IMDb > All Good Things (2010) > Reviews & Ratings - IMDb
All Good Things
Top Links
trailers and videosfull cast and crewtriviaofficial sitesmemorable quotes
main detailscombined detailsfull cast and crewcompany credits
Awards & Reviews
user reviewsexternal reviewsawardsuser ratingsparents guide
Plot & Quotes
plot summarysynopsisplot keywordsmemorable quotes
Did You Know?
triviagoofssoundtrack listingcrazy creditsalternate versionsmovie connectionsFAQ
Other Info
box office/businessrelease datesfilming locationstechnical specsliterature listingsNewsDesk
taglines trailers and videos posters photo gallery
External Links
showtimesofficial sitesmiscellaneousphotographssound clipsvideo clips

Reviews & Ratings for
All Good Things More at IMDbPro »

Write review
Filter: Hide Spoilers:
Page 1 of 7:[1] [2] [3] [4] [5] [6] [7] [Next]
Index 69 reviews in total 

96 out of 119 people found the following review useful:

Spectacular performances by Dunst and Gosling!

Author: stiff5 from United States
7 November 2010

"All Good Things" is a love story and murder mystery set against the backdrop of a New York real estate dynasty in the 1980s. Directed by Andrew Jarecki (director of the Academy Award-nominated doc Capturing the Friedmans), the film was inspired by the story of Robert Durst, scion of the wealthy Durst family. Mr. Durst was suspected but never tried for killing his wife Kathie who disappeared in 1982 and was never found. The film stars Ryan Gosling as David Marks, Kirsten Dunst as Katie McCarthy, and Frank Langella as David's father, Sanford Marks.

From the beginning, the relationship between Gosling and Dunst is very intriguing and interesting; possibly the best part of the story. Their chemistry is very believable and charming. As David and Katie start their lives together, everything seems perfect. However, all good things must come to an end.

David's father does not approve of Katie or of David's lifestyle. Disappointment is all he sees in his son. David seeks to please his father, even if that risks his own happiness. Katie becomes increasingly independent, hoping for more out of their happy life and marriage. David likes things as they are. Soon enough, secrets from his past slowly begin to surface, resulting in mistakes and consequences that cannot be changed. I won't mention details into David's past, but it soon becomes apparent that this happy marriage wasn't meant to be. Jarecki does a very good job of showing us a perfect marriage as it slowly crumbles and falls into nothing. It's very effective, and at times, tough to watch.

Although it is difficult to get into his character, Gosling is superb. He does the best of what can be done with a character that isn't given easy material to work with. It's quite sad to see a character who obviously needs help, but is never able to get it. Dunst gives an incredible performance. She stole the show. Her character is of a woman who loves her "prince charming" with everything that she has, but as their relationship dies, she slowly disintegrates into an abused mess. Dunst gives one of the best performances of her career.

The first half of the film was good. Jarecki, however, did have issues with piecing together the second half of the film. This is when the supporting characters of the film became an important part in moving the story along. Truthfully, we did not know or care enough about some of these characters. It was difficult becomes there was no one that we could really root for. It was still interesting, but not nearly as good as the first half. Everyone gave great performances. Lily Rabe, Kristen Wiig, and Philip Baker Hall were wonderful. Not one bad performance out of the entire cast.

"All Good Things" is an intriguing story that studies two people as they rise to their greatest, but unfortunately fall to their worst. The performances make this film worthwhile. The film isn't perfect, but I found it to be a very interesting portrayal of a true story that will clearly blow your mind.


Was the above review useful to you?

91 out of 129 people found the following review useful:

Im gonna keep this simple and short

Author: danielkjeilen from Sweden
8 December 2010

I had never heard this story before, and found it very interesting in a way that kept me wanting more to see of this film.This movie kept me entertained almost the whole time. has some boring moments like every movie, but still a fantastic movie to enjoy on a weekday. I recommend it to film lovers who wants something more then the usual crap Hollywood has been giving us lately. It's not an Oscar movie, but it in my opinion it deserve high points at IMDb.

Really enjoyed watching Ryan Gosling and Kirsten Dunst working together. they did a good job I think.

Summary: Good directing, Good acting, Good screenplay, Good film.


