Critics Consensus

Critics Consensus: Pain & Gain is Visceral But Uneven

Plus, The Big Wedding is a big misfire.

by | April 25, 2013 | Comments

This week at the movies, we’ve got bodybuilding bad guys (Pain & Gain, starring Mark Wahlberg and Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson) and matrimonial mishaps (The Big Wedding, starring Robert De Niro and Diane Keaton). What do the critics have to say?



Pain & Gain

50%

Michael Bay is not the kind of guy to tone things down just because he’s working with a smaller budget. However, critics say the auteur behind Armageddon and the Transformers franchise has tempered the visceral impact of Pain & Gain with a fair amount of black comedy, and the result is uneven but often queasily compelling. Based on a bizarre true story, Pain & Gain is the tale of three bodybuilders who concoct a scheme to kidnap a wealthy businessman and wrest control of his riches. However, the plan quickly goes awry, with violent repercussions. The pundits say Pain & Gain‘s pitch-black sense of humor and charismatic leads can’t quite make up for the movie’s stylistic excess and lack of nuance. (Check out this week’s 24 Frames for a gallery of films based on magazine and newspaper articles.)



The Big Wedding

7%

Critics say The Big Wedding is a comedy that audiences should decline with regrets; its all-star cast is stranded in a contrived, strained plot that features broad stabs at humor but few laughs. Robert De Niro and Diane Keaton star as a divorced couple who reunite for their son’s wedding and pretend to be happily married for the sake of his bride-to-be’s conservative mother; hilarity allegedly ensues. The pundits say The Big Wedding is a big misfire, with shopworn slapstick gags and stereotypical characters.Check out this week’s Total Recall for a countdown of Keaton’s best-reviewed movies.)

Also opening this week in limited release:

Tag Cloud

Pop Drama ITV crime Star Trek Superheroes APB Opinion TBS A&E supernatural Amazon Best and Worst TCA Awards TNT BET Valentine's Day GoT FOX LGBTQ CNN Teen TIFF American Society of Cinematographers Emmys what to watch Sneak Peek Mindy Kaling Rock Thanksgiving Masterpiece Marathons Comedy Central RT History diversity dramedy police drama vampires Mary Tyler Moore TV GIFs FX NBC Lionsgate Schedule Holidays aliens Warner Bros. Music Watching Series Comic Book sitcom comiccon Countdown Crackle BBC America IFC TCM Year in Review Cartoon Network OWN VICE AMC Infographic BBC Netflix binge Bravo thriller X-Men PaleyFest Trivia Rom-Com USA serial killer politics Disney El Rey 007 History First Look E! Animation E3 Food Network DC Comics Logo Musicals Disney Channel Red Carpet GLAAD CMT Summer Winners Universal Freeform Box Office Starz Action boxoffice VH1 social media ABC Family Tomatazos based on movie DirecTV war Sundance Photos WGN Sci-Fi DC Universe SDCC Nat Geo historical drama Esquire 2017 Mystery MTV TV Land Syfy crime thriller 2015 Fantasy Toys singing competition Fox News 24 frames Polls and Games ESPN HBO Trailer cooking Horror YA Writers Guild of America period drama Nickelodeon Calendar The Arrangement Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt travel Paramount cats science fiction Dark Horse Comics Premiere Dates discovery political drama FXX Cosplay harry potter President TruTV CBS All Access technology Reality Nominations Hulu Winter TV Adult Swim Marvel zombie sports TLC Biopics Comedy Interview Fall TV Grammys Musical Country adventure psycho 45 NYCC CBS talk show cops Super Bowl Kids & Family MSNBC biography The CW Reality Competition PBS cinemax Set visit Martial Arts Oscars TCA 2017 docudrama Tumblr composers Lifetime Extras Character Guide Spring TV Pirates Showtime Podcast SundanceTV romance Election Star Wars Rocky transformers ABC Video Games Certified Fresh 2016 Ellie Kemper crime drama Ghostbusters