Peoples Reviews of Magnolia

score = 80 
This was an interesting enough film that I hurried home from it to check out its reviews.  I liked it a great deal -- especially the wonderful character actors, both known and unknown, and the notion that we need to give attention to the dilemma of sorting out what deserves forgiveness and what does not.  I did get tired of the profanity and loudness, but there were moments of wonderful dialogue that gave me the same  thrill that I get from David Mamet. Also, I think it is a movie better seen knowing little about it (true for lots of movies, actually). Oddly, I will not recommend it to friends, as I cannot begin to predict who might like it and who probably will not. All in all, I admired the ambition of it a bit more than its execution.

Ian Martinez 
score = 100 
Not enough good things can be said about this movie. Inventive and heart-wrenching every moment captivates. Beautiful.

score = 10 
Worst movie I have ever seen.  Gave it a 10 because that was the lowest number.

Chris Linton 
score = 70 
I would love to give this film a higher rating but i need to think about it more. I just got home from seeing it less than a half hour ago. I think it was extremely well written but i am afraid it may have been too deep for me. i came straight home to research it to try and make some sense befor ei can rate/judge it. These comments have helped but i need to know."Is there one message or moral that can tie this all together or was there many?" if you can answer this question please email me at I would really appreciate it.

score = 10 
Just about the worst movie ever made - the music drowned out the dialog and the stories were way too disjointed

score = 80 
It did drag on for a little bit but it was nice to see how the characters developed during the movie. The symbolism of raining frogs was a little bit of a strech but it certainly made for some interesting scenery. If you don't want to be challenged do not see this movie.

score = 100 
Note to Josh: I completely agree with you. I think there are too many movies that are just special effects and no story line. Of course those movies attract a large audience, but it's only because they don't need to "think" when they are watching the movie. I know when I went to see Magnolia I was impressed at how intricate the movie was, and how much it required one's undivided attention and intelligence to follow it. It was funny to see people grumble because they didn't understand what was going on.  :o)

score = None 
I have pondered and even made diagrams of all the characters in Magnolia to come up with the connection to reveal the film's message so boldly stated not once, but four times (three at the beginning and again at the end) of the nature of coincidence. The narrator asserts there is no such thing as coincidence and gives three examples of the circular nature of things.  I searched and searched for the circle in Magnolia but was stumped. I was sure I'd missed something.  So I eagerly read all the reviews to find someone who got it. The people who enjoyed the movie were much impressed by all the symbolism and biblical references but no one seems able to explain a single one. CAN ANYONE EXPLAIN IT TO ME? I have concluded that the director exploited all those fantastic actors, who performed their hearts out, in an inflated, self-indulgent jerk-off that viewers may appreciate, but can't understand. An infinitely better movie with cohesive symbolism was American Beauty, which delivered on its opening premise.

score = 10 
The 10 is for the respectable acting.  Never in my life have I wanted to walk out of a movie.  The director/writer/producer (all the same guy of course)took the last hour trying to end the movie and settled for the cheap symbolism of raining frogs which was so ridiculous as to evoke only sypathy for his obvious lack of talent.  To all of the other reviewers who feel that this film evokes deep introspection and a true grasp of the sublime, metaphoric and absurd you need a better grasp of yourselves and a better education in what this film was trying to do... try Antonin Artaud for a start on the basics.  Overall, this film was utter crap and nothing more complex than a twelve year old trying for avant-gard.

score = 10 
I've wracked my brain for an example of a worse movie, but I've yet to think of one.  This oinker is a wonderful example of a movie that spends all of it's time on characterization, and almost no time in trying to tell a coherent story.  Although the movie just crawled along, I kept waiting for the hinted interconnectedness to start to tie together the many story lines.  Didn't happen (OK, it happened a little, but my estimate was that fully three-quarters of the story lines were just left dangling).  There were a lot of well-acted characters.  Too bad there's more to storytelling than characterization.

score = 100 
Sorry for those who hated it - I think it is an extraodinary winner. My question is, why is it named "Magnolia"?

