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Proof (2005)


Average Rating: 6.4/10
Reviews Counted: 141
Fresh: 88
Rotten: 53

Critics Consensus: Gwyneth Paltrow and Anthony Hopkins give exceptional performances in a film that intelligently tackles the territory between madness and genius.

Average Rating: 6.4/10
Reviews Counted: 40
Fresh: 24
Rotten: 16

Critics Consensus: Gwyneth Paltrow and Anthony Hopkins give exceptional performances in a film that intelligently tackles the territory between madness and genius.


Average Rating: 3.2/5
User Ratings: 88,460



Movie Info

A devoted daughter comes to terms with the death of her father, a brilliant mathematician whose genius was crippled by mental insanity, forcing her to face her own long-harbored fears and emotions. She adjusts to his death with the help of one of her father's former mathematical students, who searches through her father's notebooks in the hope of discovering a bit of his old brilliance. While she comes to terms with the possibility that his genius, which she has inherited, may come at a painful … More

PG-13 (for some sexual content, language and drug references)
Directed By:
Written By:
David Auburn , Rebecca Miller
In Theaters:
Feb 14, 2006
Box Office:
Miramax Films - Official Site


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Critic Reviews for Proof

All Critics (142) | Top Critics (40) | Fresh (88) | Rotten (53) | DVD (18)

Madden stages the action with a minimum of imagination and gets a career-worst performance out of Davis in a key role, but the material still sputters to life on the strength of the writing and Paltrow's commitment to the part.

Full Review… | November 25, 2006
AV Club
Top Critic

Sadly, the impact of the clever parallelogram of emotional and philosophical concerns in Auburn and Rebecca Miller's screenplay is deadened by the director's overly literal -- mechanical -- cinematic interpretation.

Full Review… | February 9, 2006
Time Out
Top Critic

Madden does a competent job transferring the film from stage to screen.

Full Review… | December 24, 2005
Arizona Republic
Top Critic

Few movies regard the psyche with such sober discernment.

Full Review… | October 1, 2005
Houston Chronicle
Top Critic

The result, like so many stout travellers from stage to screen, is respectable. Stolidly, bloodlessly, yawningly respectable.

Full Review… | September 30, 2005
Globe and Mail
Top Critic

Once you get past that golden swag and curtain of hair, Paltrow's performance is devastating, cutting to the pith and marrow of parent-child relations.

September 28, 2005
Philadelphia Inquirer
Top Critic

Proof is a smart film, but it tries too hard. It wears its heart on its sleeve, and the pathos becomes a bit much because there is little to balance it out.

Full Review… | April 25, 2011

A limp, and utterly pointless melodrama that's never as intelligent as it thinks.

Full Review… | August 20, 2010
Cinema Crazed

Timid staging faithful adaptation = no cinema

Full Review… | September 1, 2009

offers a convincing demonstration of the theorem that good writing and sensitive performances can equal an engaging and nuanced piece of cinema.

Full Review… | August 2, 2007
Eye for Film

full review in Greek

Full Review… | October 3, 2006
Movies for the Masses

As a story about personal and family dysfunction, and about coming to terms with life's uncertainties, Proof isn't bad.

September 27, 2006
Christianity Today

A subtle, slow-burning mystery that does justice to its themes of identity, sanity and sacrifice.

Full Review… | April 1, 2006
Empire Magazine

An elegant adaptation to the screen, with the play's qualities largely intact and great performances from Paltrow and Hope Davis, as her sister. Jake Gyllenhaal and Anthony Hopkins complete a dream cast.

Full Review… | March 17, 2006
Sydney Morning Herald

Proof is something of a puzzle, an all-star drama that has the feel of a Sunday afternoon film. Think curiosity, not must see.

Full Review… | March 15, 2006

Intense and compelling, Proof is an absorbing film that shows the intricacies of the human mind are as complex as a mathematical equation.

Full Review… | March 10, 2006
Urban Cinefile

Smart, well-acted, and wonderfully directed.

