Punch-Drunk Love


Punch-Drunk Love

Critics Consensus

Odd, touching, and unique, Punch-Drunk Love is also delightfully funny, utilizing Adam Sandler's comic persona to explore the life of a lonely guy who finds love.



Total Count: 192


Audience Score

User Ratings: 139,940
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Movie Info

A dark comedy centering around Barry Egan, the socially impaired owner of a small business-distributing novelty toilet plungers-in the San Fernando Valley. Dominated by seven sisters, and constantly negotiating his own manhood, he is unlikely to find romance unless romance finds him. In an attempt to resolve his loneliness, while having a vulnerable moment, Barry contacts a phone sex operator who, in turn threatens him with blackmail. Connected to a larger business network, the operator sends some thugs on a mission from Utah to California, to follow, scare, and extort Barry. Barry becomes desperate, until a new door opens in his life. Therefore, when one of his sisters fixes him up with a lovely young English woman, Lena--who has rather quirky qualities herself--his emotions go haywire, fluctuating between lust, self-doubt, and uncontrollable rage. Nonetheless, Barry will embark upon whatever adventure it takes, just to have a shot at true romance.

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Adam Sandler
as Barry Egan
Emily Watson
as Lena Leonard
Ashley Clark
as "Georgia," Phone Sex Sister
Larry Ring
as Steve/Brother-in-Law
Kerry Gelbard
as Richard/Brother-in-Law
David Schrempf
as Customer No. 1
Seann Conway
as Customer No. 2
Julius Steuer
as Mechanic
Carol Martinez
as Phone Sex Girl No. 1/Utah
June Sepulveda
as Phone Sex Girl No. 2/Utah
Andrew Higgs
as Restaurant Manager
Rogerlyn Kanealii Wakinekona
as Lena's Apartment Receptionist
Catherine L. Cooley
as Flight Attendant
Michael Immel
as Man on Plane
Ross Lasi Tanoai
as Cab Driver
Jonathan Loughran
as Wrong Number
Sissy Lake
as Hula Dancer
Marie Irwin
as Lena's Nurse
Esther Imade Balogun
as Receptionist Nurse
Tom Bornt
as Dean's Employee
Mary Kilmartin
as D&D Mattress Customer
Alan Parry
as Member of After Eden Band
John E. Beck
as Member of After Eden Band
Eddie Wayne Howell
as Member of After Eden Band
Taylor J. Thomas
as Member of After Eden Band
Bobby Bluehouse
as After Eden Sound Man
as Member of Ladies K Band
as Member of Ladies K Band
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Critic Reviews for Punch-Drunk Love

All Critics (192) | Top Critics (42)

Audience Reviews for Punch-Drunk Love

  • Jul 10, 2013
    You can tell Paul Thomas Anderson is a very talented director when he can put Adam Sandler acting like a champ. This is (as expected) a very different movie from what PTA had done before, with overal good results. This is a quirky dramedy, with plenty of indie thingies that don't make much sense as it's the trend of the genre, awkward situations, odly but affectingly placed soundtrack and a very nuts storyline where if you try to make much sense of it, it can drive you a bit mad. But this is Andler's show where he's able to portray darkness, affection, funny moments and an unusual depth that few actors can handle with this material. So, the question is, where the hell was this guy before and what the hell is he doing with his career at the moment? It seems a huge waste of potential but he's probably not the brightest guy to make moves as bold as this one, which only leaves one question: what was on his mind when he accepted being on this one? Endless answers as fascinating and detailed as Punch Drunk Love.
    Francisco G Super Reviewer
  • Apr 17, 2013
    Charming, delightful and indubitably strange, Punch-Drunk Love is a bizarre, sometimes irritating, and somehow, ultimately, rewarding viewing experience.
    Jeff L Super Reviewer
  • Mar 05, 2013
    Yet another knockout film from the brilliant Paul Thomas Anderson. The thing that shocked me the most was Adam Sandler's strange but realistic performance as a lonely man with a wide range of emotions. There are times when Barry (played by Sandler) is calm and serene, and within seconds he's trashing a bathroom with all his mighty anger. This bi-polar character is by far the most interesting and well-acted performance of his career. It's amazing how quickly things go bad for Barry, starting when he calls a phone-sex line that turns from uncomfortably awkward to uncomfortably scary: and this is the main conflict of Punch-Drunk Love. That, and along with the fact that he has a woman named Lena (played by Emily Watson) that shows a deep interest in him, but he's so socially awkward that he has trouble communicating his feelings with her. It's so fun and entertaining to see Sandler struggle to form a relationship with this woman, and it's oftentimes hilarious. Some would call this film "weird" or "strange", which it is: but that's a genuinely fantastic thing nowadays, since most love stories are generic and conventional, with little conflict and little oddity. Add a weird but great soundtrack and you get a highly original and unique film with an unparalleled vibe.
    Kevin M Super Reviewer
  • Feb 11, 2013
    Charming and funny, Punch-Drunk Love is an eccentric romantic comedy from P.T. Anderson. After finding a harmonium in the street, Berry Egan's life undoes a bizarre turn of events as he's pursued by a beautiful woman and is extorted by a crooked phone-sex company. Adam Sandler and Emily Watson lead the cast and deliver excellent performances that really capture the tone of the material. Sandler's performance in particular is especially compelling and has a lot of depth. And Anderson's directing is exquisite, with a marvelous use of light and color. The music is also extraordinarily well done, and is able to accentuate the emotional tone of the film. Exceptionally well crafted, Punch-Drunk Love is a brilliant film that delivers a quirky and touching story.
    Dann M Super Reviewer

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