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Alex & Emma (2003)



Average Rating: 3.7/10
Reviews Counted: 138
Fresh: 15 | Rotten: 123

A dull and unfunny comedy where the leads fail to generate any sparks.


Average Rating: 3.4/10
Critic Reviews: 40
Fresh: 3 | Rotten: 37

A dull and unfunny comedy where the leads fail to generate any sparks.



liked it
Average Rating: 2.8/5
User Ratings: 62,638

My Rating

Movie Info

Rob Reiner directs Luke Wilson and Kate Hudson in Alex & Emma, a romantic comedy about an author and his secretary. Gangsters will kill Alex (Wilson) in 30 days if he doesn't pay back his gambling debts. The only way he can do that is to finish his new novel. He hires sassy court stenographer Emma (Hudson) to transcribe his dictation. The film intercuts between the two of them writing the story, and the story within the story. Hudson plays three roles in the film, and Wilson plays two. Sophie


Comedy, Romance

Jeremy Leven

Dec 23, 2003


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All Critics (138) | Top Critics (40) | Fresh (15) | Rotten (123) | DVD (19)

The actors make this fun if you can overlook the ludicrous view of Jeremy Leven's screenplay concerning how novels are written and what publishers generally pay for them.

February 8, 2012 Full Review Source: Chicago Reader
Chicago Reader
Top Critic IconTop Critic

It has no tempo, energy or pulse.

June 26, 2003 Full Review Source: New York Observer
New York Observer
Top Critic IconTop Critic

This isn't one for the time capsule -- just bury it.

June 24, 2003 Full Review Source: Village Voice
Village Voice
Top Critic IconTop Critic

It's paint by numbers.

June 23, 2003 Full Review Source: Ebert & Roeper
Ebert & Roeper
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Dull and listless from the start, partly because the leads fail to connect and partly because both the script and the direction let them down.

June 21, 2003 Full Review Source:
Top Critic IconTop Critic

A desperately slight romantic comedy marked by contrived romance and little comedy.

June 20, 2003 Full Review Source: Variety
Top Critic IconTop Critic

About as funny as root canal work and as romantic as a rainy fortnight in Wrexham. Rob Reiner should make a phone call to Christopher Guest a priority.

February 8, 2012 Full Review Source: Film4

Uninspired -- neither romantic nor comic.

September 9, 2010 Full Review Source: Common Sense Media
Common Sense Media

"Alex & Emma" has a light tone of modernized '20s inflected comedy that Woody Allen would love to still be able to capture in his movies.

June 2, 2009 Full Review Source:

No matter how hard Alex and Emma tries, it's still the same package but with new wrapping.

April 29, 2009 Full Review Source: Cinema Crazed
Cinema Crazed

What might have looked like a good idea on paper goes seriously awry in the screen treatment of this clunker from writer Jeremy Leven and director Rob Reiner.

October 18, 2008 Full Review Source: Urban Cinefile
Urban Cinefile

A miserable failure on every count.

December 30, 2006 Full Review Source: Empire Magazine
Empire Magazine

What is unusual about the film is that we see both the real life of the characters, and scenes from the hero's novel.

December 13, 2004 Full Review Source: Classic Film and Television
Classic Film and Television

Delves into ... all the odious cliches of the romantic comedy genre, but Reiner justifies it by laughing at the ridiculousness of his own story.

September 20, 2004
Tyler Morning Telegraph (Texas)

Wilson is inert and lethargic... Instead of adding some comic energy and vitality to the proceedings, he seems to be sleepwalking through them.

January 2, 2004 Full Review

...sweet without being romantic, cute without being funny.

December 9, 2003 Full Review Source: Movie Metropolis
Movie Metropolis

Mesmo escrito sem maiores cuidados ou reflexões (assim como o livro de seu protagonista), o longa é ingênuo (no sentido positivo da palavra) o bastante para divertir por 90 minutos.

September 24, 2003 Full Review Source: Cinema em Cena
Cinema em Cena

The tepid lead characters, housed by actors who don't even share any chemistry, finally have nowhere to go in a film as flat as its interior dime-store novel.

August 13, 2003 Full Review Source: Pulse Weekly
Pulse Weekly

Luke Wilson in another variation of "Pete."

July 20, 2003 Full Review Source: Film Snobs
Film Snobs

With its awkward blend of postmodern literary debate and formulaic romantic comedy, Alex and Emma has the unfortunate distinction of being too intellectual for stupid people and too stupid for intellectual people.

July 8, 2003 Full Review Source: eye WEEKLY

Say, since Alex and Emma is supposed to be all about people of letters and the creative process, maybe somebody interested knows. Is lame-o all one word or hyphenated?

July 8, 2003 Full Review

After all this incoherent (and mostly unpredictable) excitement in its first six minutes, Reiner's romantic comedy descends almost immediately into foreseeable tedium

July 7, 2003 Full Review Source: PopMatters

Seems to be a vanity vehicle for Kate Hudson. Think "Tracy Takes On," written by a big fan of Kate & Leopold who didn't want to seem too derivative.

July 2, 2003 Full Review

[A] disaster.

July 2, 2003 Full Review Source: Boston Phoenix
Boston Phoenix

Alex & Emma is the kind of Hollywood formula romance that announces where it's going in its first moments.

June 29, 2003 Full Review Source: Boxoffice Magazine
Boxoffice Magazine

Audience Reviews for Alex & Emma

A cute romantic comedy. Well done. Great story, directing, and acting.
August 3, 2010

Super Reviewer

Why is it when the studios make romantic comedies they turn out to be really bad? Predictable and boring.
July 15, 2008

Super Reviewer

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