21 (2008)

Ben Campbell is a shy, brilliant M.I.T. student who--needing to pay school tuition--finds the answers in the cards. He is recruited to join a group of the school's most gifted students that heads to Vegas every weekend armed with fake… More

Directed By:
Rated: PG-13
Running Time:
Release Date: March 28, 2008
DVD Release Date: July 22, 2008
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Critic Score: 35% Rotten Tomatoes™ Critic Reviews

Consensus: 21 could have been a fascinating study had it not supplanted the true story on which it is based with mundane melodrama.

Peter Rainer
Christian Science Monitor

If only director Robert Luketic and screenwriters Peter Steinfeld and Allan Loeb had not opted for glitz. As filmmakers, they're playing for very low stakes.

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J. R. Jones
Chicago Reader

The students are so blandly written this never builds any suspense, though it probably has some value as an empowerment fantasy for debt-ridden collegians.

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Brian D. Johnson
Maclean's Magazine

Despite being "based on a true story," the script is a loaded deck that plays like a pack of lies. 21 just doesn't add up.

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Time Out

The whizzo-conceit and slick visual bling do give it an undeniably diverting buzz, yet the movie's cautionary formula shows its hand way before the clunky final reel.

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Richard Roeper
Ebert & Roeper

Although it's definitely a fictionalization of a true story, they get the essence of this insanely crazy double life that these kids led as they were breaking the bank in Vegas.

Jeffrey Lyles
Lyles' Movie Files

Craps out leaving you wondering how it all went so wrong.

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Amy Nicholson
I.E. Weekly

Like the Strip itself, it's all lights and music throbbing so hard you confuse yourself into thinking you're having fun.

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Jim Emerson
Chicago Sun-Times

Inspired by the real-life story of the M.I.T. students who took Las Vegas casinos for millions, 21 has been reshaped to fit a simple movie template -- and it's nearly as much fun as watching an insurance professional compute actuarial tables.

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Matthew Pejkovic
Matt's Movie Reviews

Too bland, too bright and too long, 21 may talk a big game but it is mainly insipid entertainment.

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More reviews for 21

Flixster Audience Score: 66% Flixster User Reviews
Sam Barnett
One of those movies I saw before I was too jaded to just sit back and enjoy a cliched drama once in a while, I will still defend that there is something… More
Eric Alvarez
Gotta love any rags to riches story, and when it deals with gambling and counting cards it's even better. Overall, good fun movie.
Eugene Bernabe
A dynamic cast compiled by the help of one Kevin Spacey. 21 is a swift and smart story that is visually fascinating as it is clever. The film is brought down by… More
Directors Cat
[img]http://images.rottentomatoes.com/images/user/icons/icon14.gif[/img] For a film that has a plot that could have really benefited from a darkly serious… More
Sanjay Rema
This movie just has so many points at which it should end, but it just keeps going and going and it isn't extremely interesting.
Martin Sahlin
I think this movie was pretty impressive. It's a pretty advanced movie. Nice to see Kevin Spacey mentoring all theese young unknown actors.