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Metascore
59

Mixed or average reviews - based on 13 Critics What's this?

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5.8

Mixed or average reviews- based on 12 Ratings

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  • Summary: The film opens as officers arrive at the scene of a typical middle-class neighborhood in San Diego. The suspect has barricaded himself inside a home and appears to have taken hostages. Two of his friends arrive, but too late. As they and their neighbors try to come to grips with what hasThe film opens as officers arrive at the scene of a typical middle-class neighborhood in San Diego. The suspect has barricaded himself inside a home and appears to have taken hostages. Two of his friends arrive, but too late. As they and their neighbors try to come to grips with what has happened, they tell their stories to the detective in charge of the crime scene. In a series of flashbacks, the bizarre story of Brad Macallam begins to emerge. After an ill-fated white-water kayaking trip in a distant land, Brad finds readjustment to suburban life increasingly difficult. As his disaffection grows and his relations with those around him become strained, he glimpses a world more vivid and strangely frightening than others can see. The detectives try to penetrate the mystery of his story, but the questions only multiply. Brad's unfolding personal and family drama leads to an obsession with an ancient play, finally driving him to murder. (Paper Street Films) Expand
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Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 6 out of 13
  2. Negative: 1 out of 13
  1. 100
    It’s likely that only Herzog would dare to, and succeed at, resolving this singular cinematic object by contemplating the fate of an abandoned basketball.
  2. 75
    Confounds all convention and denies all expected pleasures, providing instead the delight of watching Herzog feed the police hostage formula into the Mixmaster of his imagination.
  3. 75
    As nutty as you'd expect when two of our most eccentric auteurs join forces.
  4. If someone else had made "My Son," it would be just another crime thriller based on a true story. But with Werner Herzog behind the camera, it's a head-scratcher from start to finish.
  5. Reviewed by: Deborah Young
    50
    The story is riddled with salutes to executive producer David Lynch and the film seems pointed hopefully in the direction of Lynch's audiences.
  6. While watching Werner Herzog’s My Son, My Son, What Have Ye Done you might be tempted to murmur, “My Werner, My Werner, What Have Ye Done.”
  7. 30
    Even Herzog loyalists will have to concede that this fact-based 2009 hostage drama is a serious dud.

See all 13 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 1 out of 3
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 3
  3. Negative: 2 out of 3
  1. Jun 8, 2013
    10
    Extremely good movie.One of the most modern and brilliant story telling I saw in the last decade. Very very good actors (and what a greatExtremely good movie.One of the most modern and brilliant story telling I saw in the last decade. Very very good actors (and what a great casting brilliant directing, excellent editing, beautiful work on the soundtrack and very strong story. Well, I totally understand that lots of people will not be able to understand this movie. Produced by David Lynch, directed by Werner Herzog. Man, if you like to walk in the zone, you'll get it and will not regret it. Expand
  2. Jan 28, 2012
    3
    A film overflowing with ambition but Herzog's crazy back storys about nothing quickly loose their novelty and the close to 2 hour running timeA film overflowing with ambition but Herzog's crazy back storys about nothing quickly loose their novelty and the close to 2 hour running time becomes a drag. I still look forward to a Herzog film however. Over ambition is not always a good thing and My son my son what have ye done is a perfect example. Collapse
  3. jonp.
    Jan 17, 2010
    2
    This movie is shockingly bad. The story line is a mess, and what little story one gets is supremely uninteresting. The main character is a This movie is shockingly bad. The story line is a mess, and what little story one gets is supremely uninteresting. The main character is a guy in his 30s who acts like a marginally functional 12-year-old. His "obviously crazy" pronouncements and behavior are very dull and they are usually portrayed through flash backs. Flash back is anachronistic and annoying to begin with, especially when it is used to flesh out a character as one-dimensional and uninteresting as "Brad." The women around Brad do nothing but humor his weird behavior, which has the unfortunate result of dragging the movie out in a most frustrating way. Chloe Sevigny, who plays Brad's love interest, just floats along with his ravings in a somnolent, unconvincing performance (we're supposed to believe that this attractive young woman has no better option than to stick around and watch Brad's disintegration). Grace Zabriskie, an actress who has made a career out of playing lunatic women, tags along as a very David Lynchesque mother figure (which is no accident since David Lynch is the movie's executive producer). I saw this movie based on the fact that Werner Herzog directed it, despite serious reservations about the presence of the now very overexposed Willem Dafoe. "My Son, My Son..." reminded me that Herzog, while brilliant, is also very uneven. He has produced great stuff and really terrible stuff. Unfortunately, this movie belongs in the latter category. Do not be misled by generally positive reviews -- avoid this movie like the plague! Expand

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