Tracy Bennett/Columbia Pictures

(Photo by Tracy Bennett/©Columbia Pictures)

All Adam Sandler Movies Ranked

The critics haven’t always been kind to Adam Sandler over the course of his film career, but box office receipts don’t lie — his detractors have been handily outnumbered by his many ardent fans, many of whom have been laughing it up over the SNL vet’s shtick for decades. His filmography’s certainly had its share of ups and downs, but it includes some of the biggest — and most eminently quotable — comedy hits in recent memory, from Billy Madison to Happy Gilmore, as well as a number of beloved rom-coms like The Wedding Singer and 50 First Dates, and indie gems in the form of The Meyerowitz Stories and Punch-Drunk Love. In fact, one of his latest was exactly that: 2019’s Uncut Gems, the intense crime thriller from the Safdie bros, drew some of the highest critical acclaim of Sandler’s career.

Watch out for hired goons, giant penguins, and, of course, Bob Barker, and let’s take a look at his entire filmography, from the best Adam Sandler movies to the worst, ranked by Tomatometer!

#45
#45
Adjusted Score: 1826%
Critics Consensus: Every bit as lazily offensive as its cast and concept would suggest, The Ridiculous Six is standard couch fare for Adam Sandler fanatics and must-avoid viewing for film enthusiasts of every other persuasion.
Synopsis: White Knife, an orphan raised by Native Americans, discovers that five outlaws are actually his half-brothers. Together, they set out... [More]
Directed By: Frank Coraci

#44

Jack and Jill (2011)
3%

#44
Adjusted Score: 5997%
Critics Consensus: Although it features an inexplicably committed performance from Al Pacino, Jack and Jill is impossible to recommend on any level whatsoever.
Synopsis: Thanksgiving is usually a happy time, but ad executive Jack (Adam Sandler) dreads the holiday because his twin sister, Jill... [More]
Directed By: Dennis Dugan

#43

Bulletproof (1996)
8%

#43
Adjusted Score: 8791%
Critics Consensus: In addition to its ability to deflect gunfire, Bulletproof proves sadly impervious to humor, logic, or worthwhile viewing.
Synopsis: A none-too-bright criminal, Archie Moses (Adam Sandler) works for drug kingpin Frank Colton (James Caan) and remains oblivious to the... [More]
Directed By: Ernest R. Dickerson

#42

Grown Ups 2 (2013)
8%

#42
Adjusted Score: 11149%
Critics Consensus: While it's almost certainly the movie event of the year for filmgoers passionate about deer urine humor, Grown Ups 2 will bore, annoy, and disgust audiences of nearly every other persuasion.
Synopsis: Lenny Feder (Adam Sandler) moves his family back to his hometown to be with his friends, but he finds --... [More]
Directed By: Dennis Dugan

#41

The Do Over (2016)
9%

#41
Adjusted Score: 8530%
Critics Consensus: A dunderheaded story of mistaken identity, The Do-Over finds Adam Sandler and David Spade retreading old ground -- minus the comedic pep required to enliven the decidedly uninspired proceedings.
Synopsis: When two guys fake their owns deaths and assume the identify of two others, they quickly discover that those men... [More]
Directed By: Steven Brill

#40

Mixed Nuts (1994)
13%

#40
Adjusted Score: 13454%
Critics Consensus: Mixed Nuts may provoke strong allergic reactions in all but the most undemanding filmgoers -- and the most forgiving Steve Martin fans.
Synopsis: Philip (Steve Martin) manages a suicide-prevention hotline called Lifesavers, assisted by Mrs. Munchnik (Madeline Kahn) and Catherine (Rita Wilson). On... [More]
Directed By: Nora Ephron

#39

The Cobbler (2014)
10%

#39
Adjusted Score: 11228%
Critics Consensus: The Cobbler represents a slight step up from Adam Sandler's recent comedies, but while its cloying sentiment proves a more palatable substitute for his usual crass humor, it still isn't terribly compelling.
Synopsis: A frustrated shoemaker (Adam Sandler) finds a magical sewing machine that allows him to see the world in a new... [More]
Directed By: Tom McCarthy

#38

Grown Ups (2010)
11%

#38
Adjusted Score: 16226%
Critics Consensus: Grown Ups' cast of comedy vets is amiable, but they're let down by flat direction and the scattershot, lowbrow humor of a stunted script.
Synopsis: The death of their childhood basketball coach leads to a reunion for some old friends (Adam Sandler, Kevin James, Chris... [More]
Directed By: Dennis Dugan

#37
Adjusted Score: 14133%
Critics Consensus: Sandler returns to his roots in this nauseating concoction filled with potty humor and product placements.
Synopsis: Davey Stone (Adam Sandler), a 33-year old party animal, finds himself in trouble with the law after his wild ways... [More]
Directed By: Seth Kearsley

#36

Zookeeper (2011)
14%

#36
Adjusted Score: 17730%
Critics Consensus: Zookeeper smothers Kevin James's with a sodden script and a surfeit of jokes inappropriate for the young viewers who would be intrigued by its juvenile storyline.
Synopsis: Kindhearted Griffin Keyes (Kevin James) is one of the best-loved caretakers at the Franklin Park Zoo, but since he is... [More]
Directed By: Frank Coraci

#35

Blended (2014)
15%

#35
Adjusted Score: 20579%
Critics Consensus: Lurching between slapstick and schmaltz without showing much of a commitment to either, Blended commits the rare Sandler sin of provoking little more than boredom.
Synopsis: Recently divorced mom Lauren (Drew Barrymore) and widowed dad Jim (Adam Sandler) let their friends push them into a blind... [More]
Directed By: Frank Coraci

#34
Adjusted Score: 20895%
Critics Consensus: Whether by way of inept comedy or tasteless stereotypes, I Now Pronounce You Chuck And Larry falters on both levels.
Synopsis: Chuck Levine (Adam Sandler) and Larry Valentine (Kevin James) are firefighters and true-blue buddies. When Larry, a widower, learns he... [More]
Directed By: Dennis Dugan

#33

Pixels (2015)
18%

#33
Adjusted Score: 25232%
Critics Consensus: Much like the worst arcade games from the era that inspired it, Pixels has little replay value and is hardly worth a quarter.
Synopsis: When aliens intercept video feeds of classic arcade games and misinterpret them as a declaration of war, they attack Earth,... [More]
Directed By: Chris Columbus

#32

Just Go With It (2011)
19%

#32
Adjusted Score: 23988%
Critics Consensus: Just Go With It may be slightly better than some entries in the recently dire rom-com genre, but that's far from a recommendation.
Synopsis: His heart recently broken, plastic surgeon Danny Maccabee (Adam Sandler) pretends to be married so he can enjoy future dates... [More]
Directed By: Dennis Dugan

#31

That's My Boy (2012)
20%

#31
Adjusted Score: 24412%
Critics Consensus: While it does represent a new foray into raunch for the normally PG-13 Sandler, That's My Boy finds him repeating himself to diminishing effect - and dragging Andy Samberg down with him.
Synopsis: While still a teen himself, Donny (Adam Sandler) fathered a son,Todd (Andy Samberg), and raised him as a single parent.... [More]
Directed By: Sean Anders

#30

Little Nicky (2000)
21%

#30
Adjusted Score: 25051%
Critics Consensus: Despite the presence of a large, talented cast, the jokes in Little Nicky are dumb, tasteless, and not that funny, and Adam Sandler's character is grating to watch.
Synopsis: In a perfect world, he'd be happy to head-bang in his room all day to heavy metal music. But no,... [More]
Directed By: Steven Brill

#29

Mr. Deeds (2002)
22%

#29
Adjusted Score: 25798%
Critics Consensus: This update of Capra doesn't hold a candle to the original, and even on its own merits, Mr. Deeds is still indifferently acted and stale.
Synopsis: Longfellow Deeds (Adam Sandler) is a sweet, lovable guy leading a simple but happy life in the tiny hamlet of... [More]
Directed By: Steven Brill

#28

Airheads (1994)
25%

#28
Adjusted Score: 26851%
Critics Consensus: There's a biting satire that keeps threatening to burst out of the well-cast Airheads, but unfortunately, the end result lives down to its title in the most unfortunate ways.
Synopsis: Three aspiring rock musicians -- Chazz (Brendan Fraser), Pip (Adam Sandler) and Rex (Steve Buscemi) -- are determined to have... [More]
Directed By: Michael Lehmann

#27

Sandy Wexler (2017)
27%

#27
Adjusted Score: 27727%
Critics Consensus: Sandy Wexler marks a mild improvement from the Adam Sandler vehicles immediately preceding it -- which in no way serves as an endorsement for non-hardcore fans.
Synopsis: Sandy Wexler (Adam Sandler) is a talent manager working in Los Angeles in the 1990s who diligently represents a group... [More]
Directed By: Steven Brill

#26

The Week Of (2018)
27%

#26
Adjusted Score: 26670%
Critics Consensus: The Week Of suggests promise in further collaborations between Sandler and Robert Smigel, but its shopworn premise and listless execution aren't enough to recommend it.
Synopsis: Two fathers with opposing personalities come together to celebrate the wedding of their children. They are forced to spend the... [More]
Directed By: Robert Smigel

#25

Bedtime Stories (2008)
27%

#25
Adjusted Score: 30022%
Critics Consensus: Though it may earns some chuckles from pre-teens, this kid-friendly Adam Sandler comedy is uneven, poorly paced, and lacks the requisite whimsy to truly work.
Synopsis: Hotel handyman Skeeter Bronson (Adam Sandler) gets an unexpected surprise when he discovers that the tall tales he has been... [More]
Directed By: Adam Shankman

