Mighty Aphrodite

Critics Consensus

Mighty Aphrodite may not stand with Woody Allen's finest work, but it's brought to vivid life by a thoroughly winsome performance from Mira Sorvino.



Total Count: 35


Audience Score

User Ratings: 21,085
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Movie Info

A dissatisfied Manhattan sportswriter finds more than he expected when he searches for the biological mother of his adopted child in Woody Allen's comedy. Writer-director Allen also plays Lenny, a slightly more relaxed incarnation of his usual neurotic screen persona. Lenny is trapped in a bad marriage to high-strung art dealer Amanda (Helena Bonham Carter), but he finds solace in his relationship with his adopted young son. Indeed, he grows so fond of the boy that he decides to track down the boy's real mother, expecting to discover a brilliant professional. Instead, he finds Linda (Mira Sorvino), a ditzy prostitute and porno star who mingles casual vulgarity with disarming innocence. Despite his initial disillusionment, Lenny soon develops a fondness for Linda and decides to play matchmaker, setting her up with a handsome young boxer (Michael Rapaport) who is equally good-hearted and scatterbrained. While the contrast between the free-spirited Linda and the uptight Lenny provides the bulk of the laughs, hints of Allen's more literary humor are also present, particularly in the scenes involving a roaming Greek chorus commenting upon Lenny's fate. Sorvino received a supporting Oscar for her title role in a well-received movie that is nevertheless not at the level of Allen's best-known classics.


Woody Allen
as Lenny Winerib
Helena Bonham Carter
as Amanda Winerib
Mira Sorvino
as Linda Ash
Jack Warden
as Tiresias
Peter Weller
as Jerry Bender
J. Smith-Cameron
as Bud's Wife
Donald Symington
as Amanda's Father
Claire Bloom
as Amanda's Mother
F. Murray Abraham
as Greek Chorus Leader
Tucker Robin
as Infant Max
Nolan Tuffey
as Two-Year Old Max
Yvette Hawkins
as School Principal
Karin Haidorfer
as Park Avenue Woman
Gary Alper
as Park Avenue Man
Rosemary Murphy
as Adoption Coordinator
Peter McRobbie
as Linda's Ex-Landlord
Kathleen Doyle
as Ex-Landlord's Wife
Jennifer Greenhut
as Lenny's Secretary
Sondra James
as Operator
Paul Giamatti
as Extras Guild Researcher
William Addy
as Superintendent
Pamela Blair
as Greek Chorus Member
Dan Mullane
as Messenger
Thomas Durkin
as Race Announcer
Dan Moran
as Ricky, the Pimp
Paul Herman
as Ricky's Friend
Lisa Vidal
as Chorus
Tony Sirico
as Boxing Trainer
Tony Darrow
as Boxing Trainer
Al Cerullo
as Actual Helicopter Pilot
Ray Garvey
as Boxing Trainer
Joseph P. Coleman
as Porno Film Star
Georgette Pasare
as Porno Film Star
Bray Poor
as Helicopter Pilot
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Critic Reviews for Mighty Aphrodite

All Critics (35) | Top Critics (7) | Fresh (27) | Rotten (8)

Audience Reviews for Mighty Aphrodite

  • Oct 28, 2011
    A delightful treat, quirky and witty. Mira Sorvino is amazing as a hooker!!!!
    Sylvester K Super Reviewer
  • Jun 06, 2011
    I didn't like this movie as much as others did, I found Sorvino's acting less than memorable. The premise is interesting but it doesn't know where to go with it. Yet, like with most Allen films that aren't as good as his others, 'Mighty Aphrodite' is still witty and funny and Allen is as good as usual as a performer bringing life to a movie.
    Jonny B Super Reviewer
  • Jan 27, 2009
    I find Woody Allen to be very hit/miss. This one is a hit. Mira Sorvino is terrific, the subconscious Greek theatre angle is wonderful and I adore the extreme lack of editting - it really lets the actors and the scene flow without interruption. It's just a shame that Helena Bonham Carter is completely wasted.
    Marcus W Super Reviewer
  • Dec 26, 2008
    <i>"Of all human weaknesses, obsession is the most dangerous, and the silliest!"</i> When he discovers his adopted son is a genius, a New York sportswriter seeks out the boy's birth mother: a prostitute. <center><font size=+2 face="Century Schoolbook"><b><u>REVIEW</u></b></font></center> A cute, solid Woody Allen comedy that's not as good as many of the comedies that came before but is worlds better than many that came after. Allen plays a sports writer who goes searching for the mother of his adopted son, only to find that she's a prostitute. Played by Mira Sorvino, this character is one of Allen's most delightful creations, a Judy Holliday with a foul mouth. In fact, this is one of Allen's raunchier movies, but it's also one of his sweetest. Sorvino walks a tightrope between dingy and heartbreaking that deservedly won her an Oscar. Allen uses a Greek chorus to comment on the action throughout the film, populated with famous actors like Olympia Dukakis, F. Murray Abraham and Jack Warden.
    Lorenzo v Super Reviewer

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