Broken Flowers


Generally favorable reviews - based on 39 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 34 out of 39
  2. Negative: 0 out of 39

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Critic Reviews

  1. A movie of uncommon sweetness and delight.
  2. 100
    No actor is better than Bill Murray at doing nothing at all, and being fascinating while not doing it. Buster Keaton had the same gift for contemplating astonishing developments with absolute calm. Buster surrounded himself with slapstick, and in Broken Flowers Jim Jarmusch surrounds Murray with a parade of formidable women.
  3. Reviewed by: Ty Burr
    Exhilaratingly slow, which for many will simply mean SLOW... Those who can downshift appropriately, however, stand to be enraptured.
  4. 91
    An engaging exercise in mature poignancy, existential consciousness and deadpan drollery, Broken Flowers is a return by Jarmusch to the road movie structure of such films as "Stranger Than Paradise," "Night on Earth" and "Dead Man."
  5. Reviewed by: David Ansen
    Funny, bittersweet, its understatement yielding surprising depth charges, Broken Flowers is a triumph of close observation and telling details.
  6. 90
    Murray and Jarmusch, two modern masters of minimalism, triumphantly join forces in Broken Flowers, a bittersweet tour de force about a wealthy, deeply depressed lothario.
  7. 90
    With elegant restraint the film subtly intimates the wintry dead end-twilight years bereft of love, partner, or vocation-that may be in store for its aged lover man. (Payne's "About Schmidt" did too, when not gorging snidely on idiot Americana.)
  8. 90
    It's a romantic comedy in which both the romance and the comedy are turned to such muted levels that any lower would require closed captioning.
  9. Like a perfect, short-lived love affair, its pleasure is accompanied by a palpable sting of sorrow. It leaves you wanting more, which I mean entirely as a compliment.
  10. Reviewed by: David Edelstein
    The ending is madly unsatisfying--yet dead perfect. This is a remarkable film.
  11. Murray's performance is at once enormously generous and fiercely, concisely witty.
  12. 88
    Broken Flowers may be too low-key for laugh junkies, but Jarmusch fills his sharply observed comedy with wonderful mischief. The mix of humor and heartbreak brings out the best in Murray.
  13. A dark subject certainly, but in Murray's bouquet-bearing hands, it can still hand us a laugh.
  14. Reviewed by: Glenn Kenny
    This is not a perfect picture, but it’s a soulful one that offers a lot of pleasure and even a kind of wisdom.
  15. It's a consciousness-raising personal odyssey in the tradition of such recent indie hits as "Sideways" and "About Schmidt" -- only less obviously comedic and, as always with Jarmusch, blissfully unresolved.
  16. Reviewed by: Todd McCarthy
    Working in his typically idiosyncratic and episodic vein, Jim Jarmusch has nonetheless pitched the film slightly more toward mainstream tastes than usual for him, using excellent thesps in the service of accessible material.
  17. 80
    If you're shopping for neatly tied bundles of plot and the rigid arcs of "character development" common to mainstream movies, look elsewhere. Whether he's playing on the road or at home, Jarmusch always throws a lot of off-speed stuff, and that's his glory.
  18. Take this trip with him and chances are, you'll find the journey increasingly funny and touching.
  19. 80
    Jarmusch manages to imbue banality with surprising beauty and humor.
  20. Wall Street Journal
    Reviewed by: Joanne Kaufman
    Jarmusch's uncharacteristically mainstream -- wonderful -- road trip movie.
  21. Reviewed by: Jo Berry
    All the actresses (including Tilda Swinton as ex number four) give wonderful performances in the short screen time each of them is allowed.
  22. Broken Flowers is as elliptical as the haunting jazz music by Mulatu Astatke that permeates the soundtrack.
  23. 75
    In the wasteland of August releases, this entry shines like a beacon lighting the way to a theater.
  24. For actresses of a certain age, Jarmusch's film amounts to a full-employment act...Best are Stone, transparent in her desire, and Conroy, completely opaque.
  25. Reviewed by: Mike Clark
    Flowers is smartly observational -- but a little screen heat would be worth a bouquet.
  26. This is Murray's subtlest performance, and one of his best.
  27. A study of middle-class, middle-aged disappointment in its varying forms, a sober look at different life choices.
  28. It forces you to fill in the blanks, then refuses to judge whether you're right or wrong. It's almost like the audience writes its own script, and everybody appreciates his or her own work.
  29. 75
    A haunting, poetic film, and yet it suffers two major failings. First, Murray provides too blank a slate for the audience to appreciate whatever insights a more expressive performance might have offered. Second, and far more troubling, is the way Jarmusch refuses to take his female characters seriously.
  30. It skips merrily along the surface with its over-the-top vignettes but never seems to arrive at a destination. Nevertheless, the journey is more than half the fun as every actor attacks his role with relish.
  31. 70
    Murray’s linking up with Jim Jarmusch is a case of Mr. Cool meeting Mr. Cool, and the result is intriguing and elegant, but not quite satisfying.
  32. It's hard to fully empathize with Don's season of remorse. It's the big problem with Broken Flowers, and one I don't think the movie -- for all of its funny and occasionally poignant touches -- ever really transcends.
  33. Jarmusch's narrative setups are often artificial and implausible, but his stories are usually charming anyway because the sense of character runs deeper than plot.
  34. It's like watching a man trying to scratch an itch by eating an egg. It doesn't address the problem. It's also the sort of thing that Europeans love to think about America -- everybody looking, nobody finding -- and it might explain why this decent, but by no means great, film won the Grand Prix at the 2005 Cannes Film Festival.
  35. 60
    Possibly the most European of major American directors, Jim Jarmusch wears his influences on his sleeve and makes no bones about it.
  36. The film ends on an ambiguous note that will infuriate some viewers and strike others as the only possible finale to Don's sad absurdist journey.
  37. 60
    Well-meaning but remote picture.
  38. The five episodes in Broken Flowers are good enough to make us expect that the picture has a theme, but it hasn't.
  39. 50
    Audiences will laugh, mainly to prove they're awake, but the humor is pretty thin.
User Score

