Shallow Hal

November 9th, 2001


more trailers Shallow Hal

An anxious Rosemary (Gwyneth Paltrow) prepares for a romantic evening with her new boyfriend.Hal (Jack Black, right) has a life-altering encounter with self-help guru Tony Robbins.Being in love is an uplifting experience for Hal (Jack Black), after he is hypnotized into perceiving the inner beauty of Rosemary (Gwyneth Paltrow) as physical nirvana.JACK BLACK is Hal, the ultimate shallow guy whose views are changed forever after an impromptu hypnosis.Hal (Jack Black, right) reacts to some questionable advice from his equally shallow friend Mauricio (Jason Alexander).GWYNETH PALTROW is Rosemary, a Peace Corps vounteer whose inner beauty is seen as physical splendor by her new -  and hypnotized - boyfriend.

A shallow man falls in love with a 300 pound woman because of her "inner beauty".

Release Year: 2001

Rating: 6.0/10 (53,387 voted)

Critic's Score: 48/100

Director: Bobby Farrelly

Stars: Jack Black, Gwyneth Paltrow, Jason Alexander

Following the advice of his dying father, Hal dates only women who are physically beautiful. One day, however, he runs into self-help guru Tony Robbins, who hypnotizes him into recognizing only the inner beauty of women. Hal thereafter meets Rosemary, a grossly obese woman whom only he can see as a vision of loveliness. But will their relationship survive when Hal's equally shallow friend undoes the hypnosis?

Writers: Sean Moynihan, Peter Farrelly

Gwyneth Paltrow - Rosemary
Jack Black - Hal
Jason Alexander - Mauricio
Joe Viterelli - Steve Shanahan
Rene Kirby - Walt
Bruce McGill - Reverend Larson
Anthony Robbins - Himself (as Tony Robbins)
Susan Ward - Jill
Zen Gesner - Ralph
Brooke Burns - Katrina
Rob Moran - Second Tiffany
Joshua 'Li'iBoy' Shintani - Li'iBoy
Kyle Gass - Artie
Laura Kightlinger - Jen
Nan Martin - Nurse Tanya Peeler

Taglines: True Love Is Worth The Weight!


Official Website: Fox |

Release Date: 9 November 2001

Filming Locations: Bank of America World Headquarters Building - 100 North Tryon Street, Charlotte, North Carolina, USA

Box Office Details

Budget: $40,000,000(estimated)

Opening Weekend: $22,518,295 (USA) (11 November 2001) (2770 Screens)

Gross: $70,836,296 (USA) (31 March 2002)

Technical Specs


Did You Know?

In the scene where Rosemary and Hal are walking along a street, and Rosemary is enjoying a caramel apple, the two pass by a glass window. In the reflection you can see Rosemary's true figure.

Continuity: At the DoubleDoor Inn, where Rosie is seen dancing with the guy with spina bifida, we see the other guests applaud and approach them once they have finished dancing. And if you look closely you will see that Hal joins the crowd at the right hand side of your screen. But as it cuts to the next shot where Rosie is walking away from the crowd, we see Hal catch up with her from the opposite side where he was standing with the crowd.

Mauricio: She's got CANKLES!

User Review

One of the sweetest movies I've ever seen!

Rating: 8/10

No contest, I will say this marks the best of the Farrelly Brothers. Not because this film is laugh-out-loud funny--it's funny, but not hilarious--but because it has a great heart and delivers a beautiful message without any corny Hollywood pretentions. Sure, the premise is funny--a shallow guy gets virtually hypnotized into thinking all the unattractive women he sees are foxes and ends up going out with a 500-pound woman who he also thinks is a fox. It's a great premise, but the Farrellys don't fixate on that premise alone, preventing it from turning it into a lame, one-joke slapstick comedy. This is a comedy with heart--a rare finding. In between laughs, you really get wrapped up in the characters and storyline. The gags flow quite naturally, without the Farrellys forcing any humor onto the screen. If a comic opportunity comes along, they take advantage, but there's no random acts of slapstick.

I am pleasantly surprised with Jack Black, who has proved in this movie that he doesn't only have what it takes as a comic actor, but also as a serious actor and a romantic lead. I've always enjoyed seeing him on screen, but he usually plays the same wound-up, hyperkinetic characters. Basically, he's funny, but you still know you're watching Jack Black on screen. This time he exercises his ability as a method actor, he succeeds well. Gwyneth Paltrow is adorable and sweet, capturing the audience's sympathy with her winning smile. Joe Viterelli is amusing as her overweight Irish father, and actually pulls off a fairly convincing Irish accent. The sizzling hot Brooke Burns makes a few appearances. And Jason Alexander is always a joy to watch.

I think "Shallow Hal" does the best job at conveying the message that beauty is on the inside. It has been conveyed before in films like "The Nutty Professor," but I feel this film conveyed it best. This could've easily been a 105-minute fat joke, but it doesn't travel that route. There are no crude or mean-spirited gags. Could it be that the Farrelly Brothers matured? Even of the films of theirs that I liked (ex.: "Dumb and Dumber," "There's Something About Mary") are a little uneven and contain a few gags that are just plain cruel. Like in "Mary," Cameron Diaz's brother is mentally ill and the butt of a few jokes. Here, we have a character that walks on both his arms and legs, but he's portrayed as a normal character, and not as a gimmick for some cheap laughs. There are moments that really tugged at my heartstrings. The "burn victim" scene brought quite a few tears to my eyes. The story is solid, with no boring lulls. And the soundtrack is pretty good--I have criticized the Farrellys in the past for using crappy music in their sountracks.

If you're looking for a good romantic/date movie with some good laughs and a good message, "Shallow Hal" will be an absolute delight.

My score: 8 (out of 10)