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How Stella Got Her Groove Back (1998)



Average Rating: 5.5/10
Critic Reviews: 12
Fresh: 6 | Rotten: 6

No consensus yet.



liked it
Average Rating: 3.1/5
User Ratings: 31,210

My Rating

Movie Info

Terry McMillan and Ron Bass wrote this screenplay based on McMillan's semi-autobiographical best-selling novel (over 2,000,000 copies in print before the release of this film). San Francisco stockbroker Stella (Angela Bassett), a 40-year-old divorcee, has a nice Marin County home and an 11-year-old son, Quincy (Michael J. Pagan). With Quincy off to see his dad, Stella and her best friend Delilah (Whoopi Goldberg) vacation in Jamaica, where she meets sexy, good-looking Winston Shakespeare (Taye


Drama, Romance, Comedy

Terry McMillan, Ron Bass

Mar 6, 2001

20th Century Fox

Watch It Now


Latest News on How Stella Got Her Groove Back

June 29, 2005:
In Other News...A Domino Death, Stella's Groove, and Jennifer Tilly
Real-life model-turned-bounty hunter Domino Harvey, whose rejection of the privileged life for the...


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All Critics (55) | Top Critics (15) | Fresh (23) | Rotten (25) | DVD (2)

The movie meanders on and on, like a bad sexual dream, until you finally wake up mumbling: Stella, please: leave that groove thang alone.

April 12, 2002 Full Review Source: Globe and Mail
Globe and Mail
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Delivers guilt-free escapism about pretty people having wicked-hot fun in pretty places.

May 11, 2001
Rolling Stone
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Stella may be frothy and paper-thin, but it's also another great success for star Angela Bassett, who transforms the film into an infomercial for her considerable abilities.

February 14, 2001 Full Review Source: Los Angeles Times
Los Angeles Times
Top Critic IconTop Critic

I never felt Stella and Winston were on the same wavelength, that they could share their lives, that it would be a good idea for them to try.

January 1, 2000 Full Review Source: Chicago Sun-Times
Chicago Sun-Times
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Ms. Bassett portrays this high-strung superwoman with such intensity that she makes her almost believable.

January 1, 2000 Full Review Source: New York Times
New York Times
Top Critic IconTop Critic

All formula gloss, a romance that tackles some difficult issues by missing them altogether.

January 1, 2000 Full Review Source: Detroit News
Detroit News
Top Critic IconTop Critic

The "Groove" is on the move in Sullivan's ethnically snappy and exotic May-December romancer. Bassett and Diggs make for a sizzling couple

June 7, 2003

There's only one thing missing from this story, and it's the main ingredient: conflict.

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

Gives Angela Bassett the full star treatment, and she gives it right back.

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

There is insufficient chemistry, more tension and fighting than romance, and no epiphanal moment to demonstrate that Stella has indeed gotten her groove back.

June 5, 2002 Full Review Source: Boxoffice Magazine
Boxoffice Magazine

Stella's groove, like the film itself, doesn't run deep.

March 5, 2002 Full Review Source: Sight and Sound
Sight and Sound

This fine and funny film proves that a love that nurtures fills an emptiness that nothing else can fill.

March 2, 2002 Full Review Source: Spirituality and Practice
Spirituality and Practice

Frankly, this is just like a very average TV movie except the cast is more expensive and the stunning Bassett glides through with inviolable class.

January 1, 2000 Full Review Source: Empire Magazine
Empire Magazine

Stella comes straight from the 'designer problems' school of screenwriting, a genre in which stories are built around wealthy, gorgeous people who have to create their own miseries in order for anything remotely dramatic to occur.

January 1, 2000 Full Review Source:

A strong cast and solid tech credits fail to make the relationship believable.

January 1, 2000 Full Review Source: Compuserve

It features so much in the way of awkward and contrived situations that even an extremely talented cast nearly flounders.

January 1, 2000 Full Review Source: Deseret News, Salt Lake City
Deseret News, Salt Lake City

A snickering, boring, and utterly predictable movie that runs over two hours.

January 1, 2000 Full Review Source:

With a dollop more originality and slightly less patronizing Kleenex moments, this picture might have left its mark on the chick flick genre, but as it stands, it's an also-ran.

January 1, 2000 Full Review Source: SPLICEDWire

There's no tension, sexual or otherwise (even during the love scenes: it was remarkable).

January 1, 2000 Full Review Source: Philadelphia City Paper
Philadelphia City Paper

In the end, you ask: How Stella Got Her Groove Back? You're not entirely sure that she did.

January 1, 2000 Full Review Source: Apollo Guide
Apollo Guide

It takes a long, long time for our Stella to finally get her groove back, and by then you might not much care.

January 1, 2000
Jam! Movies

Audience Reviews for How Stella Got Her Groove Back

Great cast about a 40 plus stock broker on vacation in Jamaica.
March 24, 2008
Candy Rose

Super Reviewer

a movie about angry women
January 22, 2007
danny d

Super Reviewer

Likeable chick-flick that mainly deals with whether a relationship can work around a 20 year age difference. It even chucks in "best friend dying of cancer" half way through but still manages to stay upbeat about it. And it's surprisingly well shot. But I had to remove half a star because there's a desperate rush to the airport at the end.
May 3, 2009

Super Reviewer

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