Playing by Heart
Playing by Heart (1998)

This film weaves together interlocking stories about finding love in Los Angeles. The film's theme is spoken by young club-hopper Joan. Taken by the mysterious Keenan, she tells him that "talking about love" is like… More

Directed By:
Rated: R
Running Time:
Release Date: December 30, 1998
DVD Release Date: October 2, 2001
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Critic Score
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Critic Score: 60% Rotten Tomatoes™ Critic Reviews

Consensus: It's overly talky, but Playing By Heart benefits from witty insights into modern relationships and strong performances from an esteemed cast.

Lael Loewenstein

Carroll's characters spend so much time talking, albeit intelligently, that the connections they make seem peculiarly synthetic.

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Kevin Thomas
Los Angeles Times

If Playing by Heart is the kind of film that used to be known as a "woman's picture," it certainly provides more emotional nourishment than most other mainstream movies generate these days.

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Sight and Sound

Carroll's milieu is resolutely middle class and the crises encountered all too predictable.

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Jonathan Rosenbaum
Chicago Reader

This charming romantic comedy with a Los Angeles setting cuts between seemingly unconnected miniplots the way some Robert Altman movies do.

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Stephen Holden
New York Times

For all its artificiality, Playing by Heart percolates with an earnest charm.

Jeffrey M. Anderson
Combustible Celluloid

A very slight and inoffensive movie. It's a lot like L.A. itself, all surface, soothing and warm.

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Derek Adams
Time Out

All of these characters are more interesting when things are going badly for them than when the tide has turned, and Carroll's determination to make the final reel an extended bout of audience tummy tickling is disappointingly conventional.

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Roger Ebert
Chicago Sun-Times

[It's] n tune with the current trend toward movies that coddle the audience with reassuring sentiments.

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Ron Wells
Film Threat

The brightest spot belongs to Angelina Jolie, who is so compelling to watch she has chemistry with the furniture.

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More reviews for Playing by Heart

Flixster Audience Score: 79% Flixster User Reviews
Carlos Magalh„es
A passable yet rather predictable romantic drama that, despite a top-notch cast, seems more interested in its element of surprise at the end, reducing all the… More
Mark Abell
A delightful little film with an A-list roster of stars and a convoluted tale of relationships, beginning and ending and at a crossroads. I found myself caring… More
Steven Carrier
I'm a bit confused as to why "Playing By Heart" has faded into oblivion since it debuted in 1998. First off, the cast is impeccable.… More
Dann Michalski
Play by Heart is a fairly entertaining and unconventional romantic comedy. The film follows several people throughout L.A., and the various kinds and stages of… More
Arash Xak
To my suprise this was good, Cheesy yes but also impressive
Sean Gillespie
Slice of Life / Romantic Comedy. It's a little choppy through the first half with the HUGE ensemble cast squared off in pairs. Contains a lot of the late… More

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