Lucky Numbers

Movie review by
Nell Minow, Common Sense Media
Lucky Numbers Movie Poster Image
Not a great movie, and definitely not for kids.
  • R
  • 2000
  • 105 minutes

Parents say

No reviews yetAdd your rating

Kids say

No reviews yetAdd your rating

A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this movie.

Positive Messages
Violence

Comic violence, including murder.

Sex

Sexual references and situations, scenes in topless bar, adultery.

Language

Frequent strong language.

Consumerism
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

Drinking, smoking, drug use.

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that this movie has very strong language, nudity, sexual references and situations, assault, murder, shooting, drinking, smoking, and drug use, in addition to the overall theme of larceny and fraud. Some characters are punished, but some are not.

User Reviews

  • Parents say
  • Kids say

There aren't any reviews yet. Be the first to review this title.

There aren't any reviews yet. Be the first to review this title.

What's the story?

John Travolta plays Russ Richards, a popular local figure with a permanent parking space and roped-off table at his favorite local bistro, Denny's. He has ambitiously but unwisely invested in a snowmobile franchise. Despite his professional expertise, he did not anticipate that Harrisburg's uncharacteristically balmy winter would leave him on the brink of bankruptcy. He consults his friend, Gig (Tim Roth), who owns a strip joint. Gig arranges a robbery of the snowmobile showroom, but that goes wrong. So he suggests to Russ that perhaps Russ's girlfriend Crystal (Lisa Kudrow), who goes on camera in a ball gown each week to select the winning lottery numbers, might just be persuaded to help make sure that the numbers she picks are the ones they pick.

Is it any good?

Director Nora Ephron, best known for writing and directing sparkly romantic comedies like Sleepless in Seattle, goes for a darker kind of comedy in LUCKY NUMBERS. She gets terrific performances from a first-rate cast, especially Bill Pullman as a lazy police officer. Russ and Crystal behave like people who know for sure that they were meant to be rich, and are getting increasingly annoyed that somehow the message never got across.

But Ephron is a long way from the Coen brothers. She has some sharp insights about the ambitions and strategies of her characters and there are some very funny moments, a sort of "Maltese Falcon" on acid, but ultimately it does not work.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about why the money is important to the characters and how they calculate their risks. Movies about crime are always in some sense movies about problem-solving, and it is worth pointing out the way that the characters respond to the initial challenge of figuring out a way to sabotage the lottery and to the subsequent problems that they did not anticipate. Families may also want to talk about why people do and do not obey the law and what the consequences are for themselves and society if they don't.

Movie details

For kids who love comedy

Our editors recommend

Common Sense Media's unbiased ratings are created by expert reviewers and aren't influenced by the product's creators or by any of our funders, affiliates, or partners.

See how we rate

About these links

Common Sense Media, a nonprofit organization, earns a small affiliate fee from Amazon or iTunes when you use our links to make a purchase. Thank you for your support.

Read more

Our ratings are based on child development best practices. We display the minimum age for which content is developmentally appropriate. The star rating reflects overall quality and learning potential.

Learn how we rate