Charlie Wilson's War


Charlie Wilson's War

Critics Consensus

Charlie Wilson's War manages to entertain and inform audiences, thanks to its witty script and talented cast of power players.



Total Count: 199


Audience Score

User Ratings: 226,344
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Movie Info

Charlie Wilson was a bachelor congressman from Texas who had a habit of showing up in hot tubs with strippers and cocaine. His "Good Time Charlie" exterior, however, masked an extraordinary mind, a deep sense of patriotism and a passion for the underdog, and in the early 1980s the underdog was Afghanistan-which had just been brutally invaded by the Russians. Charlie's longtime friend and patron and sometime lover was Joanne Herring, one of the wealthiest women in Texas and a virulent anti-communist. Believing the American response to the Russian invasion was anemic at best, she prods Charlie into doing more for the Mujahideen (Afghan freedom fighters). Charlie's partner in this uphill endeavor is CIA Agent Gust Avrakotos, a blue-collar operative in a company of Ivy League blue bloods. Together, the three of them-Charlie, Joanne and Gust-travel the world to form unlikely alliances among the Pakistanis, Israelis, Egyptians, arms dealers, law makers and a belly dancer.Their success was remarkable. Funding for covert operations against the Soviets went from $5 million to $1 billion annually. The Red Army retreated out of Afghanistan. When asked how a group of peasants was able to deliver such a decisive blow to the army of a superpower, Pakistani President Mohammad Zia ul-Haq responded simply, "Charlie did it."

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Tom Hanks
as Charlie Wilson
Amy Adams
as Bonnie Bach
Ned Beatty
as Doc Long
Julia Roberts
as Joanne Herring
Emily Blunt
as Jane Liddle
Om Puri
as President Zia
Denis O'Hare
as Harold Holt
Jud Tylor
as Crystal Lee
Terry Bozeman
as CIA Award Presenter
Brian Markinson
as Paul Brown
Kirby Mitchell
as Stoned Buy
Peter Gerety
as Larry Liddle
Wynn Everett
as Charlie's Angel
Mary Bonner Baker
as Charlie's Angel
Rachel Nichols
as Charlie's Angel
Shiri Appleby
as Charlie's Angel
P.J. Byrne
as Jim Van Wagenen
Thomas Crawford
as Maitenance Man
Joe Roland
as McGaffin
Patrika Darbo
as Auctioneer
Amanda Loncar
as Slave Girl
Salaheddine Benchegra
as Pakistani Steward
Faran Tahir
as Brigadier Rashid
Rizwan Manji
as Colonel Mahmood
Maurice Sherbanee
as Refugee in Wheelchair
Salam Sangi
as Refugee Building a Wall
Navid Negahban
as Refugee Camp Translator
Mozhan Marnò
as Refugee Camp Translator
R.M. Haley
as Embassy Official
Michael Spellman
as Agent Patrick
Russell Edge
as Agent Wells
Christopher Denham
as Mike Vickers
Joe Sikora
as Chess Player
Gabriel Tigerman
as Chess Player
Tracy Phillips
as Belly Dancer
Daston Kalili
as Mujahideen Translator
Pasha D. Lychnikoff
as Russian Helicopter Pilot
Ilia Volok
as Russian Helicopter Pilot
Sammy Sheik
as Stinger Mujahideen
Quill Roberts
as Stinger Presenter
Jim Jansen
as Congressional Committee Member
Harry S. Murphy
as Congressional Committee Member
Spencer Garrett
as Congressional Committee Member
Kevin Cooney
as Congressional Committee Member
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Critic Reviews for Charlie Wilson's War

All Critics (199) | Top Critics (51)

Audience Reviews for Charlie Wilson's War

  • Feb 24, 2016
    Good cast but really an uninteresting film. Two stars (half of third star included because I got a b job in the theater during the showing).
    Patrick W Super Reviewer
  • Jul 28, 2014
    A pretty entertaining, yet informative look into the world of the 1980's communist crisis through the eyes of Charlie Wilson, a Texas congressman played by the always enjoyable Tom Hanks. The director Mike Nichols does a good job balancing witty dialogue with heartfelt situations, but clearly you feel Aaron Sorkin pulling the strings from on high behind the scenes. Philip Seymour Hoffman is excellent as the CIA contact for Hanks' character. When the two of them are on screen together, it's pure entertainment. Two very fine actors. Julia Roberts seems more of a caricature of who she is supposed to be playing. Also never a bad thing to see the stunning Emily Blunt make her start and Amy Adams begin her rise upward. The only thing which may keep this movie from leaps and bounds is a handful of scenes set in Pakistan with the CGI and not enough fratenizing of Tom Hanks' character. We only get a piece of Charlie Wilson's 'other side' in the very beginning of the film. I feel when the film needs some gravity to really put the situation on the front steps of what was really going on, there's still too much of a tone of comedy. The balance is a little off. Overall, you can't go wrong with an enjoyable film with this type of cast. Everyone looks to be enjoying their roles.
    Lane Z Super Reviewer
  • Mar 19, 2014
    It's not an exceptional film, however the real-life story it depicts is interesting enough and the performances are generally strong, particularly that of Philip Seymour Hoffman.
    Matthew Samuel M Super Reviewer
  • Feb 09, 2014
    Director Mike Nichols and writer Aaron Sorkin are no strangers to political satire. Charlie Wilson's War is simply fantastic. It's funny and incredibly well written. But the real disturbing elements emerge in the films final ten minutes, when you realize exactly how dangerous America's meddling into world affairs has become.
    Edward B Super Reviewer

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