Full Review… | February 24, 2006

Sure, the play won the Pulitzer Prize, but that doesn't mean it makes a great film, in my opinion. Maybe it just works better on the stage.

Full Review… | February 19, 2006
7M Pictures

We are invited to believe that Hopkins, Paltrow and Gyllenhaal all have, in their various ways, alpha-brains. They look to me like they couldn't recite the three-times-table without smoke coming out of their ears.

Full Review… | February 11, 2006

Paltrow stars as a woman who may or may not be around the twist. Having named her real-life child after a piece of fruit, that's what I call inspired casting.

Full Review… | February 10, 2006
Daily Mirror [UK]

...the story reveals a lot less substance than there appears to be.

Full Review… | February 9, 2006
Movie Metropolis

A masterpiece before it reached the screen and maybe the highest praise that can be offered in celebration of this film version is that it remains one.

Full Review… | February 7, 2006

For patient viewers, it does offer a carefully considered and ultimately inspiring examination of how the need for order and logic is less important than a willingness to embrace chaos.

Full Review… | January 31, 2006

It's a quiet kind of triumph. I know no one saw it but I hope more people will.

Full Review… | January 16, 2006

Audience Reviews for Proof

Paltrow shimmers and shines in this look at real inheritance, what the DNA leaves, as Pop (Hopkins, dynamite) is a math genius who, ummm, loses track, shall we say. Will the daughter follow in Pop's enormous footsteps ... in each and every way? Tension aplenty with a great supporting cast. Pretty damn good if you ask me.

Apeneck Fletcher

Super Reviewer


The daughter of a brilliant mathematician must convince her new beau and her domineering sister that she wrote an important mathematical document.
We don't care about the proof, the film's main source of conflict; director John Madden knows few in the audience are smart enough to care about theoretical math and physics. So what's left? Proof has to compel us with the interpersonal drama Catherine's relationship with her dead father and her sister and boyfriend who grow to doubt her sanity. But from very early on, we know there's no reason to doubt Catherine, so we're left waiting for the film to catch up to the audience, and thus the film loses its reason to compel us to care about these characters. Gwyneth Paltrow, who conjures her Sylvia character in her depressive moments, occasionally gives us reason to pay attention to Catherine's struggles, but especially when she raises her voice, Catherine, in Paltrow's hands, comes off as annoyingly disinterested and unengaged with manic bouts of petulance. It's hard to like Paltrow, and it's even harder to be interested in Catherine.
Overall, I found Proof to be structurally flawed, and the film's star certainly didn't shine.

Jim Hunter

Super Reviewer


I cried when Jake Gyllenhaal didn't believe that Gwyneth Paltrow wrote the proof. So sue me. It was sad.I love that you don't know where this movie is going until it gets there. I turned cold when Gwyneth Paltrow read out Anthony Hopkins' "proof."

Jennifer Xu

Super Reviewer


This film has so much going for it. Gwyneth Paltrow plays the lead role, Anthony Hopkins is a minor, but important, supporting character, and the premise has tons of potential. This film wants so bad to be "A Beautiful Mind", but it has some serious problems with the direction its plot moves. Everything about the story begs for less Jake Gyllenhaal, who wasn't bad, and Hope Davis, who was awful every time she was on screen. Their characters are given far too much focus. Paltrow's character, the ostensibly interesting, complex protagonist, is still a mystery to the viewer by the end of the film. The story begs to go in one direction but the plot strays away. It's not a *bad* film, but it's certainly not a good one. I didn't love "A Beautful Mind", but at least that film had a good idea of how this type of story needs to be told.

Jay Hutchinson

Super Reviewer

Proof Quotes

I'm back! I'm on fire!
– Submitted by Frances H (2 months ago)
If I go back to the beginning, I could start it over again. I could go line by line, try and find a shorter way. I could try to make it... better.
– Submitted by Tigress . (8 months ago)

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