User Score
6.6

Generally favorable reviews- based on 328 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Negative: 23 out of 328

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  1. Jun 2, 2013
    9
    One of the year's most underrated films. The strong chemistry between Matt Damon and Emily Blunt along with a very interesting sci-fi story makes this film a top ten of 2011.
  2. Mar 17, 2013
    10
    If the film didn't star Matt Damon I would have to admit, alas, that I would have dismissed it as an absurd sifi with philosophical pretensions. However, having finished my book and the plane's other onflight entertainment failing to pique my interest I decided to give this film a chance.

    And I'm extremely glad that I did. The plot isn't too involved, nor did it have me questioning
    If the film didn't star Matt Damon I would have to admit, alas, that I would have dismissed it as an absurd sifi with philosophical pretensions. However, having finished my book and the plane's other onflight entertainment failing to pique my interest I decided to give this film a chance.

    And I'm extremely glad that I did. The plot isn't too involved, nor did it have me questioning topics such as the profound meaning of life, alternate worlds, freewill, fate, destiny and such (although some people I know did feel that it questioned everything they did). However, while I watched the film I didn't think "oh what a silly plot" as it was clever enough to be entertaining, it possessed the capacity to hold you in suspense, it had action, and a certain underlying depth so that you felt connected to the characters as well as enough sentiment to be romantic without being gushy. The performance by both actors was extremely well, particularly the chemistry. I believe it was this that really brought to film alive and gave credit to the plot. The romance really did save this film. Generally with these genres when romance is added it's never well thought out and is a sort of byproduct carelessly thrown in. But in this film the chemistry between the actors really brings out the film's plot and supersedes the negatives.
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  3. Sep 12, 2011
    9
    Buy-it - Is Matt Damon married? Because if so, he might be having an affair with Emily Blunt. These two stars light the screen on fire and their burning chemistry is reason enough to see this film about politics, life and love and whether or not we control our own destiny.
  4. Aug 20, 2011
    9
    While it is not for everybody, The Adjustment Bureau is the biggest surprise of the year thanks to its excellent story, an A plus cast, and some awesome drama that pushes the story along satisfyingly. The ending is also fantastic.
  5. Jun 2, 2011
    9
    i loved this movie.. it leaves you with so many thoughts an the pace is nice throughout. the acting in wonderful.. free will vs destiny explored in a fresh and engaging way.. along with a believable love story. good stuff
  6. May 14, 2011
    10
    A fantastically crafted sci-fi drama. Matt Damon and Emily Blunt's chemistry fuses perfectly with the script. I had a strong sense of adrenaline in certain scenes and felt i was sitting through a great episode of The Twilight Zone. Bravo!
  7. May 1, 2011
    10
    The fallacies and philosphy by "worldly men" concerning free will (1 Cor 3:19). Thou it is fictitious, this movie relates the relationship between mankind and angels, in order to capture the minds of people and mislead those who do not read the bible. God does not force an individual to accept either destiny, and in that sense he allows to every intelligent creature the exercise of freeThe fallacies and philosphy by "worldly men" concerning free will (1 Cor 3:19). Thou it is fictitious, this movie relates the relationship between mankind and angels, in order to capture the minds of people and mislead those who do not read the bible. God does not force an individual to accept either destiny, and in that sense he allows to every intelligent creature the exercise of free will. It is not denied by predestinarians that men are free moral agents, yet their own teachings certainly deny it. Free will is a blessing for man and makes him human, rather than a ROBOT. Thou it is just a movie, be careful if your spiritual minded (Eph 4:14; Rev 12:9-12) Expand
  8. Apr 21, 2011
    10
    Great movie, nice mix of sci fi, true love and the bigger picture. It is more of a romance than an action movie. I think if you went to see it for car chases and people being killed you will be disappointed. But it is a nice testament to love at first sight and being destined to find your soul mate.
  9. Apr 7, 2011
    10
