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The Informant! Review

Movies.com Critics

4.0

Dave White Profile

Matt Damon eats donuts for art. Read full review

Other Critics provided by Metacritic.com

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

  • 4.0
    66

    out of 100

    Metascore®
    Generally favorable reviews
    based on a weighted average of all
    critic review scores.

  • 100

    out of 100

    Chicago Sun-Times Roger Ebert

    As Soderbergh lovingly peels away veil after veil of deception, the film develops into an unexpected human comedy. Not that any of the characters are laughing.

    Read Full Review

  • 40

    out of 100

    Wall Street Journal Joe Morgenstern

    It's overextended and exhaustingly comic.

    Read Full Review

  • 50

    out of 100

    The Hollywood Reporter Kirk Honeycutt

    The whole film, a comedy about crime and mental illness, seems at war with itself.

    Read Full Review

  • 75

    out of 100

    USA Today Claudia Puig

    Soderbergh takes a deadly serious news story and amplifies and colors it to the point of outrageousness. The results aren't always consistent, but they are undeniably compelling.

    Read Full Review

  • 75

    out of 100

    Entertainment Weekly Lisa Schwarzbaum

    In The Informant!, that brain -- screwy and yet capable of doing important undercover work -- free-associates like Ellen DeGeneres on a swing through Walmart. Cute, but as even Agent 86 would say in "Get Smart": Missed it by that much.

    Read Full Review

  • See all The Informant! reviews at Metacritic.com

For Families provided by Common Sense Media

OK for kids 15+

Playful tale of corporate misdeeds may interest some teens.

What Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that this engaging Steven Soderbergh comedy received an R rating principally for language. The actual subject matter -- corporate misdeeds -- may only appeal to teens, however, because it stars Matt Damon. The movie is based on a true story and sends some mixed messages about corporate ethics; ethical breaches are treated somewhat lightly, which may make the crimes seem less serious. And the main character isn't exactly a role model himself. That said, teens old enough to understand the movie's tone won't miss the message about the importance of questioning greed and its place in today's society. While there's little sex or violence, you can expect some drinking and plenty of cursing (including "f--k," "s--t," and more), plus frank, sometimes complicated discussions about certain criminal activities.

  • Families can talk about why Mark reveals what he does. Are his true motives clear? Is he ultimately a hero or a villain?
  • Why do companies, particiularly large ones, seem unable to prevent breaches in ethics? Is there a general culture of greed that encourages unlawful behavior?
  • The movie is based on a true story. Do you think filmmakers changed any of the key facts for the movie? Why would they do that? How could you find out?

The good stuff
  • message true0

    Messages: The main character says he wants to expose a huge corporate scandal because he believes it's wrong, but it soon it becomes clear that he has less pure motives for coming forward. The film is based on a true story about an investigation into price-fixing by massive conglomerate Archer Daniels Midland.

  • rolemodels true0

    Role models: Mark is an unreliable narrator who may not always be telling the whole truth. His motives for becoming an informant are questionable, and his stories usually paint him as either a hero or victim but never show him doing anything wrong.

What to watch for
  • violence false1

    Violence: Some intense arguments.

  • sex false1

    Sex: One man crudely discusses a former co-worker and how attractive she was.

  • language false4

    Language: Plenty of swearing, including many uses of "f--k" (some with "mother"), "s--t," "t-ts," "goddamn," "a--hole," "damn," "hell," and more.

  • consumerism false2

    Consumerism: Brands mentioned or seen include luxury cars (like Porsche and Ferrari), EconoLodge, and Anheuser Busch.

  • drugsalcoholtobacco false2

    Drinking, drugs and smoking: Some adult characters drink -- both socially and at times of crisis.

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