a Laurel & Hardy quality to it.Giamatti's character's dimensions are written with such care that it makes him tangible and engaging. He's both fragile and explosive. When set against Haden Church's aging jock it creates a great story with a Laurel & Hardy quality to it. What I liked though is that looks at love were highly imperfect but still had real consequences. Jennifer Aniston is not in this film. The actors are believable. I was able to want to believe them, right or wrong, for better or worse. Expand
2 of 6 users found this helpful24
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9
J-ShapAug 29, 2011
Mastering the tonal shifts of life with a look at the problems one can face, both serious and trivial, Sideways comes around as simply excellent. It can have scenes of high humor, scenes of sad despair, and scenes to marvel at just howMastering the tonal shifts of life with a look at the problems one can face, both serious and trivial, Sideways comes around as simply excellent. It can have scenes of high humor, scenes of sad despair, and scenes to marvel at just how something managed to end up the way it is, and the director and cast can handle the shifts between these in a way that feels so natural it's almost frightening. Expand
1 of 2 users found this helpful11
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10
jcarMay 10, 2011
This movie is phenomenal. It's humor is incredibly consistent and contains a performance from Paul Giamatti that won't be topped for ages. I loved this movie and would recommend it to anyone
1 of 4 users found this helpful13
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10
SchmidtFeb 7, 2011
Absolute perfection - a film in which ever detail is tuned beautifully, but not overdone. The cinematography, the music, the story, the set pieces, the realism, the WINE, the humour, the dialogue... and above all else the finest characterAbsolute perfection - a film in which ever detail is tuned beautifully, but not overdone. The cinematography, the music, the story, the set pieces, the realism, the WINE, the humour, the dialogue... and above all else the finest character performance I've seen from a consistently great character actor, Paul Giamatti. He captures Miles with precision - reading the novel, which is narrated by Miles, you obviously gain great insight into his character, but with every twitch, half-smile, lame comment, heartbreaking expression, he truly becomes Pickett's character, and brings him to life like no other could. Haden Church as Jack is a fantastic antithesis to Miles, and gives the surprise performance of the century, and Madsen offers a strong but scarred woman, who ultimately breathes life into Miles' body. I'm only really talking about performances here, but really, you have to see this movie yourself. For some fantastic camera work look out for the scene in Los Olivos, with a drunken Miles on the phone to his ex-wife, for a beautiful piece of music from Rolfe Kent, listen out for the scene at Mrs Raymond's, where Miles is looked down upon by his family (metaphorically, of course - they are in photographs), and for the best example of just how strong Giamatti is here, watch his stomach turn as Victoria gives him the news after the wedding. He painfully holds onto a smile, and we can see in his hurt, tormented eyes that he just wants to let go. Movie magic until the last second, and after that. Mature filmmaking at its best - as 'Jimmy' says, "an instant classic... an honest film and as real as a movie can be." Couldn't have put it better myself. Expand
2 of 4 users found this helpful22
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10
Christopher_G2Jan 16, 2011
This is in my top 20 movies of the last decade. It has an amazing script, and no less than three terrific performances by Paul Giamatti (one of the worst snubs in Oscar history) Thomas Hadden Church, and Virginia Madsen. It's very funny,This is in my top 20 movies of the last decade. It has an amazing script, and no less than three terrific performances by Paul Giamatti (one of the worst snubs in Oscar history) Thomas Hadden Church, and Virginia Madsen. It's very funny, entertaining, and made wine country a fascinating topic for someone like me who had no interest on the subject. It's purely about life and the choices we make. Expand
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9
pedrostrikNov 28, 2010
Best quotidian movie in the last 20 years, wonderful plot, nice acting Giamatti's performance its sublime.
This movie its not for a general crowd, as wine tour suggest, the movie target's people that loves wine, nature and stereotypes on
Best quotidian movie in the last 20 years, wonderful plot, nice acting Giamatti's performance its sublime.
This movie its not for a general crowd, as wine tour suggest, the movie target's people that loves wine, nature and stereotypes on actual society, for some people to hard to understand the movie's message.
i watch it 2 times already and there's always something new on the plot ...