Was the above review useful to you?

51 out of 55 people found the following review useful:

well-executed 'exhumation' of an unsolved murder

Author: mgorman-6 from United States
18 December 2010

In All Good Things, the director/writer has created a plausible fiction to account for a series of actual crimes. The evolution of the supposed killer from carefree youth to malignant immoralist is depicted, step by step. The strength of the movie as a story lies in its focus on a web of characters and their relationships to one another, rather than on the crimes themselves. We never see actual violence, but only its effects on characters, and their subsequent efforts to conceal the truth, to escape from their situation, or to satisfy some personal need. The movie functions mainly as a kind of indictment, and I wonder if it would work were it not for the 'documentary' angle, the movie as crusader for the truth, bringing to light the possible culpability of a real person, abetted by certain friends and family, a man as yet unpunished.

The motivations of this character, the object of the indictment, are accounted for in the course of the story, as various traumatic and painful incidents from his life are shown or recalled, and by allusions to deviant mental conditions or sexual preferences that are not. Whether these revelations are served up clearly or merely hinted at, they somehow fail collectively to satisfy as explanations for the barbarism that emerges as the story proceeds. At the end, the inner life of the putative killer remains obscure, a source of dissatisfaction for a movie that is about character.

So, not a great movie, but an engrossing entertainment if you are in the mood for a dark story that leaves you wondering how closely real events in fact matched up to this clever reconstruction.

Was the above review useful to you?

50 out of 59 people found the following review useful:

Some Not So Good Things

Author: David Ferguson ( from Dallas, Texas
23 January 2011

Greetings again from the darkness. Who among us isn't intrigued by a real life "unsolved" murder mystery? Throw in a very wealthy New York real estate family, a never-discovered body, an executed friend, and a horrible childhood trauma and it is certain to draw the attention of filmmaker Andrew Jarecki. Jarecki's film "Capturing the Friedmans" won numerous awards and is among the best documentaries ever made. He has a knack with dark family secrets.

In the film, Ryan Gosling plays David Marks, disenchanted son of Real Estate mogul Sanford Marks (a powerful Frank Langella), who witnessed the grisly suicide of his mother when he was very young. David meets the energetic and affectionate Katie (Kirsten Dunst) and the two dreamers escape Daddy's clutches and head to Vermont to open a health food store. Finally wilting under pressure from Sanford, the couple returns to the city and David joins the family business. The good things are soon to end.

Since much of the real life story is still a mystery, Jarecki does a nice job in assembling pieces from the trial records. Along the way, we meet David's friend Deborah Lehrman (Lilly Rabe), an acclaimed writer who seems to always be there for David ... as he is for her. We witness the transformation of David from loving husband to mentally disturbed murder suspect.

Jarecki gives us some guidance on what might have happened and how the plan could have been executed, but we'll never know for sure. What we do know is that there was not much happiness associated with this family, despite the wealth and 42nd Street real estate holdings.

The acting in the film is tremendous. Gosling, Dunst and Langella are top notch. Yes, Ms. Dunst provides what is easily her best screen performance ever. Support work from Lily Rabe, Phillip Baker Hall, Nick Offerman and Kristen Wiig is all strong and believable. This one will give you the creeps ... and rightly so.

Was the above review useful to you?

49 out of 66 people found the following review useful:

Stranger then Fiction

Author: gradyharp from United States
6 November 2010

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

ALL THINGS GOOD is a polished little film based on a true story that while it may not have the visual gruesome detail of the usual thriller tropes of films, it is terrifying in its presentation of personality variations that produce a shuddering reaction on a purely intellectual level for the audience. It is both a love story and a missing persons/murder mystery based on a still unsolved case that continues to haunt New York investigators and reporters and detectives. What writers Marcus Hinchey and Marc Smerling have created from known and newly discovered facts, speculation and court records results in a psychological examination of a powerful New York family, obsession, love and loss. The film relates incidents that began in 1972 and end in 2003 and at this time the truth is still unknown. Director Andrew Jarecki uses a superb cast and a fine sense of voice-over narration to interweave the puzzling history with the gradual dissolution of each of the characters involved.

