Punch-Drunk Love - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

Punch-Drunk Love Reviews

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David Ansen
Newsweek
November 1, 2007
It's a romantic comedy on the verge of a nervous breakdown.
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Derek Adams
Time Out
June 24, 2006
The film looks good and has its funny moments, but too often one senses Anderson straining to impress...
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Eleanor Ringel Gillespie
Atlanta Journal-Constitution
November 2, 2002
It is quite a vision.
| Original Score: B
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Robert Denerstein
Denver Rocky Mountain News
October 26, 2002
The journey toward redemption feels more like a cinematic experiment than a full-blown movie.
| Original Score: C+
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Mike Clark
USA Today
October 25, 2002
Despite its title, Punch-Drunk Love is never heavy-handed. The jabs it employs are short, carefully placed and dead-center.
Full Review | Original Score: 3.5/4
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Jay Boyar
Orlando Sentinel
October 25, 2002
Easily one of the best and most exciting movies of the year.
| Original Score: 5/5
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Rene Rodriguez
Miami Herald
October 25, 2002
Punch-Drunk Love knows how to reap epic delight from the most precious of details.
| Original Score: 3.5/4
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Eric Harrison
Houston Chronicle
October 25, 2002
[Anderson] uses a hit-or-miss aesthetic that hits often enough to keep the film entertaining even if none of it makes a lick of sense.
| Original Score: B-
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Susan Stark
Detroit News
October 25, 2002
It's wacky. It's unpredictable. It's sure to give pause to Sandler fans and, smaller in number but every bit as dedicated, to Watson admirers too.
| Original Score: 4/4
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Terry Lawson
Detroit Free Press
October 25, 2002
Director Paul Thomas Anderson hasn't reinvented Sandler; he's just allowed those of us who tired very quickly of his innocent naif shtick to see how effectively it can be put in the service of something to care about.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
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Steven Rosen
Denver Post
October 25, 2002
Everything about Punch-Drunk Love works in a Being John Malkovich sort of way save one. Sandler. When your star doesn't work, it's hard to get us to buy into the rest of a movie as unusual as this.
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/4
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Bill Muller
Arizona Republic
October 25, 2002
In Punch-Drunk Love, Adam Sandler doesn't so much discard his old persona as illuminate it, breathing life into the cardboard characters that populated his earlier films.
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Rex Reed
New York Observer
October 23, 2002
How odd that a tribute to a wildly theatrical presence should turn out so dull and prosaic.
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Andrew Sarris
New York Observer
October 23, 2002
It is already apparent that Punch-Drunk Love will not be everyone's cup of tea, but nonetheless Mr. Anderson has found a way to fashion a passionate romance out of the materials of postmodern chaos.
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Ann Hornaday
Washington Post
October 18, 2002
A weird, arresting little ride.
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Moira MacDonald
Seattle Times
October 18, 2002
A weirdly sweet little love story set in waltz time and filmed as a study in contrast: light and dark, order and chaos, delicate music and ear-bending noise.
| Original Score: 3.5/4
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Carla Meyer
San Francisco Chronicle
October 18, 2002
Sandler is quite winning, but he doesn't stretch so much as deepen the same character he always plays.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
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Roger Ebert
Chicago Sun-Times
October 18, 2002
The film is exhilarating to watch because Sandler, liberated from the constraints of formula, reveals unexpected depths as an actor.
Full Review | Original Score: 3.5/4
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Ty Burr
Boston Globe
October 18, 2002
[Sandler] plays Barry just as he would any of the comic dolts who've made him rich but this time all the panicky sadness is out where we can see it. It's a honey of a performance: controlled, achingly human, and funny in the deepest ways.
Full Review | Original Score: 3.5/4
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Chris Vognar
Dallas Morning News
October 17, 2002
Even if he turns around and makes Mr. Deeds 2, [Sandler] has shown that his range goes beyond mindless fisticuffs and easy laughs.
Full Review | Original Score: A-
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Desson Thomson
Washington Post
October 17, 2002
In this movie, you'll see Sandler like you've never seen him.
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Bruce Newman
San Jose Mercury News
October 17, 2002
Manages to be both heartbreaking and happy, while managing to look like nothing you've ever seen before.
| Original Score: 4/4
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Steven Rea
Philadelphia Inquirer
October 17, 2002
One of the strangest and most beguiling romantic comedies ever made.
| Original Score: 4/4
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Michael Wilmington
Chicago Tribune
October 17, 2002
A happy nightmare of silly-smart movie comedy that defies category -- and challenges expectations involving Sandler and his pictures.
| Original Score: 3.5/4
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Geoff Pevere
Toronto Star
October 11, 2002
With this, not only does the former frat clown become an actor to watch, Anderson confirms his reputation as one of America's and the world's preeminent moviemakers.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/5
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Gene Seymour
Newsday
October 11, 2002
For all the incidental pleasures and anxious romanticism, Punch-Drunk Love still feels skimpy, if not hollow.
| Original Score: 2.5/4
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Lou Lumenick
New York Post
October 11, 2002
It's a supposed romantic comedy with few laughs and no romance, a musical comedy without the song and dance.
| Original Score: 1/4
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Owen Gleiberman
Entertainment Weekly
October 11, 2002
You may be captivated, as I was, by its moods, and by its subtly transformed star, and still wonder why Paul Thomas Anderson ever had the inclination to make the most sincere and artful movie in which Adam Sandler will probably ever appear.
Full Review | Original Score: B+
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Charles Taylor
Salon.com
October 11, 2002
By turns irritating, strange, and finally entrancing, Punch-Drunk Love is something we haven't seen before: a manic-depressive romantic comedy that aspires to the soul of a musical.
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Liam Lacey
Globe and Mail
October 11, 2002
No film this year has offered quite the cerebral tickle, weird invention and slaphappy gusto as Paul Thomas Anderson's Punch-Drunk Love.
| Original Score: 3.5/4
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Kenneth Turan
Los Angeles Times
October 10, 2002
What Anderson and his equally unlikely stars, Adam Sandler and Emily Watson, have managed is to stretch the boundaries of the romantic comedy genre to their extreme outer limits.
Full Review | Original Score: 4.5/5
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Peter Travers
Rolling Stone
October 10, 2002
Anderson orchestrates a comic romance like no other. The effect is intoxicating.
| Original Score: 4/4
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James Berardinelli
ReelViews
October 8, 2002
Anderson has created the kind of unconventional 'romantic comedy' we might expect from him.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
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Richard Roeper
Ebert & Roeper
October 7, 2002
This movie's like no other movie yet it's really interesting.
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Peter Rainer
New York Magazine/Vulture
October 6, 2002
A startling achievement, but its lack of psychological dimension prevents it from making much human contact with us.
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A.O. Scott
New York Times
October 5, 2002
What Mr. Anderson wants to do is recapture, without nostalgia, the giddiness and sweep of old movies, and his mastery of the emotional machinery of the medium is breathtaking.
| Original Score: 4.5/5
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J. Hoberman
Village Voice
October 1, 2002
As elegantly crafted as it often is, Anderson's movie is essentially a one-trick pony that, hampered by an undeveloped script, ultimately pulls up lame.
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Mike D'Angelo
Time Out
June 29, 2002
The comedy here emerges not from personality but from aesthetics: the precise framing, the bravura camera movements, Jon Brion's insistently percussive score, Sandler's ridiculous blue suit.
Full Review | Original Score: 68/100
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Michael Rechtshaffen
Hollywood Reporter
May 22, 2002
A delightfully idiosyncratic romantic comedy that manages to give convention a swift jab in the gut while still pushing all of the genre's requisite buttons.