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7
rodericrinehartAug 14, 2010
Although I enjoyed the movie, I'm not sure why the critics fawned over it as much as they did. It's solid, but not spectacular. The characters and plot were entertaining and unique.
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10
NeilFOct 19, 2009
Life-affirming. Anyone who doesn't get it has a black hole where their heart should be.
0 of 0 users found this helpful
10
JackOOct 10, 2009
Can't describe how real and awesome this movie is. absolute perfection in every sense of the word.
1 of 1 users found this helpful
7
DaveJSep 11, 2009
A good film especially due to the fact that there are not any really big name actors. I wouldn't say that its a comedy though nor should it be in the top 100 films of all time list! Still worth a seeing though!
0 of 0 users found this helpful
10
BrianWApr 3, 2009
this movie is neither a 10 nor a 0, but I'm giving it a 10 to offset all of you who don't have a clue. It is very entertaining and quite refreshing compared to all the formula crap coming out of Hollywood. All you folks who this movie is neither a 10 nor a 0, but I'm giving it a 10 to offset all of you who don't have a clue. It is very entertaining and quite refreshing compared to all the formula crap coming out of Hollywood. All you folks who didn't get it ought to consider staying home to watch something really stimulating, like American Idol. Expand
0 of 0 users found this helpful
8
SImonMJan 11, 2009
Put it like this - if you are an intelligent, witty and astute person, you will LOVE this. If, however, you are not a very bright person, you will say it's boring and unfunny. Take a look at the negative reviews here and you will notice Put it like this - if you are an intelligent, witty and astute person, you will LOVE this. If, however, you are not a very bright person, you will say it's boring and unfunny. Take a look at the negative reviews here and you will notice some terrible spelling, and inarticulate submissions. I think that says it all. For those who didn't enjoy the movie, perhapsMr Bean is more your style?? Expand
0 of 1 users found this helpful
10
TroyP.Oct 17, 2008
This movie is excellent! An amazing script with great acting. It touches on so many real life issues and does so in such a sutly humorous way. I feel that many people will not understand the greatness of this movie, but it is a masterpiece!!!
1 of 1 users found this helpful
8
PlanRJun 25, 2008
I didn't know much about this movie before seeing it so i didnt really know what to expect... This is one great little movie. This is a buddy- road trip movie that works on many levels. Not that unlike Midnight Run (minus the action) or I didn't know much about this movie before seeing it so i didnt really know what to expect... This is one great little movie. This is a buddy- road trip movie that works on many levels. Not that unlike Midnight Run (minus the action) or Y Tu Mama Tambien (minus the subtitles). I've never understood the need to have likable characters in a movie like this, this isn't Spiderman. All the characters need to be is interesting, and these guys are nothing if not interesting. The humor here is mostly subtle but there are several laugh out loud moments. If you have any sort of attention span and can appereciate a well acted, smart, grown-up script, then this might become one of your favorite movies, it certainly is one of mine. Expand
0 of 0 users found this helpful
10
KennyM.Mar 28, 2008
One of the greatest movies of all time. Alexander Payne is a master of his craft. I don't understand why so many people here didn't find it funny...I thought it was hilarious. Anyway, this film kicks ass. Great script, great One of the greatest movies of all time. Alexander Payne is a master of his craft. I don't understand why so many people here didn't find it funny...I thought it was hilarious. Anyway, this film kicks ass. Great script, great shooting, great acting, great directing...everything is perfection. Only American Beauty and a select other few films rate above Sideways in my book. Expand
0 of 0 users found this helpful
9
RagnarJ.Mar 3, 2008
very clever comedy. You see the hopeless lives of two men, succumbing slowly to their own extinction and aspiring to find a new way to lead their lives. May seem sardonic and obnoxious, at times, but they are portraying realistic emotions very clever comedy. You see the hopeless lives of two men, succumbing slowly to their own extinction and aspiring to find a new way to lead their lives. May seem sardonic and obnoxious, at times, but they are portraying realistic emotions and case-studies. Fabulous wit and clever as f*ck. Expand
0 of 0 users found this helpful