Sanford Marks (Frank Langella) is one of the wealthiest owners of Manhattan real estate, the current head of a family that has long dominated the New York scene with its power and money. Marks is aging and is relying on his son David (Ryan Gosling) to take over the family business: he sends David out to the brothels, and filthy hotels and porn houses to collect rent. David is reticent to be a part of his father's business: he is a deeply disturbed young man, having witnessed his mother's suicide leap as a child. David meets a tenant in one of the properties - Katie McCarthy (Kirsten Dunst) who longs to go to medical school but at present has no income to support that dream. The chemistry between the two is magnetic and despite David's father's objection that Katie is not of 'their kind of people', David decides to marry Katie and move to Vermont to open a Health Foods store - a move that makes the couple ecstatic, but is financed by Sanford Marks who eventually convinces David to sell his haven and move to New York to stay with the family business.

In their Manhattan home (and in their country lake front home!) the couple flourishes until Katie mentions she'd like to have children - a force that drives David back into violent behavior resulting form his witnessing his mother's suicide: David can't understand why Katie would want anything but the obvious life of wealth they enjoy. The shell is cracked and the subsequent events include Katie becoming pregnant only to be forced by David to terminate the pregnancy, Katie's disappearance after uncovering the facts about the sources of wealth of the family, David's descent into drugs and irresponsible behavior, and ultimately his leaving New York for Galveston, Texas where he lives a life disguised as a woman, his only friend being another old runaway Melvin Bump (Philip Baker Hall) who David engages to do away with a 'problem confidant' (Lilly Rabe), after which Bump is killed and dissected and tossed into the river. The murders are never solved nor is the mystery of Katie' disappearance. A trial (the source of the voice-over throughout the film has been the lawyer's interrogation of David in the year 2003) fails to resolve anything and the film ends with the message that David Marks is at present a real estate broker in Florida.

Frank Langella is superb as the heartless father who drives his family like cattle in the quest of power and wealth. Ryan Gosling offer a multifaceted performance of the deeply disturbed David and is match by Kirsten Dunst's bravura performance as Katie, the simple bright girl whose life is quashed by a powerful family's sickness. The brilliant cast, including the performances by Philip Baker Hall and Lilly Rabe - daughter of the deceased Jill Clayburgh), has excellent cameo roles by Diane Venora, Trini Alvarado, David Margulies, Nick Offerman and many more. This is a tough film to watch because at the bottom of it all is that it is true and the cases are unsolved. It makes us cringe but it is a very fine film.

Grady Harp

Was the above review useful to you?

23 out of 26 people found the following review useful:

Condemnation by Hollywood--a horrid tale told with perfunctory familiarity

Author: secondtake from United States
16 May 2011

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

All Good Things (2010)

Here's a story that was dramatic in life and equally dramatic on paper, as a story pitch. What wouldn't sound thrilling, in Hollywood terms, about a latent psychopath of a man, his aging older power hungry father, and a charming young innocent woman caught up in a struggle for happiness and wealth? And so "All Good Things" had all the right things to get going.

On top of that, the three actors are all excellent in their own ways, Ryan Gosling, Frank Langella, and Kirsten Dunst, respectively. What falters is something more subtle, some combination of screen writing (that magic of turning an idea into something concrete) and direction (that hard technical and aesthetic work of pulling it all off). It turns out that the screenwriters are both first timers, and the director has one other film to his credit, so there is a sense of still figuring things out that is evident here. The movie lacks elegance, for sure, though it doesn't lack intensity at times, using well-worn but necessary tricks (girl arrives at night into dark room and man is waiting in shadows for her, etc.).

Not that this is a bad movie. The story itself grows and multiplies even as the characters remain somewhat thin. The one character who get complicated is the leading man, Gosling's David Marks, the troubled son who knows he's troubled and tries to hide it and eventually cannot.

You can ask of course deep questions about why this man turned so rotten, and the answer the film provides is that his father pushed him relentlessly in a dirty business rife with secrecy and power. That he didn't find salvation in the "perfect" Kirsten Dunst (who was never demanding, always supportive and loving, etc., to the point of simplicity) is part of his own tragedy. Ultimately this is a simple story about guy who, as his father said to his face, was a "weak man." And if this is a movie about a weak man being trapped by circumstances and therefore given a license to violence, it doesn't reveal or express those qualities in ways that would sway or disturb us. We are mostly reminded that it really happened, and that the guy is still out there, down South, selling real estate.

