Universal acclaim - based on 34 Critics What's this?

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Generally favorable reviews- based on 83 Ratings

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  • Starring: ,
  • Summary: A small group of adventurous American soldiers (Clooney, Whalberg, Ice Cube, Jonze) in Iraq at the end of the Gulf War is determined to steal a huge cache of gold reputed to be hidden somewhere near their desert base. Finding a map they believe will take them to the gold, the soldiers embark on a journey that leads to unexpected discoveries, enabling them to rise to a heroic challenge that drastically changes their lives. (Warner Brothers) Expand
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 31 out of 34
  2. Negative: 0 out of 34
  1. A daring, teeth-grinding experience that doesn't let the viewer rest easy.
  2. An all-hell-breaks-loose, panicky fever of a story, all of it drenched in grainy, color-saturated cinematography.
  3. Reviewed by: Robert Horton
    It's like a madly inventive hybrid of "Dr. Strangelove" and "The Treasure of the Sierra Madre."
  4. Exhilarating, alternately funny and horrific film.
  5. As entertaining as it is a viable, political message destined to make viewers rethink their stance on war.
  6. So wild an approach demands straightforward performances that don't draw attention to themselves, and that's what the actors supply.
  7. Reviewed by: Janet Maslin
    It isn't nearly as successful a showcase for this filmmaker's extraordinary talents.

See all 34 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 16 out of 21
  2. Negative: 4 out of 21
  1. Oct 21, 2011
    Not for those who don't like politics. I enjoyed the original story, the acting was alright and it has just enough action to keep things exciting. Definitely worth watching, I would say not a popcorn flick. Expand
  2. Sep 5, 2014
    A terrific war drama that has action, comedy, suspense and a wonderful cast.
  3. KennedyB.
    Jun 13, 2006
    The 3rd best film of 1999(next to American Beauty and Magnolia).
  4. sethw
    Nov 7, 2005
    Damn good movie. interesting and different. probably to much so for some people.
  5. JimH.
    May 7, 2006
    I just watched this for the second time (2006) against the backdrop of current events (ie. resistance to, support for ongoing war vs. terror). Yoon C (and detractors among the metacritics), while your comments are intelligent and incisive, I would argue that this movie is great precisely because it plays (and I mean, plays) along all those lines without telling you what to think. If anything it shows that all people's opinions are ridiculous and it imposes none of its own. It sounds to me like you are looking for a movie to tell you what to think of war in Iraq (that is, to tell you "war is hell" or something like that - the message you are expecting becausue you've already heard it in other movies and novels). Whatever else you say about this, it's a war movie unlike any other. It rocks first and foremost, but it also socks and it even (dare I say) does make you think. And it's still relevant seven years later, in ways that it was not when it was made. That anticipatory quality makes it much more artful than the huge majority of "deep" arthouse movies with a moral agenda. Maybe the best thing about it is that it gets the Schwarzenegger-set to watch and rewatch a movie where a child cries over her dead mother, where men are torn by morally ambiguity, where in the end we are at least given an inkling of how hard it is to "do the right thing." Expand
  6. Nov 20, 2013
    The Gulf War was a total waste of time and money, but we all know what it is interesting about this movie surrounded by stars and known direction, is how it exposes issues such as greed, sacrifice, comedy and action as realistically and moving, even if sometimes he is a bit inconsistent in transit and wants to spend time with dubious quality between pure drama and black humor, but other than that he and a lot of fun and their performances are very charismatic cat, especially from Clooney. Expand
  7. Jul 21, 2014
    Overall, this one is a pretty good film. George Clooney, Mark Wahlberg, Ice Cube, and Spike Jonze, are all good here and really help this film out. The direction from David O. Russell was also very good and gave this one a unique feel. Many war films do not really have character development and this one did not have a ton, but it at least had some to let us know the motivation behind the main characters' actions. However, the narrative slacks at times and can be a tad boring at times for my liking and even when it was not, I was never fully gripped by what was happening. It was certainly interesting enough, but the plot was a tad too outlandish and predictable for me to fully enjoy it. Now, the film is still entertaining and is still very well made and well acted, so I can see why it got the praise it did. However, this one was just not fully for me, though it was still a pretty good film in my eyes. Expand

See all 21 User Reviews


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