Good Will Hunting (1997)



Critic Consensus: It follows a predictable narrative arc, but Good Will Hunting adds enough quirks to the journey -- and is loaded with enough powerful performances -- that it remains an entertaining, emotionally rich drama.

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Matt Damon, who created the title character and wrote the script with costar Ben Affleck, gives a star-making performance as a working class genius with a chip on his shoulder.
R (for strong language, including some sex-related dialogue)
Directed By:
Written By:
In Theaters:

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Matt Damon
as Will Hunting
Robin Williams
as Sean McGuire
Ben Affleck
as Chuckie
Minnie Driver
as Skylar
Stellan Skarsgard
as Prof. Gerald Lambeau
Casey Affleck
as Morgan
Cole Hauser
as Billy
Rob Lyons
as Carmine Scarpaglia
Matt Mercier
as Barbershop Quartet No. 1
Ralph St. George
as Barbershop Quartet No. 2
Bob Lynds
as Barbershop Quartet No. 3
Dan Washington
as Barbershop Quartet No. 4
Alison Folland
as MIT Student
Derrick Bridgeman
as MIT Student
Vik Sahay
as MIT Student
Shannon Egleson
as Girl on Street
Steven Kozlowski
as Carmine Friend No. 1
Philip Williams
as Head Custodian
Patrick O'Donnell
as Marty/Assistant Custodian
Kevin Rushton
as Courtroom Guard
Jimmy Flynn
as Judge Malone
Joe Cannons
as Prosecutor
Ann Matacunas
as Court Officer
George Plimpton
as Psychologist
Jessica Morton
as Bunker Hill College Student
Barna Moricz
as Bunker Hill College Student
Libby Geller
as Toy Store Cashier
Chas Lawther
as MIT Professor
Frank T. Nakashima
as Executive No. 1
Christopher Britton
as Executive No. 2
David Eisner
as Executive No. 3
Bruce Hunter
as NSA Agent
Robert Talvano
as 2nd NSA Agent
James Allodi
as Security Guard
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News & Interviews for Good Will Hunting

Critic Reviews for Good Will Hunting

All Critics (70) | Top Critics (16)

Towering performance by Matt Damon as a troubled working class who needs to address his creative genius elevates this drama way above its therapeutic approach, resulting in a zeitgeist film that may touch chord with young viewers the way The Graduate did

Full Review… | February 5, 2008
Top Critic

The film works as a character-driven narrative because Mr. Van Sant and his co-screenwriters are not afraid to unlock the psychological mysteries of their five major characters with clear and concise dialogue.

Full Review… | April 26, 2007
New York Observer
Top Critic

It's acted and directed with care, and Damon is outstanding, his scenes with Driver being especially sparky.

Full Review… | February 8, 2006
Time Out
Top Critic

While the charismatic performances of Damon and Affleck make "Good Will Hunting" a difficult entertainment to resist, doing just that is not as hard as the film would like to think.

Full Review… | February 13, 2001
Los Angeles Times
Top Critic

Good Will Hunting narrowly avoids many sentimental pitfalls thanks to what doesn't happen...

December 31, 1999
Top Critic

This has not been a great year for language in movies, but people are going to be memorizing and reciting some of these lines for years to come.

December 31, 1999
Top Critic

Audience Reviews for Good Will Hunting

A heartfelt and deeply honest drama that is most impressive due to the excellent script by Damon and Affleck, which doesn't even let us realize how attached to the characters we grow to become - and I guess we can all forgive it for that sentimental 'it's not your fault' scene.

Carlos Magalhães
Carlos Magalhães

Super Reviewer


Starts off strong but lags towards the end

Matt Goodman
Matt Goodman

Super Reviewer


An original story concerning a janitor (Matt Damon) who works at MIT, before he is discovered by an arrogant professor (Stellan Skarsgard) after he solves a theorem only a handful of people in the world can figure out. This leads to an unstable but always interesting partnership of the two, which eventually develops into a raw relationship between the young man and the professor's former roommate (Robin Williams), who is a psychiatrist. This is a very well done film, due in large part to the screenplay, which is simply sensational, as well as the overall solid acting, led by Damon, Driver, and the always versatile Williams. Van Sant does an outstanding job capturing the atmosphere of Boston, and implements this backdrop into a tale of human emotion and uncovering brilliance in the most unlikely of situations.

Dan Schultz
Dan Schultz

Super Reviewer

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