Was the above review useful to you?

27 out of 38 people found the following review useful:

Amazing Acting and a Good Story

Author: Siamois from Canada
9 December 2010

The dysfunctional family of David Marks appears to have scarred him. His mother's death at a young age seems to haunt him. He is the eldest son of a shady, demanding real estate mogul and seems uncomfortable following in his father's footstep and getting involved in this financial empire. He seems bored, disconnected. One day he meets Katie McCarthy, a sunny and enthusiastic young woman. The story, taking place over several decades, explores their growing relationship and how the weight of David's dark legacy makes it all spiral down.

Andrew Jarecki is better known for the well-received Capturing the Friedmans. This is his first full-feature film and he tackles a difficult project but in many respect, this seems a logical continuation. His past as a documentary maker serves him well, since All Good Things is based on a real story. And much like "Friedmans", once again this is about very scary, dark characters. Jarecki's direction is mostly slick and simple, relying on a script and also an amazing cast

It is David who narrates the story, yet things are kept enigmatic and viewers have to reach certain conclusions. There is an economy in dialogue but everything is put in place for you to have a good idea of what is going on in Marks' life. There's something really powerful yet understated about how David inherited of traits both from his mother and his father, pulling him down. Many people have described the film as a sort of mix of romance and mystery, which is accurate. There are almost noir elements to the film.

What is most remarkable about the film by far is the cast. Ryan Gosling continues his ascension as one of the best actors working today. Kirsten Dunst shows why she has become kind of underrated in a very difficult role. They both play every single emotion perfectly and must use a lot of range and in very few words, we get their characters. Frank Langella as the father steals almost every scene he is in. This is an actor who always took his craft seriously but seems to be getting even better as of late. People talk about the chemistry between Dunst and Gosling but I was amazed by Langella and how he made these two actors better in every scene he was with them. Philip Baker Hall is another veteran who shines here in a smaller role later in the film. It's not easy establishing your character with little screen time but he pulls it. The rest of the supporting cast is excellent. Really strong point (and good for Jarecki, a guy used to film real people and not actors).

Where the film is a little less successful is in drawing the audience in. We feel sometimes as emotionally disconnected from these characters as David and Sanford Marks themselves. Jarecki is almost clinical in his approach. The romance never lifts up and so, the mystery grabs the audience a little less. Visually, the film also ends up a mix bag of more naturalistic shots and weird artsy attempts. There are abrupt flashbacks and forwards that make for an uneven pace and a less engaging experience.

Overall, this is still an interesting take based on a fascinating real-life mystery and a rewarding film if you are patient.

Was the above review useful to you?

20 out of 27 people found the following review useful:

Think, 'Oscar-worthy "Unsolved Mysteries" Segment.'

Author: Mr_Ectoplasma from New York, NY
16 December 2010

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

"All Good Things" is based on the infamous life and media circus around Robert Durst, an New York heir to billions, infamous for the string of murders and disappearances that have revolved around him for three decades. For those familiar with his story, the film will reacquaint you and surprise you. For those who have never heard of him, it will be even more shocking. The characters' names in the film are altered slightly, but the story is nonetheless the same. Ryan Gosling plays David Marks, who meets Katie McCarthy (Kirsten Dunst) in 1971; Katie comes from a middle-class background, while David comes from billions of dollars of old New England money. The two fall madly in love and are married soon after, but their relationship deteriorates over the next decade. David becomes abusive toward Katie, and they eventually end up living in separate houses as Katie studies at medical school while David works in New York City under his dad's company. In 1982, Katie vanishes without a trace. Fast-forward to 2000, and David is living under the identity of a woman in Texas; the deaths of friend/publisher Deborah Lehrman and the gruesome murder of elderly Malvern Bump reignite interest in Katie's 18-year-old disappearance. They all have one thing in common: David Marks.

