• Studio: A24
  • Release Date: Jun 6, 2014
Metascore
75

Generally favorable reviews - based on 34 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 29 out of 34
  2. Negative: 1 out of 34
  1. Reviewed by: Alonso Duralde
    Jun 5, 2014
    92
    The only agenda of this scruffy and urbane comedy, about a young comic contemplating abortion, is to be true and funny.
  2. Reviewed by: Leah Greenblatt
    Jun 4, 2014
    91
    Despite a few too-cute moments (and many fantastically graphic vagina jokes), the movie is both smarter and more sympathetic than that glib shorthand.
  3. Reviewed by: Amy Nicholson
    Jun 3, 2014
    90
    Obvious Child is perfect for those who want more honesty in fiction.
  4. Reviewed by: Kimberley Jones
    Jun 18, 2014
    89
    It’s an indie film about abortion that comes snuggled in the broad strokes of a quirky relationship comedy. A grump might wonder when indie films got so soft, but I’m more intrigued by the inverse: Why aren’t more studio films this clever and winning and conversant in the same language as their audience?
  5. Reviewed by: Ann Hornaday
    Jun 12, 2014
    88
    There are as many awkward, discomfiting sequences in Obvious Child as there are interludes of genuine fun and romance. The result is a movie that feels risky and forgiving and, despite its traditional rom-com contours, refreshingly new.
  6. Reviewed by: Sheila O'Malley
    Jun 6, 2014
    88
    Unlike in Judd Apatow's "Knocked Up," with a similar circumstance and where abortion is not even mentioned by name (except for the cowardly "schma-shmortion"), Obvious Child is honest.
  7. Reviewed by: Marc Mohan
    Jun 19, 2014
    83
    Politics aside, Obvious Child hinges on Slate's performance, which is endearing and real.
  8. Reviewed by: Eric Kohn
    Jun 3, 2014
    83
    The real triumph of Obvious Child involves its ability to make familiar ingredients work just fine on their own terms. In doing so, it makes up for a lot of lost time in the pantheon of female-centric comedies, and studios would be wise to take note.
  9. Reviewed by: Olly Richards
    Aug 25, 2014
    80
    Sharp, funny and feeling, this isn't just Juno-meets-Girls but a smart film that tackles real-life issues with rare frankness.
  10. Reviewed by: Betsy Sharkey
    Jun 12, 2014
    80
    As Obvious Child stumbles its way to the final punch line, it echoes Donna's onstage musings — funny but rough around the edges. A work in progress that somehow hooks you anyway.
  11. Reviewed by: Barbara VanDenburgh
    Jun 12, 2014
    80
    It's a well-written rom-com with rascally charm, a modest story of an awkward Brooklyn girl making a go of life. It's irreverent and rough around the edges with an imperfect protagonist, blue language, scatological humor and rambling confessional stand-up monologues, sometimes about bodily fluids. The laughs are frequent and ribald.
  12. Reviewed by: Andrew O'Hehir
    Jun 9, 2014
    80
    Often scabrously funny in a post-Lena Dunham, post-Woody Allen New York comedy vein, and finds a star performance in the thoroughly unlikely personage of Jenny Slate.
  13. Reviewed by: Todd McCarthy
    Jun 5, 2014
    80
    Raunchy humor laced with gradually revealed vulnerability makes for a winning combination in Obvious Child, a wildly funny and appealing female-centric comedy that launches very promising talent on both sides of the camera.
  14. Reviewed by: A.O. Scott
    Jun 5, 2014
    80
    It’s both funny and serious without trying too hard to be either, and by trying above all to be honest.
  15. Reviewed by: Joe Morgenstern
    Jun 5, 2014
    80
    Yet the heart of the film lies in what it manages to say, without boldface or italics, about how hard it is for Donna, like so many of her anxious cohort, to make genuine connections, to break free of narcissistic constraints and become a stand-up grown-up.
  16. Reviewed by: Genevieve Koski
    Jun 3, 2014
    80
    Despite its attention-grabbing logline and gleeful embrace of raunchy, frequently scatological humor, Obvious Child is at heart a well-realized, straight-ahead rom-com, one with the potential to reinvigorate a genre that’s been flagging for decades.
  17. Reviewed by: Tomris Laffly
    Jun 3, 2014
    80
    Leavened by an attractive soundtrack that includes the Carter Family’s well-placed “Single Girl, Married Girl” (and the Paul Simon song that gives the film its title), Obvious Child has a loud agenda that will be off-putting to some. Still, it’s a welcome counterpoint to the likes of "Knocked Up" and even "Juno," where the abortion route is an apparent no-go.
