Metascore
49

Mixed or average reviews - based on 22 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 7 out of 22
  2. Negative: 4 out of 22
  1. Reviewed by: Cory Everett
    Jul 8, 2013
    83
    Afternoon Delight succeeds mainly because although the premise is broad, writer/director Jill Soloway is determined to keep it real.
  2. Reviewed by: Andrew O'Hehir
    Aug 29, 2013
    80
    It’s a crisp and often hilarious female-centric social satire loaded with delicious talent from the TV-comedy pool.
  3. Reviewed by: Ty Burr
    Sep 12, 2013
    75
    The results feel a little life lesson-y but also well-earned and well-observed, and Hahn takes advantage of a rare lead role to locate both the ugliness and beauty in her character.
  4. Reviewed by: Leba Hertz
    Sep 5, 2013
    75
    Director Jill Soloway gets the most out of her actors, fleshing out their characters and letting us know what makes them tick. It's refreshing to hear dialogue that's natural and modern and doesn't try to pontificate. And the rewards are many.
  5. Reviewed by: Laremy Legel
    Aug 30, 2013
    65
    Afternoon Delight will both depress and engage an audience, usually just depending on the minute of the movie you find yourself watching.
  6. Reviewed by: Sean O’Connell
    Sep 6, 2013
    63
    The movie’s a mixed bag, but Hahn makes the most of her opportunities. Casting directors would be wise to take note.
  7. Reviewed by: Michael Phillips
    Sep 5, 2013
    63
    It's an up-and-down movie, honest one minute and a fraud the next, but you stick with it mainly because of Hahn.
  8. Reviewed by: Anna Smith
    Mar 24, 2014
    60
    Six Feet Under scribe Jill Soloway offers a wry perspective on married life as Temple's stripper-with-a-heart is lobbed into this domestic yarn like a firecracker in an arms cache.
  9. Reviewed by: Jordan Hoffman
    Aug 29, 2013
    60
    Kathryn Hahn gives an outstanding performance in what is ultimately a not-very-amazing movie.
  10. Reviewed by: Stephen Holden
    Aug 29, 2013
    60
    Whether or not you wince, this meticulously acted movie, which won Ms. Soloway a directing award at the Sundance Film Festival, paints an accurate picture of how a segment of youngish, educated, affluent, white Americans converse. It is anything but inspiring.
  11. Reviewed by: Matt Patches
    Aug 27, 2013
    60
    Soloway mines her ensemble of funny ladies more for laughs than emotional insight, but Hahn breaks through it all; she’s the one who provides the glossy rumination with actual heart.
  12. Reviewed by: Marjorie Baumgarten
    Sep 11, 2013
    50
    Afternoon Delight has many small pleasures but falls far short of reaching the G spot.
  13. Reviewed by: Richard Roeper
    Sep 6, 2013
    50
    Things play out in predictable fashion, and we’re more than ready to bid farewell to these people and feel grateful they don’t live on our block.
  14. Reviewed by: Christy Lemire
    Aug 30, 2013
    50
    This cannot end well—we know this—but the major turn Afternoon Delight takes is jarring and irreparable.
  15. Reviewed by: Mike D'Angelo
    Aug 28, 2013
    50
    Alas, the film, which had at worst seemed unfocused (not a cardinal sin for a comedy), takes a bizarrely reactionary turn in the homestretch, undermining all of the goodwill Hahn had accumulated up to that point and turning her character into detestable yuppie scum.
  16. Reviewed by: Sheri Linden
    Aug 29, 2013
    40
    Aiming to discomfort, the film ends up retreating.
  17. Reviewed by: Nick Schager
    Aug 27, 2013
    40
    A film whose themes are as neatly laid out as its characters' behavior is preposterous.
  18. Reviewed by: Alissa Simon
    Jul 8, 2013
    40
    Although there are moments when it feels the plot might move in unexpected directions, in the end, the expected cliches reign.
  19. Reviewed by: Farran Smith Nehme
    Aug 30, 2013
    38
    There are some bright one-liners in the beginning, but the comedy/drama mix is an uneasy one, especially considering the shabby way the film treats McKenna, as a tart who’s just there to improve some yuppie sex lives.
  20. Reviewed by: Scott Tobias
    Aug 29, 2013
    30
    Afternoon Delight is one of those bad films that seem to drift further and further away from a recognizable reality the more we get to know it.
  21. Reviewed by: Todd McCarthy
    Jul 8, 2013
    30
    It’s impossible to buy into the film’s plea to be taken seriously at the end, just as the upbeat finale feels false.
  22. Reviewed by: Tomas Hachard
    Aug 26, 2013
    12
    Jill Soloway's film is dishonest in the way it attempts to mask self-pity as enlightened self-criticism.
User Score
6.3

