Metascore
58

Mixed or average reviews - based on 17 Critics What's this?

User Score
6.4

Generally favorable reviews- based on 8 Ratings

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  • Starring: , , , , , , , , ,
  • Summary: Armed with nothing more than twigs, their imaginations and a simple set of rules, a group of 12-year-olds engaged in a lively game of Capture the Flag in the neighborhood woods start dangerously blurring the lines between make-believe and reality. Rocks = Grenades. Trees = Control towers. Sticks = Submachine guns. The youthful innocence of the game gradually takes on a different tone as the quest for victory pushes the boundaries of friendship. The would-be warriors get a searing glimpse of humanity's dark side as their combat scenario takes them beyond the rules of the game and into an adventure where fantasy combat clashes with the real world. [Drafthouse Films] Collapse
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 9 out of 17
  2. Negative: 2 out of 17
  1. Reviewed by: Joe Neumaier
    Aug 29, 2013
    80
    There’s social commentary in all of this, but it takes a back seat to a surprisingly compelling narrative of the two combating teams.
  2. 75
    It’s engrossing, violent, frightening and funny in the ways it captures the way kids speak with no adults around, and the way kids act when society’s rules take a back seat in time of war.
  3. Reviewed by: Annlee Ellingson
    Aug 29, 2013
    70
    An entertaining and insightful portrait of boyhood.
  4. Reviewed by: Steve Davis
    Aug 28, 2013
    67
    In the end, I Declare War is both enthralling and a little frustrating in its refusal to fit neatly in any box. Its unpredictable tone clicks back and forth between the comical and the serious like the safety catch on a firearm.
  5. Reviewed by: Ignatiy Vishnevetsky
    Aug 28, 2013
    58
    The problem, mainly, is that Lapeyre’s kids are stock types: runts, bullies, toadies, a girl with a big crush. In essence, they are kids’-movie tropes pretending to be war-movie tropes — one layer of generic material being used to cover another.
  6. Reviewed by: Andrew Schenker
    Aug 24, 2013
    50
    The film rarely takes us past its rather obvious conclusions about the potential bestial nature of kids and how that may translate to the larger battlefields.
  7. Reviewed by: Joe Leydon
    Sep 5, 2013
    30
    The concept is thought-provoking but the execution is flat-footed.

See all 17 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 0 out of 2
  2. Negative: 1 out of 2
  1. Jun 2, 2014
    5
    Una pelicula que muestra como viven algunos jóvenes que tienen muchas libertades de ver de hacer lo que quieran. buenas actuaciones pero creo que hay una parte donde se vuelve muy lenta como unos 10 minutos . Expand
  2. Aug 30, 2013
    3
    I could almost forgive some of the violence and racial slurs if the film had been fun or had an important message, but this film does neither. I enjoy films involving kids in a much more adult themed way such as Kick Ass or kids involved in fun adventures such as Goonies. This film left me cold to the point where it's almost offensive. D Expand

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