491 user 165 critic

As Good as It Gets (1997)

2:28 | Trailer

Watch Now

From $2.99 (SD) on Prime Video

A single mother and waitress, a misanthropic author, and a gay artist form an unlikely friendship after the artist is assaulted in a robbery.



(story), (screenplay) | 1 more credit »
1,422 ( 261)
Won 2 Oscars. Another 36 wins & 52 nominations. See more awards »



Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Comedy | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

A swinger on the cusp of being a senior citizen with a taste for young women falls in love with an accomplished woman closer to his age.

Director: Nancy Meyers
Stars: Jack Nicholson, Diane Keaton, Keanu Reeves
Adventure | Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

Two terminally ill men escape from a cancer ward and head off on a road trip with a wish list of to-dos before they die.

Director: Rob Reiner
Stars: Jack Nicholson, Morgan Freeman, Sean Hayes
About Schmidt (2002)
Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

A man upon retirement, embarks on a journey to his estranged daughter's wedding, only to discover more about himself and life than he ever expected.

Director: Alexander Payne
Stars: Jack Nicholson, Hope Davis, Dermot Mulroney
Drama | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  

Military lawyer Lieutenant Daniel Kaffee defends Marines accused of murder. They contend they were acting under orders.

Director: Rob Reiner
Stars: Tom Cruise, Jack Nicholson, Demi Moore
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.2/10 X  

Dave Buznik is a businessman who is wrongly sentenced to an anger-management program, where he meets an aggressive instructor.

Director: Peter Segal
Stars: Jack Nicholson, Adam Sandler, Marisa Tomei
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.7/10 X  

A criminal pleads insanity after getting into trouble again and once in the mental institution rebels against the oppressive nurse and rallies up the scared patients.

Director: Milos Forman
Stars: Jack Nicholson, Louise Fletcher, Michael Berryman
Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

Follows hard-to-please Aurora looking for love, and her daughter's family problems.

Director: James L. Brooks
Stars: Shirley MacLaine, Debra Winger, Jack Nicholson


Cast overview, first billed only:
Verdell (as Jill)
Timer the Dog ...
Supporting Dog (as Timer)
Billy the Dog ...
Supporting Dog (as Billy)
Bibi Osterwald ...
Neighbor Woman
Ross Bleckner ...
Jaffe Cohen ...


New York City. Melvin Udall, a cranky, bigoted, obsessive-compulsive writer, finds his life turned upside down when neighboring gay artist Simon is hospitalized and his dog is entrusted to Melvin. In addition, Carol, the only waitress who will tolerate him, must leave work to care for her sick son, making it impossible for Melvin to eat breakfast. Written by Jon Reeves <jreeves@imdb.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


A comedy from the heart that goes for the throat. See more »


Comedy | Drama | Romance

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 on appeal for strong language, thematic elements, nudity and a beating | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:





Release Date:

25 December 1997 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Old Friends  »


Box Office


$50,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$12,606,928, 28 December 1997, Wide Release

Gross USA:


Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

,  »
Show more on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:




Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


The only film in which Jack Nicholson won an acting Oscar for his performance in a film which did not win Best Picture. See more »


The number of grapes on Melvin's Plate changes repeatedly between shots during his conversation with Carol in the restaurant. See more »


Melvin Udall: Never, never, interrupt me, okay? Not if there's a fire, not even if you hear the sound of a thud from my home and one week later there's a smell coming from there that can only be a decaying human body and you have to hold a hanky to your face because the stench is so thick that you think you're going to faint. Even then, don't come knocking. Or, if it's election night, and you're excited and you wanna celebrate because some fudgepacker that you date has been elected the first queer president ...
See more »

Crazy Credits

In cast credits dogs are credited as: Verdell - Jill Supporting dogs - Timer, Billy See more »


Spoofed in Family Guy: E. Peterbus Unum (2000) See more »


Written by Phil Roy and Peter Blakeley
Produced by Phil Roy
Performed by Danielle Brisebois
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more »

User Reviews

Unusual movie
17 February 2000 | by See all my reviews

This movie is bizarre because, while judged overall its story is shmaltzy and unbelievable, nevertheless each individual scene plays absolutely convincingly and feels very real. It's weird. I don't know if it's just the greatness of the actors overcoming an under-thought out script, or whether it's just the script concentrated solely on crafting great scenes one after the other, but not so much in coming up with a convincing through-line. Whatever. All I know is that this is one of the most entertaining pictures I've ever seen, extremely funny and quite emotionally affecting in places. Somehow, it just doesn't matter - I like it anyway.

The performances are uniformly excellent. Nicholson shows real range here - sure, he gets to be the sarcastic curmudgeon we've all come to expect, but his character also has moments of fear, repression and vulnerability which he brings off equally well. My problem with this character (and the "problem" only exists as I think about him afterward, not while I'm actually watching the movie) is in his conception: he seems to be whatever the writers want him to be at that moment, with no particular consistency from scene to scene so when he supposedly "changes" at the end, we're left to think, "Change? This guy's been changing through the entire movie!" And also, the fact that his character is a romance novelist is never really explained or examined in any way.

And yet, Nicholson's performance makes it not matter quite so much.

Helen Hunt is a revelation in this movie - she nails every scene she's in, whether she's forced to be witty, embarrassed, angry, defiant, emotionally overwhelmed, whatever. She keeps Jack on his toes, and they work off each other brilliantly. Also, I never thought I'd find myself saying this, but Greg Kinnear was great as Simon, the gay neighbor. (It was also nice to see director Harold Ramis - the third Ghostbuster, after all - in front of the camera again, if only briefly, in a small part as a doctor.)

What more can I say? Good comedy, good love story, great acting. None of it, in the end, is very convincing, but if you just focus on the individual moments and not on the grand design - a task made easy by the wonderful writing and playing - it's very easy to like As Good As It Gets.

65 of 104 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 491 user reviews »

Contribute to This Page

15 Most Bingeable TV Shows

"The IMDb Show" presents the 15 most bingeable TV shows of all time, featuring "Rick and Morty," "The Office," and "Lost."

Watch now