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. In Hirozaku Kore-eda's "Wandafuru Raifu", the recently dead get to make a movie that recounts their happiest moment which will play in an endless loop for all of eternity. Heaven is a short film. But before the person makes it to this celluloidal after life, the subject must sit through pre-production meetings conducted by angels, who look about as ordinary as Harry(Anthony Mackie) does, as well as the other fedora-ed men in "The Adjustment Bureau". The interview process, in which the vignettes are collected for the subsequent shootings, are held at a sort of way station, a decrepit-looking building that resembles a social services institution, the anti-thesis of the usual iconography associated with heaven. Heaven has an indie aesthetic. Angels with harps, the pearly gates, clouds- those overused tropes are too Hollywood. "Wandafuru Raifu", in its eccentric depiction of the hereafter, stood apart from the usual religious genre fare with the truly radical idea that our creator is actually an omnipotent studio head. Heaven is art, seemingly without any ties to organized religion. The same heaven-as-bureaucracy angle is also prevalent in "The Adjustment Bureau", where heaven has an annex on Earth which looks conspicuously like an insurance company building. When David Norris(Matt Damon) discovers that the world is being micro-managed by "case workers"(read: angels), then defies their grand plans for him by his insistence on pursuing Elise(Emily Blunt), a woman he was supposed to meet just once, the men in hats "kick" the case "upstairs". The "chairman"(read: God) send down an archangel-type named Thompson(Terrence Stamp), who informs the senator hopeful that free-will doesn't exist, only the appearance of it. The men who work for the Adjustment Bureau function as architects of predestination. In the Kore-eda film, free will, likewise, turns out to be an illusion, as well, since the movie that the people are collaborating with god on requires a script. A script suggests that everything is written out ahead of time, a collection of life experiences that has a beginning, a middle, and an end. For David, his happiest memory(were he an interviewee in "Wandafuru Raifu") may very well be the moment he says, "I love you," to Elise on the rooftop, kissing his muse as if it was for the last time, so he kisses her hard, while the bureaucrats approach the couple with the intent of "resetting" their mental faculties. Prior to being trapped on the terrace overlooking New York City, the fleeting lovers, in a sense, make their own movie, as they ingress into new locales with each turn of the knob, like editors, surveying the city in the blink of an eye. Their whirlwind jaunt through the urban landscape can be construed as a metaphor for how love has its own velocity when you're with the one you love. Whipping through Yankee Stadium, Times Square, and Ellis Island, time seems to move too fast. Time just slips away. Time passes you by. If David and Elise kiss each other deeply enough, the future amnesiacs hope that perhaps some vestige of their affinity for each other will survive. Maybe they'll find each other, similar to how Joel Barish(Jim Carrey) and Clementine Kruczynski(Kate Winslet) think they're meeting for the first time on that train to Montauk at the outset of Michel Gondry's "Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind". Lucky for the politician and the dancer, but unlucky for the fortunes of the film, their undying love never gets tested, because "the chairman" is a Judeo-Christian figure, whereas in the Gondry film, traces of Buddhism can be detected in the way the victimized Lacuna customers are able to recognize each other, which subtly suggests reincarnation, a concept commonly associated with eastern religions. The ending to "The Adjustment Bureau", in what is otherwise an entertaining mish-mash of reasonably sophisticated sci-fi and high romance, is sort of a cheat(or maybe not). God is perfect, right? Hypothetically, when does God ever change his mind? In Carl Reiner's "Oh, God", George Burns, playing our heavenly father, admits to making the pits in avocados too big, but he lets the imperfection remain as is. After forty years of presiding over earth under a working predestination model, now the chairman wants to give free will one more try? C'mon, now. The last time people were entrusted with free will, as previously stated earlier in the film by Thompson, the Cuban Missile Crisis occurred, bringing the world to the brink of nuclear war. What if God didn't issue this edict? When Harry is summoned to the Chairman's chambers, what if the angel staged a coup, and took over the reigns of power? Maybe the Salon writer is right. Maybe Harry is the devil. Expand
  10. Mar 22, 2011
    9
    Honestly i went in the movie knowing it was going to be good...but not this good.This movie was OUTSTANDING from begining to end.Matt Damon is incredible(as usual) and the story is really amazing...makes you see life differently.I put a nine(9) on the score but its more like a 9.5.
  11. Mar 19, 2011
    10
    One of the best movies of the year. Let me explain why. The Adjustment Bureau starts with a local Election taking place in New York city. In which the main character, played by Damon, is being praised. Later on he meets a women he finds amazing. Throughout the movie these two fight some unknown to possibly find their love.

