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Mixed or average reviews - based on 25 Critics What's this?

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6.9

Generally favorable reviews- based on 10 Ratings

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  • Starring: , ,
  • Summary: Steve Buscemi's seamless direction and James C. Strouse's thoughtful script paint a picture of working-class characters filled with the comedy and rich details of everyday life. (IFC Films)
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Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 10 out of 25
  2. Negative: 0 out of 25
  1. 75
    Buscemi does not act in Lonesome Jim, but his sly humor and keen eye for nuance resonate in every frame. I can't recall having a better time at a movie about depression.
  2. Bleak, minimal, bone-dry and hilarious, it creates a rich and layered world from deft strokes of dialogue and action.
  3. Reviewed by: Don R. Lewis
    70
    Affleck is dead on as the hapless Jim but the film is nearly stolen from him by Mark Boone Jr. who plays Jim's drug induced Uncle Evil. Kevin Corrigan is also great as Jim's brother Tim.
  4. Mostly a snooze. Maybe if Buscemi himself had starred in it things would have turned out better.
  5. 50
    It finds some fine comedic moments when it stops focusing on Affleck's never-ending angst and starts exploring small-town oddness.
  6. 50
    At one point screenwriter James C. Strouse name-checks the brilliant Richard Yates, whose fiction similiarly perches between grim humor and utter despair, but the movie's hip detachment is a far cry from the unruly passions of Yates's chronic losers.
  7. 40
    First-time screenwriter James C. Strouse (in whose hometown the film was shot) provides so few clues to the source of Jim's malaise, or that of his entire sad-sack family, that the movie remains rudderless and not the least bit believable.

See all 25 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 3 out of 4
  2. Negative: 0 out of 4
  1. NostrilR.
    May 27, 2006
    10
    funny poignant excellent Affleck is superb Buscemi does an excellent job as director.
  2. RonO.
    Apr 25, 2006
    9
    To anyone who has really struggled with depression, this film softly resonates. To all others, the film will return proportionally to the To anyone who has really struggled with depression, this film softly resonates. To all others, the film will return proportionally to the viewer's willingness to invest. Those who pan the film are likely unaware of the pervasivenss and depth of depression in modern society. And that is sad for them . This film, in it's simple way, is simply true to life, and well worth the time. Collapse
  3. ChadShiira
    Oct 26, 2006
    8
    [***SPOILERS***] Signposts of a dysfunctional family point to Sally(Mary Kay Place) in the opening faux-happy scenes of "Lonesome Jim". When [***SPOILERS***] Signposts of a dysfunctional family point to Sally(Mary Kay Place) in the opening faux-happy scenes of "Lonesome Jim". When Jim (Casey Affleck) returns to the fold after an apparently long hiatus, she repeatedly refers to herself in the third person, as both a grandmother and mother. The latter sounds a little creepy because her sons (& Tim) are fully grown men, but her maternal overkill enacts as a sort of wish-fulfillment, an extension of her do-over, that she and her husband (Seymour Cassel) enjoy with their two grandchildren. At the outset of "Lonesome Jim", we hear her yearning for redemption in sentences that begin, "Let mother..." Obviously something went hideously wrong, because her two boys are back home; both depressed, both leeched of any optimism that something good will happen in their lives. Yes, "Lonesome Jim" is a blame-mom-and-dad-for-all-your-bull**** sort of film. And miraculously, it's not at all exasperating, thanks to the intervention of a dry, but uncannily plausible array of humorous situations. "Lonesome Jim" delivers some big laughs from the most subdued line deliveries. It has a very shrewd screenplay. "Lonesome Jim" is at its most brilliant when somebody finally tells Jim to shut up, which doesn't only address the situation at hand, but also for the unforgivable thing he says to Sally (mom) earlier in the film. Expand
  4. JulioP.
    Apr 22, 2006
    5
    This was a thoroughly mediocre film (was it even a "film"? it all looked very digital-born and the titles were hideously pixelated) and Mr. This was a thoroughly mediocre film (was it even a "film"? it all looked very digital-born and the titles were hideously pixelated) and Mr. Buscemi's eye for comedy does not add to this show. It's tragic, plays out that way, and may be insulting to anyone who considers themselves ordinary. If the characters don't inspire tears of despair they are certainly yawn-worthy and the plot is thoroughly insipid. This production should have spent more time in editing, hopefully removing the rueful "details of everyday life." Expand

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