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

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