#24

The Longest Yard (2005)
31%

#24
Adjusted Score: 37598%
Critics Consensus: This Yard has some laughs but missing from this remake is the edginess of the original.
Synopsis: Disgraced pro football quarterback Paul Crewe (Adam Sandler) lands in jail, where manipulative Warden Hazen (James Cromwell) recruits him to... [More]
Directed By: Peter Segal

#23
#23
Adjusted Score: 38532%
Critics Consensus: Men, Women & Children is timely, but director Jason Reitman's overbearing approach to its themes blunts the movie's impact.
Synopsis: Like many Americans, average suburbanite Don Truby (Adam Sandler) and his 15-year-old son use the Internet for information, communication and... [More]
Directed By: Jason Reitman

#22

The Waterboy (1998)
34%

#22
Adjusted Score: 37915%
Critics Consensus: This is an insult to its genre with low humor and cheap gags.
Synopsis: Raised by his overprotective mother, Helen (Kathy Bates), Bobby Boucher Jr. (Adam Sandler) is the water boy for a successful... [More]
Directed By: Frank Coraci

#21

Click (2006)
34%

#21
Adjusted Score: 40288%
Critics Consensus: This latest Adam Sandler vehicle borrows shamelessly from It's A Wonderful Life and Back To The Future, and fails to produce the necessary laughs that would forgive such imitation.
Synopsis: Michael Newman (Adam Sandler) seems to have it all but his wife, Donna (Kate Beckinsale), is increasingly frustrated by the... [More]
Directed By: Frank Coraci

#20

Coneheads (1993)
35%

#20
Adjusted Score: 37004%
Critics Consensus: Listless, crude, and overall uninspired, Coneheads offers further evidence that stretching an SNL sketch to feature length can be tougher than narfling a garthok.
Synopsis: Cone-headed extraterrestrials Beldar (Dan Aykroyd) and Prymaat (Jane Curtin) find themselves in New Jersey after a recon mission for their... [More]
Directed By: Steve Barron

#19
Adjusted Score: 43519%
Critics Consensus: You Don't Mess With the Zohan features intermittent laughs, and will please Sandler diehards, but after awhile the leaky premise wears thin.
Synopsis: Tired of all the fighting in his country, legendary Israeli commando Zohan (Adam Sandler) fakes his own death and goes... [More]
Directed By: Dennis Dugan

#18

Big Daddy (1999)
39%

#18
Adjusted Score: 42837%
Critics Consensus: Adam Sandler acquits himself admirably, but his charm isn't enough to make up for Big Daddy's jarring shifts between crude humor and mawkish sentimentality.
Synopsis: Thirty-two-year-old Sonny Koufax (Adam Sandler) has spent his whole life avoiding responsibility. But when his girlfriend dumps him for an... [More]
Directed By: Dennis Dugan

#17

Billy Madison (1995)
42%

#17
Adjusted Score: 43728%
Critics Consensus: Audiences who enjoy Adam Sandler's belligerent comic energy may find him in joyously obnoxious form as Billy Madison, but this thinly-plotted starring vehicle surrounds its star with an aggressively pedestrian movie.
Synopsis: Man-child Billy Madison (Adam Sandler) has been a spoiled rich kid all his life, and spends his days drinking and... [More]
Directed By: Tamra Davis

#16

Anger Management (2003)
42%

#16
Adjusted Score: 48617%
Critics Consensus: Thought not without its funny moments, Anger Management is ultimately stale and disappointingly one-note, especially considering its capable cast.
Synopsis: Dave Buznik (Adam Sandler) is usually a mild-mannered nonconfrontational guy. But after an altercation aboard an airplane, he is remanded... [More]
Directed By: Peter Segal

#15

Shakes the Clown (1991)
43%

#15
Adjusted Score: 43039%
Critics Consensus: Shakes the Clown has a handful of memorable moments, but they're scattered in a movie whose best ideas were left undeveloped on their way to the screen.
Synopsis: The all-clown town of Palukaville provides a colorful backdrop for this tale of an alcoholic funnyman framed for murder.... [More]
Directed By: Bobcat Goldthwait

#14

Murder Mystery (2019)
45%

#14
Adjusted Score: 47527%
Critics Consensus: Murder Mystery reunites Jennifer Aniston and Adam Sandler for a lightweight comedy that's content to settle for merely mediocre.
Synopsis: A New York cop and his wife go on a European vacation to reinvigorate the spark in their marriage. A... [More]
Directed By: Kyle Newacheck

#13
#13
Adjusted Score: 49826%
Critics Consensus: Hotel Transylvania's buoyant, giddy tone may please children, but it might be a little too loud and thinly-scripted for older audiences.
Synopsis: When monsters want to get away from it all, they go to Count Dracula's (Adam Sandler) Hotel Transylvania, a lavish... [More]
Directed By: Genndy Tartakovsky

#12

50 First Dates (2004)
45%

#12
Adjusted Score: 50276%
Critics Consensus: Gross-out humor overwhelms the easy chemistry between Adam Sandler and Drew Barrymore, who bring some energy and yucks to this tale of a girl with short-term memory loss and the guy who tries to get her to love him.
Synopsis: Playboy vet Henry sets his heart on romancing Lucy, but she has short-term memory loss; she can't remember anything that... [More]
Directed By: Peter Segal

#11

Hubie Halloween (2020)
52%

#11
Adjusted Score: 57088%
Critics Consensus: Viewers immune to its star's charms won't find it much of a treat, but Hubie Halloween is sweet enough to satisfy fans of Adam Sandler's antics.
Synopsis: It's October 31st in Salem, Massachusetts, and a town's eccentric, devoted community volunteer and the good-natured object of his fellow... [More]
Directed By: Steven Brill

#10

Spanglish (2004)
53%

#10
Adjusted Score: 58987%
Critics Consensus: Paz Vega shines, and Adam Sandler gives a performance of thoughtfulness and depth, but Spanglish is ultimately undermined by sitcommy plotting and unearned uplift.
Synopsis: Mexican immigrant and single mother Flor Moreno (Paz Vega) finds housekeeping work with Deborah (Téa Leoni) and John Clasky (Adam... [More]
Directed By: James L. Brooks

#9
#9
Adjusted Score: 57931%
Critics Consensus: Hotel Transylvania 2 is marginally better than the original, which may or may not be enough of a recommendation to watch 89 minutes of corny, colorfully animated gags from Adam Sandler and company.
Synopsis: Now that Dracula (Adam Sandler) has opened the Hotel Transylvania's doors to humans, things are changing for the better; however,... [More]
Directed By: Genndy Tartakovsky

#8

Happy Gilmore (1996)
61%

#8
Adjusted Score: 63865%
Critics Consensus: Those who enjoy Adam Sandler's schtick will find plenty to love in this gleefully juvenile take on professional golf; those who don't, however, will find it unfunny and forgettable.
Synopsis: All Happy Gilmore (Adam Sandler) has ever wanted is to be a professional hockey player. But he soon discovers he... [More]
Directed By: Dennis Dugan

#7
Adjusted Score: 68646%
Critics Consensus: Hotel Transylvania 3: Summer Vacation delivers exactly what fans will expect - which means another 97 agreeably lightweight minutes of fast-paced gags and colorful animation.
Synopsis: Your favorite monster family boards a luxury cruise ship so Dracula can take a summer vacation from the hotel. It's... [More]
Directed By: Genndy Tartakovsky

#6

Reign Over Me (2007)
64%

#6
Adjusted Score: 70373%
Critics Consensus: Reign Over Me is a charming, affecting tale of friendship and loss, with solid performances from Adam Sandler as a broken, grief-stricken man and Don Cheadle as his old friend and savior.
Synopsis: Charlie Fineman (Adam Sandler), who lost his family in the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, still grieves over their deaths.... [More]
Directed By: Mike Binder

#5
#5
Adjusted Score: 72204%
Critics Consensus: It's decidedly uneven -- and surprisingly sappy for an early Adam Sandler comedy -- but The Wedding Singer is also sweet, funny, and beguiling.
Synopsis: Set in 1985, Adam Sandler plays a nice guy with a broken heart who's stuck in one of the most... [More]
Directed By: Frank Coraci

#4

Funny People (2009)
69%

#4
Adjusted Score: 77815%
Critics Consensus: Funny People features the requisite humor, as well as considerable emotional depth, resulting in Judd Apatow's most mature film to date.
Synopsis: Recently learning that he has a fatal disease, comic George Simmons (Adam Sandler) spots a struggling performer named Ira (Seth... [More]
Directed By: Judd Apatow

#3

Punch-Drunk Love (2002)
79%

#3
Adjusted Score: 84507%
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.
Synopsis: Although susceptible to violent outbursts, bathroom supply business owner Barry Egan (Adam Sandler) is a timid and shy man by... [More]
Directed By: Paul Thomas Anderson

#2

Uncut Gems (2019)
92%

#2
Adjusted Score: 112439%
Critics Consensus: Uncut Gems reaffirms the Safdies as masters of anxiety-inducing cinema -- and proves Adam Sandler remains a formidable dramatic actor when given the right material.
Synopsis: A charismatic jeweler makes a high-stakes bet that could lead to the windfall of a lifetime. In a precarious high-wire... [More]
Directed By: Benny Safdie, Josh Safdie

#1
Adjusted Score: 105681%
Critics Consensus: The Meyerowitz Stories (New and Selected) observes the family dynamic through writer-director Noah Baumbach's bittersweet lens and the impressive efforts of a remarkable cast.
Synopsis: The adult children of Harold Meyerowitz reunite in New York in preparation for their father's career retrospective.... [More]
Directed By: Noah Baumbach

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(Photo by Columbia Pictures/ courtesy Everett Collection)

All Seth Rogen Movies, Ranked By Tomatometer

One-season wonder Freaks and Geeks had a startling amount of its young alums go on to have successful Hollywood careers, Seth Rogen chief among them. He followed mentor Judd Apatow into the movie game with The 40 Year-Old Virgin, starring in a memorable supporting role. Rogen was then upgraded to lead status for Apatow’s follow-up Knocked Up, and the movie’s critical and box office success showed Virgin was no fluke, heralding a significant sea change in mainstream American comedy. Rogen has remained the face of this bong- and bro-tastic style of comedy, also featuring big rips of heartfelt emotion – like Animal House by way of James L. Brooks – in repeated movie hits like Superbad, Pineapple Express, This Is the End, Neighbors, and The Disaster Artist.

