Mixed or average reviews - based on 16 Critics What's this?

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Mixed or average reviews- based on 5 Ratings

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  • Summary: Rocker Ethan Brand and his band are on the comeback trail when a former flame drops a bomb in his lap: their 13-year-old daughter, Janie Jones. Ethan refuses to believe Janie is his kid, but when her mom suddenly leaves for rehab, the child has no place to go but into the tour bus and on the road with the band. With no feel for fatherhood, Ethan continues his hard-living ways, giving Janie a crash course of the not-so-glamorous life on the road. Nivola and Breslin naturally embrace their musical characters—both actually sing and perform in the film—while developing Ethan and Janie's relationship in a refined way to delicately express the emotional needs of the characters. Writer/director David M. Rosenthal, who was inspired by his own experiences, blends the musical setting with road trip movie elements that add subtle layers to the dynamic of his two main characters. (Tribeca Film)
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 6 out of 16
  2. Negative: 1 out of 16
  1. Reviewed by: Pam Grady
    Oct 22, 2011
    What this predictable tale lacks in surprises it more than makes up for in charm, good music and the indelible performances of Alessandro Nivola and Abigail Breslin as father and child.
  2. Reviewed by: Andrew O'Hehir
    Oct 28, 2011
    A compelling and unpretentious indie built around two wonderfully layered performances and straightforward storytelling. Give it a listen.
  3. Reviewed by: Noel Murray
    Oct 26, 2011
    Contrivances aside, though, Janie Jones is one of the more realistic depictions of what the rock 'n' roll lifestyle is really like.
  4. Reviewed by: Ray Bennett
    Oct 22, 2011
    An earnest tale about a faded rock star who discovers he has a teenaged daughter and takes her on the road, Janie Jones follows a predictable path and despite decent performances it does not catch fire.
  5. Reviewed by: Robert Abele
    Nov 6, 2011
    Janie Jones is ultimately its own uneven tune, a mixture of discordant notes and way-too-familiar chords.
  6. Reviewed by: Joe Neumaier
    Oct 28, 2011
    Writer-director David M. Rosenthal fills this dewy road-trip movie with too many cliches. From the glimpses we get of Shue's character, that may have been a more rockin' story.
  7. Reviewed by: Kyle Smith
    Oct 28, 2011
    The indie road movie Janie Jones is billed as "inspired by the true story" of its writer-director, David M. Rosenthal. Impossible. No one's life is this boring.

See all 16 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 1 out of 2
  2. Negative: 0 out of 2
  1. Oct 5, 2014
    Seeing movies back to back on a plane is always interesting. The context can totally shift the tone of a film. Watched JANIE JONES, a lovely small indie that just feels so right and so right now, capturing the ebb and flow of contemporary life. The film doesn't break any new territory but as a character study it surprises in so many ways. Both Abigail Breslin and Alessandro Nivola are pitch perfect and even every small role from Elizabeth Shue to one of my favorites Peter Stormare, just rings right. An eloquent complex work that really surprised me! Expand
  2. Oct 20, 2012
    Starts off absorbing, band interactions are interesting. But second half is a bore and utterly predictable. Should have let Breslin solo, rather than spend so much time on Nivola's dreary narcissistic monotones. Shue's role could have been developed more, especially her relationship to her daughter. Instead, the ending just doesn't ring true. Expand