Box art for Peaceful Warrior

Peaceful Warrior

drama, sports

Nick Nolte, Scott Mechlowicz and Amy Smart star in this inspirational film about the power of the human spirit. Inspired by true events and based on the best-selling novel by Dan Millman.

Rotten Tomatoes® scores

  • Critic Score
  • Audience Score

common sense

ON for kids age 12
3 out of 5
Drinking, drugs, & smoking
3 out of 5
0 out of 5
Positive messages
3 out of 5
3 out of 5
0 out of 5

Like Karate Kid -- without the karate.

what parents need to know

Parents need to know that although the content in this inspirational sports drama is fairly mild -- the hero parties a lot and sleeps with a string of women in the beginning but eventually transforms his life -- it won't be interesting to most kids and tweens. It's better suited to teens who are prone to thinking about self discovery and analysis. The somewhat-New Agey tale is based on a true story and deals with big issues like inner emptiness and the meaning of life -- not exactly light entertainment.

what families can talk about

  • Families can talk about the goal of inspirational "mentor" tales. What do movies and TV shows that follow this kind of storyline have in common? Who are they trying to reach? Why do you think so many involve sports? Families can also discuss Socrates' sometimes-mixed messages about drinking, fighting, health and discipline, and being "in the moment." A lot of these points are alluded to in other martial-arts flicks, but they're often lost in a fog of kung-fu fighting. Do you think this film's non-violent approach is more effective?

movie reviews from Rotten Tomatoes®

  • Tomatometer®

    reviews counted: 27
    see all Peaceful Warrior reviews
  • Audience


Top Critic Reviews

Rotten: Dan's transformation hits the kinds of snags that might occur in real life but spell doom for narrative momentum.

- Chris Vognar, Dallas Morning News, Thursday, June 22, 2006

Rotten: Based on the story by gymnast Dan Millman, the movie tries to be inspirational and profound, but much of the dialogue sounds like it came out of a fortune cookie.

- Claudia Puig, USA Today, Friday, June 2, 2006

Rotten: A collection of New Age platitudes beyond their expiration date, the sort of thing that might seem profound if your library doesn't extend much beyond zodiac love guides and Jonathan Livingston Seagull.

- Colin Covert, Minneapolis Star Tribune, Thursday, June 22, 2006

Audience Reviews

3 stars

I read this book so many years ago. I was actually excited for the movie coming out. As always, the book is better, but the movie slightly sticks to what is told. I was suprised to see that they put Nick Nolte as Socrates. I was hoping it would be a European actor like perhaps Rutger Huer or maybe Christopher Lambert. The movie tries to deliver the image of what the book describes, but it only succeeded a little. All in all, it's a fairly good movie.

- donnarenee2006, Tuesday, July 3, 2007

4 stars

Nick Nolte is masterful! This is one of the finest performances of his career. His character alone is worthy of a strong recommendation of this film. Moreover, the story and theme induce self-reflection upon the viewer, calling upon him to philosophically question his purpose. Unfortunately, some phony writing for this second rate supporting cast prevented this from being a true masterpiece.

- sportsphenom1, Saturday, May 17, 2008

3 stars

It was a little boring at times, but it told a a good story.

- irisheyes686, Sunday, August 23, 2009