He’s been amassing an impressive résumé as producer (not just on his own starring films, but also the likes of Blockers and Good Boys) and director, helming This Is the End, The Interview, and episodes of Future Man and Preacher. His latest comedy was An American Pickle. And now we’re looking at all of Seth Rogen’s movies, ranked by Tomatometer!

#32
#32
Adjusted Score: 14708%
Critics Consensus: No consensus yet.
Synopsis: The Compson family struggles to adjust to the changes in society during the early 20th century in the Deep South.... [More]
Directed By: James Franco

#31

Zeroville (2019)
23%

#31
Adjusted Score: 23035%
Critics Consensus: Potentially an ironic favorite for cult film fans, Zeroville is a fundamentally misguided -- and descriptively titled -- passion project for its director and star.
Synopsis: With two tattoos of Montgomery Clift and Elizabeth Taylor on his shaved head, Vikar rides a bus into Hollywood and... [More]
Directed By: James Franco

#30

The Guilt Trip (2012)
37%

#30
Adjusted Score: 41025%
Critics Consensus: Seth Rogen and Barbra Streisand have enough chemistry to drive a solidly assembled comedy; unfortunately, The Guilt Trip has a lemon of a script and is perilously low on comedic fuel.
Synopsis: Before embarking on a once-in-a-lifetime road trip, Andy Brewster pays a visit to his overbearing mother, Joyce. That proves to... [More]
Directed By: Anne Fletcher

#29

The Green Hornet (2011)
44%

#29
Adjusted Score: 53339%
Critics Consensus: It's sporadically entertaining, but The Green Hornet never approaches the surreal heights suggested by a Michel Gondry/Seth Rogen collaboration.
Synopsis: Britt Reid (Seth Rogen), the heir to the largest newspaper fortune in Los Angeles, is a spoiled playboy who has... [More]
Directed By: Michel Gondry

#28

The Interview (2014)
51%

#28
Adjusted Score: 55946%
Critics Consensus: Unfortunately overshadowed by controversy (and under-screened as a result), The Interview's screenplay offers middling laughs bolstered by its two likable leads.
Synopsis: Dave Skylark (James Franco) and his producer Aaron Rapoport (Seth Rogen) are the team behind the popular tabloid-TV show "Skylark... [More]
Directed By: Seth Rogen, Evan Goldberg

#27
#27
Adjusted Score: 59740%
Critics Consensus: Though it has a mean streak, and does not cater to all tastes, Observe and Report has gut-busting laughs and a fully committed Seth Rogen in irresistible form.
Synopsis: As head of security at the Forest Ridge Mall, Ronnie Barnhardt (Seth Rogen) takes his job very seriously, enforcing mall... [More]
Directed By: Jody Hill

#26

The Lion King (2019)
52%

#26
Adjusted Score: 78224%
Critics Consensus: While it can take pride in its visual achievements,The Lion King is a by-the-numbers retelling that lacks the energy and heart that made the original so beloved--though for some fans that may just be enough.
Synopsis: Simba idolizes his father, King Mufasa, and takes to heart his own royal destiny on the plains of Africa. But... [More]
Directed By: Jon Favreau

#25
#25
Adjusted Score: 60128%
Critics Consensus: Brisk, funny, and sweetly raunchy, For a Good Time, Call... adds to the recent string of R-rated female comedies while serving as an overdue coming out party for the charming Ari Graynor.
Synopsis: Reserved Lauren (Lauren Anne Miller) and bubbly Katie (Ari Graynor) are polar opposites and past enemies. However, when both gals... [More]
Directed By: Jamie Travis

#24
Adjusted Score: 75831%
Critics Consensus: Neighbors 2: Sorority Rising may not be strictly necessary, but it still wrings a surprising amount of humor from a recycled premise with a distaff twist.
Synopsis: Life is good for Mac Radner (Seth Rogen) and pregnant wife Kelly (Rose Byrne) until the unruly sisters of Kappa... [More]
Directed By: Nicholas Stoller

#23
Adjusted Score: 73012%
Critics Consensus: Zack and Miri Make a Porno is a modest success for Kevin Smith, due in large part to the charm of Seth Rogen and Elizabeth Banks.
Synopsis: Lifelong friends and now roommates, Zack (Seth Rogen) and Miri (Elizabeth Banks) are buried under a mountain of debt. When... [More]
Directed By: Kevin Smith

#22
#22
Adjusted Score: 76191%
Critics Consensus: Both funny and scattershot, this loose-knit action/buddy/stoner comedy bridges genres and keeps a steady tempo of low-ball laughs.
Synopsis: Stoner Dale Denton's (Seth Rogen) enjoyment of a rare strain of marijuana may prove fatal when he drops his roach... [More]
Directed By: David Gordon Green

#21

Funny People (2009)
69%

#21
Adjusted Score: 77815%
Critics Consensus: Funny People features the requisite humor, as well as considerable emotional depth, resulting in Judd Apatow's most mature film to date.
Synopsis: Recently learning that he has a fatal disease, comic George Simmons (Adam Sandler) spots a struggling performer named Ira (Seth... [More]
Directed By: Judd Apatow

#20

The Night Before (2015)
69%

#20
Adjusted Score: 74217%
Critics Consensus: The Night Before provokes enough belly laughs to qualify as a worthwhile addition to the list of Christmas comedies worth revisiting, even if it isn't quite as consistent as the classics.
Synopsis: For the last 10 years, lifelong buddies Ethan (Joseph Gordon-Levitt), Isaac (Seth Rogen) and Chris (Anthony Mackie) have gathered on... [More]
Directed By: Jonathan Levine

#19

Paul (2011)
70%

#19
Adjusted Score: 77918%
Critics Consensus: It doesn't measure up to Pegg and Frost's best work, but Paul is an amiably entertaining -- albeit uneven -- road trip comedy with an intergalactic twist.
Synopsis: For the past 60 years, a wisecracking alien named Paul (Seth Rogen) has resided at a top-secret military base in... [More]
Directed By: Greg Mottola

#18
#18
Adjusted Score: 83249%
Critics Consensus: An American Pickle lacks the tart snap viewers might expect given its creative premise, but Seth Rogen's dual performance makes this a low-key comedy to relish.
Synopsis: Preserved in pickle brine for 100 years, an Orthodox Jewish factory worker wakes up in New York City and tracks... [More]
Directed By: Brandon Trost

#17
#17
Adjusted Score: 81922%
Critics Consensus: Though it doesn't approach the depth of the best animated films, Monsters Vs. Aliens has enough humor and special effects to entertain moviegoers of all ages.
Synopsis: When a meteor full of space gunk transforms Susan Murphy (Reese Witherspoon) into a giant, the government renames her Ginormica... [More]

#16

Neighbors (2014)
73%

#16
Adjusted Score: 81526%
Critics Consensus: With plenty of bawdy humor evenly spread between its well-matched stars, Neighbors earns its R rating -- and filmgoers' laughs.
Synopsis: New parents Mac (Seth Rogen) and Kelly (Rose Byrne) move to the suburbs when they welcome an infant daughter into... [More]
Directed By: Nicholas Stoller

#15

Take This Waltz (2011)
79%

#15
Adjusted Score: 83634%
Critics Consensus: Featuring excellent work from an outstanding cast, the bittersweet drama Waltz proves that in the right hands, a familiar tale can still ring true.
Synopsis: A young woman (Michelle Williams) is torn between the husband (Seth Rogen) that she loves and a new man (Luke... [More]
Directed By: Sarah Polley

#14
Adjusted Score: 84142%
Critics Consensus: Horton Hears A Who! is both whimsical and heartwarming, and is the rare Dr. Seuss adaptation that stays true to the spirit of the source material.
Synopsis: Animated elephant Horton (Jim Carrey) finds a speck of dust floating in the Jungle of Nool. Upon investigation of the... [More]

#13
#13
Adjusted Score: 85664%
Critics Consensus: The Spiderwick Chronicles is an entertaining children's adventure, with heart and imagination to spare.
Synopsis: Of the three Grace children, Jared (Freddie Highmore) has always been thought of as the troublemaker. So when strange things... [More]
Directed By: Mark Waters

