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Generally unfavorable reviews - based on 18 Critics What's this?

User Score
7.5

Generally favorable reviews- based on 24 Ratings

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  • Starring: , ,
  • Summary: A son struggles to finish his thesis when his father wins the Nobel Prize in chemistry, making life all the more difficult for him and his mother, a well-known forensic. (Freestyle Releasing)
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 2 out of 18
  2. Negative: 12 out of 18
  1. 75
    A mercilessly convoluted version of a Twister, that genre in which the plot whacks us as if it's taking batting practice. I will not hint at anything that happens. I will simply observe that it's all entertaining.
  2. Reviewed by: Ronnie Scheib
    60
    Uneven but enjoyably titillating black comedy should elate Rickman fans while pleasing aficionados of extra-flakey caper flicks.
  3. 50
    Guy Ritchie made a name for himself with scuzz, but even his shtick has exceeded its sell-by date. Nobel Son goes further, crossing the contortions of "The Usual Suspects" with the shallowness of certain intellectual family melodramas.
  4. What finally sinks the film is that the more it tries to dazzle us, the more uninterested we become.
  5. 25
    Rickman has fun playing a lecherous old bastard of a professor in Nobel Son, a pulpy would-be comic thriller, but the movie doesn't deserve him.
  6. The movie is so relentlessly self-congratulatory, you can't help becoming thoroughly sick of it.
  7. 16
    Nobel Son sadistically resurrects the Tarantino knockoff--an unloved, foul-mouthed little bastard of a subgenre that should now go away forever.

See all 18 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 2 out of 4
  2. Negative: 0 out of 4
  1. GeorgeA.
    Dec 16, 2008
    10
    Its deliberately "over-the-top"....in this light it is entertaining! Great car/mall action!
  2. JackP.
    Jan 30, 2009
    8
    It is not a perfect film, although it is an excellent, and (pun intended) nobel one. The cast is terrific, and the story is very good. It never slows down for anything, and delightfully makes room for both comedy and thriller. Expand
  3. JayH.
    Mar 7, 2009
    5
    Very uneven film, but it misses the mark overall. There were just too many slow patches, and I just could not get into the film, even after several attempts to start it over from the beginning. Mary Steenburgen is great though. Expand
  4. ChadS.
    Dec 12, 2008
    4
    There's an intruder in the house. Unless he's psychic, the intruder should be waiting outside his girlfriend's place. How does he know that Barkley(Brian Greenberg) has the instincts of a twelve-year-old boy and returns home? Since the Nobel Prize laureate's son is late for his ride to the airport, it's a bit of a plot contrivance that this cannibal expert doesn't meet up with mom and dad at the airline terminal, hopefully before they board the plane and go to Sweden without him. Evidently, the screenwriter wanted Brian to be kidnapped at home, so he goes home, instead of using a cellular phone to find out where they are. So Brian is kidnapped, while kidnapped, he learns that his father(Alan Rickman) is a bigger d*** than he previously thought. And overreacts; Barkley joins forces with Thaddeus(Shawn Hatosy) and collects half of the ransom money(shades of Sidney Lumet's "Before the Devil Knows You're Dead"). Unlike the two brothers in the Lumet film, however, Brian is an academic, not a "loser" like the Ethan Hawke and Phillip Seymour Hoffman characters; his foray in crime, again, seems like a plot contrivance, because it's psychologically unmotivated. And then there's the drop-off point for the ransom money, a mall of all places, teeming with people, a place where so many things could go wrong. The scheme with the two cars took a whole lot of panache to pull off, but it's hopelessly convoluted, bordering on the nonsensical. "Nobel Son" is a series of plot twists interspersed with an unconvincing family drama. If your main character is writing his master's thesis on cannibalism, and he doesn't eat his father in the end: Why bother? Expand

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