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The Family Man (2000)



Average Rating: 5.5/10
Reviews Counted: 128
Fresh: 68 | Rotten: 60

Despite good performances by Cage and especially by Leoni, The Family Man is too predictable and derivative to add anything new to the Christmas genre. Also, it sinks under its sentimentality.


Average Rating: 4.5/10
Critic Reviews: 32
Fresh: 10 | Rotten: 22

Despite good performances by Cage and especially by Leoni, The Family Man is too predictable and derivative to add anything new to the Christmas genre. Also, it sinks under its sentimentality.



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Average Rating: 3.1/5
User Ratings: 193,875

My Rating

Movie Info

Wall Street playboy, Jack Campbell is at the top of his professional game with little time for anything else. Jack's lavish, fast-paced lifestyle drastically changes one snowy Christmas night when he unwittingly stumbles into the middle of a grocery store holdup and in a bold display of self-preservation disarms the gunman. The next morning he wakes up in a suburban New Jersey bedroom lying next to Kate, his college sweetheart who he left in order to pursue his career, and to the horrifying

Jul 17, 2001


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All Critics (132) | Top Critics (33) | Fresh (68) | Rotten (60) | DVD (19)

It's rare that an American movie lets slip such a snobbish distaste for the humdrum lives of its blue-collar audience base, but of course it doesn't last.

January 26, 2006 Full Review Source: Time Out
Time Out
Top Critic IconTop Critic

A series of moments, sentimental and comic, that never do add up to a coherent fable.

March 22, 2002 Full Review Source: Globe and Mail
Globe and Mail
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The outsize ticky tackiness of Jack's new life has been stitched together out of the broadest possible series of middle American clichés.

December 22, 2000 Full Review Source: Entertainment Weekly
Entertainment Weekly
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Too much of the movie is pure formula nonsense.

December 22, 2000 Full Review Source: Washington Post
Washington Post
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It's the sort of steamroller seasonal entertainment calculated to make us average folks out here feel temporarily warm and happy about our averageness.

December 22, 2000 Full Review Source: Toronto Star
Toronto Star
Top Critic IconTop Critic

The absolute choices it forces on its hapless hero are far too mutually exclusive to be credible.

December 22, 2000 Full Review Source: Detroit News
Detroit News
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Its emotional core makes it easy to appreciate as a classical (if not classic) entertainment.

May 25, 2012 Full Review Source: Not Coming to a Theater Near You
Not Coming to a Theater Near You

Pleasant movie despite some predictability.

December 28, 2010 Full Review Source: Common Sense Media
Common Sense Media

Ratner isn't a capable enough director to work the alchemy needed to make this cheese into gold.

February 15, 2010 Full Review Source:

Leoni is a revelation. Vibrant and gorgeous, she plays her role of the determined mother in love with teasing, salty charm, providing just enough grit to save the film from Ratner's slushy direction.

September 19, 2008 Full Review Source: Film4

A hunk of sentimental fluff that boasts an often-overstated performance by Cage and an annoying turn by Leoni.

December 30, 2006 Full Review Source: Seattle Post-Intelligencer
Seattle Post-Intelligencer

I voted for the happy ending, thusly, my enjoyment was diminished.

December 31, 2005 Full Review Source:

If you're looking for a heartfelt, feel-good holiday movie, just give in and enjoy.

December 6, 2005 Full Review Source: Film Threat
Film Threat

One of the few films this season able to offer something likely to entertain almost everyone.

December 6, 2005 Full Review Source: Film Threat
Film Threat

The makers of The Family Man were trying to do a kind of reverse It's a Wonderful Life without ever realizing that it doesn't work on paper, much less on the screen.

June 5, 2003 Full Review Source: Combustible Celluloid
Combustible Celluloid

Redeems itself with raw emotion and the evocative force of love.

May 14, 2003
Palo Alto Weekly

A holiday film Joe Lieberman could love, unembarrassed by its wholesome, sugary pro-family message.

