The Adjustment Bureau


The Adjustment Bureau

Critics Consensus

First-time writer/director George Nolfi struggles to maintain a consistent tone, but The Adjustment Bureau rises on the strong, believable chemistry of its stars.



Total Count: 255


Audience Score

User Ratings: 104,586
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Movie Info

On the brink of winning a seat in the U.S. Senate, ambitious politician David Norris (Damon) meets beautiful contemporary ballet dancer Elise Sellas (Emily Blunt)--a woman like none he's ever known. But just as he realizes he's falling for her, mysterious men conspire to keep the two apart. David learns he is up against the agents of Fate itself--the men of The Adjustment Bureau--who will do everything in their considerable power to prevent David and Elise from being together. In the face of overwhelming odds, he must either let her go and accept a predetermined path...or risk everything to defy Fate and be with her. Based on a short story by Philip K. Dick. -- (C) Universal Pictures

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Matt Damon
as David Norris
Emily Blunt
as Elise Sellas
Anthony Mackie
as Harry Mitchell
John Slattery
as Richardson
Michael Kelly
as Charlie Traynor
Terence Stamp
as Thompson
Lisa Thoreson
as Suburban Mom
Florence Kastriner
as Suburban Mom
Phyllis McBryde
as Suburban Neighbor
Natalie Carter
as Suburban Neighbor
Captain Gregory P. Hitchen
as U.S. Coast Guard Officer
as Political Consultant
RJ Konner
as Political Consultant
Gregory Lay
as Albert, Campaign Aide
Lauren Hodges
as Robyn, Campaign Aide
Amanda Warren
as Senior Campaign Aide
Sandhi Santini
as Norris Supporter
Laurie Dawn
as Norris Supporter
Christine Lucas
as Christine, Charlie's Assistant
Jim Edward Gately
as Man in Madison Square Park
Don Hewitt Sr.
as Bus Driver
Venida Evans
as Bus Passenger
Kyoko Bruguera
as Bus Passenger
David Gregoire
as Bus Passenger
Julie Hays
as RSR Receptionist
David Bishins
as Burdensky
Kate Nowlin
as Junior Partner
Rob Yang
as Junior Partner
Jennifer Ehle
as Brooklyn Ice House Bartender
Johnny Cicco
as Johnny from Red Hook
Pedro Pascal
as Maitre D' Paul De Santo
Michael Boyne
as New Leaf Waiter
Sarah Bradford
as New Leaf Waitress
Peter Epstein
as Taxi Driver
Brian Haley
as Police Officer Maes
Kirsty Meares
as Police Sergeant
Laura Kenley
as Onieals Waitress
Jessica Keller
as Lauren, Elise's Best Friend
Kieran Campion
as Donaldson's Aide
Sandi Carroll
as Orthopedic Surgeon
Shane McRae
as Adrian Troussand, Elise's Fiancé
Meghan Andrews
as Cedar Lake REceptionist
Sandra Berrios
as Court Registrar
David Alan Basche
as Thompson's Aide
Joel de la Fuente
as Thompson's Aide
Michael DiSalvo
as Thompson's Aide
Dina Cataldi
as DMV Clerk
Paul DiPaola
as Courthouse Security Officer
Jason Kravits
as New Yorker in Courthouse Lobby
Peter Jay Fernandez
as County Clerk
Lawrence R. Leritz
as Court Officer
Peter Benson
as Bureau Headquarters Staff
Leroy McClain
as Bureau Headquarters Staff
Brit Whittle
as Bureau Headquarters Staff
Wayne Scott Miller
as Bureau Headquarters Staff
Lorenzo Pisoni
as Bureau Headquarters Staff
Bart Wilder
as Bureau Headquarters Staff
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Critic Reviews for The Adjustment Bureau

All Critics (255) | Top Critics (53) | Fresh (182) | Rotten (73)

  • Accomplished filmmaking that features two highly attractive, talented leads, a healthy dose of sentiment, an intelligent script, and which takes you away for two hours from the quotidian worries and banalities of your regular life.

