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


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


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

GoT DC Comics women BBC Reality Competition golden globe awards WGN comics sitcom video Disney+ Disney Plus romance Image Comics Mystery OneApp twilight versus toy story Character Guide Calendar robots Photos Baby Yoda Mudbound green book FX on Hulu 2015 TV One 2021 cars Song of Ice and Fire BET Lucasfilm President revenge telelvision CNN Rocky kong australia king kong comic books Opinion Country Marathons Tokyo Olympics new star wars movies Quiz Creative Arts Emmys San Diego Comic-Con police drama jamie lee curtis GLAAD cooking name the review historical drama Set visit composers Podcast Musical Cosplay ABC 4/20 Britbox what to watch Watching Series Countdown television Avengers SXSW target BET Awards sag awards The Purge Television Academy binge Legendary children's TV scene in color elevated horror Sneak Peek Spike CW Seed spinoff screen actors guild game of thrones Endgame comic Disney Trophy Talk strong female leads facebook Valentine's Day anime VICE game show french Classic Film 93rd Oscars black singing competition supernatural hollywood Pirates emmy awards Dark Horse Comics venice El Rey 71st Emmy Awards unscripted USA Network franchise basketball 72 Emmy Awards quibi Rocketman animated mockumentary zero dark thirty lord of the rings 2018 Superheroe TCA Awards blockbusters crime thriller boxing GIFs dramedy YouTube Premium scorecard foreign reviews deadpool TCM Superheroes teaser DC Universe Amazon Prime Video CMT critics christmas movies medical drama TIFF sequels hist technology parents Chilling Adventures of Sabrina Music ghosts saw The Academy Cartoon Network FXX Spectrum Originals Mary Poppins Returns adenture indiana jones reboot adventure Masterpiece LGBTQ werewolf scary movies PaleyFest TruTV mutant prank Nickelodeon batman Trivia Super Bowl trailers RT History 1990s sequel Fall TV psycho BAFTA ratings A24 war festival blaxploitation TV Land 2020 screenings docudrama ABC Family Emmys Brie Larson Disney streaming service social media Family popular CBS X-Men Film Stephen King MTV talk show Reality dceu Women's History Month Pride Month football BBC One best joker zombies universal monsters Vudu live action finale documentaries discovery Walt Disney Pictures NYCC Netflix Christmas movies olympics series Martial Arts OWN travel Rock Nat Geo crossover Awards Acorn TV Amazon Prime wonder woman Red Carpet APB richard e. Grant nature die hard heist movie rotten Peacock cancelled TV shows Writers Guild of America stand-up comedy Paramount Plus stop motion halloween See It Skip It First Reviews legend Certified Fresh Sony Pictures vampires Pop witnail justice league Netflix streaming mission: impossible Sci-Fi Anna Paquin Paramount Network Animation 99% TV renewals Summer YouTube godzilla Ghostbusters james bond Apple new york 24 frames Columbia Pictures Sundance Now japanese Biopics sports halloween tv spider-man Pacific Islander Broadway japan news VH1 independent casting cops science fiction cancelled new zealand Best and Worst breaking bad high school stoner slashers TNT Drama Binge Guide Winter TV Amazon cults TV Trailer cartoon latino dragons Nominations CBS All Access Amazon Studios Showtime NBC Television Critics Association Grammys nfl cancelled television romantic comedy crime drama Fox News 90s Syfy Thanksgiving American Society of Cinematographers marvel cinematic universe E3 E! 2017 cats TCA 2017 Election Adult Swim DGA aliens concert 2019 comedies 007 Comedy Central know your critic Star Wars DirecTV Freeform renewed TV shows based on movie south america VOD Disney Channel TCA Winter 2020 Action 21st Century Fox Schedule miniseries directors Polls and Games zombie king arthur Film Festival crime HBO Go movies classics dark worst tv talk Turner obituary biography PlayStation Comic-Con@Home 2021 New York Comic Con The Walking Dead FOX Hallmark monster movies space political drama book adaptation boxoffice RT21 TLC Logo cancelled TV series Turner Classic Movies Fantasy serial killer child's play Western Pop TV Crunchyroll canceled TV shows Apple TV Plus true crime Crackle Lifetime Christmas movies Rom-Com ID Lifetime spain TBS asian-american NBA Heroines PBS Shondaland jurassic park Chernobyl italian Hulu Lionsgate IFC Travel Channel Starz worst movies Alien MCU Teen Infographic aapi Comics on TV Pet Sematary rt archives harry potter 2016 HBO Max Shudder YA Mary poppins award winner book Comedy First Look Pixar rom-coms 45 The CW Ovation Black Mirror diversity The Witch Paramount USA BBC America ABC Signature spanish HBO TCA A&E Kids & Family SundanceTV Hallmark Christmas movies thriller Emmy Nominations Food Network anthology dogs Winners Cannes video on demand Funimation archives toronto hispanic Sundance pirates of the caribbean The Walt Disney Company international Marvel Esquire Tumblr remakes spanish language Elton John movie rotten movies we love Universal transformers superman criterion LGBT theme song IFC Films chucky TV movies doctor who festivals golden globes Oscars Mindy Kaling natural history politics Extras Box Office films Sundance TV satire YouTube Red superhero AMC spy thriller ViacomCBS Captain marvel streaming movies Comic Book 20th Century Fox Exclusive Video Fox Searchlight Marvel Studios suspense ITV kaiju Black History Month FX History Musicals Year in Review SDCC Christmas MSNBC Arrowverse Wes Anderson Toys razzies Epix WarnerMedia psychological thriller Tarantino Interview period drama cinemax ESPN hidden camera blockbuster Ellie Kemper Holidays DC streaming service Horror dc Video Games nbcuniversal canceled disaster Spring TV kids Tomatazos Hear Us Out Apple TV+ docuseries National Geographic comiccon all-time free movies Mary Tyler Moore Awards Tour Premiere Dates Bravo fast and furious The Arrangement Holiday Warner Bros. Tubi laika Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt a nightmare on elm street fresh Disney Plus Star Trek adaptation 78th Annual Golden Globe Awards documentary indie Marvel Television Academy Awards Discovery Channel