Generally favorable reviews- based on 12 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 2 out of 4
  2. Negative: 0 out of 4
  1. Dec 6, 2014
    7
    Subtle yet dark at moments. Exploring a specific agenda of a married life. Superb acting with good general plot. But it goes flat without muchSubtle yet dark at moments. Exploring a specific agenda of a married life. Superb acting with good general plot. But it goes flat without much of an emotional roller coaster ride. Full Review »
  2. Jul 2, 2014
    4
    I randomly watched this, and can say it`s the only way you should watch it. Afternoon delight has a few interesting moments, but nothing greatI randomly watched this, and can say it`s the only way you should watch it. Afternoon delight has a few interesting moments, but nothing great about it. Full Review »
  3. Mar 23, 2014
    5
    Go on, you can tell me. Have you ever jumped into the back seat of your car as it trundles slowly through the car wash, just because you can,Go on, you can tell me. Have you ever jumped into the back seat of your car as it trundles slowly through the car wash, just because you can, free for a moment of the responsibility of control, just for a different of view things?

    No? Well, me neither. Already, I feel inadequate, quirk-wise, and the opening credits haven't even finished.

    Afternoon Delight may be the perfect film for someone, just not for me. I have way too much testosterone coarsing through my innards to really get down with the ladies here. The story of (now, when you've watched it, you can tell me which) a disillusioned/selfish/vacant/bored wife and mother with a flagging sex-life, a challenged libido and a distinct lack of direction is not as voracious as it may be, but is written well, with enough reality at its core to be recognisable to many of a certain age.

    Kathryn Hahn leads this ensemble of considered female examples. To call them stereotypical is probably unfair, but they are more obvious when you're old enough to have met most of them already. None are particularly striking or surprising, with characters that are mostly old enough to know better, but are still barren of satisfaction, and not just in the bedroom. Emotionally needy and only slightly psychologically challenged, this collection of women, though seemingly empowered, still seem at odds with a world of opportunity and their apparent inability to grasp it firmly by its very hairy bollocks. If this is a mans world, then you just might have these ladies to thank for it, wasting their time with not even beginning to understand what they want, instead of knowing their own minds and just **** well taking it.

    "You want to blog with her? Name one good thing that's come from blogging.."

    Well I can think of one. This review, for example. Cited for best direction at Sundance, you can easily spend the first half of the films' running time just wishing that these women would stop suffering under a cloud of whatever it is these soccer moms are ailed by. The arrival of stripper McKenna (Juno Temple) into the lives of these frustrating, frustrated women is a breath of fresh air for the audience and you would expect this to be true also for Rachel (Hahn) when she invites her to stay at her house, conveniently forgetting to check with her husband or son beforehand.

    And this is where we have a problem. The story is at odds with itself. You can ask why she even needs to ask permission to invite a friend to stay, for as long as she wants? But she really should. This is about respect, after all. This is something she clearly needs from others, yet seems unable to provide it herself. If the intention was to make Rachel unbalanced and slightly avoidable, then this seems like a triumph. Personally, I get the feeling that we are, regardless of our gender, supposed to be engaged by her (we are to an extent), to understand her (we do, she is quite transparent) and to empathise (oh no, you can forget that, missy). Throughout the majority of the running time, Rachel becomes progessively more unlikeable and self-absorbed, pining for for a youth that's long gone and quietly regretting the life she's had since, for a number of reasons.

    Hahn's portrayal of Rachel is excellent and the acting performances are enviable throughout, with Juno Temple continuing to impress and deliver a range of performances only touched on here, but Afternoon Delight has trouble with what it wants to say, or come to that, even if it has something to say. As a contemporary temperature gauge for how women of a certain age feel today, then it's all well and good, but you have to ask what the audience can take away from this, aside from a nodding appreciation if the audience also happens to be female and middle-aged. And if that is even the case, is there anything here besides recognition worth sitting through this navel-gazing story that is ultimately quite unpleasant, if we're brutally honest.

    Seemingly trapped in two stories, one of a lonely stripper, one of a lonely housewife, the two could rightfully be expected to meet somewhere in the middle with either one or both of these women learning from the other, making two worlds collide for some kind of purpose, but this never really happens. Or at least, I never saw it happen. Both of the two main characters are reluctant to change, yet neither is satisfied with their life as it is. Perhaps, despite being confident and assured, they try to learn to understand that their world does not stop immediately outside their bubble.

    Well acted and scripted, the story is naive and beneath the audience it is trying to impress. The performances are easily the best thing about the film and the same cast with something more to chew on would have made a more satisfying project come to life with their abundant flair. This plods and lollops from one selfish, tired complaint to the next, rarely getting up enough steam to generate actual enthusiasm from an audience that were clearly
    Full Review »