score = 100 
First i'd like to stste that i rarely find a movie worth my time yet i am a movie lover and will forever be addicted to wacthing them. Also a lover of art and hater of art for arts sake i find too many movies to be a regurgitation of idiotic themes, plot and acting.  Lets face there are too many predictable movies out there and once a movie becomes predictable it loses all my respect.  These are appropriatly labeled chick flicks and macho garbage. Magnolia was outstanding; for lack of any kind of word that could properly grasp my wonder. There were many biblical intricacies, commentaries on the human psyche, extraordinary characters, beautiful cinematography and great music.  i absolutely loved the way the music dominated much of the movie as sometimes only music can emote the true meaning where words just fail or demean the meaning by its limited boundries.  The theme of repentance and forgiveness is a struggle everyone strives through and few understand.  This seems to be the dominating theme in magnolia, which is appropriate as this flower represents repentance (to answer some of your questions).  I loved the hiding of Exodus in such places as: on the roof whent the man is about to jump off, on the door in one of the first scenes of "coincidence", in the gameshow crowd, flickering in the bus stop before it comes ture...and many more places that my brain refuses to recalla t this moment.  The passage entales the theme so well.  as this pestilence came down to punish sins and bring forth repentance and forgiveness. For those of you who couldn't follow it or didn't ge it i pity you for you will never be able to understand, let alone appreciate, real art as your intelligece is quite confined to cookie cutter images. Art, my friends, is a vital part of life as it is the expression of ourselves. Back to the movie; i am glad to see that Tom cruze has finally given an excellent preformance, W Macey has finally picked a worthy movie since fargo, Juianna more has expressed that one doesn't need intelligent lines to be a brilliant actress, that kids can act without being celebrated for being "cute". The cop was incredible and the druggy stayed so consistant in her role with all her mannurisma and general demeanor. I loved the irony in the movie as well.  the ruining of the perfect teeth as a kind of reflection on his wanting braces.  The contradiction of how one always considers one who pisses thier pants to be stupid. I loved the intricacies. the repeating of doll imagery (tom comments on women as mere dolls made up for his enjoyment, the druggy yells at her father saying im not your doll and the genius kid goes on a rampage about how he is not a doll to manipulate nor a freak to gawk at). The  portrayl of all types of man and how no matter what or how you live your life love is the final goal (sorry for the cheese but i am a girl). there really is so much more to say about this movie but i cant seem to find the words. IF YOU LOVE MOVIES THAT HAS A GREAT PLOT, GOOD MUSIC, EXCELENT CINEMATOGRAPHY, OUTSTANDING ACTING AND INCREDINBLE CHARACTERIZATIONS SEE MAGNOLIA. or if you hate movies like titanic or any girly mushy-in-desperate-need-for-a-plot or overtly violent and macho lets-fight repeatedly-even-if-it-makes-no-sense type of movie you'll love manolia.

score = 20
 wassup with the raining frogs??? I know it has some biblical meaning but many of us are not familar with the is a very confusing movie...great story line but it could have been more effecive if it was shorter.

Bob Mitchell 
score = 10 
The acting in Magnolia was outstanding.  But when one is serverd XXX(crap) on a fine platter, one tends to not notice the fine platter.  This movie is quite simply a complete, total and absolute trash.  This movie could knock a buzzard off of a xxx(crap) bin a mile away!  From the under-developed story to the massive confessions of one's adultery to the fricking falling frogs knocking Bill Macy's teeth out to the shitty background music which was anything but, this flick fux.  I am ashamed that I wasted my breath, heartbeats and life watching this conglomerate of some drugger's dreams...and to think that Hollywood put up the finance and New Line Cinema shoved their heads up their asses and distributed this vomit is simply astounding.  What the hell is their problem in Hollywood?  I would rather watch 50 hours of my dog taking a xxx(crap) than watch this xxx(crappy)-producing orafice of a movie...but too late, I already watched it.  I wish I had the opportunity to film Captain Kangaroo taking a shit in a public stall than to endure this offensive and shameless piss.  Yeah, piss! I am mad and I was robbed.  I would rather have spent the time having my ass removed one razor blade slice at a time than sit through this vomitous heap of stinking shit!  Ebert and his  friends can sit and pretend to enjoy this excrement but as for me, a month of hot baths will not wash the stench off!  Don't waste your time watching this movie.... 
score = 100 
The most amazing movie I have seen in years.  Can't wait to see it again.  I think this will be the subject of analysis and debate for years to come.

score = 90 
I don't believe that Magnolia fits together smoothly.  I don't think it was supposed to. It raises an interesting question. Why must a story fit together smoothly to be considered good entertainment?  The fact is that the characters of Magnolia lead chaotic lives. They aren't happy. They have skeletons in their respective closets and can't seem to forgive themselves. This is not a happy plot, which, I'm sure, would turn many viewers off. But since the time of Greek theater audiences have been entertained by Tragedy as well as Comedy. Entertainment is measured not only by the joy it produces, but by Catharsis--does it stir a true emotional response?  And Magnolia does. Every character was well-acted and well-written. Yes, their lives are filled with sex and drugs and illness, but that is the subject of the movie. It saddens me that viewers dislike the raining frogs because it isn't realistic. American audiences have seen nothing but realism on television and in the movie theaters for so long that they are unwilling to accept anything else! Of the multiple styles of the Theater, very few are "believeable," and I applaud Paul Thomas Anderson for bringing a story to the screen that departs from the realm of the mundane--or the worldly--and brings to us a fantastic event to stimulate our imaginations--because so much is produced by Hollywood that does it all for us. Magnolia is truely unique--a modern-day story--it's not exactly comedy, it's not exactly tragedy.  It's magical realism--everyday and fantastic events woven into the same story.  Magnolia will no doubt inspire a whole new genre of film, and I look forward to it. I gave it a 90 because it was awfully long.  I have no problems with long movies if they need to be long, but I felt that Magnolia could have had 30 minutes cut off without losing its very powerful effect.

