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Overall Rating
4.27

Awesome57.43%
Worth A Look: 23.27%
Average: 12.87%
Pretty Bad: 1.98%
Total Crap: 4.46%

13 reviews, 124 user ratings



Three Kings
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by Slyder

"It's Comedy, It's Action, It's Drama, And It Rocks"
5 stars

Three Kings is a clever, stylish and interesting little film that is capable of keeping you on the edge of your seat, and give you nonstop entertainment. It gives you an in-depth and thought-provoking message about the qualities of life during the aftermath of the Gulf War, with stylish humor, interesting twists, and great storytelling, enough to make it a cult classic. This film is definitely worth your attention.

So, the film starts off after the end of the Gulf War, and we meet Archie Gates (George Clooney) and his ďThree KingsĒ, Troy Barlow (Mark Wahlberg), and Chief Elgin (Ice Cube), and Conrad Vig (Spike Jonze), who set off to rob a storage full of gold after discovering from a prisoner soldier a map that contains directions of the secret hideout where the Iraqis have it. The task goes smoothly, until tensions arise, shoving and shooting occur, and the matter goes out of hands, and in the end, they most join forces with the oppressed Kuwaiti refugees against the stronghold of Iraqis that are in that town, which becomes a saga that would change their lives forever.

The film blasts off with a unique blend of action and comedy, and the fire starts burning up. Many classic sequences will come up like the Nerf Football shooting, or the cow-bomb, but nothing prepares us for what is to come. When we get to the scenes where it involves stealing the gold, we see the Iraqis, respecting the truce, but bashing all over their own people, starving them to death, and also includes shooting one woman villager. This triggers the entire chain reaction to come, and a new sense of humanity is reached. We get to see and feel the shots that each side fires, giving you a plain description that the truce was broken. Originally these guys were off to steal gold and get fucking rich and famous, but after their experiences, we see the film changing total course and teaching us a human value, which is to help necessitated people out of their oppression.

The film avoids being formulaic and throws you in a series of profound political messages, showing you what the other side of the coin feels and speaks. Thatís rarely seen in a movie these days, with usual pro-Americanism shown everywhere, but not here. Through the interrelated discussions that the main characters have with the locals and the Iraqi soldiers, it gives you a different aspect of what these people were experiencing, a story unheard of in any TV news, on their feelings and anger against both the Iraqi attacks AND the American bombings done on Baghdad. You can even feel those peopleís pain and the suffering they had to live with for a very long time.

The film also tackles new ground on again breaking the rules and blending genres all over it. We see parts of action, comedy, drama, etc. But director David O. Russell (who also wrote the screenplay based on the story by John Ridley) manages to carefully place all those parts from different genres into place perfectly, and doesnít over blow it in a single while. Itís basically another great example of the true ďartĒ in filmmaking, next to Ghost Dog and other great ones. The film is more about human values, and the challenges that come from them, and what can you do about them, when it comes to helping other people, and also a film that deals with the opinions from other side of the front and what meaning does the treasure of gold and oil is given by both sides. Itís also the first time a film maker has set a movie in the Gulf War, the last time I ever saw that was in courage under fire. There are many metaphors scattered in this film that only add to the depth and meaning of the message, and also deal with the everyday life. The film is basically a well made political statement that shines and keeps on shining within your head long after the film has finished.

The performances were great by all the actors; in fact I believe that this was the movie that catapulted Clooney and Wahlberg to superstardom while Cube and Jonze solidify their status as major stars. Everybody was all-around great in the movie.