#12

Kung Fu Panda 2 (2011)
81%

#12
Adjusted Score: 86841%
Critics Consensus: The storyline arc may seem a tad familiar to fans of the original, but Kung Fu Panda 2 offers enough action, comedy, and visual sparkle to compensate.
Synopsis: Now known as the Dragon Warrior, Po (Jack Black) protects the Valley of Peace alongside his friends and fellow kung... [More]
Directed By: Jennifer Yuh Nelson

#11

Long Shot (2019)
81%

#11
Adjusted Score: 99821%
Critics Consensus: A sharp and deceptively layered comedy that's further fueled by the odd couple chemistry of its leads, this Long Shot largely hits its marks.
Synopsis: Fred Flarsky is a gifted and free-spirited journalist who has a knack for getting into trouble. Charlotte Field is one... [More]
Directed By: Jonathan Levine

#10

Sausage Party (2016)
82%

#10
Adjusted Score: 95762%
Critics Consensus: Sausage Party is definitely offensive, but backs up its enthusiastic profanity with an impressively high laugh-to-gag ratio -- and a surprisingly thought-provoking storyline.
Synopsis: Life is good for all the food items that occupy the shelves at the local supermarket. Frank (Seth Rogen) the... [More]

#9

This Is the End (2013)
83%

#9
Adjusted Score: 91203%
Critics Consensus: Energetic, self-deprecating performances and enough guffaw-inducing humor make up for the flaws in This Is the End loosely written script.
Synopsis: In Hollywood, actor James Franco is throwing a party with a slew of celebrity pals. Among those in attendance are... [More]
Directed By: Seth Rogen, Evan Goldberg

#8
#8
Adjusted Score: 92444%
Critics Consensus: Steve Carell's first star turn scores big with a tender treatment of its titular underdog, using raunchy but realistically funny comedy to connect with adult audiences.
Synopsis: Andy Stitzer (Steve Carell) is an amiable single guy who works at a big-box store. Living alone, 40-year-old Andy spends... [More]
Directed By: Judd Apatow

#7

Steve Jobs (2015)
85%

#7
Adjusted Score: 98210%
Critics Consensus: Like the tech giant co-founded by its subject, Steve Jobs gathers brilliant people to deliver a product whose elegance belies the intricate complexities at its core.
Synopsis: With public anticipation running high, Apple Inc. co-founders Steve Jobs (Michael Fassbender) and Steve "Woz" Wozniak get ready to unveil... [More]
Directed By: Danny Boyle

#6

Kung Fu Panda 3 (2016)
87%

#6
Adjusted Score: 96905%
Critics Consensus: Kung Fu Panda 3 boasts the requisite visual splendor, but like its rotund protagonist, this sequel's narrative is also surprisingly nimble, adding up to animated fun for the whole family.
Synopsis: Living large and loving life, Po (Jack Black) realizes that he has a lot to learn if he's going to... [More]

#5

Kung Fu Panda (2008)
87%

#5
Adjusted Score: 94519%
Critics Consensus: Kung Fu Panda has a familiar message, but the pleasing mix of humor, swift martial arts action, and colorful animation makes for winning Summer entertainment.
Synopsis: Po the panda (Jack Black) works in his family's noodle shop and dreams of becoming a kung-fu master. His dream... [More]

#4

Superbad (2007)
88%

#4
Adjusted Score: 96006%
Critics Consensus: Deftly balancing vulgarity and sincerity while placing its protagonists in excessive situations, Superbad is an authentic take on friendship and the overarching awkwardness of the high school experience.
Synopsis: High-school seniors Seth (Jonah Hill) and Evan (Michael Cera) have high hopes for a graduation party: The co-dependent teens plan... [More]
Directed By: Greg Mottola

#3

Knocked Up (2007)
89%

#3
Adjusted Score: 100064%
Critics Consensus: Knocked Up is a hilarious, poignant and refreshing look at the rigors of courtship and child-rearing, with a sometimes raunchy, yet savvy script that is ably acted and directed.
Synopsis: Rising journalist Alison Scott (Katherine Heigl) hits a serious bump in the road after a one-night stand with irresponsible slacker... [More]
Directed By: Judd Apatow

#2
#2
Adjusted Score: 116562%
Critics Consensus: Oh, hai Mark. The Disaster Artist is a surprisingly poignant and charming movie-about-a-movie that explores the creative process with unexpected delicacy.
Synopsis: The incredible true story of aspiring filmmaker and Hollywood outsider Tommy Wiseau as he and his best friend defiantly pursue... [More]
Directed By: James Franco

#1

50/50 (2011)
93%

#1
Adjusted Score: 100616%
Critics Consensus: A good-hearted film about a difficult topic, 50/50 maneuvers between jokes and drama with surprising finesse.
Synopsis: Adam Lerner (Joseph Gordon-Levitt) has always tried to take good care of his health, so it comes as a cruel... [More]
Directed By: Jonathan Levine

Thumbnail image: Columbia Pictures, Universal / courtesy Everett Collection 

For almost two decades, Judd Apatow has been the king of a certain kind of American movie comedy – as he described it to Rotten Tomatoes, films about people who are stuck and whose lives are falling apart… because “life falling apart is usually funny.” In movies like Knocked Up, The 40-Year-Old Virgin, and Trainwreck, the writer and director has given us some of recent cinema’s funniest moments, from a chest-waxing scene that almost cost Steve Carell his nipple to an epic breakdown in the principal’s office courtesy of a foul-mouthed Melissa McCarthy in This Is 40. His latest comedy, The King of Staten Island, is a semi-autobiographical feature starring and co-written by Saturday Night Live star Pete Davidson, and it packs in Apatow’s signature mix of big laughs and big feels.

Ahead of the movie’s release, Apatow sat down with us to break down the mechanics and stories behind some of the funniest scenes he’s put on the screen – including an messy pool fight that’s getting the biggest laughs from audiences who’ve seen his newest film.

#1
Adjusted Score: 94306%
Critics Consensus: The King of Staten Island's uncertain tone and indulgent length blunt this coming-of-age dramedy's ability to find itself, but Pete Davidson's soulful performance holds it together.
Synopsis: An aimless slacker dreams of becoming a tattoo artist while living with his mother and hanging out with his friends... [More]
Directed By: Judd Apatow

With this weekend’s War Dogs, Jonah Hill teams up with Miles Teller to tell the reality-inspired tale of two guys out to strike it rich as arms dealers. It’s just the latest in a series of eclectic roles for Hill, who made his name as a member of the Apatow comedy stable before branching out into more dramatic fare, and we’re here to celebrate it with a fond look back at some of the brightest critical highlights from his growing filmography. It’s time for Total Recall!


 Funny People (2009) 69%

Years after they roomed together as young comics with showbiz dreams, Adam Sandler and writer/director/producer Judd Apatow reunited for 2009’s Funny People, which surrounded Sandler with a crowd of comedic talent that included multiple members of the Apatow stable — including Seth Rogen, who plays an aspiring comedian who lucks into a friendship with Sandler’s embittered superstar, and Hill, who plays Rogen’s roommate and a fellow veteran of the stand-up circuit whose own career ambitions end up getting tangled in the complicated relationship between Rogen and Sandler’s characters. The movie’s 146-minute length turned off a number of critics, but it was just right for Ben Lyons of At the Movies, who wrote that “Apatow has always found a balance of heart and humor in his best films, and Funny People is no exception.”

Watch Trailer


Get Him to the Greek (2010) 72%

Hill and Russell Brand triggered a few laughs during their scenes together in Forgetting Sarah Marshall — so when it was decided that Brand would reprise his character in the Marshall spinoff Get Him to the Greek, it was only natural that the duo should be reunited. Here, Brand’s Aldous Snow must be shepherded to a crucial gig through a landmine of bad decisions and irresponsible behavior, with responsibility for his whereabouts falling to an increasingly overmatched label rep played by Hill. “The movie’s a good, rude commercial comedy,” argued the Chicago Tribune’s Michael Phillips. “How many good movies have we even seen this year?”

Watch Trailer


The Wolf of Wall Street (2013) 79%

Hill earned his second Best Supporting Actor Oscar nomination for his work in The Wolf of Wall Street, a luridly over-the-top Martin Scorsese epic that uses the real-life exploits of disgraced stockbroker Jordan Belfort as the launchpad for a wild-eyed look at modern capitalism — and three hours of drug-fueled insanity. Always entertaining as part of a duo, Hill turns in some of his best work as a foil for Leonardo DiCaprio’s Belfort, playing the comparatively less unscrupulous part in a gonzo dramatization of one of Wall Street’s more infamous cautionary tales. “For three hours the movie operates at a ridiculous comedic pitch. You never forget you’re at the circus,” Wesley Morris wrote for Grantland. “You never lose sight of the lawlessness, the reckless pleasure, the sheer lunacy and lack of regulation.”

Watch Trailer


Cyrus (2010) 80%

The 21st century has brought us no shortage of comedies about schlubby man-children, but Cyrus is something different. Rather than going broad and over-the-top with the story of an overgrown mama’s boy (Hill) who plants himself squarely between his mom (Marisa Tomei) and her well-meaning new suitor (John C. Reilly), writer-directors Jay and Mark Duplass gave their seemingly tired premise a fresh mumblecore spin, playing up the sphincter-tightening awkwardness of the situation and trusting their talented cast to imbue the characters with three-dimensional honesty. “I’ve seldom seen,” mused the Wall Street Journal’s Joe Morgenstern, “a film in which three intelligent, articulate people make so many penetrating observations about themselves, and address their bizarre situation so directly, without providing, or indeed possessing, the slightest clue.”

