21 Grams

Released 2003


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21 Grams

Movie Summary

Alejandro González Iñárritu
21 Grams is a 2003 drama starring Sean Penn, Benicio Del Toro, and Naomi Watts in a riveting story about three troubled people whose lives become entwined at crucial moments in their lives, leading them all to the brink of death and back again. Penn plays Paul Rivers, a terminally ill professor who needs a heart transplant in order to live. Watts plays Cristina Peck, a recovered drug addict who has turned her life around with a loving husband and two kids. Benicio Del Toro plays Jack Jordan, a recently released convict who has begun a new life under the guidance of the Christian faith. These three disparate lives intersect after a brutal car accident. As their relationships and lives fall apart around them, they learn essential truths about themselves that forever change their lives. 21 Grams is a gripping portrait of human suffering and the power of the soul that received two Academy Award nominations for Best Supporting Actor (del Toro) and Best Supporting Actress (Watts).moreless


Metacritic Score

  • 100

    The New York Times A.O. Scott

    You won't come out unaffected, because the depths of intimacy that the Mexican director Alejandro González Iñárritu plumbs here are so rarely touched by filmmakers that 21 Grams...

  • 90

    Los Angeles Times Manohla Dargis

    What gives the film a formalist kick is that the story unfolds piecemeal as a series of nonlinear moments. What gives it soul are the three lead actors who pull the pieces together...

  • 60

    Variety David Rooney

    Ambitiously structured in non-chronological fragments that form a fascinating puzzle, this raw drama about grief, guilt and redemption becomes ultimately overextended and overwroug...

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Crime, Thrillers