State and Main

User Score
6.4

Generally favorable reviews- based on 31 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 22 out of 31
  2. Negative: 7 out of 31
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  1. PatC.
    Jan 6, 2004
    3
    First Rule of Moviemaking: Don't fritter away the attention of the audience in the first 10 minutes. After one initially effective one-liner is panned by Macy's character, the show plunges into unmitigated disjointed banter involving a slew of characters and phone voices all disrupting the continuity with unrelating dialogue about things that are neither interesting nor matter. First Rule of Moviemaking: Don't fritter away the attention of the audience in the first 10 minutes. After one initially effective one-liner is panned by Macy's character, the show plunges into unmitigated disjointed banter involving a slew of characters and phone voices all disrupting the continuity with unrelating dialogue about things that are neither interesting nor matter. If I want to hear people interrupt each other, I'll watch political talk shows. I deserted this show after 15 minutes, so I didn't watch it all. If it was good from there on, a 3 is the best I could have given it, and that's the benefit of the doubt. Besides, it was my second attempt. Sorry, but abusing the audience's gift of initial attention is a fatal error. It makes me suspect some critics may be taking complimentary drugs from the movie companies before reviewing their products. But hey, the value is merely misplaced: Rent this movie as a sedative. Expand
  2. DaveS.
    Feb 20, 2001
    1
    Not even close to being funny, which is what a comedy is supposed to be about.
  3. MichaelF.
    Jul 31, 2001
    7
    This is a very smart little movie that delivers the laughs very well. Extremely smart but towards the end just gets plain boring. The characters lose their touch, but all of the acting is supurb! The movie plays out as if it were a play and in fact would make a good play too (David Mamet showing us his playwrite side). Not Mamet's best ("House of Games") but its still a good solid This is a very smart little movie that delivers the laughs very well. Extremely smart but towards the end just gets plain boring. The characters lose their touch, but all of the acting is supurb! The movie plays out as if it were a play and in fact would make a good play too (David Mamet showing us his playwrite side). Not Mamet's best ("House of Games") but its still a good solid movie. Worth the $3 to rent. Expand
  4. YoonMinC.
    Oct 10, 2003
    8
    Hard-hitting urbanite Mamet situates his usual story of hucksters and conmen in a quiet little NE town where the folks are not as simpleminded as they may first seem. The Mametisms here should by now be well-known to everyone. There is the signature cynicism taking advantage of wide-eyed trust; you have the hardened dupes retaliating in like manner. There are hidden motives, personal Hard-hitting urbanite Mamet situates his usual story of hucksters and conmen in a quiet little NE town where the folks are not as simpleminded as they may first seem. The Mametisms here should by now be well-known to everyone. There is the signature cynicism taking advantage of wide-eyed trust; you have the hardened dupes retaliating in like manner. There are hidden motives, personal grudges, downright greed, and vanity fueling the engine for most of human behavior. Only two people--both playwrights--are good which may be Mamet patting the likes of himself on the back a bit too gently. The acting is good but limited as the movie never strives for anything other than light satire. The sense of irony evident in situations--moral or plotwise--is bit too obvious and the ending too pat. One even wonders if this would have worked better as a play than as a movie. Still, Mamet's control of his material and the medium is impeccable; without the customary mushiness and with a ruthlessness that doesn't degenerate into pointless ugliness, this is overall a well-observed movie about clash of egos, instability of values, and the power of money. Expand
  5. ChadS.
    Sep 4, 2004
    9
    Unlike The Coen Brothers' "Oh, Brother Where Art Thou", David Mamet's "State and Main" doesn't treat smalltown folks like affected hayseeds. In Mamet's world, the denizens of Vermont are allowed to be sophisticated, which could also an affectation, but it's better to be portrayed as smart rather than dumb. They're allowed to know the names of obscure Unlike The Coen Brothers' "Oh, Brother Where Art Thou", David Mamet's "State and Main" doesn't treat smalltown folks like affected hayseeds. In Mamet's world, the denizens of Vermont are allowed to be sophisticated, which could also an affectation, but it's better to be portrayed as smart rather than dumb. They're allowed to know the names of obscure playwrights, read Variety, and interact with Hollywood types without being at a disadvantage. Mamet's great achievement here is finding the right tone for the assembled film team. The rustic charm of the town and its inhabitants softens the pretty people's urban edge without effacing their immoral centers. At the center of "State and Main", is the wonderful pairing of Phillip Seymour Hoffman and Rebecca Pidgeon, who have the starry-eyed wonder of young lovers from "Our Town". They have a lot of chemistry. Who knew? Expand
  6. BobT.
    Aug 3, 2001
    1
    Barely watchable and totally predictable. Stilted dialog and amateurish direction. The film is a major disappointment.
  7. ChrisL.
    Jan 25, 2001
    8
    Great film. William H. Macy and Alec Bladwin do a great job.
  8. MichaelO.
    Feb 9, 2001
    10
    Sharp dialogue and intertesting characters that I really cared about. A lot of fun.
  9. VD
    Nov 30, 2002
    10
    I loved it.
  10. NasjadeV.
    Feb 3, 2005
    8
    Good tempo, nice references. Overall very enjoyable.
  11. JeffM.
    Feb 13, 2001
    3
    A smug, simple-minded movie that thinks it's much more intelligent than it really is, featuring yet another grating performance by the director's wife.
  12. WalterS.
    Jul 24, 2002
    2
    This has got to be one of the most overrated films I've seen in some time, and I see a LOT of movies, okay. This movies is botched in so many ways it's hard to keep track. It's almost easier to say what was good about it. William Macy's director was fantastic, both in writing and performance. The two leads (Baldwin, Parker) were great fun. Philip Seymour Hoffman did This has got to be one of the most overrated films I've seen in some time, and I see a LOT of movies, okay. This movies is botched in so many ways it's hard to keep track. It's almost easier to say what was good about it. William Macy's director was fantastic, both in writing and performance. The two leads (Baldwin, Parker) were great fun. Philip Seymour Hoffman did what he could well given the limits of his character's stereotypical drivel. And that's it. The editing was amateurish. The script was terrible. Mamet's wife? Miscast and her role was pathetic. Her fiance was just as unbelievable as a Vermonter. Durning needed a Starbucks. LiPone (who I love) was way off the mark. The local reporter had a British accent.. I mean who the f%$# was making this film? Too many subplots which are as quickly introduced and sloppily dismissed. Attention Hollywood: just because you make a self-loathing, self-indulgent feature doesn't mean it's injokes are really that interesting. Expand
  13. Shane
    Jun 19, 2003
    10
    Philip Seymour Hoffman's greatest acting job, ever.
Metascore
75

Generally favorable reviews - based on 26 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 22 out of 26
  2. Negative: 0 out of 26
  1. Gently hilarious comedy.
  2. 70
    Mamet's jabs at Tinseltown's silken ruthlessness are quietly pointed, and the ensemble cast -- even the brittle and sometimes annoying Pidgeon (Mamet's wife) -- is brilliant.
  3. A snarling satire of Hollywood single-mindedness and its lack of any moral underpinning.