Pain & Gain

Subscribe to Mark Wahlberg alerts

Facts and Figures

Genre: Thriller

Run time: 129 mins

In Theaters: Friday 26th April 2013

Box Office USA: $49.9M

Budget: $25M

Distributed by: Paramount Studios

Production compaines: Paramount Pictures, De Line Pictures

Reviews 3 / 5

Rotten Tomatoes: 50%
Fresh: 90 Rotten: 91

IMDB: 6.5 / 10

Cast & Crew


Starring: Mark Wahlberg as Daniel Lugo, Dwayne Johnson as Paul Doyle, Anthony Mackie as Adrian Doorbal, Tony Shalhoub as Victor Kershaw, Ed Harris as Ed DuBois, Rob Corddry as John Mese, Bar Paly as Sorina Luminita, Rebel Wilson as Ramona Eldridge, Ken Jeong as Johnny Wu, Michael Rispoli as Frank Griga, Keili Lefkovitz as Krisztina Furton, Vivi Pineda as Detective Haworth, Christopher Jestin Langstaff as Nine-Year-Old Boy/Rusty, Gustavo Quiroz Jr. as Son of Victor Kershaw, Corinne Ferrer as Basketball Girl, Zack Moore as Young Daniel Lugo, Kory Getman as Teenage Daniel Lugo, Peter Stormare as Dr. Bjornson, Larry Hankin as Pastor Randy, Tony Plana as Captain Lopez, Peter Stormare as Dr. Bjornson, Brian Stepanek as Brad McCalister, Persei Caputo as Judy, Bill Kelly as Jim, Emily Rutherfurd as Carolyn 'Sissy' Du Bois, Wladimir Klitschko as Client

Pain & Gain Movie Review

Spirited and very funny, this movie should actually be rather disturbing since it's a true story about torture and murder. But director Michael Bay is so slick with the action and comedy elements that he lulls audiences to sleep, entertaining us with events that really should send chills down our spines. So the movie feels rather tasteless when you begin to think about it.

Wahlberg stars as Daniel, an obsessive bodybuilder in 1990s Miami who works as a personal trainer at a local gym. But he's becoming increasingly annoyed by the fact that his clients are much wealthier than he is. So he convinces his steroid-addicted colleague Adrian (Mackie) to help him kidnap a customer (Shalhoub) and steal his fortune. Realising that they need some help, they enlist born-again ex-con Paul (Johnson) in their plan. But none of them is very smart, and the kidnapping goes badly wrong from the start. Still, they manage to steal quite a lot before a tenacious private detective (Harris) notices something isn't right.

For a story that deals with such intensely serious themes, this is an oddly broad comedy. Bay never even tries to find dark irony here; he just focusses on how stupid these criminals are, convinced that they are as cool as the characters from their favourite movies and eerily unbothered by the fact that they are inflicting pain and even death on people for their own greedy ends. The actors inhabit the roles with a disarming naivete, so we can't help but laugh at their idiotic actions. Wahlberg plays Daniel as a muscle-head so focussed on getting what he wants that he doesn't notice the carnage in his wake; Mackie at least gives Adrian a sense of self-doubt, plus some comical romance (with scene-stealer Wilson); and Johnson has a tricky role as a religious guy with a weakness for drugs and women.

But the fact remains that these are not actually nice men. And the film goes even further, turning Shalhoub's victim into the least likeable person on screen. Meanwhile, Bay is unable to resist cranking up the action to include car chases and explosions, plus some very grisly violence. He is obviously uninterested in the real events or the actual victims; he just wants to entertain his audience. And the film is a lot of fun to watch. But the lack of perspective will eat away at more discerning viewers.


Subscribe to Mark Wahlberg alerts


Pain & Gain Rating

" OK "


More Mark Wahlberg

Bill Trailer

A young and ambitious playwright in the time of Queen Elizabeth the 1st makes the travel to London to showcase his wares. The young bard's...

A Little Chaos Trailer

In the palace of Versailles, a tremendous garden is maintained. One day, the builder and head gardener sees an ordinary woman arriving at the palace,...

Damien Rice - My Favourite Faded Fantasy Album Review

The solo career of Mr Rice is not one you may realistically describe as that with which you may associate a prolific output. His is...

Backstreet Boys: Show 'Em What You're Made Of Trailer

In the late 90's and early 00's, The Backstreet Boys were the most powerful boy band in the world. After discovering that they had not...


George The Poet - 1,2,1,2 (Dismantle Remix) Video

George The Poet unveils an audio for the Dismantle Remix of his single '1,2,1,2', taken from the tracks Remixes EP. The track has been produced...

Perfume Genius - Too Bright Album Review

Ever since the release of his debut LP 'Learning' back in 2010, Seattle's Perfume Genius has attracted increasing attention both publicly and critically. His piano...

The Boys of St. Paul's Choir School - O Come All Ye Faithful Video

The angelic voices of The Boys of St. Paul's Choir School perform a moving rendition of classic Christmas carol 'O Come All Ye Faithful'.

Jamie Scott - Last Christmas Video

Jamie Scott of London duo GRAFFITI6 performs an acoustic rendition of Wham!'s 1984 festive single 'Last Christmas' in a black and white one-take video. In...