Stand Up Guys

2013

Stand Up Guys (2013)

TOMATOMETER

Critic Consensus: Stand Up Guys largely wastes its talented cast in a resolutely mediocre comedy hampered by messy direction and a perfunctory script.

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Movie Info

Val (Al Pacino) is released from prison after serving twenty-eight years for refusing to give up one of his close criminal associates. His best friend Doc (Christopher Walken) is there to pick him up, and the two soon re-team with another old pal, Hirsch (Alan Arkin). Their bond is as strong as ever, and the three reflect on freedom lost and gained, loyalties ebbed and flowed, and days of glory gone by. But one of the friends is keeping a dangerous secret- he's been put in an impossible quandary by a former mob boss, and his time to find an acceptable alternative is running out. As the sun rises on the guys' legendary reunion, their position becomes more and more desperate and they finally confront their past once and for all. -- (C) Lionsgate

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Critic Reviews for Stand Up Guys

All Critics (107) | Top Critics (34)

Thematic inconsistencies abound as Stevens aims for a tone somewhere between Grumpy Old Men, The Hangover, and Goodfellas.

Feb 4, 2013 | Full Review…

Some actors don't need top-shelf material. Just the pleasure of their company is enough. And so Al Pacino, Christopher Walken and Alan Arkin turn the insubstantial Stand Up Guys into solid entertainment.

Feb 2, 2013 | Rating: 2.5/4 | Full Review…

It's just fun to watch Pacino, Walken and Arkin work together, very much enjoying the shared experience. Seeing Stand Up Guys is an offer you could easily refuse, but hey, why fight it?

Feb 1, 2013 | Rating: 2.5/4 | Full Review…

If you don't think Al Pacino still has it in him, this is a welcome chance to be proved wrong.

Feb 1, 2013 | Rating: 4/4 | Full Review…

Is it fun? Sure, some of the time. Is it good? That's a stretch. Does it tap the potential of these three actors? Fuggedaboutit.

Feb 1, 2013 | Rating: C+ | Full Review…
Detroit News
Top Critic

The degree to which "Stand Up Guys" succeeds at all is completely dependent on Walken, who elevates everything around him by seemingly doing nothing at all.

Feb 1, 2013 | Rating: 2/4 | Full Review…

Audience Reviews for Stand Up Guys

½

A coupla guys who've seen a mob movie or two return to the form one more time in this sort of bucket list for mob guys movie. And what do mob guys want at the end of the road? One more job together again, natcherly. Pacino, Walkin & Arkin are old hands at this, and so raise what might've been a banal and cheesy offering to sort of a cool night at the bowling alley with some oldtimers. Some classy oldtimers. Take a selfie with them.

Kevin M. Williams
Kevin M. Williams

Super Reviewer

The star is for Christopher Walken, who really commits to this turdburger of a movie and makes Al Pacino look just as washed-up as I've long refused to admit he is. Skip this one, blecch.

Daniel Perry
Daniel Perry

Super Reviewer

A hit-man must kill his ex-partner, who has just been released from prison, but first they go on one last evening of entertainment. Christopher Walken, who has discovered his sensitive side in his later years, and Al Pacino are great together, and I can only wish that they unite for a better story than this one. Uneven in tone and genre, the film is best described as Grumpy Old Men meets Carlito's Way, and those two films don't mix well. Alan Arkin, forever sardonic, is hilarious but miscast, only adding to the comedic milieu, until we're supposed to take the film seriously. Overall, though I'm happy to see good actors giving good performances, even the best actors need a script.

Jim Hunter
Jim Hunter

Super Reviewer

½

Val: They say we die twice. Once when the breath leaves our body, and once when the last person we know says our name. "They don't make em like they used to." I guess I don't see why this film was so heavily criticized. Stand Up Guys is exactly what it advertised itself to be, nothing more than a star driven film. Sure Al Pacino, Christopher Walken, and Alan Arkin look like they should have died ten years ago, but they make this film a lot of fun. It's predictable, as the story of old friends getting together one last time isn't exactly a new idea; but the stars make this movie an extremely fun time. Val is just out of prison where he has been for 28 years. Doc, his best friend picks him up and they hang out for awhile. We learn that Val was in prison for the murder of their former bosses son which was an accident that happened during a job. Doc is supposed to kill Val before 10 am the next day or he will be killed too. So the two enjoy Val's last night on earth by robbing a pharmacy, going to a brothel, and committing some other various crimes. They brake their other friend and former partner out of a retirement home and they do one last job together. This all goes in a predictable fashion and you see every turn coming. The ending will only surprise those who have never seen a movie before and even most people who haven't would still see it coming. In the end, the story, the predictability, all of that really doesn't matter. This is Pacino's and Walken's movie to carry and they do so beautifully. It's a hell of a good time.  Stand Up Guys is definitely worth the watch, especially for fans of Pacino and Walken, and even Arkin to a degree, although he isn't as big a part of it as the other two. Ignore the criticism and just know that the story isn't breaking new ground and you should be able to enjoy yourself with this one.

Melvin White
Melvin White

Super Reviewer

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