Murder by Numbers (2002) - Rotten Tomatoes

Murder by Numbers (2002)



Critic Consensus: A predictable police procedural that works better as a character study rather than a thriller.

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Movie Info

The body of a young woman is found in a ditch in the woods of the small California coastal town of San Benito. Cassie Mayweather, the seasoned homicide detective and tenacious crime scene specialist is assigned to the case with her new partner uncover. They discover a trail of shrewdly concealed evidence that links two brilliant young men to the murder. Through the investigation, the detective discovers dark secrets in the teenagers' past that explain how the two could be capable of such cold calculated crimes.

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Sandra Bullock
as Cassie Mayweather
Ben Chaplin
as Sam Kennedy
Ryan Gosling
as Richard Haywood
Michael Pitt
as Justin Pendleton
Agnes Bruckner
as Lisa Mills
R.D. Call
as Capt. Rod Cody
Tom Verica
as Al Swanson
Janni Brenn
as Ms. Elder
Michael Canavan
as Mr. Chechi
John Vickery
as Restaurant Manager
Krista Carpenter
as Olivia Lake
Neal Matarazzo
as Male Officer In Flashback
Adilah Barnes
as Lab Technician
Jim Jansen
as Lawyer
Paula Scarpino
as Female Officer In Flashback
Brian Stepanek
as Parole Board Marshal
John Doolittle
as Fingerprint Technician
Dennis Cockrum
as Criminalist at Ray's House
Eric Saiet
as Criminalist at Ray's House
Nancy Osborne
as Richard's Mother
Ralph Seymour
as Paramedic
Christine Healy
as Justin's Mother
Nick Offerman
as Uniformed Cop
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News & Interviews for Murder by Numbers

Critic Reviews for Murder by Numbers

All Critics (125) | Top Critics (33)

The outline of Murder by Numbers may be familiar, but the filmmakers and Bullock do an expert job of filling in the colors.

July 20, 2002 | Rating: 3/4
Chicago Tribune
Top Critic

We're less in suspense over how (or if) the killers will be caught than we are over the question of just who this tough, hedonistic detective is.

June 1, 2002 | Full Review…
L.A. Weekly
Top Critic

It's well worth catching for its interesting twists on the Leopold and Loeb story.

May 17, 2002 | Full Review…
New York Observer
Top Critic

As long as Schroeder stays with the kids, the film musters a good deal of restless tabloid intensity, and even the occasional twinge of pathos.

April 23, 2002
Village Voice
Top Critic

Bullock is good, the script is not.

April 22, 2002
Ebert & Roeper
Top Critic

Turns potentially forgettable formula into something strangely diverting.

April 19, 2002 | Rating: 4/5
Washington Post
Top Critic

Audience Reviews for Murder by Numbers


A watchable thriller, but lacks real excitement! Bullock is great as always a watchable sunday movie!

Film Crazy
Film Crazy

Super Reviewer


Two teens decide to commit the perfect murder just because they can. They figure they can set it up that obviously the murder was committed by a local janitor/drug dealer. Of course Sandra Bullock just knows that it wasn't the drug dealer, and the battle of wills and more between her and the two teens is on.

Red Lats
Red Lats

Super Reviewer

I often wonder why this is a much loved film of mine, it's certainly not one of the best murder tales nor is it the most suspenseful of Thrillers, but I feel the reason lies in the forensic analysis and planning of a perfect murder, alongside the battle of intelligences and ego. This is a film I've watched countless times and never grow old of Ryan Gosling's smug performance.

Lady D'arbanville
Lady D'arbanville

Super Reviewer

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