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The Paperboy

Paperboy-span-thumbstandard-v2 Convinced by a death row inmate's female pen pal that the convict is innocent, a reporter and his brother investigate and discover a case marred by deceit, seduction and betrayal. Meanwhile, one brother falls for the convict's mysterious confidant.
HD Available
Netflix Rating: 3.1
NYT Review
“The Paperboy," a tangled and steamy drama directed by Lee Daniels, stars Nicole Kidman as a woman whose fiancé, played by John Cusack, is an alligator hunter on death row. Read the review
Rotten Tomatoes: Rotten 43%
Critics' score: 43   Audience score: 33   Rotten Tomatoes page
Top Rotten Tomatoes Critics

"The Paperboy" is one of those rare examples where you might wish the movie was less faithful to the book. full review

Rafer Guzman, Newsday

Yes, it's a dizzying stew set to boil. full review

Lisa Kennedy, Denver Post

The Paperboy is southern Gothic wallowing in the swamp of low camp. And if the wallowing were deliberate, this might have been hugely funny. full review

Rick Groen, Globe and Mail

The Paperboy bears some promise as a good-bad movie, but it unfolds as a bad-bad one. full review

Peter Howell, Toronto Star

It's a movie that seems to have a mild form of heatstroke: it's blurry, as if filmed long ago, and feverish, and the story wanders all over the place as if lost in a bayou. When it's over, you want to wipe your brow. full review

Moira MacDonald, Seattle Times

The Paperboy is over-the-top every which way you look. full review

Steven Rea, Philadelphia Inquirer

This one has it all: sex, violence, torture, incest, jellyfish attacks, telekinetic masturbation, Nicole Kidman peeing on Zac Efron and a gator gutted in revolting close-up. full review

Rene Rodriguez, Miami Herald

This is just the sort of movie certain people are hoping to see when they go to the movies but would never say they go to the movies for. full review

Wesley Morris, Boston Globe

"The Paperboy" suggests something Tennessee Williams might have come up with, if he didn't know how to string together a plot. full review

Colin Covert, Minneapolis Star Tribune

It's a good story about people who are not what they seem, about identity wavering in the heat-a true swamp tale-but the movie is messily ineffective. full review

David Denby, New Yorker

Simple ugly trash. full review

Stephen Whitty, Newark Star-Ledger

The entire cast of "The Paperboy" glistens with a golden sheen, as if they've been sprayed with Pam cooking oil. full review

Michael O'Sullivan, Washington Post

'The Paperboy" can't decide whether to be an unfunny sex comedy, a half-hearted detective story or a woeful race drama - so it decides to be all three ... full review

Kyle Smith, New York Post

The movie is definitely a mess. full review

Mick LaSalle, San Francisco Chronicle

There is so much grit in Kidman and McConaughey's performances, it's a lot for Efron to stand up to, but he does a good job of giving Jack a cocky innocence that is disarming. full review

Los Angeles Times, Los Angeles Times

Daniels' deft adaptation of Pete Dexter's 1996 novel is even more disturbing on screen than on the page. It's a Southern Gothic noir thriller with a terrific ensemble cast. full review

Claudia Puig, USA Today

Some of The Paperboy's missteps would be forgivable if Daniels delivered them with any conviction, but he doesn't seem capable of it. full review

This hot mess got booed by the snobs at Cannes, but there's no denying its profane energy. full review

Peter Travers, Rolling Stone

There is so much sweaty, gum-smackin', Southern-accented *acting* going on, you'd applaud if you weren't appalled. full review

Joe Neumaier, New York Daily News

The movie curls back and forth as sinuously as a snake through the bayou, tracing the fine line between desire and degradation. full review

J. R. Jones, Chicago Reader
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