• Studio: FSI
  • Release Date: Oct 14, 2011
User Score
7.8

Generally favorable reviews- based on 9 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 8 out of 9
  2. Negative: 0 out of 9

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  1. Mar 3, 2012
    9
    If Terence Malik had been listed as the director the critics would have been all over this piece claiming it was brilliant. My complaint was the ending which signified some type of reconciliation but even with the possibility it didn't really state emphatically that everything had been fixed. The performances are all excellent. Yes it's family dysfunction at it's best but the actorsIf Terence Malik had been listed as the director the critics would have been all over this piece claiming it was brilliant. My complaint was the ending which signified some type of reconciliation but even with the possibility it didn't really state emphatically that everything had been fixed. The performances are all excellent. Yes it's family dysfunction at it's best but the actors pull it off quite well. Just as the critics got so much wrong this year they got this one wrong as well. Expand
  2. Jun 2, 2012
    10
    This is a rather sloppy movie about a dysfunctional family headed by a demonic turn by Willem Dafoe and abetted by a an unusually tame Julia Roberts. Dafoe's father psychologically traumatizes his son, while Roberts flits around mewling but not interfering. Her anger only shows when she finds out Dafoe is unfaithful. She is killed in a car accident and the family is gathered for theThis is a rather sloppy movie about a dysfunctional family headed by a demonic turn by Willem Dafoe and abetted by a an unusually tame Julia Roberts. Dafoe's father psychologically traumatizes his son, while Roberts flits around mewling but not interfering. Her anger only shows when she finds out Dafoe is unfaithful. She is killed in a car accident and the family is gathered for the funeral. The son is grown, and yet Dafoe keeps harping away. But the son may have revenge: he has just finished an autobiography about his family and Daddy, a famous writer himself, will be skewered. This is where it gets really sloppy. Emily Watson plays the son's childhood friend and sole soul-mate. Now she is distant and critical of him, and we are given no reasons as to why. His ex wife (ex alcoholic) shows up (Carrie Ann Moss) and soon they are shagging upstairs noisily while the funeral reception tries to go on downstairs. Father is mortified but everybody else just giggles. In the end Dafoe gets a by as the son gets religion and burns the book. Nothing is done with Roberts enabling mother role. A sister gets mostly ignored, and in the end they all sit around watching home movies and lo and behold we see Dafoe actually acting like a real Dad. Do we care? We do not. Expand
Metascore
34

Generally unfavorable reviews - based on 14 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 1 out of 14
  2. Negative: 5 out of 14
  1. Reviewed by: Lisa Schwarzbaum
    Oct 19, 2011
    50
    The resentments acted out at the dining table by the rest of this miserable family - gathered for a graduation celebration that turns into a wake - are so oppressive that Eugene O'Neill might ask, ''Too much?''
  2. Reviewed by: Lou Lumenick
    Oct 14, 2011
    25
    A dispiriting rehash of dysfunctional family clichés that seems to last longer than Thanksgiving Day dinner.
  3. Reviewed by: Manohla Dargis
    Oct 13, 2011
    40
    Mr. Lee gathers together a lifetime of hurt without conveying that there's something personal at stake.