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The Fighting Temptations

The Fighting Temptations (2003)



Average Rating: 5.3/10
Reviews Counted: 107
Fresh: 45 | Rotten: 62

The music is the only saving grace in this predictable and eager-to-please comedy.


Average Rating: 5.9/10
Critic Reviews: 34
Fresh: 21 | Rotten: 13

The music is the only saving grace in this predictable and eager-to-please comedy.



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Average Rating: 3.2/5
User Ratings: 32,863

My Rating

Movie Info

Darren, a morally vacant and debt-ridden advertising executive in New York, travels back to his small southern town in Alabama to attend his aunt's funeral--and more so, to cash in on an inheritance. However, soon thereafter, he discovers that in order to collect, he must first lead the local church gospel choir to success at a national competition. Desperate for money, Darren embarks on the nearly impossible challenge of turning the choir of lackluster parishioners into Gospel gold. In order to

Feb 3, 2004


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June 14, 2005:
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All Critics (116) | Top Critics (36) | Fresh (45) | Rotten (62) | DVD (14)

You may not be dancing in the aisle, but at least you won't be tempted to flee the theater.

September 24, 2003 Full Review Source: Fort Worth Star-Telegram/
Fort Worth Star-Telegram/
Top Critic IconTop Critic

This is an exhilarating musical -- but it's dragged into Thumbs Down territory by a dreadful story that creaks along between the rousing gospel numbers.

September 22, 2003 Full Review Source: Ebert & Roeper
Ebert & Roeper
Top Critic IconTop Critic

The only real question in this flaccid narrative ... is when everybody will stop talking and start singing again.

September 19, 2003
Washington Post
Top Critic IconTop Critic

May not be great cinema, but it's a guaranteed crowd-pleaser.

September 19, 2003
Washington Post
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Has practically nothing to recommend it save its music: Take that away and Jonathan Lynn's movie is as ordinary as an unsold TV pilot episode. But what music.

September 19, 2003 Full Review Source: Toronto Star
Toronto Star
Top Critic IconTop Critic

The Fighting Temptations exists for its rousing gospel soundtrack, which is at times so good that you can forgive the movie its flaws.

September 19, 2003 Full Review Source: Seattle Times
Seattle Times
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Great music, mediocre plot and acting.

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

The indifferent gospel music that permeates the movie never solidifies with the dramatic might that the genre is known for...

June 14, 2009 Full Review Source:

Although there are plenty of positive, feel-good elements to this movie, they are outweighed by missed opportunities to do something more valuable.

September 26, 2006
Christianity Today

...the plot's stupid, the writing's bad, the acting is barely professional, but the movie isn't evil.

January 27, 2005 Full Review Source: Arkansas Democrat-Gazette
Arkansas Democrat-Gazette

You might think this prodigal would learn to take responsibility for his lies ... or humbly accept the consequences of his crimes and change. Nope.

January 15, 2005
Looking Closer

As a romantic comedy...neither exceptional nor groundbreaking. But as a musical, the movie bursts with foot-stomping, arm-swaying, finger-snapping gospel music.

June 25, 2004 Full Review Source: Courier-Journal (Louisville, KY)

The Fighting Temptations is a movie that will soften even the most cynical moviegoer. You can see most of it coming a mile away, and it still works.

January 1, 2004 Full Review

Down-home, good-natured sense of humor, but a sitcom-ish sentimentality often veering between Sunday sermonizing and silliness.

December 31, 2003
Long Island Press

hopelessly sub-standard feel-good fare

December 12, 2003 Full Review Source: RTE Interactive (Dublin, Ireland)

All about the music, and you'd have to be truly tone-deaf not to respond to its soaring harmonies and spirited spirituality.

November 18, 2003 Full Review Source:

It feels more like an artificial fable than a story we can sink our teeth into.

November 16, 2003 Full Review Source: Shadows on the Wall
Shadows on the Wall

Cuba Gooding Jr. [is] so animated a performer that he even appears to be overacting on this movie's poster.

November 10, 2003
Creative Loafing

Cuba Gooding Jr. and Beyonce Knowles bring us a rousing film about a gospel choir... too bad it goes straight to hell.

October 7, 2003 Full Review Source: EDGE Boston
EDGE Boston

This film would have been better with a lot more gospel and a lot less Gooding.

October 1, 2003 Full Review Source: eye WEEKLY

Gooding is on a downward spiral, but The Fighting Temptations is at least a step above Snow Dogs and several above the inexcusably offensive Boat Trip.

September 27, 2003

Fight the temptation to look for anything more than good music in this movie.

September 23, 2003 Full Review Source:

The lack of gross-out moments is refreshing, as is the way that it never sacrifices its character-driven plot to a discordant comic set piece.

September 23, 2003 Full Review Source:

Crowd-pleasing but shoddy... During a funeral scene, the corpse can clearly be seen breathing...

September 22, 2003
Commercial Appeal (Memphis, TN)

Audience Reviews for The Fighting Temptations

Good story, bad film.
June 20, 2011
Lucas Martins

Super Reviewer

An incredible movie on how an executive finds himself going in one direction while his lost religious "soul" takes him into another direction. Hilarious at times....enjoyable in others. See this for the soul of it! LOL!
September 29, 2008

Super Reviewer

Could've been funnier. Yet, when it comes to Gooding Jr. picking good films, this is simply a wiser choice compared to some of the films he has choosen..not saying any certian films...(SHADOWBOXER) didnt say anything...
June 30, 2010

Super Reviewer

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