    What makes the Adjustment great first is the acting of Damon and
    One of the best movies of the year. Let me explain why. The Adjustment Bureau starts with a local Election taking place in New York city. In which the main character, played by Damon, is being praised. Later on he meets a women he finds amazing. Throughout the movie these two fight some unknown to possibly find their love.

    What makes the Adjustment great first is the acting of Damon and Emily Blunt. They have amazing chemistry some of the best in a while. And from a social perspective this movie is awesome because it is about desperate true love unlike a lot of popular movies now like Blue Valentine etc. which are about confused love or off the beaten path love. If you like a desperate love story mixed with mystery and a little bit of sci-fi this if for you.

    The next thing that makes this movie great is that it has a lot of interesting messages. On top of that the cinematography reminds me of an Abrams Fringe episode (men with black hats). Which was a quirky little thing that made me like this even more.

    Go see this if you're not a bitter old love hater. Or if you want to see a good sci fi or a good love story.
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  12. Mar 12, 2011
    9
    It was very good except that it describes so many people and it doesn't show them, the best part of the whole movie was when ever there was a ripple effect, it is the best part to 19 out of 20 members in my group! Very good but we think that the plot could make just a little more sense but as for anything else it was great!
  13. Mar 12, 2011
    9
    Absolutely one of the best movies ever. If you are bored in this one, you weren't paying attention! Amazing how powerful those little decisions are that seem so insignificant at the time! WOW. Couldn't leave my theatre seat to go get more popcorn because I was too afraid I would miss something AND, even missing a minute would have spoiled it all!
  14. Mar 9, 2011
    10
    It was basically a modern-day "It's a Wonderful Life". The basic concept of "ripple effects" is something I always think of in the daily routine of life. (Doing or not doing certain things that have the potential to change the outcome of events in the near or distant future.)

    In the end, it makes one become very aware of the weather and who's wearing headgear and who isn't.
  15. Mar 7, 2011
    10
    ''''The Adjustment Bureau" has both too little action and too little romance. In the ending, which is way too long, Matt Damon, has to wear and Adjustment Bureau hat, to go through doors. Why he has to go through doors, except to try to escape The Adjustment Bureau, is not clear and takes way too long. Going through these doors reminded me of "Inception," where the actors go to different''''The Adjustment Bureau" has both too little action and too little romance. In the ending, which is way too long, Matt Damon, has to wear and Adjustment Bureau hat, to go through doors. Why he has to go through doors, except to try to escape The Adjustment Bureau, is not clear and takes way too long. Going through these doors reminded me of "Inception," where the actors go to different levels, in dreams. In "The Adjustment Bureau," it is also confusing and time-wasting. I was expecting a better movie, considering Matt Damon's acting skills, but I was disappointed. Expand
  16. Mar 6, 2011
    10
    The beauty of Science Fiction is the ability to tell a story, any story, outside of our reality and make it work. So a love story wrapped in the intrigue of a thriller with some good old fashioned "what if' thrown in is just perfect for me. Not sure what movies the critics were watching, but from my seat in the theater, what was thrown up there on the screen was 100% quality writtng,The beauty of Science Fiction is the ability to tell a story, any story, outside of our reality and make it work. So a love story wrapped in the intrigue of a thriller with some good old fashioned "what if' thrown in is just perfect for me. Not sure what movies the critics were watching, but from my seat in the theater, what was thrown up there on the screen was 100% quality writtng, directing and acting. Better than Inception, by far. Expand
  17. Mar 4, 2011
    10
    Definitely a great film. It was extremely thought-provoking, & quite complex. A movie like "Inception", not by plot, but by the fact that you really must pay attention in order to see what's going on. Very entertaining & interesting, as well as unpredictable.
Metascore
60

Mixed or average reviews - based on 41 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 21 out of 41
  2. Negative: 2 out of 41
  1. Reviewed by: Richard Corliss
    Mar 7, 2011
    50
    It's a clever idea that, around the mid-point, stumbles into absurdity as the movie itself makes too many lunatic choices.
  2. Reviewed by: Peter Rainer
    Mar 4, 2011
    83
    If the head of the bureau is God, then why is he played by Terence Stamp and not Morgan Freeman?
  3. Reviewed by: Shawn Levy
    Mar 4, 2011
    75
    Ultimately, The Adjustment Bureau shifts from paranoid dystopia to a more hopeful tenor, and that weakens it slightly.