In the end, I recommend this film to anyone. David O. Russell for the look of it has reestablished, solidified and updated the old but brilliant formula once made famous by legendary filmmakers such as Oliver Stone, Martin Scorsese, and Stanley Kubrick. This film is guarantee to rock ass, seriously. Itís really worth your couple of dollars.

link directly to this review at http://www.efilmcritic.com/review.php?movie=2224&reviewer=235
originally posted: 08/10/01 15:13:15
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User Comments

9/14/17 morris campbell good war flick 4 stars
1/26/11 PAUL SHORTT INTELLIGENT AND GRITTY 4 stars
8/20/09 Jeff Wilder Very good overall even if ti does get a bit preachy in spots. 5 stars
7/08/09 *Holy_J@lapeno* A super enjoyable movie to watch. Great plot, great action, and awesome acting! 5 stars
2/20/09 Nolvia Seron Vargas Y loveOr I love Jerry Panenka, someone can say to him(her)? 5 stars
8/28/08 Shaun Wallner The storyline is well made! 5 stars
3/07/07 Frank Rountree Absolute Crap, offensive to veterans who served. 1 stars
10/19/06 David Pollastrini not great, not terrible 3 stars
9/15/06 Booksworm Had a kind of six o'clock news feel to it, didn't it? Good movie. 4 stars
6/12/06 Jerome Bosch Norah Dunn ruined it, what a cunt. 3 stars
1/04/06 WISEMAN I dont know any one who didnt like this movie, Lets watch it again!!! 5 stars
8/24/05 SALAH SALEA (THE IRAQI SOLDIER WITH MAP DAVID HE DID VERY GOOD JOP IN THIS MOVIE I NEED TO TALK TO HIM 5 stars
5/25/05 Jake David O. Russell's MASTERPIECE! 5 stars
2/09/05 Jeff Anderson DAVID O. RUSSELL'S TRUEST MASTERPIECE! A rare film that shows what a modern war is like!!!! 5 stars
11/07/04 One more paranoid American No bleedin heart's gonna tell me looting Iraq is bad, it's like being Robin Hood. 1 stars
10/31/04 JOE KENNEDY GREAT CHEMISTRYWITH THE ACTORS 4 stars
10/30/04 Jack Bourbon Pretty average. Pointless wankery. 3 stars
9/24/04 Agent Sands One of my favorite movies ever. Hilarious, violent, provocative, George Clooney. 5 stars
5/26/04 miranda loved it 5 stars
3/19/04 john great premise and interessting theme.It should have been great but just isn't - too bad 3 stars
1/07/04 beautie well its a --------MOVIE!!!!! 3 stars
11/29/03 Henrik Widell What a load of crap! watched this movie yesterday and thought it was the worst ever! 1 stars
10/26/03 Humvee Dumpty Has its quite poignant moments if you don't mind overall ambiguous message. 4 stars
6/19/03 JoeSco Great film with non stop action & humour - Realistic weapons results for a change 5 stars
3/31/03 spacecowboy sweeet 5 stars
3/17/03 Peter A superb portrayal of modern wars. Reveals that not everything we believe is true. 5 stars
2/25/03 Jon "Thumb the Toad" lyrik GREAT movie. 5 stars
9/19/02 Sarah Absolutely Wicked! 5 stars
8/22/02 MaIniYaK EXCELLENT MOVIE 5 stars
7/25/02 Tabitha Jean Lots of gold, but where's the frankincense and myrrh? 4 stars
6/10/02 Francis weird, interesting, but not that good 3 stars
3/13/02 Humvee Dumpty Has its quite poignant moments if you don't mind overall ambiguous message. 4 stars
3/02/02 Alan Smithee Original and highly entertaining filmmaking. 5 stars
1/06/02 daniboy truly, a classic. one of the greatest war films ever (even though the war was over) 5 stars
1/01/02 Lainey I could watch it again. 5 stars
10/10/01 Butterbean A great war film without any over-the-top antics, or corny ass speeches from some general. 4 stars
9/17/01 Rebecca Wahlberg the almost killed mark 5 times! I cried when they almost killed him, all5 times! 4 stars
9/14/01 Bront simply the best of everything in one movie 5 stars
8/15/01 vpitman Americans doing bad things? Men following their conscience? 5 stars