The entire film, penned by Marcus Hinchey and Marc Smerling, plays out like a feature-length segment of "Unsolved Mysteries", except with award-worthy performances and stellar storytelling. I personally see this as a positive thing; I am, after all, a big fan of true crime tales and unsolved murders. The circumstances of the characters and the entire realm of which this takes place makes for not only a fascinating biographical narrative; but a love story, murder mystery, and a period piece. The cross-decade stretch the film makes also gives the audience a sense of relevance, since this man's history of crime (or innocence?) spreads across time.

On top of the weird fascinating aspects of this story, it was superbly acted, which makes it even more of a treat. Ryan Gosling takes a turn as a semi-sociopathic husband, and he carries the film gracefully (he's played the psycho role before, see "Murder by Numbers"). He plays that balance of sympathetic and downright evil to a tee, even when he's dressed in drag in a masquerade to hide his identity. His blonde wig, trench coat and sunglasses evoke an eerie image very similar to the villain in Brian De Palma's 1980 thriller "Dressed to Kill". Gosling aside, Kirsten Dunst is the real winner here. Her role as the vulnerable, goodhearted wife-turned-victim is played so well that it would catch any of her "Spiderman" fans off guard. Dunst is a capable actress, but she often chooses shallow films that don't exactly showcase that— this surely wasn't one of them. She is the window into David's psychosis, and we see the deterioration of their marriage through her eyes; after she's vanished, her presence is felt like a ghost looming over the rest of the film. This is really Dunst's movie, and she gives what is easily one of the best performances of her career here.

The most disturbing scene in the movie, in my opinion, is one of extreme suggestion involving Katie— on the night of a grand fight between she and David at their lake house, a neighbor is making tea in the middle of the night. The neighbor looks out her window at the Marks' house, and sees all the lights are oddly turned off, except for a single basement window, lit with an eerie fluorescent blue. We, as an audience, can only imagine what happened to Katie in that basement, and it's nothing short of horrifying.

The modern day sequences, much in contrast to the retro '70s/'80s vibe the first act of the film has, are extremely well-done, too, and the court-centered narrative is largely accurate in terms of what actually happened in this case. The entire film, in fact, is surprisingly accurate, which is nice to see for a change; very little artistic liberties or fabrication, if any, is embedded in the script. It's nice to see a true crime film tell it like it is; the truth is often more interesting than dressed-up fiction.

The sad truth here is that, in reality, Robert Durst hardly paid for his crimes; he spent nine months incarcerated for "improper disposal of a corpse" when he dismembered Morris Black (renamed Malvern Bump in the film) after killing him in "self defense" in 2001. Susan Berman's (renamed Deborah Lehrmen in the film) shotgun murder at her California home in 2000 is still unsolved. And Durst's wife, Katie, who vanished in 1982, has never been found— god only knows what happened to her. The mere fact that this man has been able to dodge any punishment for these murders is frustrating, and paints him as quite an evil enigma.

Overall, "All Good Things" is one of the best movies I've seen this year. I'd say that seeing it for Dunst's performance is reason enough, but it's also a treat for true crime buffs and people who are familiar with this decades-long story of secrecy and murder. While it may lack the conventional thrills and spills of fictional psychothrillers, "All Good Things" maintains a chilling, picturesque truthfulness to it, and for that, is a real winner in my book. 9/10.

Was the above review useful to you?

46 out of 80 people found the following review useful:


Author: val broeksmit from New York City / London, UK
25 November 2010

What a great, creepy story. This film falls under 'truth is stranger than fiction' and slips right at the top of that genre. Best film of the year. Great acting, Excellent Direction.

Andrew Jarecki took a fascinating story and made it into a great film, slipping it just under your skin; where you may find it hard to scratch away after viewing. All Good Things is an experience, its amazing how this story comes to life through under the umbrella of Andrew Jarecki and his team.

Like Wynn Thomas, the production designer/Art Director who's team put us right smack into 70's New York. There is no question of where you are; all details between dirt and sky are early 70's like a Space/Time blizzard came and left everything in Vanderbilt jeans, Hals ton Tops; covering Times Square in sleaze and tight tank tops for fat guys in pastel leisure suits. This is not the swinging Studio 56, 70's; but the creepy, Times Square Porn theatres, Taxi Driver, Son of Sam, 70's; Dark and strange, where wealthy and powerful New Yorkers, Civil servants and Leisure suited Larrys' live under their own rules and law.

