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Based on 34 Reviews
critic reviews (10)
fan reviews ( 13 )
  • 88
    Peter Travers Rolling Stone

    No list of the year's best performances should be made without her (Sally Hawkins). show more

  • 75
    Ruthe Stein San Francisco Chronicle

    The key to enjoying the film is warming up to the heroine, Poppy. show more

  • 88
    Claudia Puig USA Today

    It is that rare film that is equal parts entertaining, life-affirming and thought-provoking. show more

  • 100
    Joe Morgenstern Wall Street Journal

    I thought "Topsy-Turvy" was perfection, a spirited evocation of the partnership of Gilbert and Sullivan, plus a blithely definitive depiction of the artistic process. Happy-Go-Lucky is perfection too, assuming you go along with its leisurely pace, which I did quite happily. show more

  • 88
    Steven Rea Philadelphia Inquirer

    Stays with you like great movies tend to do. It asks you to examine the inner mechanisms of human beings, cheerful and miserable alike. It's not about looking at a glass half empty or a glass half full. It's about drinking down what's in that glass and letting it fill your soul. show more

  • 60
    Elizabeth Weitzman New York Daily News

    Is it possible to enjoy the company of the world's most irritating woman? Mike Leigh's surprisingly sunny dramedy makes a pretty good case that, in fact, it is. show more

  • 70
    Ray Bennett The Hollywood Reporter

    As surprising as it is delicious with an indelible performance by new star Sally Hawkins. show more

  • 80
    Bob Mondello NPR

    So relentlessly upbeat that it won't take long before you're wondering just how the director plans to wipe the smile off her face. show more

  • 100
    Roger Ebert Chicago Sun-Times

    This is Mike Leigh's funniest film since "Life Is Sweet" (1991). Of course he hasn't ever made a completely funny film, and Happy-Go-Lucky has scenes that are not funny, not at all. show more

  • 100
    Liam Lacey The Globe and Mail (Toronto)

    As refreshing as it is to find a movie that leaves you smiling, it's something much rarer to discover a film that makes you think about what a commitment to happiness really means. show more

  • June 13, 2009 Rean Rossier
    Report This User

    I wanted to see this movie because I loved the trailer so I got the movie & was disapointing. I thought the charecter Poppy was annoying & sometimes when she talks I did not understand her. the acting was really bad, & the movie did not go anywhere It was okay for me.

  • December 22, 2008 BFBoscoCyn
    Report This User

    This movie was totally irritating, as was the lead actress and her driving teacher. I tried to stay and enjoy it, but could not. I ended up walking out. I know everyone else is raving about it, but I guess I didn't get it. I would not recommend spending your hard earned bucks on this one.

  • December 12, 2008 Quality Cinema
    Report This User

    delightful,warm humurous movie. thoroughly enjoyed this. sally hawkins was terrific in her role. the character of scott really showed how ultimatey pple determine thir own destinies. the contrast also showed just how well-adjusted and admirable her person.

  • November 27, 2008 John Brunner
    Report This User

    Great acting, I was watching a real slice of life and not a movie...but the story line and plot were lost after the first few minutes, and two hours is a long time to stay lost.

  • November 24, 2008 Gracey822
    Report This User

    My husband and I left feeling very empty after this movie. She seems to be searching for a greater purpose in life, but never seems to find it or realize she's looking for it. Where does her true happiness come from?

  • November 22, 2008 mr rbi4u
    Report This User

    The best film I have seen in a while. Her scene with Scott near the end was powerful. She WAS happy-go-lucky. Scott couldn't understand her personality and mistook it for something it was not. We need more people who appreciate the little things in life--and whose every event is not a life and death drama. This especially applies to women.

  • November 12, 2008 Karyn Paris
    Report This User

    First of all the person who wrote his three page synopsis of the movie bored me... and made no sense.. I did not consider this a chick flick. I thought it quirky, fun and yes crazy. Life is too serious at times and I thought she shed light on a world that moves way too fast, and does not enjoy the little things. She absolutely made the movie.

  • November 10, 2008 LEODUNN3
    Report This User

    I almost wlaked out. The first half an hour was boring then it had its funny moments. In the end I am glad I stayed but it is the type of film that you would rather catch on HBO at home. Scott the driving instructor makes the film

  • November 10, 2008 CERTIORIO
    Report This User

    Who would enjoy this movie? Maybe Generation X Anglophiles and people who are happy watching characterizations of quirky or defective people. Yes, it’s a small group. Who should not go see it? Intellectuals; those looking for romance, feel good date-movies, action, excitement or drama. Pretty much the rest of the population. Be aware - although it’s billed to look like a chick-flick, it isn’t what you might expect. Chick flicks typically have a strong, engaging story line with a beginning, a middle and an end; this movie doesn’t. Although Seinfeld used to be “about nothing”, at least it was funny. This movie isn’t. There wasn’t a single person who laughed out loud in the theater. The mood was more one of silence, irritation and disgruntlement. It’s said in the blurb that it is a movie about eternal optimism, which falsely suggests there will be a triumph of happiness but what is supposed to pass for spirit seems more like a triumph of total resignation to the security of life in a rut. It’s a spirit that never eclipses the bleakness of a world populated by infantilized adults and losers who seem proud of their ignorance and immaturity while playing at being adults and thinking they are cool and hip, and that there’s nothing wrong with that. Poppy, the lead female character, is cast to be the engaging girl next door with naïve charm but after an hour her girly giggles and constant inane remarks make her annoying. She tries to be a heroine but in reality is someone whose redeeming qualities are outweighed by flaws that she never gets to grips with, and someone who could only be clung onto by a fellow loser. Expect to be bored and disappointed if you go to this movie looking for a fun evening.

  • November 04, 2008 SRavensR
    Report This User

    I too was about to walk out, there were a few exceptional scene's such as the Flamingo dance class and the confrontation from the lurking to the explosion with Scott. Other than that...just annoying.


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