8/12/01 Dakamus Why this movie was totally overlooked at the Academy Awards is beyond me. 5 stars
6/14/01 Gary Excellent. Wahlberg & Clooney are great. Not a classic but still fucking awesome. 5 stars
5/30/01 Bada Bing Crosby Smart, thoughtful and great. A beautiful war movie, if that's possible 5 stars
5/12/01 The Moorhen One of the best movies I've seen this year. I loved it. 5 stars
5/04/01 Freak-77 Brilliant 5 stars
4/29/01 richard wong see the ass of the small suck by the man 5 stars
4/19/01 Tam The best scenes of this film were in the trailer. If you didnt see this, u didnt miss much. 3 stars
2/15/01 jk great film but they didn't set him on fire with thwe oil...bit of a shame 5 stars
2/11/01 Phil M. Afficianado Only "A" films blend drama/humor, escape/reality, mood/character like this one did. 5 stars
1/26/01 Bodhi An anti-war action caper comedy with a political perspective.Original,unique,brilliant. 5 stars
1/15/01 Action freak Great flick, I especially loved the bullet in the guts part. 5 stars
1/13/01 Jake Loved it 5 stars
1/13/01 Avenger Girl A lame rip of kelly? 1 stars
1/12/01 Matt69 This movie kicked fucking ass. 5 stars
1/02/01 Msitrab EXCELLENT 5 stars
12/22/00 joh This is a great movie, even the tidy ending didn't ruin it 5 stars
10/25/00 JC23 This is the best film of 1999 5 stars
9/27/00 mephetic Heartfelt and very emotional. Is this a love story or a war move? Still, its a great movie. 5 stars
9/18/00 Jed Very good movie. Not the best but certainly not the worst of 1999. 4 stars
9/04/00 The Extreaminizer One of 1999's Best...Great Camera, Acting, Action, Comedy, and Drama...Downright Excellent 5 stars
8/08/00 lily percy The absolute coolest, most kick ass film that I have seen in a while. It blew me away. 5 stars
7/31/00 Trevor Vos Best movie of 1999 - best war movie ever 5 stars
6/26/00 stranded on the Island Excellent attention to detail. DVD extras are awesome! Best (only?) gulf war film. 5 stars
6/20/00 JC A superb film, one of last years best. 5 stars
5/16/00 Jed Basically its what you get if you mixed "Good will hunting" & a episode of M.A.S.H. 4 stars
5/08/00 Joe Smaltz Waste of film and my time. Another Istar! 1 stars
4/25/00 Girl9 Nothing spectacular, but will hold your attention. Some interesting visual effects. 3 stars
4/24/00 Trina Barnard It's worth it just to see Clooney in BDU's! 4 stars
4/22/00 KoHawk Great, Realistic Movie 5 stars
4/22/00 Bruce One of 1999's truly great movies 5 stars
4/17/00 punkass Creative, funny and original, never too heavy handed but not quite there at the end 4 stars
4/16/00 arnold fantastic movie 5 stars
3/10/00 Peter Pan Lot of action (sometimes absurd, but exciting) 4 stars
3/10/00 Add So over rated, sure there were some really cool bits but the rest of the time its BORING!!! 2 stars
3/10/00 Matthew Bartley Some scenes don't work but it's still a great movie 5 stars
2/08/00 Andi Randell Mark, George & Ice Cube awesome combination 5 stars
1/29/00 John Which cell phone service operates 200 feet underground in the middle of a desert? 1 stars
1/29/00 jody the movie couldn't decide what it was comdey,action adventure, drama and it was not all 3 2 stars
1/24/00 JonnyAngel One of last years best- (can't wait for the DVD) 5 stars
1/17/00 Will I liked it dammit 5 stars
1/16/00 Joel Harwood A cinematic master piece 5 stars
1/15/00 Mic I'm much more comfortable with a 4-star system. This is actually about 3.5 out of 5 stars. 3 stars
1/15/00 Jerry Panenka Why isn't anybody from the media asking Mr.Bush about abandoning of the Iraquis 5 stars
1/13/00 heroinchic ICE CUBE! Who ever heard of such a stupid name? Why not FROZEN WATER or MAKES DRINKS COLD? 4 stars