Watch Trailer


This Is the End (2013) 83%

We’ve seen plenty of movies about the end of civilization, but they’ve all focused on the apocalyptic problems of ordinary people while neglecting to imagine what those last few days on earth might be like for celebrities. Enter This Is the End, which imagines what it might be like if disaster struck Los Angeles while James Franco was hosting a house party. Featuring Hill, Franco, Seth Rogen, Jay Baruchel, Craig Robinson, and Danny McBride — among plenty of others — playing fictionalized (and generally obnoxious) versions of themselves, it combines a fresh take on the apocalyptic comedy with the fun of watching movie stars make fun of themselves. As J.R. Jones argued for the Chicago Reader, “Their big joke is to literalize the Book of Revelations, but snaking around this is a biting contempt for the entertainment business, their own bad movies, and the social privilege these confer.”

Watch Trailer


21 Jump Street (2012) 85%22 Jump Street (2014) 84%

A movie about a TV show that wasn’t exactly a classic in the first place has no business being awesome, and a buddy-cop picture doesn’t seem like the most natural environment for testing out Channing Tatum and Jonah Hill’s screen chemistry. All of which is pretty much exactly why the Jump Street franchise has had such a blockbuster time of it on the big screen: the duo’s easy banter, coupled with the freewheeling attitude of a pair of films that went meta on their medium in increasingly bonkers ways, added up to two critical and commercial hits. Whether we’ll ever get that rumored Jump Street/Men in Black crossover remains an open question, but for now, we’ve got the movies that moved the Atlantic’s Christopher Orr to write, “Self-referential irony is hardly a new gimmick, having served as the underlying premise for such franchises as Scream and Austin Powers, but rarely has it been indulged with such fervor.”

Watch Trailer


Hail, Caesar! (2016) 85%

The Coen brothers have a terrific eye for talent and enough clout to hire just about any actor they see fit, so the opportunity to star in one of their films isn’t something many stars would take lightly — even if the role in question isn’t necessarily the biggest in the movie. For example, here’s Hail, Caesar!, a Coens spectacular that uses a bustling ensemble of famous faces (including George Clooney, Josh Brolin, Scarlett Johansson, and — you guessed it — Jonah Hill) to tell the madcap tale of a doofus actor in ’50s Hollywood who gets himself kidnapped, spurring his studio to enlist the efforts of their in-house fixer (inspired by real-life movie biz legend Eddie Mannix) to secure his return. That description just scratches the surface of an old-school singing, dancing extravaganza that simultaneously celebrates and sends up old-school cinema; if the end result is a little unwieldy, most critics felt its deficiencies were far more than outweighed by its charms. “This,” opined Richard Roeper for the Chicago Sun-Times, “is one of my favorite movies ever made about making movies.”

Watch Trailer


Superbad (2007) 88%

A high school loss-of-virginity flick in the grand tradition of Fast Times at Ridgemont High and American Pie, Superbad teamed Hill and Michael Cera with newcomer Christopher Mintz-Plasse as desperately horny teens on a quest to secure booze for a house party. It may have been embarrassingly familiar, but screenwriter Seth Rogen and his writing partner, Evan Goldberg, nonetheless managed to squeeze fresh laughs (and plenty of ticket receipts) from it — not to mention kudos from critics like the San Francisco Chronicle’s Mick LaSalle, who wrote, “for pure laughs, for the experience of just sitting in a chair and breaking up every minute or so, Superbad is 2007’s most successful comedy.”

Watch Trailer


Knocked Up (2007) 89%

After making a brief appearance in Judd Apatow’s 40-Year-Old Virgin, Hill took on a more substantial role in the follow-up, Knocked Up, which paired rumpled slacker Ben Stone (Seth Rogen) with gorgeous E! Network employee Alison Scott (Katherine Heigl) for a look at what can happen when you head to a club, have a few too many drinks, and don’t give a lot of thought to who comes home with you. (This is Hollywood, of course, so what ends up happening is everlasting love, but not before a lot of funnier, more unpleasant consequences.) An enormous box office success, Knocked Up offered Hill an opportunity to reel off a few funny lines, cemented Apatow’s standing as a purveyor of fine adult comedies, and earned the adoration of critics such as Stephanie Zacharek of Salon, who called it “Hilarious from moment to moment, but leaving behind both a warm glow and a sting. This is a picture that refuses to fetishize either the ability to conceive or the significance of our place in the universe once we’ve done so.”

Watch Trailer


Moneyball (2011) 94%

As a (freakishly entertaining) by-the-numbers account of how the Oakland A’s used newly adapted metrics to turn conventional baseball wisdom on its head, Michael Lewis’ Moneyball seemed like one of the least cinematic bestsellers to have its film rights optioned by a major studio — and after directors David Frankel and Steven Soderbergh departed the project, it looked like it might be destined for the scrap heap. But with Bennett Miller behind the cameras and Hill demonstrating his Oscar-nominated dramatic chops opposite Brad Pitt — not to mention an Aaron Sorkin screenplay — it ended up being not only a six-time Academy Awards nominee, but a $110 million box office hit. “Baseball fans know this story,” admitted USA Today’s Claudia Puig, “but Miller puts it all in fascinating context. This is a thinking person’s baseball movie, a more complex version of the inspirational sports story.”

Watch Trailer


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Funny People

When Judd Apatow grew up he made Funny People. This is certainly his most mature comedy to date, if not his most successful.

George Simmons (Adam Sandler) is a narcissistic, superstar comedian who is diagnosed with a terminal disease. The only treatment available to him is highly experimental and he is plunged into deep misery as he contemplates his mortality and the superficiality of his life. He shares his introspective ponderings on stage at the comedy club where he started out and meets new-comer Ira (Seth Rogen).

There are some genuinely hilarious moments, most of which come from Ira’s housemates played by Jason Schwartzman and Jonah Hill, but at almost two and a half hours, the movie does drag in parts. The humour is lewd, over-the-top and at times down-right offensive but if that sort of thing worries you then you have no business picking up an Apatow DVD.

The plot has a jack knife twist which makes the film as a whole feel somewhat disjointed and some of the analysis of comedy as art and the nature of the artist borders on self-indulgent but at least all the scat and holocaust jokes save it from slipping into schmaltzy sentimentality.

Definitely plunder the special features on this one because the commentary with Apatow, Sandler and Rogen is very funny. There are also gag reels, deleted, extended and alternate scenes and featurettes including snippets from Judd’s High School Radio Show.


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Push

This highly stylised sci-fi thriller looks super slick and has an edgy feel that is well complimented by the Hong Kong setting. It has striking colours, gorgeous lighting and uses every trick in the editor’s handbook. There is only one problem…it is absolutely incomprehensible.

The basic premise is that the Nazi’s carried out a series of experiments on a gang of psychics in an effort to build a race of paranormal soldiers. Their work was picked up by a secret government agency called the Division and now the world is inhabited by rogue souped-up psychics. There are pushers who can force any idea into their victims’ heads, movers who are telekinetic, watchers who see the future, bleeders who appear to cause massive internal bleeding with a single scream and bloodhounds who can sniff them all out. There is also some serum, a suitcase and an ever-moving future. Don’t sweat the details because the details don’t make a whole lot of sense. Just enjoy it like you are flicking through a very hot comic and you will have fun.

The good news is that the special features contain a featurette that is meant to capture the science behind the film. I am not sure if it does that but it is a fascinating look into psychic conspiracy theories. You will also find deleted scenes and an audio commentary with director, Paul McGuigan, and stars Chris Evans and Dakota Fanning.


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The Taking of Pelham 1 2 3

John Travolta stars as an evil hijacker who takes a New York subway and threatens to start killing off the passengers unless a massive ransom is paid in one hour. Denzel Washington is his nemesis, the subway dispatcher who draws on his intricate knowledge of the subway system in his race to thwart the criminals and save the day.

The stars in this do a good job. Both Travolta and Washington bring a great energy to the screen and James Gandolfini plays an excellent Mayor. In fact, this is a perfectly adequate, if predicable, remake of an outstanding original film. The techniques are flashier, the score bigger, the crashes are more explosive and computer generated and everything is slightly more frenetic. In short, it is a modern day thriller. However, all the flash in the world can’t replace strong characterisation and a good build of the story and sadly, both of those elements are missing in this version.

By all means watch it, enjoy it and then walk down to the dusty end of the video store and hire the 1974 original. You won’t be disappointed.

The special features include an audio commentary from director, Tony Scott as well as handful of featurettes including an interesting ‘making-of’ piece.


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The Soloist

Robert Downey Jr. plays real-life newspaper columnist, Steve Lopez, who develops a friendship with an extraordinarily talented violinist, Nathaniel Ayers (Jamie Foxx), a schizophrenic living on the streets.

This true story is a very moving portrayal of friendship and acceptance. It is less successful in its analysis homelessness and mental illness, in part because tends to resort to a ‘midday movie’ style earnestness with its hand-wringing representations of welfare options and flashbacks.

What works exceptionally well is that the characters themselves are never romanticised. There is no traditional happy ending. There is no shining knight. This honesty redeems the film from all other failings. And this success lies in the work of Robert Downey Jr and Jamie Foxx. Sure, you can tell they were playing for the Oscar, but beyond that, they both deliver truly magnificent performances.

