Metascore
56

Mixed or average reviews - based on 19 Critics What's this?

User Score
7.6

Generally favorable reviews- based on 14 Ratings

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  • Starring: , ,
  • Summary: An intensely personal rites of passage story about the influence that an older actress has on an awkward young teenager, the son of a vicar, when he goes to work as her assistant. (Sony Pictures Classics)
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 11 out of 19
  2. Negative: 0 out of 19
  1. With the aid of a charmingly offbeat story and a jolly good dialect coach, the stars leave you thinking, well done. Their spirited performances help cover up glaring holes in the plot.
  2. The screwball aging diva genre isn't the only formula guiding this stubbornly old-fashioned movie. Driving Lessons belongs to the silly feel-good mode of "The Full Monty," "Calendar Girls," "Billy Elliot," "Kinky Boots" and dozens of other celebrations of Britons defying convention to become "free," whatever that means.
  3. 70
    While Driving Lessons' writer-director, Jeremy Brock, sticks to the all-too-familiar template of such tales, he's given Walters her best role since "Educating Rita." Hamming it up with the precision of a master, she makes this somewhat plodding film a pleasure, as does young Grint.
  4. Reviewed by: Ken Fox
    63
    Linney's character is written as a one-dimensional monster whose selfish cruelty is beyond redemption and, ultimately, belief.
  5. Aiming for wacky and heartwarming, the film is, at its sporadic best, a mildly diverting coming-of-age story. At its worst, it feels forced.
  6. 50
    Everybody in the movie is so tightly wound that Walters seems a model of actorly limberness. She cuts through the movie with speed and mannish, zany wit.
  7. 40
    Because screenwriter-director Brock fails to create a moving relationship between its mentor and student in life's lessons, the film hardly resonates five minutes after it's over.

See all 19 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 5 out of 7
  2. Negative: 1 out of 7

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