Mixed or average reviews- based on 175 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 40 out of 101
  2. Negative: 37 out of 101
  1. NickN
    Jul 5, 2007
    A clever and meaningful film about a middle aged man reflecting on his life and his future. If you think the movie has no end, you're an A clever and meaningful film about a middle aged man reflecting on his life and his future. If you think the movie has no end, you're an idiot and you have no idea what they're trying to say. I can see the criticism that it moves slowly, because some people aren't able to engage without constant fireworks. Full Review »
  2. Aug 5, 2015
    Great film from top director Jim Jarmusch. It's an open film with several mensages and an ambiguous ending. I liked very much, but i must sayGreat film from top director Jim Jarmusch. It's an open film with several mensages and an ambiguous ending. I liked very much, but i must say who didn't like Jarmusch other works, won't like this one. Full Review »
  3. Apr 30, 2015
    This one is slow and I can get why the audience is a little mixed on it, but the critics hit this one right on. Bill Murray is excellent inThis one is slow and I can get why the audience is a little mixed on it, but the critics hit this one right on. Bill Murray is excellent in this one, as is Jeffrey Wright in a supporting role. A tale about a man going on a journey to discover if he has a son and if so, which woman is the mother of that child, this one is simply a slice of life type of film. Nothing extraordinary happens and it is debatable as to if anything happened at all. However, I really do enjoy these type of films for the insight they provide for the characters presented. In Broken Flowers, you really get to really understand Murray's character and his problems and really, you feel bad for him since he is so alone, though he has always been surrounded by people. In addition, Jim Jarmusch's direction is brilliant. He really manages to capture the beauty of life by emphasizing the beauty of the landscape that Murray transverses. Much like life, the beauty is in the details and this film really underscores that. A subtle film that is so subtle it will not really touch a lot of viewers, this one really was moving. On top of that, the comedic moments were well done and actually really funny, but you had to pay attention to catch them. As a whole, Broken Flowers is a very good film that works on multiple levels. Full Review »