Generally favorable reviews - based on 36 Critics What's this?

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Generally favorable reviews- based on 552 Ratings

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  • Starring: , ,
  • Summary: From Preston, Idaho comes Napoleon Dynamite (Heder), a new kind of hero complete with a tight red 'fro, some sweet moon boots and skills that can't be topped. (Fox Searchlight Pictures)
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 24 out of 36
  2. Negative: 2 out of 36
  1. 90
    The cast playing these eccentric characters is magnificent...This is definitely one of the most unique comedies you’ll see all year.
  2. Thrusts us into a high school senior year like no other.
  3. 75
    Hess and his terrific cast -- Heder is geek perfection -- make their own kind of deadpan hilarity. You'll laugh till it hurts. Sweet.
  4. Reviewed by: David Edelstein
    Napoleon Dynamite is too low-wattage to be a true nerd anthem, but it's charming in retrospect.
  5. With the exception of one truly glorious dance solo, the movie treats its hero - and his equally uncool family - with undisguised disdain.
  6. The performances, even those by trained actors like Mr. Ramirez and Ms. Majorino, have the hesitant, blinking opacity that some directors look for in nonprofessional casts. Their awkwardness is charming, and part of the point of the movie, but it also makes for some dull stretches and thwarts your ability to regard the characters with sympathy rather than mere curiosity.
  7. 30
    If Napoleon Dynamite really is, as reported, a semiautobiographical exercise, it is one of the most astoundingly self-hating such exercises in memory.

See all 36 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Negative: 69 out of 384
  1. Mar 2, 2011
    High school teenage issues in a backwards town where everyone dresses as if they are in the 80's, a little behind the times. Phones with long cords, moon boots, 80's hair styles and Tupperware RULE! Napoleon is the sweetest and clueless of them all. It was created, written, produced and acted by college/college graduates and unknowns, won awards, was made on a shoestring and made lots of money. Expand
  2. Nov 28, 2012
    Relentlessly hilarious, with uncommonly unique characters dishing out pithy, yet unforgettable one-liners.
  3. Jun 12, 2011
    One of the funniest movies I've ever seen, it really captures the average socially awkward teen and dysfunctional family perfectly, I loved every character and every moment of this hilarious movie, while some say some of the scenes are useless I disagree, I felt they were all necessary in defining the characters, if you like comedies or just good movies, this is a must see, this is a masterpiece that is deserving of nothing less that a perfect 10. Expand
  4. Jan 22, 2013
    Absolutely hilarious and original. Definitely a hit or miss comedy, and this one was a hit for me big time. Remains one of my favorite comedies alongside Dumb & Dumber. Expand
  5. Jul 5, 2012
    This is one of the quirkest movies I have seen. Matter of fact, first time I didn't like it, but grew on me. If you like offbeat humor and unusual characters/circumstances-this is for you. I can't imagine another character playing napolean! But most people either really like this movie or HATE it. Expand
  6. Jan 28, 2014
    What to say about Napoleon Dynamite? I really didn't think it was all that funny. I think it started out pretty funny, and I liked the ending, but for the most part it was extremely boring and lacking in humor. Now notice I said for the most part. There are a few funny scenes scattered throughout, and it contains a unique sense of quirkiness, but when an hour and twenty two minute comedy feels like a whole day you know it wasn't very good. It thinks that the characters standing there looking stupid and depressed is hilarious, but in reality it's just humorless and strenuously boring. Sure it's different, but that doesn't automatically make it great. Expand
  7. Aug 23, 2013
    One of the stupidest movies I have ever seen. What an asinine waste of time. Even ten years after seeing it in theatres I look back on the film with hatred. Expand

See all 384 User Reviews