Like Marcus Hinchly and Marc Smerling, the writers who took a big twisted story one may have read in Vanity Fair on hot Southampton summer beach; unraveled into a clear and coherent, cliché' free film; strung together with clever dialogue and cleverly created a non- narrator, narration, through the POV of a court room character brief / testimony.

Frank Langella, who, with one look at an empty chair, early on in the movie, could have stolen the film outright , had it not been for for the careful editing of David Rodenbloom and Shelby Seigel, under Jarecki's umbrella; making sure the film, which is not about his character, Sanford Marks, remains that way, true to the story.

Langella brings weight to every frame he's in; his charisma so apparent, it's not his fault really, that he commands every scene he's in, stealing the viewer's attention from what may be going on in the frame. (see The Ninth Gate or Frost /Nixon) - "it's 39.50 each, that includes a very generous tip" -

The Father and son subtext; combined with the functional madness of real life Durst ({David Marks]) played by Ryan Gosling as you've never seen him) is so very strange and un-nerving, it may make you shudder knowing that people like this exist all around you; everywhere you go, all the time.

Kristen Dunst, shows her range in this film. This is not your friendly Spiderman love interest, but a woman pushed emotionally to her frayed ends, where, in one near silent dinner scene, she, with great countenance, shows us how she can move from a woman trying to salvage what she can from her relationship - to great disgust; sadness, fear, and hurt all on one look; all in reaction from a single line slung at her by Gosling's 'Durst'.

We watch as the light Kristen Dunst brings to every role she plays, drains away into the black hole of Durst (Gosling/Marks) until she becomes a paranoid wreck; and rightfully so. Not every actress can do this, we take her for granted as an actress, but in thanks to Jarecki's direction we get to see what a truly great actress can do.

Philip Baker Hall in the last third of the film is a treat to watch as he plays a strange homoerotic vet who befriends Gosling who at this point, has succumbed to his madness, but like a functioning alcoholic. Gosling as Durst, plays/wears his aberrations as the straight man in a twisted comedy duo.

Kristen Wiig shines here, proving her talent stretches way past just comedy straight into the world of excellent dramatic acting (be careful you may develop a crush on her) "eat your salad"

Jarecki shows us much, in All Good Things; the breakdown of a marriage, the strained relations of a father and son, wealth and its trapping, but more intriguingly, how a seemingly 'normal' man can hide the sociopathic madman inside, carefully, while unbeknownst to us, can live a functional and, again, subjectively 'normal' life. - In a world where there is a law (in Texas of course) where "improper disposal of a body" can get you a fine and/or 6 months in jail.

What you may find most terrifying is that these people are all around us, they shop where we shop, eat at the same restaurants wear the same clothes; you've probably met a functional lunatic many times in your life. Although we may hide behind the great illusion and lie to ourselves that they are few and far between; that all murders and madmen eventually get caught and put far away from our children, friends and familys', yet Jarecki and his team show that this great conceit of ours, is totally wrong, just another lie we tell ourselves as we sign our lease's, leave our tips, show the bouncer our ID's, and run around central park in the evenings to avoid the crowds.

All Good Things, Directed by Andrew Jarecki, shows this to us in a film that you may need to to see a few more times to get all the brilliant subtleties, and top star acting.

Was the above review useful to you?

18 out of 26 people found the following review useful:

Like Watching Paint Dry

Author: cracker from NYC
30 April 2011

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

"When will this turkey be over?"

Every once in awhile you will see a movie that is full to the brim with acting talent that can do nothing collectively to save the awful script and direction. This is that movie.

This is neither a psychological thriller nor does it have any suspenseful elements at all. The story would make a very mildly interesting ten-page article in an unsolved crime magazine, but should never have been made the focus of an entire movie. One is left to wonder how movies like this get funded and made, and the only plausible explanation is someone with deep pockets had animus against the Marks family.

Don't be fooled by the cast. Avoid.

Was the above review useful to you?

Page 1 of 7:[1] [2] [3] [4] [5] [6] [7] [Next]

Add another review

Related Links

Plot summary Ratings Awards
External reviews Parents Guide Official site
Plot keywords Main details Your user reviews
Your vote history