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Rating: 4.0 / 5.0 (6 votes)

Released: 2013-01-22

The Paperboy (Blu-Ray) by Millennium

The Paperboy (Blu-Ray)

Movie Details

Lee Daniels
R (Restricted)

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A sexually and racially charged film noir from Oscar®-nominated director Lee Daniels (Precious), THE PAPERBOY takes audiences deep into the backwaters of steamy 1960s South Florida, as investigative reporter Ward Jansen (Matthew McConaughey) and his partner Yardley Acheman (David Oyelowo) chase a sensational, career-making story. With the help of Ward's younger brother Jack (Zac Efron) and sultry death-row groupie Charlotte Bless (Nicole Kidman), the pair tries to prove violent swamp-dweller Hillary Van Wetter (John Cusack) was framed for the murder of a corrupt local sheriff. Based on the provocative bestselling novel by Pete Dexter (Mulholland Falls, Rush), The Paperboy peels back a sleepy small town's decades-old façade of Southern gentility to reveal a quagmire of evil as dark as a Florida bayou.


  • Matthew McConaughey
  • Zac Efron
  • Nicole Kidman
  • David Oyelowo
  • Macy Gray


  • NTSC
  • Surround Sound
  • Widescreen

Editorial Review

Throw on some collard greens and get ready to gut that 'gator, because The Paperboy is settin' out a southern-fried feast, served one way: overheated. This adaptation of Pete Dexter's novel takes us to the steamy Florida of the late 1960s, where we witness the reopening of a case involving a scummy local (John Cusack, convincing), now on death row, and whether he really did kill a lawman some years before. The convict has a sexed-up pen pal (Nicole Kidman, also convincing) drumming up interest in the case, which is presumably how she got two Miami newspaper reporters to snoop around. They're played by Matthew McConaughey and David Oyelowo (Red Tails), the latter a particularly puzzling presence to the locals because he is both black and British-accented. Toss in McConaughey's bored little bro (Zac Efron), and you've got the makings for a decent potboiler–except there's nothing decent about director Lee (Precious) Daniels's design for this material. He pours on the sweat, the sex, and the faux-1970 look (yep, there's some split-screen in there), and reaches some kind of trash-movie nadir with a pair of WTF sequences: a jailhouse visit that becomes an exercise in remote sex, and the spectacle of Kidman urinating on Efron's jellyfish-stung body (sometimes the old folk remedies are the best, it seems). Oh, and alligators are indeed cut open–not once, but twice. Lost in this craziness is whatever tension the actual investigation might have provided, as the hothouse needs of the characters overwhelm the mystery. But by then you'll know the real mystery is “How did this thing get made?” –Robert Horton

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