There are two interesting featurettes to be found amongst the special features, one is about Julliard, the famed music school where Ayers started his study before his mental illness made it unbearable for him to continue and the other is a making-of feature called ‘An Unlikely friendship’. There is also an audio commentary from director, Joe Wright, and some deleted scenes.


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The Girlfriend Experience

Real-life adult movie star Sasha Grey plays a high-class New York call-girl who offers her client the ‘girlfriend experience’ within a very structured code. Away from work she has a boyfriend who is accepting of her career choice, contingent on her compartmentalising her girlfriend experience offering.

This is a small film from director Steven Soderbergh. He even shot it himself, under a pseudonym, on HD video. It is set in the lead up to the last US election and is less about sex and the life of a call-girl as it is an analogy of the global financial crisis and an economy where even sex and love become a commodity.

Those looking for the emotional complexity of Soderbergh’s break-through film, Sex, Lies and Videotape, won’t find it here. The Girlfriend Experience is surprisingly cold and non-sexual but is still a fascinating little film.


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Beautiful Kate

Rachel Ward’s directorial debut is an emotionally charged portrayal of a family in ruin. When Ned (Ben Mendelsohn) returns home for the first time in 20 years to see his sister, played with great warmth by Rachel Griffith and his cruel, overbearing father, Bruce (Bryan Brown), he is confronted by haunting memories.

All of the performances in this film are exceptional. Each character, though largely unlikable, feels rounded and complete; with the possible exception of the title character, beautiful Kate. Bryan Brown is particularly harrowing as the dying old man who has lost none of his spit and venom with age.

The family’s story is revealed largely though flashbacks which gives the film a dreamlike quality to it. Ward makes excellent use of the South Australian bush and manages to take the original American novel and invest it with a strong Australian feel. There are moments in this film that are shot so beautifully, with such simplicity, that you can almost smell the dark, country night air.

The storyline is very confronting, for some maybe too much so. This is not a film that shies away from taboos but rather strides right through them, regardless of the consequences.

As well as containing deleted scenes and an audio commentary, the special features also offer a couple of Rachel Ward’s short films including The Big House and Martha’s New Coat.


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Fighting

Played by G.I. Joe: The Rise Of Cobra’s Channing Tatum, Shawn is a street-hustler who finds himself lured into the underground world of bare-knuckle fighting in New York City.

This is a fairly predictable story that follows the well-trod formula of the underdog boxer or fighter film. It distinguishes itself from the dross, however, by its absolute grit. The fight scenes feel downright dirty and realistic. And the sleazy fight manager, Harvey Boarden (Terrence Howard) is an example of how a fine performance can elevate even the most pedestrian film.

If it is a world that interests you, this film produces the best it possibly can with a slightly tired script.


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Red Cliff

Based on one of the most legendary battles in China’s history, John Woo’s The Battle of Red Cliff is a tale of heroism and warfare on an epic scale. It is nothing short of spectacular and makes some of the battle scenes in the Lord of the Rings trilogy look like playtime. It is the most expensive Chinese-language film ever made and you can tell.

There are two versions of this film available. In Asia, it was released in two parts and ran for over four hours in total. In Australia the theatrical release was a highly edited one-film version running at a little over two hours.

Editing this film was a travesty. It still contains many of the magnificent battle scenes but an epic of this quality deserves to be savoured in full.

There are two versions of this film on DVD. There is the one-disc theatrical release and the two-disc Director’s Edition which contains part 1 and 2. Both are available on DVD and Blu-ray. Look out for the extended version and where possible watch it on Blu-ray.

None of the DVD or Blu-ray releases are heavy on the special features, though there is an interesting interview with John Woo and some behind the scenes coverage.


You are looking fantastic — you’ve lost a lot of weight. How did you do it?

Seth Rogen: Thank You. I had a trainer and I dieted. It was that easy — it drives my girlfriend crazy.

They make quite a joke of your new slimmer build in the film. Was that based on real life?

Seth Rogen: Yeah people make fun of what I’m eating because they can tell I hate it. They know I am not happy eating healthy food. I look miserable — I look like I would rather be eating something else.

Was there any concern that people might look at you differently?

Seth Rogen: For me it’s like a movie to movie thing. Its like your doing a movie — you should probably lose some weight. This was done for Green Hornet and the filming was pushed back a bit. I was always supposed to film Funny People before Green Hornet so it was a mad dash to lose the weight before Funny People, because I couldn’t be losing weight throughout the film.

So you are also Executive Producer on this film. What did that involve?

Seth Rogen: On The 40 Year Old Virgin I was co producer and on Knocked Up I was also Executive Producer. I’m officially there to help him out throughout the pre-production process. It means I go to the rehearsals for the other actors which most actors would not do but as Executive Producer I do that and later I am involved in the conversation about those rehearsals. In this movie Judd had a very clear view of what he wanted to do. He usually finds it more along the way but this one he as very clear what he wanted out of it, so it made my job a lot easier.

Is your character based on Judd’s earlier career?

Seth Rogen: I didn’t know Judd when he was young so it’s kind of what I would imagine Judd would have been when he was young. Judd and I are very different — we don’t act anything alike. We are friends and we work together well but we are not very similar people. I knew the guy he wanted in the movie was supposed to be naïve and wide eyed and who would take a lot from other people but still could be a little sneaky. I think I am much more cynical and I put up walls much more than the character he wanted me to be. To be the sort of person that would take that much crap from someone I needed to be a very different person than what I am. If it was me I probably would have punched him in the face 20 minutes into the movie

That’s what was interesting — he seems to be a guy who would always do the right thing and yet he doesn’t hesitate to stabs his friend in the back.

Seth Rogen: That’s what makes them interesting characters. As a writer it’s bold to do something like that. It’s contradictory because people could say it doesn’t make sense — but it does make sense — the character is doing something complicated. That’s why I really like it.

Do you feel that being in the business you have to learn to play the game even if it’s against your nature?

Seth Rogen: What I relate a lot to in the movie is how much of yourself are you willing to sacrifice in order to become success? Are you willing to stop hanging out with your friends — are you going to become a jerk?

So what is your conclusion personally?

Seth Rogen: No I don’t think so. I think if you want to become the most successful person maybe you have to, but then I look at Adam who is unbelievably successful and he is really nice and seems happy and has a family and kids but generally when I see very rich people I generally assume they are evil. (laughs).

You started stand up at 13. How did you get your first break?

Seth Rogen: They have workshops run out of comedy clubs put on by comics and you learn the basic constructs of joke writing. Then you get up on stage and tell your jokes and that was basically what happened and it was held out of a lesbian bar in Vancouver. It went pretty well and there were some other comics that invited me to do something else, and then slowly you meet the comics and you get more work.

13 is pretty young to be hanging out with seasoned comics, isn’t it?

Seth Rogen: I thought it was hilarious. That’s probably why I have a pretty sick sense of humour now. I still had my friends. It’s not like I only hung out with comedians. I would be there a few nights at week.

What was it like doing stand up for this movie?

Seth Rogen: Judd made us do stand up for months leading up to the movie. It was very helpful in selecting the jokes — for every scene you see me telling a joke, we filmed an entire routine of about 20 minutes. Every moment in the movie may seem random and off the cuff but it is all very meticulously selected.

But you had to write them in character?

Seth Rogen: Obviously I couldn’t write jokes about sleeping on a pull out couch or not having money and I have a girlfriend. I had to write jokes from the point of view of an insecure single struggling guy that has no money. It’s a lot more pathetic than I am, so that was hard, but at the same time I couldn’t go onstage and would have to explain that these jokes are not about me.

Did you think of any other movie references when you were making this?

Seth Rogen: There were a lot of movies we talked about and tried to combine them. We did talk about Lenny because we felt it captured the stand up comedy world really well, and it felt real. We also talked about movies like Terms of Endearment and Broadcast News — those life changing movies, because it was going to be a mix of those.

Did you feel that this was a grown up movie for Judd?

Seth Rogen: I guess. I think it’s a much more complicated movie. I don’t know if it’s because it’s about terminal illness. There are a lot of stories. The 40 Year Old Virgin and Knocked Up are pretty simple stories. This one is tracking many ideas and it’s a much more ambitious movie.

How did you build your relationship with Adam Sandler for the movie?

Seth Rogen: We didn’t really hang out but we rehearsed for a few weeks. Luckily in real life Adam is someone I idolized my entire life growing up and I’m in awe of and nervous around so we didn’t need to work on that dynamic. Obviously he is way meaner to me in the movie than he is in real life but that’s easy to fake. We didn’t need to work that hard on it because the dynamic was already there.

This week marks the DVD release of Judd Apatow’s comedy Funny People, the director’s ambitious film starring Adam Sandler and Seth Rogen. To celebrate, we’re giving away five copies, with thanks to Universal.

To win, tell us in 25 words or less who you think the funniest person in movies is, and why. Send your answers, along with your mailing address, to: Funny People Giveaway.

Entries close Monday, January 11. Winners will be notified by mail. Please note that the contest is open to Australian residents only.

Check out our interview with Seth Rogen here.


Richard Curtis

Richard Curtis has a plan. “What I’ve decided is to choose recent films,” he explains to RT. “I do think that often people get stuck in always picking the five greatest films of all time, films they saw between the ages of 17 and 22, because that’s when you’re forming your opinions. I think I’ll talk about modern films, which aren’t necessarily the greatest films ever made, but are five great films.”

