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75

Generally favorable reviews - based on 34 Critics What's this?

User Score
7.7

Generally favorable reviews- based on 76 Ratings

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  • Starring: , ,
  • Summary: Disheartened attorney Mike Flaherty, who moonlights as a high school wrestling coach, stumbles across a star athlete through some questionable business dealings while trying to support his family. Just as it looks like he will get a double payday, the boy's mother shows up fresh from rehab and flat broke, threatening to derail everything. (Fox Searchlight Pictures) Expand
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 29 out of 34
  2. Negative: 0 out of 34
  1. Reviewed by: Ann Hornaday
    Mar 24, 2011
    100
    In spirit, and sheer joie de vivre, it's everything the movie business should aspire to. Win Win exemplifies movies the way they oughtta be.
  2. Reviewed by: Peter Travers
    Mar 10, 2011
    88
    This movie wins you over, head and heart, without cheating. It's just about perfect.
  3. Reviewed by: Calvin Wilson
    Apr 8, 2011
    88
    It's an original that plays as if it were based on a novel.
  4. Reviewed by: Scott Tobias
    Mar 18, 2011
    75
    All these characters make a beautiful mess together, even if McCarthy spends too much time tidying it up.
  5. Reviewed by: Steven Rea
    Mar 31, 2011
    75
    The same kind of keen, empathetic observations that made "The Station Agent" and "The Visitor" so illuminating are at play here, too.
  6. Reviewed by: A.O. Scott
    Mar 17, 2011
    70
    Win Win goes a bit soft in places, protecting its characters from serious danger or tough moral reckoning. But the film's niceness is also central to its appeal, because nearly all of the characters are people you enjoy spending time with.
  7. Reviewed by: Peter Debruge
    Mar 5, 2011
    50
    A disappointing domestic comedy in which all but the audience get what they want.

See all 34 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 19 out of 25
  2. Negative: 2 out of 25
  1. Mar 25, 2011
    10
    This movie is ok--realistic and plausible, but it certainly doesn't deserve stellar reviews. Paul Giamatti is very good and believable as a small town lawyer who isn't really making a go of it, through no fault of his. The other actors are very good too, but there's nothing exceptional about this film. I wish I hadn't spent almost $9 to see it; it was worth about half that. Amusing, a good way to fill some time, but not a soul-replenshing, satisfying film. Expand
  2. Apr 24, 2011
    10
    If you are able to see this film, do it. New comer Alex Shaffer acting is quite funny, and Giamati is great as always. By the end of the movie you will feel like you just made some friends that you will never see again. Expand
  3. Sep 24, 2011
    9
    I read a review for Win Win that described it as "soul crushingly clichéd" and I have to admit that the ending plays like the end of a Nicholas Sparks novel (except no one dies......I think). However this may be the only problem with the film.
    The story of a small town lawyer struggling to get enough work to pay the bills while volunteering as a high school wrestling coach on the side because of his love of the game. The best thing about the film is its view on the world with Paul Giamatti's Mike embracing the fact that everything is not black and white. This is in direct contrast with the boy that Mike and his wife Jackie (Amy Ryan) take in who is Played by Alex Shaffer, who sees things as either good or bad even if he won't admit it to himself. The way Shaffer's Kyle and Mike interact is what makes the film as they both seem to understand one another and grow with Mike regaining some of his innocence and Kyle becoming more cynical with them in a way, meeting in the middle. The learning curve in this film is tempered by some of the best black comedy I have watched in a long time with both Jeffrey Tambor and Bobby Cannavale lightening the mood of a sometimes bleak story. The biggest surprise in this film however is how good Amy Ryan and Alex Shaffer are with them both providing a incredible sense of sincerity in a film based almost entirely around a lie. Overall it is a film that I won't forget in a long time but is spoilt by a Hollywood desire to provide a "happy ending", which is a true shame considering the quality of the rest of the film.
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  4. Dec 18, 2011
    8
    A really good movie that feels so genuine. The interaction between Giammati and the wrestler is highly original, and the wrestler's relationship with his mother is not something we've seen before. I love Amy Ryan, and she nails her part. Expand
  5. May 28, 2011
    7
    "Win Win" is an honest, good movie that, unfortunately, left me wanting more story. I really enjoyed Paul Giamatti's performance, and the supporting cast is also wonderful. Expand
  6. Apr 30, 2011
    5
    Paul Giamatti is always a pleasure. And to watch how the arc of his moral dilemma is played out is fascinating in this excellent film. It's comforting to see an all too familiar middle class crisis assuaged in an amusing and non-condescending way. Expand
  7. Aug 24, 2011
    0
    I am writing this review because this is the worst movie I have seen in months and I am one of Giamatti's biggest fans so it pains me to say so. To be fair, I went into this movie expecting it to be funny... or at least contain a bit of dark humor and what I got was melo-drama capital C, capital R, capital A, capital P. Lastly, bethesdabob wrote "This movie is ok--realistic and plausible, but it certainly doesn't deserve stellar reviews." and then gave it a 10 out of 10. Dementia much? Expand

See all 25 User Reviews

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