March 10, 2003 Full Review Source: Austin Chronicle
Austin Chronicle

Cage's delivery of the Big Final Speech is strained and uncomfortable, and the film's ending is unsatisfying, offering a conflicted message and only a meager chance of hope.

February 8, 2003 Full Review Source: Film Quips Online
Film Quips Online

Perfect feel-good Christmas-period family entertainment. Highly recommended.

October 30, 2002 Full Review Source: ViewLondon

Cage and Leoni are cute together and struggle mightily, but they can't overcome this sinking ship of a script by David Diamond and David Weissman that telegraphs the ending in the first 20 minutes.

October 21, 2002 Full Review Source: San Diego Metropolitan
San Diego Metropolitan

There is not a lot wrong with The Family Man, except for an almost total lack of surprise and a nasty attitude toward exactly the people who are supposed to pay money to watch it.

October 15, 2002 Full Review Source: Cincinnati Enquirer
Cincinnati Enquirer

Okay, so this is kinda corny but hey, it's a Christmas movie, what do you expect? Plus, it's so well done that it doesn't matter that it's formulaic and not very deep.

September 10, 2002 Full Review Source: Montreal Film Journal
Montreal Film Journal

I was disappointed with its overly sentimental tone and rather questionable message. Are married men with children actually more deserving of happiness than single guys? According to this movie, yes.

August 2, 2002 Full Review Source: ReelTalk Movie Reviews | Comments (2)
ReelTalk Movie Reviews

Even as the writers spin their entertaining suburban legend, there's a lingering feeling perhaps even they don't really stand behind the statement they're trying to make.

June 15, 2002 Full Review Source: Kalamazoo Gazette
Kalamazoo Gazette

Demonios!, Y yo que estaba tan bien en mi soltera!

June 3, 2002

Audience Reviews for The Family Man

Good storyline and a great film with Nicolas Cage making a great 'Family Man' character. A must see!
June 23, 2011
Bethany Murphy

Super Reviewer

Corporate raider and hedonist playboy Nicolas Cage wakes up one morning to find himself living the life he would have led if he'd not chosen his career over an old girlfriend. In other words:
1 Cage wakes up surrounded by kids and associated mess
2 Runs around shocked by the fact that all his rich pals don't recognise him
3 Is horrified by nappies
4 Has a trademark Cage rant about how crappy his new life is
5 Finally learns "what's important"
6 Is dumped back in his old life, to his dismay
7 *Hallmark moment*
As you can see, The Family Man follows the formula of the feelgood holiday movie to the letter and will warm either your heart or your sick bucket depending on taste. As a film, I'd have to say it's too long and not particularly funny although Don Cheadle's all too brief appearance is reasonably enjoyable. I would have to point out that I doubt that anyone involved in producing this film has to clip coupons or shop at K Mart, so being told by a bunch of rich people that "money isn't everything" smacks of hypocrisy AT BEST. At least I got to see Tea Leoni dancing in the shower which almost makes up for the two hours I wasted watching this predictable pap.
November 9, 2010
xGary Xx

Super Reviewer

Seems to rarely look at the theme it claims to convey--that married life is preferable to being single. What it really does is contrast being wealthy to being middle-class, though the comparisons it makes mean little. While the final, quasi-climactic scene at last satisifies the wont for a wholly title-appropriate theme the film so lacks, it does so far too late and with little meaning as the ending neither satisfies nor leaves the viewer happy or optimistic. A decent film, still; Cage's and Leoni's chemistry is great and the screenplay isn't terrible. It's just completely off-message for the majority of the film.
July 30, 2010

Super Reviewer

Sort've an updated version of It's a Wondeful Life, so it's bound to make you get a little sentimental and vulnerable. The surprising thing about this is that it is really good. Nicolas Cage is very toned down to fit the bill of an average man. Don Cheadle and Tea Leoni also make for a great supporting cast. It's harmless and light-hearted, to make it out to be something more is just stupid. For what it is, The Family Man is great.
May 2, 2010

Super Reviewer

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