score = None 
To the person who said that the music was drowning out some "important" diaglogue, remember that when a director makes the decision to "drown out" the dialogue with music, he is essentially telling you the diaglogue is NOT important.  At that point in the movei, the music makes a more eloquent point than the dialogue ever could.  As for symbolism, I'm sure I didn't catch even half of it, but here is a random listing of what I observed (in no particular order, ofcourse): * children = angels (notice various references by the old quiz kid, rapper's reference to himself as a prophet, and wings that protrude from the young quiz kid's head due to design on the wall behind him.) * cop = Christ figure (his "job" is to decide who to forgive and who not to {as is ours}, he helps various characters, he "saves" the druggy {listen to words of final song}, he is the only religious character in the movie and he lives his life simply, recognizing the value and importance of life.) * frogs/Exodus 8:2 = God's warning/reminder of our own mortality and our purpose on this earth (to forgive those who have hurt or used us and to open our hearts, allowing ourselves to be free to love again)  It also symbolizes the way in which God gives us many chances to right our lives (the way he did the Pharoah in Exodus) and we have time to take advantage of that, repent, and forgive. * the music = main points of movie (buy the soundtrack and read P.T. Anderson's comments on the inside cover--Aimee Mann influenced much of his writing of this film). * coincidence = God's hand (Vignettes at beginning only illustrate that what looks like coincidence is not--there is a reason for everything, and if we can't explain it we call it coincidence, but what we should call it is God's intervention {like the frogs}. However, I, like some of you, do not see how this connects to the storylines of each character--please comment on this if you know.) I'm saddened by those who feel they need to hurl insults at the others who don't agree with their own viewpoints--remember, art is meant to be open to interpretation, and if we all viewed it the same way IT would not be art and WE would not be individuals.  However, I will say that this is quite possibly the best film I have ever seen, although I did not fully grasp it the first time I saw it and so had to see it a second time.  It forced me think, using analytical skills that had not been put to such a test in a long time.  I like a movie that makes me work like that, and if others don't, that doesn't make them unintelligent, it just makes them different. And different isn't bad--that kind of thinking is how stereotypes are made.

score = 30 
very difficult to follow and understand.  Kept waiting and wanting integration of characters/plot... never arrived.  Good acting though.

score = 100 
I went to see this movie not knowing what I was about to get into...I saw previews for the movie..and I wanted to see it...But I never thought that any one movie could be so powerfull...and I never felt so involved in a movie..This I saw Magnolia..After I left the movie I was in ahhhh...I was speechless...I was intriged...this movie was so realisticthat a lot of people can relate...We need more movies like this.

score = 30 
L O N G and basically a waste of time and money.  Blurry, dizzying filming (I refuse to call that "cinematography"), unintelligible "rapping", "background" music obscures actors' lines and not very subtle inuendo.  Actually "got" the gist in the first few minutes of the movie (I can't in good conscience call this one a "film") -- Grossly obvious that the numbers 82, coincidences and intersections were "significant" to the  so-called meaning of it all.  LOVED the little "Game Show" boy!!! He was the best part of the whole thing!!! and probably SHOULD get an Oscar nomination for his performance -- He's WONDERFUL (and I note, does not even get billing above).  Thank God for the "raining frogs" and for my unfamiliarity with Exodus 8:2 -- It was comic RELIEF! If the "F" word were removed, it would have been a silent film.  Though known to use the word myself on some occasions I'm disappointed that it seems the only way this movie was able to allow the characters to express their anger and frustration. Personally I dealt with my own cancer, losing a young ailing parent, and drug addiction all at the same time in my own family and though I could relate to the frustration/anger thank God I none of us behaved as these people were portrayed! For those who think it's so much a slice of life I am sorry for you:  LONG, DREARY, SAD & BORING -- and greatly lacking humor -- is how I'd best discribe this movie and that's certainly not my view of life!

score = 90
There is alot to digest in Magnolia.  I need to see it again before It's unified meaning can become clear. I consider it great simply for that. Thank you to the writer/director for this provacative movie. I like this trend toward multi-threaded movie plots. Its like 3D chess, or a Jackson Pollack paintings--they stay with you. Just a few points I considered to be hightlights: * The frog storm. It was awe-inspiring.  How the movie ignores it, other than the quiz kid's comment that "these things happen," is wildly creative.  My mouth hung open involuntarily.  And I loved that there was no news cast shown about the frogs. * The cop's gun being returned to him from heaven after the frog storm is also very telling.  He is a good man, a savior, whom God helps. * The streets being totally vacant after dark. Its sureal, even with the bad wheather.

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