Watch It

On DVD: Now | On Blu-ray: Now

Smokin' Aces Review Critics


Dave White Profile

… aesthetically bankrupt … Read full review

Other Critics provided by

Critics scores range from 0 to 100, with higher scores indicating more favorable reviews.

  • 3.0

    out of 100

    Mixed or average reviews
    based on a weighted average of all
    critic review scores.

  • 20

    out of 100

    Wall Street Journal Joe Morgenstern

    Calling Joe Carnahan's movie heartless implies that this auteur of affectless anarchy might have meant to invest it with detectable human feelings, and failed. Better to call it heart-free.

  • 25

    out of 100

    USA Today Claudia Puig

    The film tries to be stylish and slick, but is mostly just nasty and blood-drenched. Piven, so funny in other film roles and on TV's "Entourage," overdoes it here, and extended scenes of his debauchery grow excessive and thuddingly dull.

    Read Full Review

  • 60

    out of 100

    The Hollywood Reporter Kirk Honeycutt

    While the film bristles with cinematic verve, it also is as second-hand as an antique store.

    Read Full Review

  • 75

    out of 100

    Entertainment Weekly Owen Gleiberman

    A cheerfully disposable gangland freak-show thrill ride that's been directed by the gifted Joe Carnahan (Narc) as if he were trying to give the audience a seizure.

    Read Full Review

  • See all Smokin' Aces reviews at

For Families provided by Common Sense Media

Not for kids 16 & under

Chaotic, violent, and unoriginal. Not for kids.

What Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that this fast-paced shoot-'em-up isn't for kids. While its combination of over-the-top violence and sardonic attitude produces a certain sort of humor, it's full of bloody injuries and destruction. Most of the characters -- assassins, law enforcement officers, gangsters, bounty hunters, and bodyguards -- are experts in lethal violence who use everything from guns and knives to explosions and disguises. Lots of smoking and drinking, and several characters do drugs repeatedly and excessively (mostly cocaine, but also marijuana and pills). Characters discuss sex, women wear revealing outfits and "play" prostitutes, a young boy develops a "comic" hard-on while showing off his martial-arts skills, and two of the assassins are lesbian lovers. Incessant swearing (over 100 uses of "f--k," plus other language, including the "N" word).

  • Families can talk about the film's multiple sets of partners (professional, familial, and romantic). How do these characters try to protect each other in the face of horrendous aggression? How does the film portray the FBI as being corrupt? How does the agents' corruption compare to that of the gangsters and assassins? How does the film pull together its many plot strands? Does the film offer any sort of commentary on action movie conventions in its excessiveness? At what point does movie violence get to be too much? Who's the judge of what's acceptable and what's over the top?

The good stuff
  • message true0

    Messages: Nearly all of the characters -- gangsters, federal agents, assassins, bounty hunters, bodyguards, and Las Vegas performers -- are greedy and brutal, betraying one another whenever possible. The single exception is an FBI agent, who pays dearly for his moral solvency.

What to watch for
  • violence false5

    Violence: Bloody, fast-cut, Guy-Ritchie-style violence: frequent shooting, strangling, stabbing, exploding, sticking with needles, dismembering, punching, kicking; ferocious elevator shootout between two is bloody and smoke-producing; assassin takes out targets with a long-range weapon; boy's display of his martial-arts skills leads to his sexual arousal (see above).

  • sex false5

    Sex: Repeated shots of women's bottoms and cleavage; passed-out prostitute shows her breasts in several shots; Nazi-punk assassin appears with his hand inside his pants, appearing to masturbate; "hooker" characters and references ("ho train," "skank ass"); sexual slang ("c--k," "bone," "p---y"); references to sexual acts (including "semen," "ejaculate," "jizz"); young boy has huge "hard-on" showing through his karate uniform; his grandmother keeps a dildo by her bathtub; addled male lawyer appears in women's lingerie (bra and thong).

  • language false5

    Language: Relentless use of "f--k" (over 100); frequent use of other profanity ("s--t," "bitch," "damn" ) and other language ("hell," "douche bag," "ass," "dick," "fag"); several uses of the "N" word, both as indications of camaraderie by African-American characters and as racist disparagement by white characters.

  • consumerism false0

    Consumerism: Set mostly in Vegas, film includes shots of neon signs (hotels, clubs).

  • drugsalcoholtobacco false5

    Drinking, drugs and smoking: Lots of cigarette smoking, drinking (wine, beer, liquor in glasses and flasks), and drug use (pills, marijuana, cocaine); Buddy does so much cocaine that he appears comatose (weepy/red eyes, unable to speak).