Modern films are certainly Curtis’ bread-and-butter. Best known for defining a genre with Four Weddings and a Funeral, the writer of Notting Hill and Bridget Jones’s Diary turned to feature directing in 2003 with Love, Actually — an entire career on the big-screen set in the here and now. The Boat that Rocked, out on DVD and Blu-ray in the UK this week and soon to hit US cinemas retitled Pirate Radio, is his first ‘period’ film and he doesn’t go much further back in time than the swinging 60s.

On the small-screen, he’s Britain’s ruling king of comedy, giving us the ultimate history lesson through the various series of Blackadder, and defining comedy for the 80s and 90s through BBC favourites Mr. Bean, The Vicar of Dibley and Spitting Image. In 1985 he founded Comic Relief, which has raised £80m for good causes this year alone.

Read on to learn about the five films he can’t do without.


Let the Right One In (2008) 98%

“Very apt for now, because I think it’s just come out on DVD. I’m scared of horror films, and hardly ever see them, but I was just so haunted by the scene at the end at the swimming pool, about which I will say no more because my brain is still trying to work out what happened there. It just shows how, if you’ve got a really low budget, and a really serious intent, you can make people feel uncomfortable. It’s a weird, spooky, melancholy Swedish love story about vampires, which is a big subject at the moment, but it’s hard to imagine a better vampire film. So that would be my number one choice — delightful, strange and disjointing.

“That will be the only horror movie on any list of mine. The first time I saw The Exorcist, I had to sleep with the lights on for about four years, so horror is not for me.”

Lost in Translation (2003) 95%

“It seems to me that Sofia Coppola is incapable of producing an ugly frame; it’s just completely beautiful, from astonishing first shot to the final whisper. I think that Scarlett Johansson can be just fabulous, and in that she’s just fabulous, plainly beautiful all the way through. She was great in Match Point too, so very good. She gives that dreadful feeling of somebody that will weigh you down forever. And on top of that it’s a genuinely funny film, its got those fantastic bits, particularly the bit where [Bill Murray] is recording the ads, and it really is a comedy. And yet Bill Murray is so melancholy; so sad. After spending all my life in comedy, where you’re aware of all the grief and melancholy that accompanies being thought of as a charming and amusing person, I think it’s an almost perfect film, I think I’d put that in my top ten favourite films of all time. I love that film.”

Knocked Up (2007) 89%

“I don’t know why because I’m almost never in Los Angeles, but I went to the premiere of Knocked Up. Some cousin of Judd Apatow‘s was going to propose to his girlfriend, but was shy, so what Judd did was brought up the cousin and his girlfriend onto stage and Jack Black hid behind, knelt on the floor behind the cousin, and very noisily proposed to her. So the first time I saw the film I was in a very good mood having had such a brilliant start. But Knocked Up, like The Hangover which is also wonderful, is full of really really funny things; particularly the friends. When that group of friends is together, everyone has a sort of weird idiosyncratic joke which is perfectly expressed every time they appear, from the guy with the beard downwards.

There are so many other funny things — when Kristen Wiig is rude to Katherine Heigl when she gets her job, and she’s going on about how lucky she is to get the job, it’s completely hilarious. Both Seth Rogen and Katherine are so charming and funny, and it’s so modern, on the edge and hard; a real romantic film. I think that if romantic comedies are meant to be romantic and funny, then that’s a perfect example. It’s very relaxed and at ease with itself, and doesn’t try too hard, or doesn’t seem to be trying very hard, and I think that’s very much to do with how Judd makes his movies. I’m sure he knows exactly what he wants, but it does have a slightly improvisational edge to it, because he does work with people that he knows very well, so there’s a naturalness to it, and I think it’s a great modern film. I haven’t seen Funny People yet, but I have very high hopes for it, I’m looking forward to it a great deal. “

Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind (2004) 92%

“This is one of my favourite films, and I’m going to almost insist that you say in this article that people must go and watch a song called Carol Brown, from the new series of Flight of the Conchords. It’s been directed by Michel Gondry, and it’s just so amazing; for the rest of the episode you can’t really see that it’s him, but up comes this dazzling thing. I just think for a movie with such a massive concept, that idea, that sort of fantasy, should be done by being completely realistic. In a way it’s like Let the Right One In – the office where they alter your mind feels like a ghastly dental surgery. So you’re in this weird mixture between something that feels terribly realistic, with Kirsten Dunst jumping up and down on a bed, absolutely normal, and yet it’s completely freakish and odd and had these spectacular special effects in it. I love the sort of downbeat-ness of the love story — the fact that, really, they’re sort of right for each other, but only because they’re not right for anyone else. I think it’s a genuinely great fantasy movie, a great love story, and Kate Winslet‘s hair is, after all, blue, so that’s obviously a good reason for seeing it. You’ve been on this massive ride, and it gets back to these people in a corridor, which I suppose is like — if you land on the moon, there’s just you on the moon, and I think there’s something profound about the whole thing.”

National Lampoon's Animal House (1978) 90%

I’m going to break my rules for this one, and just put in one old movie. I still think that Animal House is misunderstood, although I do increasingly read about a generation of comedians saying it is the great film. Because I think it’s a brilliant comedy, with brilliant acting, with everybody at their best – Karen Allen at her cutest, Tim Matheson at his handsomest, John Belushi at his most mono-syllabic. So these extraordinary comic performances with just a series of amazing scenarios with amazing set-ups with the horse and the chainsaw, the dead girlfriend, them going to the toga party, and just everything about it. It’s boiled down to the funniest joke scenarios that there could possibly be. That fantastic Elmer Bernstein score, which could be from Patton.

“It seems to me like a really great, classic, funny character movie hiding in wolves clothing, pretending to be a big stupid old generic college movie, but it actually invented the genre, and I don’t know that I’ve ever seen a funnier version of those movies. Certainly when I was doing The Boat That Rocked, it was M*A*S*H on the one hand – very casual, conversational, just guys doing a weird job – and Animal House on the other – with big characterisations and set-pieces.. So we’ve got four moderns and one slightly older. Can I have one more? Am I allowed? Just for sorrow?”


I think we can let you have another film.

Richard Curtis: OK – The Son’s Room by Nanni Moretti. He was this kind of comedian when younger, and was always called Italy’s Woody Allen, and in a way he’s fulfilled that promise, because Woody Allen also made some very profound films. The Son’s Room is an amazingly gentle, completely sorrowful movie, which I don’t even know whether or not to recommend. It’s full of sadness but everyone who is thinking of having a family should see the film so that they know the risk, and everyone who has got a family should see the film so that they understand how in the middle of the most normal conversational world, sorrow can hit you. But it’s got the best music of any film I’ve seen and it’s got this Brian Eno track at the end. The movie can’t be resolved because it’s about grief that never ends, but somehow the music acts as some way back to normality. So I think The Son’s Room is the film I’ve been most struck by in a way, over the last ten years, the most truthful film I’ve seen.

Music in a film is obviously very important to you…

RC: Yeah, I don’t know. Strangely I watched The Godfather the other day, and the Godfather Soundtrack is extraordinary, it never stops. It’s either jazz music or orchestral music or exciting music, he never lets it go, and that’s the way he keeps the pace up. So I always wanted The Boat That Rocked to be an ecstatic movie. I remember at the end of Bridget Jones, the second one, where we were trying to choose which of the three songs to put at the end where she’s running after Colin Firth – in the end I just said, “Put them all in. Put all three. Let’s have Beyonce, let’s have The Shirelles, and let’s have Barry White.” So I like the idea of going for it, wall-to-wall. And in a way I’ve always thought of my films as being like a Madness album or like an ABBA album, full of delightful little scenarios and very high spirited bursts of things.

But as a writer, just as sort of autobiographically, I listen to music all the time while I’m writing. It always cheers me up and always lifts my spirits, and it always has. On The Boat That Rocked I just wanted to make a film about that feeling of what it’s like to be exhilirated day and night by pop music.

Does the music that you’re listening to end up in the movie when you’re writing?

RC: Yes, but the weird thing is when the music doesn’t. I wrote the whole of Love, Actually listening to one song, which is The Loving by XTC, which is a huge orchestral song about everyone in the world being full of love, but I didn’t put it in the film. Notting Hill was based around two songs, one of which was Wasting Time by Ron Sexsmith, and the other – very oddly I used to listen to it all the time because it exactly represented the pitch of the emotion I wanted in the film – was a version of Downtown Train by Everything But the Girl. That was what I wanted the film to feel like. I used that as the pattern and then threw it away, because there wasn’t actually a place for it in the film. But I often get the mood of what I’m writing from pop music.

Did you have any problems with rights for any of the songs you wanted to use in The Boat That Rocked?

RC: No. With The Boat That Rocked, we had a bit more money, so we got most of what we wanted. Some songs you just couldn’t get because they wanted something like a million pounds – those were the acts who just didn’t want their songs in movies. When Hugh Grant dances in Love, Actually, we wanted a Michael Jackson song we couldn’t get, because it was about a million pounds to use.

But on the whole, these days, I get what I want. My bad memories of The Tall Guy, the very first film I made, are thankfully in the past. It was meant to be structured around three songs by Madness. It was meant to start with Yesterday’s Men, go to The Sun and the Rain, then end with It Must Be Love, and that was the shape of the movie. But they could only afford one song, so we only had It Must Be Love, which was a great disappointment.

