All The King's Men (2006)

TOMATOMETER

AUDIENCE SCORE

Critic Consensus: With a scenery-chewing performance from Sean Penn, an absence of political insight, and an overall lack of narrative cohesiveness, these Men give Oscar bait a bad name.


Movie Info

The legacy of a populist Southern politician whose lofty ambitions for the future leave him open to corruption and scandal is detailed as author Robert Penn Warren's thinly veiled portrait of Depression-era Louisiana governor Huey Long comes to the screen -- again -- this time courtesy of director and screenwriter Steven Zaillian. Willie Stark (Sean Penn) is a man of the people, and for the people; at least that's what he tells the people. Propelled into a race for governor by opposing forces … More

Rating: PG-13 (for an intense sequence of violence, sexual content and partial nudity)
Genre: Drama
Directed By:
Written By: Steven Zaillian
In Theaters:
On DVD: Dec 19, 2006
Box Office: $7.2M
Runtime:
Sony Pictures - Official Site

Cast


as Willie Stark

as Jack Burden

as Anne Stanton

as Adam Stanton

as Sadie Burke

as Judge Irwin

as Tiny Duffy

as Mrs. Burden

as Lucy Stark

as Willie's Father

as Editor

as Commissioner

as Senator

as Mr. Peyton

as Mrs. Peyton

as Miss DuMonde

as Ice Skater

as Carruthers' Banker

as Savannah Clerk

as Lily Littlepaugh

as Sheriff

as Senate Leader

as Jack (age 10)

as Mr. Burden

as MacMurphy

as Jack (age 4)

as Slade's Guitarist
Show More Cast

News & Interviews for All The King's Men

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Critic Reviews for All The King's Men

All Critics (155) | Top Critics (50)

What should have been an incisive study of the American political scene turns out a lumbering celluloid white elephant.

Full Review… | October 30, 2006
Time Out
Top Critic

The film isn't dreadful: it is just generally disappointing.

October 26, 2006
The New Republic
Top Critic

There's a good movie in here somewhere but Zaillian's muddied storytelling and lack of focus hides it beyond recall.

Full Review… | December 28, 2010
ComingSoon.net

All the King's Men is a dull movie, mainly due to the fact that it is full of boring characters which are poorly written by writer/director Steven Zaillian and led by an underwhelming Jude Law.

Full Review… | July 6, 2010
Matt's Movie Reviews

Static and dreary, drained of juice and drenched in "respectable" lighting

Full Review… | August 30, 2009
CinePassion

"All the King's Men" is a grand scale embarrassment.

Full Review… | April 15, 2009
ColeSmithey.com

Audience Reviews for All The King's Men

I know I might be in the minority, but I loved every minute of this. The acting was terrific and it was a perfect neo-noir story. I liked the idea of seeing the complete corruption of an innately good person and the following of him by journalist Jack Burden.

ythelastman89
Conner Rainwater

Super Reviewer

½

All of the talent but none of the substance would be a good way to describe this film.

FilmFanatik
Tim Salmons

Super Reviewer

"Time brings all things to light."

The legacy of a populist Southern politician whose lofty ambitions for the future leave him open to corruption and scandal is detailed as author Robert Penn Warren's thinly veiled portrait of Depression-era Louisiana governor Huey Long comes to the screen -- again -- this time courtesy of director and screenwriter Steven Zaillian. Willie Stark (Sean Penn) is a man of the people, and for the people; at least that's what he tells the people. Propelled into a race for governor by opposing forces looking to split the "hick vote," Stark is convinced by a handler -- as well as by young journalist Jack Burden (Jude Law) -- to not kowtow to the powers that be. His rhetoric grows fiery, and he makes his way into office on a not-so-solid foundation of social-service promises. When idealism gives way to the harsh realities of the time, however, the fast-talking politico is quick to discover just how far one can fall when ambition and power lead to a betrayal of one's original motivations. Kate Winslet, Patricia Clarkson, James Gandolfini, Mark Ruffalo, and Anthony Hopkins round out an all-star cast in this second version of Warren's Pulitzer Prize-winning 1947 novel; the first won a parade of Oscars after its release in 1949.

Review
While this movie did contain a startling amount bad film clichés, including a "dark man in the shadows" bit, I think that the actors were about the only thing that made this film watchable. Penn was a bit over the top as Willie Stark, but it felt somewhat fitting, especially because he went more over the top as the character's mania increased. Jude Law, while exceedingly pretty, fit the character of the struggling debutante fairly well. Patricia Clarkson as Saide Burke far outshone the rest of the cast, and was really the only one that pulled off convincingly a Louisiana accent. Mark Ruffalo was underused and far out shown his traditional romantic comedy characters.

There were parts of the movie that were distracting to the plot. The movie was overly melodramatic along with most of the music, which was at times distracting. James Gandolfini acted well but his accent was terrible. Kate Winslet was the least convincing of all cast members and often looked out of place. Worst of all, perhaps, is that the "morals" of the movie were so obvious and yet with the heaviness of the movie you felt empty for not achieving some deeper level of understanding.

LorenzoVonMatterhorn
Lorenzo von Matterhorn

Super Reviewer

All The King's Men Quotes

– Submitted by Alyssa B (16 months ago)
– Submitted by Alyssa B (16 months ago)
– Submitted by Alyssa B (22 months ago)
– Submitted by Alyssa B (22 months ago)

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