Barney's Version - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

Barney's Version Reviews

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February 26, 2016
Funny and moving. Paul Giamatti excellent
½ February 3, 2016
Starts out OK, but gradually morphs into an irritating mess. A lot of elements that you can tell must have been integral to the book's narrative without even reading it (the murder subplot and Mark Addy's pointless character, the nature of Barney's deteriorating memory and its potential effect on the reliability of the flashback structure) are seemingly ignored by Lewis's asinine, TV-movie-with-a-bigger-technical-budget direction. Giamatti's alright, but Saul Rubinek ended up being my favourite part of the whole movie. And he's only in one scene.
August 22, 2015
Nice to see a unique and interesting plot. Funny for the first half and really a drama during the second.
½ August 6, 2015
Great human condition piece. Love the development of the characters.
½ April 24, 2015
Bizarre. Long. So well acted by Paul Giamatti. But why???
½ March 11, 2015
Not without it's flaws, but they fade in importance towards the end of the film (and after). Quite an impact on me that I couldn't shake for an entire weekend!
½ March 8, 2015
I watched over half this film about 4 years ago, but never finished it. I finally re-watched the entire film over this weekend, thus the random movie review. The movie follows the life of Barney Panofsky (Paul Giamatti) a TV Producer that has three very different marriages. His first marriage is during his younger years when he doesn't have a lot of responsibilities and mostly runs around with his free roaming friend Boogie (Scott Speedman). Clara (Rachelle Lefevre) is a free spirited woman who Barney mostly is only together with because he believes she's pregnant. His second marriage is to someone only referred to as The "Second Mrs. P" (Minnie Driver) who is a wealthy Jewish girl who constantly is talking and nagging him. Then there's finally Miriam Grant (Rosamund Pike) the true love of his wife and eventually mother of his children. The film also co-stars Dustin Hoffman as Izzy Panofsky, Barney's father. The movie is very slow paced, but i overall enjoyed it as a drama. It's suppose to be more of a comedy, but it's more funny in the way it just shows how terrible choices can lead to a terrible life in some ways. Giamatti does very well as Barney and you feel for the guy, but you also kinda hate him because he's really an asshole still deep down inside. It's a good character piece showing the slow decline of a man who just doesn't know what he wants, but turns out he does have a soft spot as a romantic. Definitely, won't be for everyone, but has some great performances.
½ February 27, 2015
My first response: a God-awful movie, almost each scene - without exaggeration - a cliche, which not even the stellar cast can save. It does not ring true, at any time. I'm not convinced the casting was optimal either. A longer review would justify my viewpoint - but can I be bothered?
½ February 9, 2015
Paul Giamatti's succulent performance is just the tip of the iceberg of this compelling comedy/romance.
January 3, 2015
Beautiful film in every sense.
December 25, 2014
It's a good movie and you are in for the ride until it just keeps going and going. It did not need to be over 2 hours because it seemed longer. But the performances are great especially from Minnie Driver and Dustin Hoffman. Giamatti is good but he won a Comedy Golden Globe for this movie which was hardly a comedy nor a amazing performance. It also was nominated for Best Make Up at the Oscars and that was worthy as well as the aging hair design. I really don't like this new trend of all out of order story telling and it doesn't work here too. But in the end it is worth the watch and has great enough performances to make it worth while
½ November 2, 2014
Great acting by Paul Giamatti helps make this film feel real and human. He has faults and is human...like us, which makes all the more believable.
½ November 2, 2014
Although melodramatic and meandering, Barney's Version is a film with some fine performances and an inoffensive mix of romance, black comedy and touching drama.

*Full Review Pending*
September 8, 2014
not equal to the sum of its parts nor is there anyone to root for,
½ July 29, 2014
Between 2.5 and 3. It starts good, but level decreases at it advances. The latest times, however, bring some interesting lines.
½ May 13, 2014
Another movie all about the acting, and Paul Giamatti and surprisingly Rosamund Pike are the clear reasons to watch this movie.
hunterjt13
Super Reviewer
May 2, 2014
A man meets the woman of his dreams at his wedding.
After you suspend your disbelief that any woman would fall for a man who woos her at his own wedding, you might enjoy this film. There are some funny moments, but Paul Giamatti and Dustin Hoffman wring a dramatic tale out of the lunacy. The key is the honesty of Giamatti's portrayal. He's committed to the character's integrity, even if that integrity belies anything a reasonable person might encounter in real life. Particularly compelling are the film's final moments.
Overall, this is a tour de force for Giamatti even if the film defies believability.
cosmo313
Super Reviewer
½ March 17, 2014
This is the story, told in confessional form, of 30 years of the life of Barney Panofsky. The film covers a lot of stuff in his life, but the primary focus is on his three marriages: the first to an openly adulterous free spirit, the second to a stereotypical Jewish American Princess, and the third, to the love of his life...whom he has a few kids with, and fist met (and fell in love with) on the day he married wife #2.

Considering the subject matter, it might seem like this is a Woody Allen film, but alas, it is not. It's based on a novel and stars Paul Giamatti. Other than the women, the other big presence in Barney's life is his father Izzy, played here by the great Dustin Hoffman.

I thought I would like this dramedy. It just seemed like something I would dig. In the end though, I didn't like it. It's overlong, dawn out, fairly slow, and yeah, the subject matter is something that I can easily get tired of, even when it really is done by Woody. I'm not being racist or anti-semitic here. I can only take so much of heavy Jewish shtick (or, for that matter, black, or even Catholic), before it gets dull and tedious.

And in this movie, not really a whole lot is done to make the story come off as remarkable or special. Yeah, there's a murder subplot, but that comes off as a bit odd and sticks out.

I will give praise to the cast and their performances though. That's the main thing that keeps me from giving the film a lower grade. BEsides Giamatti and Hoffman, the three wives are played by (in order) Rachelle Lefevre, Minnie Driver, and Rosamund Pike. Nothing to complain about here. Bruce Greenwood is also present, but barely, thus his talent is basically wasted. The film does feature though, what is probably the best performance Scott Speedman has given. He plays a wild buddy of Barney's, and made me wish he was in even more of the film, and he's in a decent amount of it.

As far as the technicals go, this is a well made film. It just needed to be shorter, tighter, and less boring.

I don't recommend this, but if you feel the need to see it, do so only for the acting. And sure, even the makeup. That was decent, too.
February 23, 2014
Unexpectedly really enjoyed this. It was also very sad too. The story of a guy who finally marries the man of his dreams but jealousy and alcohol destroy his marriage
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