There’s a very funny bit in that movie where Jeff Goldblum sits down and listens to a radio and he’s heartbroken. He switches it and on comes a really sad song like Let the Heartaches Begin, so he switches it again and on comes another one called So Sad or Cry in the Rain or something, but if you listen carefully, they’re all sung by my friend Philip, because we couldn’t afford any of the songs. We had to spend an hour in a studio to do one impression of Long John Baldry and one of the Everly Brothers. So in the old days we couldn’t get what we wanted, but now it’s easier.

The Boat that Rocked might be the first film I’ve seen with a double-CD soundtrack.

RC: And I don’t think that’s all of them either – we’ve had to leave out one or two songs from the middle of the movie that haven’t made it onto the soundtrack. But yeah, it was very passionate. What you realise when you’re making a film like that is that people do love their pop music, and as people are finding out now at festivals, living with pop is a great way of leading your life. When we made the movie, everyday when we went out on the boat, all 140 of us, and they blared pop music for an hour. The moment it was lunch we would put it on over the huge speakers, and on the way home we put in on the speakers, and it was an idyllic life.

And you were working with Bill Nighy, who we know is a huge music fan – that would have been fun…

RC: Yeah, Bill loves his pop music. He’s obsessed, at the moment, with a guy called Maxwell, who he says is a great genius, and has just had a huge hit in America. What was nice was that there was one or two songs that I picked that nobody had heard of, like Crimson and Clover by Tommy James and the Shondells and All Over the World by Francoise Hardy. Everybody had one or two things they were absolutely delighted to meet in the film. And that was my aim, to have a mixture of very high-profile songs and songs that people didn’t know as well.
What’s next for you as a director?

RC: I’m doing a huge range of things, but I think my next movie is probably going to be a film about time travel, but it’ll be quite complicated so it’ll take a while to work out.

Lots of paradoxes to figure out?

RC: I’m not going to worry about things like that, but there are always going to be issues!

Comedy heavyweights Adam Sandler and Judd Apatow claimed the number one spot
with their new dramedy

Funny People
which debuted to only moderate results leading the entire top
ten to slump to its lowest point of the summer. Two other new releases, the
kidpic Aliens
in the Attic
and the horror film
The Collector
,
both struggled to find ticket buyers helping the North American box office once
again fall below year-ago levels for the fourth consecutive weekend.

Universal claimed the top spot with

Funny People
which debuted to an estimated $23.4M making for the lowest
gross for a number one film all summer. Playing in 3,007 locations, the R-rated
story of a Hollywood superstar facing death averaged a healthy $7,795 per
theater. Reviews were mixed for the reported $75M production.
[rtimage]MapID=1205730&MapTypeID=2&photo=9&legacy=1[/rtimage]
Friday generated $8.7M in opening day grosses but sales tumbled 15% on Saturday
to $7.5M signaling bad word-of-mouth. The weekend estimate Universal reported
was very aggressive as it includes a scant 3% Saturday-to-Sunday decline. Final
grosses will be reported on Monday and the three-day figure may end up closer to
$22M.

Funny People, which co-stars Seth Rogen, Leslie Mann, Jonah Hill, and
Eric Bana, opened weaker than Apatow’s last directorial effort Knocked Up
which bowed to $30.7M in June 2007 with a $10,690 average. With Sandler being a
bigger and more reliable star, Funny was expected to at least open in the
same vicinity. Even last weekend’s The Ugly Truth with Knocked Up
star Katherine Heigl did better with its $27.6M bow from fewer theaters.[rtimage]MapID=1205730&MapTypeID=2&photo=8&legacy=1[/rtimage]
People’s Saturday drop and weak B- CinemaScore grade hints at a troubled path
ahead. Audiences may be finding it too serious for an Apatow pic and not
immature enough for a Sandler flick. The actor has scored $100M hits in each of
the last seven years (tying Will Smith) but never with an R-rated entry.
Sandler’s younger fans may have been kept out because of the rating. A running
time of nearly two-and-a-half hours also tested the patience of moviegoers.

Universal has suffered through a very forgettable summer and Funny People
has added another headache. Land of the Lost is considered one of the
season’s most expensive flops with less than $50M collected, Public Enemies
hasn’t been a blockbuster despite the starpower, and Brüno fared well
on opening day but has been plummeting by at least 66% each weekend since. The
studio could possibly end the summer without any $100M hits. It had four last
summer when the it focused mostly on franchise action films.[rtimage]MapID=1205730&MapTypeID=2&photo=32&legacy=1[/rtimage]With most IMAX locations finally getting to open

Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince
this past Wednesday, the latest
wizard flick enjoyed the smallest third-weekend decline for the franchise since
2002. Prince’s Friday-to-Sunday take fell just 40% to an estimated $17.7M
allowing it to hold steady in second place. Domestic cume to date rocketed to
$255.5M. The last Potter installment to enjoy a smaller drop in the third
outing was Chamber of Secrets which dipped only 24% thanks to the
Thanksgiving holiday session.

Warner Bros. was able to debut the new Hogwarts chapter in 166 additional IMAX
venues this past week following the five-week run those screens had for the new
Transformers pic. That boosted the playdate count for Prince to
4,393 this weekend making it the widest film release in history edging out the
4,366 of last summer’s The Dark Knight, another Warners smash. The new
Potter
seems likely to hit $300M in North America.[rtimage]MapID=1189302&MapTypeID=2&photo=48&legacy=1[/rtimage]Half-Blood Prince again ruled the overseas box office this weekend grossing
an estimated $42.7M from over 13,200 screens in 64 markets propelling the
international cume to a sensational $492.3M. The global gross flew to an
eye-popping $747.8M in just under three weeks of release. Top offshore markets
are the United Kingdom with $66.5M, Japan with $50.8M, and Germany with $48.2M.

Close behind in third was last week’s top entry
G-Force
with
an estimated $17.1M for a 46% sophomore decline. It was a bigger fall than those
experienced by fellow summer 3D kidpics Up and Ice Age: Dawn of the
Dinosaurs
which depreciated by 35% and 34%, respectively, in their second
weekends. After ten days, Disney’s spy actioner has grossed $66.5M and is hoping
to reach $110-120M by the end of its run.[rtimage]MapID=10009462&MapTypeID=2&photo=26&legacy=1[/rtimage]With a new Apatow flick in the marketplace,
The Ugly Truth

took a major hit falling 53% but still collected a sizable gross taking in an
estimated $13M in its second weekend. The ten-day total for Sony stands at
$54.5M. Budgeted at $38M, the Katherine Heigl-Gerard Butler pic should end up
with an encouraging $90-100M. Sony hasn’t been too big of a player at the box
office this summer so Truth will be a welcome hit.

Opening in fifth place and barely making a dent in the summer movie season was
the new kidpic
Aliens in the
Attic
which took in an estimated $7.8M from 3,106 theaters for a weak
$2,511 average. The Fox release tried to play to families and older kids, but
couldn’t compete with the high-octane competition from all the wizards and
guinea pigs infesting multiplexes.[rtimage]MapID=1197086&MapTypeID=2&photo=15&legacy=1[/rtimage]The horror flick
Orphan
held up reasonably well dropping 44%, encouraging for a fright
flick, to an estimated $7.3M boosting the total to $26.8M in ten days. Warner
Bros. looks to end with a solid $45M or so.

Popular summer blockbusters rounded out the top ten continuing their successful
runs. Fox’s

Ice Age
threequel dipped 37% to an estimated $5.3M upping the total to
$181.8M. Close behind was the runaway smash
The Hangover

with an estimated $5.1M, off only 21%, for a stellar $255.8M cume. The
post-bachelor party flick has now spent nine consecutive weekends in the top ten
matching Paul Blart: Mall Cop, Taken, and Monsters vs. Aliens
for the most of any 2009 releases. The only film to spend more time this
calendar year was Oscar champ Slumdog Millionaire which spent 11 total
frames in the top ten.

Sandra Bullock claimed ninth place with her top grosser ever,
The Proposal
,
which took in an estimated $4.8M, down just 24%, for a $148.9M sum. The Buena
Vista release has been a consistent go-to choice for adult women and couples.
Falling 43% to tenth place was the year’s largest hit
Transformers: Revenge of
the Fallen
with an estimated $4.6M raising the cume to $388.1M.

Scaring up little excitement outside of the top ten was the new horror film
The
Collector
which debuted poorly with an estimated $3.6M. Averaging a weak $2,736
from 1,325 sites, the R-rated Freestyle release failed to connect with its
target audience which had more high-profile options to choose from.[rtimage]MapID=10011524&MapTypeID=2&photo=2&legacy=1[/rtimage]
Two new titles launched to good results in platform release. Fox Searchlight’s
Hugh Dancy romance Adam bowed to an estimated $66,265 from four sites for a
$16,566 average. The total since its Wednesday start is $94,776. Focus unleashed
its Korean vampire thriller
Thirst
in four theaters as well and banked an
estimated $55,173 for $13,793 per location. Both films will expand to more
cities throughout August.

The top ten films grossed an estimated $106.1M which was down a troubling 25%
from last year when
The Dark Knight
stayed in the top spot for a third straight
time with $42.7M; and also down 33% from 2007 when
The Bourne Ultimatum
debuted
at number one with $69.3M.
 

Author: Gitesh Pandaya, Box Office
Guru

TM
Movie Gross
Funny People

83%

83%

Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince

G-Force

The Ugly Truth
Aliens in the Attic
Orphan

Ice Age: Dawn of the Dinosaurs

The Hangover
The Proposal
Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen

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