Generally favorable reviews - based on 31 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 28 out of 31
  2. Negative: 0 out of 31
  1. One of very few films to accurately portray the experience of growing up male.
  2. Although the talent of a kid with the last name of Culkin may not, at this point, register as such a novelty -- Rory follows brothers Macaulay and Kieran -- there is something precociously mature but natural about the work of this youngest Culkin sibling that stands apart.
  3. Reviewed by: Duane Byrge
    Intelligent, universal tale.
  4. The acting is remarkable across the board, undoubtedly a combination of a strong script, gifted actors and exceptional direction.
  5. Mean Creek's greatest asset is its sense of truth. It doesn't pander to or indulge its characters like the teen films we're used to. It looks at them straight ahead and with respect. It's something you wish Hollywood, and even parents, did more often.
  6. 88
    Adults should find its simmering drama at least as compelling as teens will, even if parental figures are only slightly more present here than in a " Peanuts" comic strip.
  7. 88
    By entering such fertile, intellectually stimulating and psychologically rich territory, Estes provides us with a freshman feature that is far beyond the generic coming-of-age tale Mean Creek initially seems to be.
User Score

Universal acclaim- based on 30 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 17 out of 19
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 19
  3. Negative: 2 out of 19
  1. Nov 16, 2014
    Very under rated film, but extremely good. The best part about this movie was the acting. A lot of suspense throughout the movie and the plot and writing was incredible. Highly recommend it. Full Review »
  2. Apr 17, 2011

    It starts off with a scene starring Josh Peck, aka Josh from Drake and Josh.
    Honestly, I almost stopped it there... Him? In a serious sounding role? This could not end well... Or could it?

    Luckily it did. For those who haven't heard of this movie it revolves around a bully (Josh Peck) and his "victim", Sam. Sam wants to get back at him and enlists his brother and his brothers friends. They devise a prank that involves getting the bully, George, onto the river, daring him to strip naked, leaving him and making him run home naked. Of course as you can see by the poster...things turn dreary.

    This movie was honestly one of the hardest movies to watch I feel. So excruciating to watch as you know what they are planning to do, humiliate this bully. At first you feel bad for Sam as he got beat up, but then you get to know George and see that he actually just wants to be friends with them all and he has a learning disability and such. So watching them plot, scheme, and lie to his face knowing that he eventually is going to be hurt... so painful to watch. It gets even more painful when the climax occurs and the "accident" happens.

    The rest of the movie after the climax is just as painful to watch and just as emotionally draining. It follows the same characters, sans George, as they have to make huge decisions in their life and face the consequences. What makes this movie so good is the fact that as you are watching it you can easily put yourself into their positions and that turns this movie into a whole new perspective. You feel their distress, their sadness, their anger, their motives. You are Sam, you are George, you are every single one of those characters at once and feel all what they are going through. This movie will leave you in shambles.
    Full Review »
  3. FA
    Nov 17, 2008
    It was a very good film although a huge amount of bad language. Good themes- deeper meaning. Would not recommend for younger viewers although would be good for those a bit older. Full Review »