    Oct 7, 2011 | Full Review…

    Leah Rozen

    Top Critic
  • Nolfi and his colleagues make especially good use of New York, filming everywhere from the Brooklyn waterfront to the lobby of the Museum of Modern Art. It's a fresh look at a familiar city. But Nolfi drops the ball in the home stretch, and that's...

    Jun 23, 2011 | Rating: 2.1/2
  • This mind-meld of sci-fi thriller, morality play and passionate romance is worth seeing, mostly for the palpable chemistry between the lead actors.

    Apr 4, 2011 | Rating: 2.5/4 | Full Review…

    Claudia Puig

    USA Today
    Top Critic
  • Damon and Blunt give such terrific performances you might almost forgive the movie's dopey ending.

    Mar 19, 2011 | Rating: 2.5/4 | Full Review…

    Rafer Guzman

    Top Critic
  • The on-screen pairing of Matt Damon and Emily Blunt is so winning that you may be willing to overlook the oddly modulating tone of the story that brings them together and then tries to keep them apart.

    Mar 9, 2011 | Rating: 3/5 | Full Review…
  • Reworks A Matter of Life and Death with elements of It's a Wonderful Life and shares techniques and themes with Christopher Nolan's Inception.

    Mar 7, 2011 | Full Review…

    Philip French

    Top Critic

Audience Reviews for The Adjustment Bureau

  • Mar 09, 2016
    A very different movie that makes you wonder about this thing called fate a little bit more, Obviously it's quite preposterous but the idea is pretty fresh and original, With good chemistry between it's two staring roles this film hits most spots, Maybe drags in places where it had chance to create more tension it didn't take advantage and the problem with these smart thinking films the ending feels rushed and forced and this was no different, Deserved more recognition as it's new ideas end up a nice change from the usual films we have today.
    Jamie C Super Reviewer
  • Jul 23, 2013
    The Adjustment Bureau is an interesting love-drama that is powered by the chemistry of Matt Damon and Emily Blunt. The script is alternative and may not be fully comprehensive to most audiences. But the film is solid and interesting to see. 4.5/5
    Eugene B Super Reviewer
  • Apr 24, 2013
    Star-crossed lovers are kept apart by an omniscient bureau because their perfect, fulfilling love will dampen all other desires, including their respective ambitions to attain professional success in politics and DANCE. I don't particularly buy that thesis, nor that the universe wouldn't have better things to do than keep Matt Damon and Emily Blunt apart, but the light chase movie is kinda fun, cutesy, and dangerous but not so dangerous that a happy ending isn't ensured.
    Alice S Super Reviewer
  • Feb 11, 2013
    The entire fate of mankind! The fate of mankind, man! (anguished, tortured voice like Charleton Heston as Taylor at the end of Planet Of The Apes) THE FATE OF ALL MANKIND! (falling to knees and choking on own blood) <B>THE FATE OF MANKIND !!!!!!!!</B> (clutches heart, unintelligible gurgling and convulsing) OK, the fate of all mankind aside, The Adjustment Bureau is kind of corny, emotionally manipulative, has an uber-predictable moral, and is more romance than sci-fi. But despite this I enjoyed letting myself be sucked into it anyway, and so will anyone who spends a lot of time caring about love and relationships, and who likes an imaginative albeit very basic story. I still would have liked a much darker take on the concept. In real life, any entity with this kind of power would be conducting their manipulations strictly out of greed ala They Live (1985). And here's why: I don't care how advanced a civilization is, it's just intuitive that what we call "human nature" is going to be sadly ubiquitous based on required evolutionary programing for survival run amok, and nature being unable to let people ever fully rise above it -i.e.the bad traits misguided lust, jealousy, self-defeating stupidity, belief in a higher power, war, looking out for number 1, avarice, and greed, etc. Man's idiocy goes hand in hand with his intellect and I bet high stakes this unfortunate phenomenon is universal throughout the cosmos. So an actual "adjustment bureau" wouldn't be magnanimous. Nope. Sorry. They'd just be the stooges of intergalactic Republicans. Kind of like our CIA. But I digress as usual. To sum up: could have been deliciously dark, convoluted and cynical; still good entertainment, cute movie.
    Pamela D Super Reviewer

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