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Freakonomics (2010)

PG-13  |   |  Documentary  |  3 September 2010 (USA)
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Ratings: 6.4/10 from 5,405 users   Metascore: 58/100
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A collection of documentaries that explores the hidden side of human nature through the use of the science of economics.

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Credited cast:
Herself (archive footage)
Himself - Narrator
Himself - Narrator (segment "It's Not Always A Wonderful Life")
Courtroom Audience
Sarah Croce ...
Yoga Instructor
John D. Rockefeller ...
Barry Eisler ...
Konishiki ...
Blaire Whitney ...
Bruce-Cubicle Worker


The field of economics can study more than the workings of economies or businesses, it can also help explore human behavior in how it reacts to incentives. Economist Steven D. Levitt and journalist Stephen J. Dubner host an anthology of documentaries that examines how people react to opportunities to gain, wittingly or otherwise. The subjects include the possible role a person's name has for their success in life, why there is so much cheating in an honor bound sport like sumo wrestling, what helped reduce crime in the USA in the 1990s onward and we follow an school experiment to see if cash prizes can encourage struggling students to improve academically. Written by Kenneth Chisholm (

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Six Rogue Filmmakers Explore The Hidden Side Of Everything



Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for elements of violence, sexuality/nudity, drugs, and brief strong language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:





Release Date:

3 September 2010 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Freakonomia  »

Box Office


$3,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$31,893 (USA) (2 October 2010)


$100,675 (USA) (26 November 2010)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


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Did You Know?


Himself - Author: The closest thing to a worldview, I would say, in "Freakonomics," is that incentives matter. Not just financial incentives, but social incentives and moral incentives.
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User Reviews

Freakonomics (2010)
14 December 2011 | by (United Kingdom) – See all my reviews

Freakonomics is one of those films that tries to make a complex subject accessible to a mainstream audience. Here, there subject in question is economics, and how it is everywhere. Although trying to reach a wider audience in a fun way we can relate to is admirable, it can't avoid a patronizing tone. Still, there are lots of interesting parts to this documentary. It's split into a number of sections, with each section helmed by a familiar documentary filmmaker. This allows for a number of fun and interesting style to be put on display. As we delve into the world of economics, this all feels like a few great bits in an overambitious whole. Each segment has a fascinating topic, and one that could be explored at full length. Corruption and murder in sumo wrestling, how our names affect our lives, and how abortion may have helped to reduce the crime rate. All great subjects that are handled with kid gloves. It has inspired me to look into further detail about some things, but I wonder if the ideas and thoughts provoked will last a long time.

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