11/29/99 Crystal Fleming Great suspense and great laughs 5 stars
11/11/99 Dinks Kicked Ass!! 5 stars
10/27/99 pipeman Promising start with a steady decline to a predictible hollywood ending. Disapointing. 3 stars
10/26/99 Lady Taz This film kicked butt!! 5 stars
10/26/99 RJohnson I was entertained. It was a fun movie. 4 stars
10/21/99 H'Woodbigshot Was there a Gulf War?Did we win? 1 stars
10/17/99 JimBob good entertainment 4 stars
10/14/99 BillDog Awful. Just plain awful. 1 stars
10/14/99 swonkdog fscking awesome! a totally surreal adventure. 5 stars
10/14/99 phypor very smart, witty, action with good drama and gut wrenching humor 5 stars
10/13/99 B. Kutz Any movie with a cow exploding is worth a look 5 stars
10/13/99 Wolfyboy A movie that plays on most of the emotions very fuckin awesome 5 stars
10/12/99 lester a stinker disguised as film art 1 stars
10/12/99 Scott A very entertaining action flick, although the story didn't flow as well as it could have. 4 stars
10/11/99 nate Brilliant film. Only downer was there was no funky bunch to accompany Marky Mark. 5 stars
10/10/99 Z arg! the bile! thank gud I didn't have lunch... 3 stars
10/09/99 John M See this movie. Period. 5 stars
10/09/99 Alyssa Loved the cow - hated the flashback to E.R. and the lung valve! Great movie!!! 5 stars
10/08/99 C.A.T.M. Every single ingredient in this film is perfection !! 5 stars
10/07/99 SJKelley See how a very good beginning missteps in Acts II and III. 3 stars
10/07/99 Justin the Fight Clubber Screw Bullet-Time, Seeing Iraqies get shot one by one without a single American dying - Wow 5 stars
10/07/99 PhilmPhreak Trys to do to many things and kinda succeeds at some of them. 3 stars
10/06/99 Nick Z Different sort of war flick, but too much mis-information for this ex-non com. 3 stars
10/06/99 sophia962 How to keep your soul in the face of CNN -- No cheap or easy answers 5 stars
10/06/99 Glenn Moss I love to read reviews from director-wannabe's. Seems that there is more than a little env 4 stars
10/06/99 Fork Not the conventional action movie (has a heart) but still maintained some of the dressings. 4 stars
10/05/99 Jeff Michels !!! 5 stars
10/05/99 JumpinJoe This movie ROCKED!!!! Great Cinematography, dialogue...a lot of heart!! 5 stars
10/05/99 phypor very excellen-story, acting, action, dialog... 5 stars
10/05/99 rob Excellent,powerful,intelligent. When did George Clooney and Mark Wahlberg turn into actors? 4 stars
10/04/99 MovieMaven Thoughtful action film -- who woulda thunk it? 5 stars
10/04/99 mard lack of stereotypes make the moview worth viewing 4 stars
10/04/99 chris jericho this movie kicks ass 5 stars
10/04/99 some one An attemt to be many different things...and ends up being shizophrenic. 2 stars
10/03/99 PyroFLA A masterful combination of action, drama, comedy and morality. What a great movie! 5 stars
10/03/99 Wyatt Earp Damned Good Movie 5 stars
10/03/99 mr yank it is NOT f'in awesome-wait for video! 2 stars
10/03/99 majawat fun to watch, if only for the stupid people in it. 4 stars
10/03/99 Brian Carnell Excellent film, but does drag a bit at the end 5 stars
10/02/99 sydney the second-best movie of the year! 5 stars
10/01/99 The King I loved this movie better than anything you will see this year. I say OSCAR time! 5 stars
IF YOU'VE SEEN THIS FILM, RATE IT!
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USA
  01-Oct-1999 (R)
  DVD: 03-Feb-2004

UK
  03-Mar-2000 (15)
  DVD: 18-Sep-2000

Australia
  13-Jan-2000 (MA)


Directed by
  David O. Russell

Written by
  John Ridley

Cast
  George Clooney
  Mark Wahlberg
  Ice Cube
  Spike Jonze
  Nora Dunn



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