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Generally favorable reviews - based on 36 Critics What's this?

User Score
6.8

Generally favorable reviews- based on 247 Ratings

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  • Starring: , ,
  • Summary: Chris Gardner (Smith) is a bright and talented, but marginally employed salesman. Struggling to make ends meet, Gardner finds himself and his five-year-old son evicted from their San Francisco apartment with nowhere to go. When Gardner lands an internship at a prestigious stock brokerageChris Gardner (Smith) is a bright and talented, but marginally employed salesman. Struggling to make ends meet, Gardner finds himself and his five-year-old son evicted from their San Francisco apartment with nowhere to go. When Gardner lands an internship at a prestigious stock brokerage firm, he and his son endure many hardships, including living in shelters, in pursuit of his dream of a better life for the two of them. (Sony) Expand
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 22 out of 36
  2. Negative: 0 out of 36
  1. 100
    The tough beauty of the picture is that it lets each viewer weigh the costs and benefits to Gardner. It's a genuinely transporting inspirational movie because it's also a cautionary tale. It doesn't downplay the hero's occasional clumsiness or pigheadedness.
  2. It's a beautiful and understated performance, one that hums with a richer, quieter music than Smith has mustered before.
  3. 75
    The movie is essentially a vehicle for Smith, but the actor more than rises to the challenge. Rarely has attaining the American Dream seemed so impossible or daunting or so intensely, profoundly satisfying.
  4. It's the same old bootstraps story, an American dream artfully told, skillfully sold. To that calculated end, the filmmaking is seamless, unadorned, transparent, the better to serve Mr. Smith's warm expressiveness.
  5. This is a slick studio production with a huge movie star and top professionals occupying every production role so that the polish of this well-made film makes even homelessness look neat and tidy.
  6. Reviewed by: Brian Lowry
    60
    The Pursuit of Happyness is more inspirational than creatively inspired -- imbued with the kind of uplifting, afterschool-special qualities that can trigger a major toothache.
  7. The pursuit is manipulative and repetitive.

See all 36 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 58 out of 88
  2. Negative: 23 out of 88
  1. Steve
    Dec 22, 2006
    10
    I'm surprised with the negative comments. This was a fantastic movie, dare I say the best movie I've seen all year. Seldom do I'm surprised with the negative comments. This was a fantastic movie, dare I say the best movie I've seen all year. Seldom do movies capture the essence of the importance of life with such heart. I loved everything about it and highly recommend it. Expand
  2. PnArdyPnArdy
    May 13, 2007
    10
    Great emotional drama with Will Smith about a father who loves and cares about his young son in spite of all the difficulties of the Great Great emotional drama with Will Smith about a father who loves and cares about his young son in spite of all the difficulties of the Great Depression in America. Should have got an Oscar. Collapse
  3. Jondoe
    Mar 2, 2009
    10
    great movie. anyone who disagrees is a blind fool. it shows how real men take care of their kids. also a great movie on learning how to be a great movie. anyone who disagrees is a blind fool. it shows how real men take care of their kids. also a great movie on learning how to be a father and getting to know your kid. i don't even want to get into the motivational and other aspects of the movie. great acting jobs all around. Expand
  4. BitBurn
    Feb 8, 2007
    8
    Good stuff. I enjoyed this movie a lot. Congrats Will Smith! Although the ending was a bit disappointing.
  5. RalphA.
    Dec 31, 2006
    6
    Good acting by Will Smith and his son. However, there are two disturbing acts that question whether they should have been portrayed Good acting by Will Smith and his son. However, there are two disturbing acts that question whether they should have been portrayed differently. In one scene, Will tells his son to "Shut Up", and in another he viloently shakes his son. Do we really want to see this on film, thus validating this type of behavior? Expand
  6. Deanna
    Feb 25, 2007
    3
    I thought this movie was just a real downer. It kept dragging on and on, and from the moment it started you knew how it was going to end. I I thought this movie was just a real downer. It kept dragging on and on, and from the moment it started you knew how it was going to end. I liked the ending the best not because of the happyness, but because I could finaly leave. Expand
  7. Aaron
    Dec 15, 2006
    0
    predictable story about how much garbage you can eat without complaining. The ending was sadly lacking and there were no character developmentpredictable story about how much garbage you can eat without complaining. The ending was sadly lacking and there were no character development to explain the lack of family and friends. To be a successful stock broker you have to have one part used car salesmen and two parts attorney in you. Will Smith had neither. Expand

See all 88 User Reviews

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