Three Kings | Rotten Tomatoes (2024)

94% Tomatometer 132 Reviews 77% Audience Score 100,000+ Ratings Just after the end of the Gulf War, four American soldiers decide to steal a cache of Saddam Hussein's hidden gold. Led by cynical Sergeant Major Archie Gates (George Clooney), three of the men are rescued by rebels, but Sergeant Troy Barlow (Mark Wahlberg) is captured and tortured by Iraqi intelligence. The Iraqi rebels beg for the American trio to help fight against the impending arrival of Hussein's Elite Guard. The men agree to fight in return for help rescuing Troy. Read More Read Less Now in Theaters Now Playing Buy Tickets

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Three Kings

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Critics Consensus

Three Kings successfully blends elements of action, drama, and comedy into a thoughtful, exciting movie on the Gulf War.

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Critics Reviews

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Three Kings | Rotten Tomatoes (1) Kirk Honeycutt Hollywood Reporter [Russell] not only has designed an action-adventure laced with incendiary humor but a movie that wants to explore race, politics, war, the media and U.S. diplomacy in the Middle East. In large measure, he pulls it off with breathtaking aplomb. Oct 25, 2019 Full Review Three Kings | Rotten Tomatoes (2) Radheyan Simonpillai AskMen.com It's amazing how much action can be crammed into a movie about a war where most soldiers didn't actually see any action. Rated: 94/100 Apr 9, 2009 Full Review Three Kings | Rotten Tomatoes (3) Lisa Alspector Chicago Reader A damning yet idealistic satire about the motives behind U.S. foreign policy. Aug 25, 2008 Full Review Three Kings | Rotten Tomatoes (4) Yasser Medina Cinefilia A war satire in which O' Russell, indirectly, mocks the foreign policy of the United States regarding the Gulf War. [Full review in Spanish] Rated: 7/10 Dec 13, 2023 Full Review Three Kings | Rotten Tomatoes (5) Chuck Klosterman Akron Beacon Journal Three Kings does offer nice comedic interplay between its lead performers and a compelling visual gimmick, all of which adds up to a strong (if not necessarily soul-shaking) production. Rated: 3/4 Oct 27, 2023 Full Review Three Kings | Rotten Tomatoes (6) Rob Gonsalves Rob's Movie Vault It has a distinctive look and feel, an atmosphere of burnout and chaos; it launches at a high energy level and generally stays there. The buzz, however, wears off fast. Rated: B- Sep 2, 2022 Full Review Read all reviews

Audience Reviews

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Scott H A rare occasion when the critics have got it right. Smart wisecracking satire of US grab it and run foreign policy expertly crafted. Rated 4/5 Stars • Rated 4 out of 5 stars 02/28/24 Full Review Alec C In the deserts of Iraq, during an ending war, three soldiers travel to secure their fortune and their futures! Discovering a treasure map leading to a fortune in gold, a major and three soldiers begin a journey to steal it for themselves as they evade enemy forces and hidden land mines. Funny and intense, this film balances both in an entertaining and surprising show of force! Rated 5/5 Stars • Rated 5 out of 5 stars 01/29/24 Full Review Giorgio S This changed my opinion on David O. Russell,unfortunately it's old and now he is like he is.The cast is amazing and the action is perfect.It has an amazing story with villains made to be hated and interesting subplot of lies heard during war.It has a sweet ending,like Silver Linings,wich after I watched this it's his second best movie. Rated 5/5 Stars • Rated 5 out of 5 stars 03/20/24 Full Review Wayne C You have to remember that this movie with made in the context of the war crimes of the Iraq war. three Kings a heist picture, about soldier/thieves, who hope to loot Iraq to get rich. The ambivilant story is uneven and racist/capitalist too. We're supposed to root for antiheroes who like the US anttacking and occupying Iraq, are murderous looters for Iraqi gold. The US's Coalition authority order 39 openly robbed all Iraqi resources (currency, government and socialized programs) to enrich international corporate thugs. That's the story these diversionary films cover up.The pro-war/white male savior messaging undergird the entire ambling enterprise leaving a bad flavor. Cinematography is excellent, editing, nimble, and acting focused, but this cinematic legerdemain can't disguise a misleading story.It's telling that reviewers give it a 94 and audiences, 70. The audiences (the people) have a humane philosophical viewpoint while reviewers serve (like the studios) as megaphonic filters blaring imperial messages. Rated 2/5 Stars • Rated 2 out of 5 stars 05/18/23 Full Review Andrea C L'impronta di un giovane David O. Russell si nota subito in questo film in grado di racchiudere molteplici generi e di mescolare senza continuità di causa commedia e war movie.Sullo sfondo di una delle guerre meno combattute della storia, tre insoliti personaggi si muovono ed agiscono in modo bizzarro e rocambolesco per cercare di arricchirsi.Per quanto improbabili tutti i personaggi chiamati in causa sono credibili e sorprende positivamente la facilità del passaggio da ironia a momenti estremamente drammatici che colgono costantemente impreparato lo spettatore.Le poche sequenze di azione sono montate in modo molto artificioso ma probabilmente coerente con la logica del film.Sicuramente il finale nobilita tutto il resto dove a tratti l'ironia prende un po' troppo il sopravvento. Rated 4/5 Stars • Rated 4 out of 5 stars 05/12/23 Full Review Richard L A schizophrenic mess of a film with some of the worst-looking cinematography I've ever seen. Although genuinely funny at moments, Three Kings is a narrative mess that suffers from pacing issues and solid direction from the moment the initial heist is finished. Rated 1.5/5 Stars • Rated 1.5 out of 5 stars 02/11/23 Full Review Read all reviews

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Cast & Crew

David O. Russell Director George Clooney Maj. Archie Gates Mark Wahlberg Sfc. Troy Barlow Ice Cube SSgt. Chief Elgin Spike Jonze Pfc. Conrad Vig Nora Dunn Adriana Cruz
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Movie Info

Synopsis Just after the end of the Gulf War, four American soldiers decide to steal a cache of Saddam Hussein's hidden gold. Led by cynical Sergeant Major Archie Gates (George Clooney), three of the men are rescued by rebels, but Sergeant Troy Barlow (Mark Wahlberg) is captured and tortured by Iraqi intelligence. The Iraqi rebels beg for the American trio to help fight against the impending arrival of Hussein's Elite Guard. The men agree to fight in return for help rescuing Troy.

Director
David O. Russell

Producer
Charles Roven, Edward L. McDonnell, Paul Junger Witt

Screenwriter
David O. Russell, John Ridley

Distributor
Warner Bros.

Production Co
Warner Brothers, Atlas Entertainment

Rating
R

Genre
War, Comedy, Drama

Original Language
English

Release Date (Theaters)
Oct 1, 1999, Wide

Release Date (Streaming)
Aug 15, 2008

Box Office (Gross USA)
$60.7M

Runtime
1h 55m

Sound Mix
Surround
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