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50/50 (2011)

R  |   |  Comedy, Drama  |  30 September 2011 (USA)
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Ratings: 7.7/10 from 257,262 users   Metascore: 72/100
Reviews: 370 user | 321 critic | 42 from Metacritic.com

Inspired by a true story, a comedy centered on a 27-year-old guy who learns of his cancer diagnosis, and his subsequent struggle to beat the disease.



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Nominated for 2 Golden Globes. Another 12 wins & 22 nominations. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Donna Yamamoto ...


Adam is a 27 year old writer of radio programs and is diagnosed with a rare form of spinal cancer. With the help of his best friend, his mother, and a young therapist at the cancer center, Adam learns what and who the most important things in his life are. Written by Calikeane

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


It takes a pair to beat the odds


Comedy | Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for language throughout, sexual content and some drug use | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:



Official Sites:



Release Date:

30 September 2011 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

I'm with Cancer  »

Filming Locations:


Box Office


$8,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$8,644,095 (USA) (30 September 2011)


$34,963,967 (USA) (16 December 2011)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

| | (as Datasat Digital Sound)


Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Joseph Gordon-Levitt's second film beginning with the numbers 5-0, he previously starred in (500) Days of Summer (2009) in 2009. Levitt was nominated for the Golden Globe as Best Actor in a Comedy film for both movies and both films earned a second nomination as Best Comedy at the same award. See more »


When Adam is running in Seattle at the beginning of the film, the Lion's Gate Bridge in Vancouver, BC is seen in the background. See more »


Adam: [When Katherine comes to see Adam after his surgery] I'm peeing right now.
See more »


Featured in The Tonight Show with Jay Leno: Episode #20.3 (2011) See more »


Written and Performed by Eric V. Hachikian
Courtesy of Soundcat Productions
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

Comedic, inspiring, dramatic, tearful, and effervescent
1 October 2011 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

After playing a bad boy rocker with a full head of hair, Joseph Gordon-Levitt now plays a nervous Cancer-patient with no hair at all. 50/50 is loosely based on the story of Will Reiser, who wrote this film, and is telling us his story and struggle through the character Adam.

Adam is played by Levitt, a marvelous actor who is continuing his string of quirky, yet well made independent films where he plays an off-the-wall protagonist. Adam is twenty-seven and works for a Seattle radio company. He is informed that he has a rare form of Cancer called Neurofibrosarcoma, and is told he only has a 50% chance of living with it. Frustrated, but moving day by day in a seemingly calm manner with his buddy Kyle (Rogen), Adam continues his long journey only to be bothered by his annoying, self-centered girlfriend (Howard) frequently. Through thick and thin, Adam starts to cope with his disease and manages to stay calm for most of the picture.

We all have to die at one point. It's part of the life. But I can't imagine the sadness and calamity brought upon someone who finds out they have a rare form of Cancer and that their chances of living are fifty-fifty. At twenty-seven nonetheless. My mother, who has work in a Chemotherapy unit for about a decade, said that the youngest she has even seen someone die from Cancer is two and a half years old. Some people, hardly get to experience life at firsthand because of Cancer.

There are so many forms of Cancer, rare and common, harmless and not, that your chances of getting it are very high. Getting it is at random, but coping with it is even harder. While 50/50 has a heartbreaking, and is sometimes emotion-testing and tear-jerking, it still has a strong comedic relief thanks to Seth Rogen, who is rather unfairly bashed in a majority of his films.

The acting is superb by both leads, the parents of Adam played by Angelica Houston and Serge Houde are portrayed effectively and in a loving way, and the screenplay and Johnathan Levine's direction never fails or works against this film in any way. Three years prior he was creating good chemistry between Ben Kingsley and Josh Peck in The Wackness. Now, he's finally mastered in creating two characters that do nothing but sparkle when on screen together. You can't really call this a Seth Rogen film because while his comedy is here, his underlying sweetness shows through the cloth of this film more than it has ever done before. The last time he gave a performance this well done was in Sandler's Funny People.

Thanks to a wonderful third act in terms of direction and screenplay, you get an all out emotional breakdown from the characters and yourself. 50/50 has a way with making emotional moments not seemed contrived, but welcomed. I think out of everyone in the theater, my mom was more emotional than the average person in the general public which is understandable.

Many films have come out this year, and many have been ignored. Comedies and dramas alike have been swept under the bus with other blockbusters in theaters at the same time. I plan on doing a list of the top ignored and underrated films of 2011. I hope 50/50 doesn't make that list.

Starring: Joesph Gordon-Levitt, Seth Rogen, Bryce Dallas-Howard, Angelica Houston, and Serge Houde. Directed by: Johnathan Levine.

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