The Dilemma

2011

The Dilemma

Critics Consensus

It boasts a likable cast and an interesting premise, but The Dilemma can't decide what to do with them; the result is an uneven blend of cheesy slapstick and surprisingly dark comedy.

24%

TOMATOMETER

Total Count: 161

29%

Audience Score

User Ratings: 56,472
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Movie Info

Vince Vaughn and Kevin James headline an all-star comedy from director Ron Howard and producer Brian Grazer about a man who finds out that what you don't say to a friend is just as important as what you do. Jennifer Connelly, Winona Ryder, Channing Tatum and Queen Latifah join them in The Dilemma, a story of how far you can bend a brotherly bond before it snaps. Since college, confirmed bachelor Ronny (Vaughn) and happily married Nick (James) have been through thick and thin. Now partners in an auto design firm, the two pals are vying to land a dream project that would launch their company. With Ronny's girlfriend, Beth (Connelly), and Nick's wife, Geneva (Ryder), by their sides, they're unbeatable. But Ronny's world is turned upside down when he inadvertently sees Geneva out with another man and makes it his mission to get answers. As the amateur investigation dissolves his world into comic mayhem, he learns that Nick has a few secrets of his own. Now, with the clock ticking and pressure mounting on the biggest presentation of their careers, Ronny must decide how and when he will reveal the truth to his best friend. -- (C) Universal

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Cast

Vince Vaughn
as Ronny Valentine
Kevin James
as Nick Brannon
Queen Latifah
as Susan Warner
Amy Morton
as Diane Popovich
Chelcie Ross
as Thomas Fern
Clint Howard
as Herbert Trimpy
Troy West
as Dr. Rosenstone
Grace Rex
as Cousin Betty
Mike McNamara
as Cousin James
Madison Dirks
as B & V Worker
Mimi Sagadin
as B & V Worker
Sandy Marshall
as Medic at Gardens
Talulah Riley
as Concept Car Spokesmodel
William Smillie
as Poissonier
Julian Burfete
as Restaurant Server
Jillian Burfete
as Restaurant Server
Katie Korby
as Restaurant Server
Catherine Bruzzini
as Resturant Patron
Laura Cooper
as Waitress
Mariko Hayashi-Hall
as Vietnamese Parlor Owner
Cheryl Hamada
as Vietnamese Parlor Worker
Gary Houston
as Camera Clerk
Wendy George
as Store Clerk
Keith Kupferer
as Bank Customer
Kevin Bigley
as Bank Customer
Christina Anthony
as Bank Customer
Michael Trnka
as Skate Rat
Chante Linwood
as El Train Patron
Kielor Roberts
as Diane's Son
Nick Brade
as Skate Rat
Michael Trinka
as Skate Rat
Karen Aldridge
as Receptionist
Gene Honda
as Shoot the Puck Announcer
Heidi Johanningmeier
as Shoot the Puck Girl
Brennan Buhl
as Shoot the Puck Guy
William M. Connor
as Disgruntled Fan
Christopher Meister
as Concession Stand Customer
Charlie Hilbrant
as Concession Stand Customer
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News & Interviews for The Dilemma

Critic Reviews for The Dilemma

All Critics (161) | Top Critics (39)

  • As cumbersome and drawn out as a slowly deflating tire, this cinematic collision between Vaughn's celebrated funny-surly persona and Howard's earnest pedigree is a bore -- and a serious miscalculation.

    Jan 28, 2011 | Rating: C-
  • Rather less fun than a badly executed coronary bypass.

    Jan 26, 2011 | Full Review…

    Philip French

    Guardian
    Top Critic
  • Who ever thought that Ron Howard could make a cult film? This movie is a mess, but it's an intelligent and affecting mess.

    Jan 24, 2011

    David Denby

    New Yorker
    Top Critic
  • This collapses into comic mayhem, falling-out-of-trees slapstick, snore-bore misunderstandings and a sizeable distance between laughs.

    Jan 20, 2011 | Rating: 2/5 | Full Review…

    Cath Clarke

    Guardian
    Top Critic
  • Junk-food cinema in its most elementary form. If you're lucky you'll have forgotten everything about this film by the time you leave the building.

    Jan 20, 2011 | Rating: 1/5 | Full Review…
  • It lacks faith in its story, characters and audience.

    Jan 18, 2011 | Rating: 2/5 | Full Review…

    Ben Walters

    Time Out
    Top Critic

Audience Reviews for The Dilemma

  • Jul 05, 2012
    Ron Howard's The Dilemma it's a surprising black comedy and presents a interesting cast to a humor picture. But it flaw, what could be a different comedy become just another funny drama, sometimes unfunny and a cliche ending. Rotten.
    Lucas M Super Reviewer
  • Jun 16, 2012
    vaughn is crazy and funny as always but James & the other cast is lost without any depth. typical Ron Howard film that is full of good intentions but all over the place in execution.
    Brendan N Super Reviewer
  • May 23, 2012
    "It's simple...we have a contract to get this job done...let's do it." Ronnie Valentine (Vince Vaughn) and Nick Brannen (Kevin James) sworn buddies since college and great business associates until Ronnie sees something that he wasn't supposed to see that could threaten the very core of the foundation of friendship that Nick and him shares. Seeing this you have to question the boundaries that friendships are based upon, and wonder how far do they go. See this it's interesting!
    Fascade F Super Reviewer
  • May 15, 2012
    The Challenge: Name ten great dramedies in motion picture history. All right, then name just five good ones. Difficult, right? They are as hard to find as a smile in a Sylvester Stallone movie. And that includes <i>Oscar.</i> Fact is, serious drama and lighthearted comedy simply don't work well together, and such is the dilemma in <i>The Dilemma</i> which does not create the template for future screenplays to follow. Vince Vaughn is pretty good in the lead role and does what he can in trying to draw laughs and sympathies, often in the same scene, whereas Kevin James is unable to do the same and clearly miscast. The best decisions came filling the female leads, featuring the two most beautiful dark-haired, smoky-eyed early-40s actresses of our time in Jennifer Connelly and Winona Ryder; we're talking wish-fulfillment here! Connelly is typically excellent and gives the film the dramatic weight it wants to carry, but her work is partially capsized by the shifting tone. Cut out her scenes and reassemble them together as a short film and I bet you'd be impressed. Better than most reviews led me to believe, <i>The Dilemma</i> contains half an amusing comedy and half a decent drama, but you can't have everything.
    Doctor S Super Reviewer

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