  18. Reviewed by: Xan Brooks
    Apr 18, 2014
    80
    A glorious jumping bean comedy that moves from the profane to the poignant in the blink of an eye.
  19. Reviewed by: Peter Debruge
    Apr 18, 2014
    80
    The humor springs either from real-world recognition, as Robespierre and her co-writers go where others fear to tread, or in response to the cast’s lively, eccentrically lived-in characters.
  20. Reviewed by: Joe Williams
    Jun 26, 2014
    75
    Sorry, partisans, but there’s nothing obvious about Obvious Child.
  21. Reviewed by: Steve Persall
    Jun 26, 2014
    75
    Robespierre does a nice job of balancing the seriousness of this situation with the no-boundaries irreverence of Donna's comedy background.
  22. Reviewed by: Ty Burr
    Jun 12, 2014
    75
    It’s a warm, sympathetic, very sloppy, and often very funny little movie about a young woman who, among several other things, is not remotely ready to be a parent and knows it.
  23. Reviewed by: Mick LaSalle
    Jun 12, 2014
    75
    The pregnancy monologue isn't funny at all, despite cuts to audience members laughing it up. It's a small false note in a movie that's otherwise as honest as they come.
  24. Reviewed by: Peter Travers
    Jun 5, 2014
    75
    Obvious Child is a romcom with a sting in its tail. And Slate is a dynamo, nailing every laugh while showing a true actor's gift for nuance.
  25. Reviewed by: A.A. Dowd
    Jun 4, 2014
    75
    In turning a 23-minute story into an 83-minute one, Robespierre sometimes struggles to occupy her running time.
  26. Reviewed by: Steve Macfarlane
    Mar 20, 2014
    75
    Whatever your foreknowledge of low-budget Brooklyn dramedies, it's impossible that Gillian Robespierre's film won't lob you at least a few curveballs.
  27. 70
    The beauty of Obvious Child is that there’s nothing obvious about it.
  28. Reviewed by: Dana Stevens
    Jun 5, 2014
    70
    There's something old-Hollywood about Slate's dizzy-dame charm, and at the same time, something very modern about her unapologetic ownership of her own sexuality.
  29. Reviewed by: James Rocchi
    Apr 18, 2014
    67
    Obvious Child is well-made and wickedly bold, but I still found myself wishing for a little more subtle maturity on the part of its characters and creators.
  30. Reviewed by: Mike Scott
    Jun 27, 2014
    60
    Not all of the stand-up scenes in Obvious Child are quite as funny. At least one is meant to be bad. Another is meant to be poignant but just ends up coming off as a touch weird and emotionally false.
  31. Reviewed by: Joe Neumaier
    Jun 5, 2014
    60
    Laughter may be the best medicine, but in Obvious Child, it’s also a helluva cure for dealing with a serious topic.
  32. Reviewed by: Kate Taylor
    Jun 20, 2014
    50
    In truth, despite its honesty, this is a flawed little film, its low comedy never funny enough to justify its crudeness.
  33. Reviewed by: Scott Bowles
    Jun 5, 2014
    50
    The problem is the movie's comedians, who are, to the last, unfunny.
  34. Reviewed by: Kyle Smith
    Jun 4, 2014
    38
    No, this film by director/co-writer Gillian Robespierre just isn’t funny, and the mismatched leads aren’t even interesting together.
User Score
5.8

Mixed or average reviews- based on 16 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 5 out of 9
  2. Negative: 2 out of 9
  1. Jun 7, 2014
    9
    Fantastic movie. Jenny Slate is going to be a huge star. She's funny as hell, but not in an obnoxious way. Entirely sympathetic in her approach. And immensely likable. The story is a classic choice for a good modern comedian. It's handled with care and a degree of class, yet it's riddled with very funny low-brow humor. Great supporting cast with Cross and Hoffman. See it. Full Review »
  2. Jun 11, 2014
    9
    Jenny Slate is a revelation. I can't wait to see what she does next. This movie's topic may rile some moviegoers but it really shouldn't. I'm surprised that more standup comedians don't venture out to do this sort of movie more often. Come to think of it I would love to see Louis CK do this type of movie even though his TV show is essentially that. Full Review »
  3. Jul 14, 2014
    2
    If you find stepping into dog turds or public farting automatically funny, this is your movie. Jenny Slade is not a bad actress, but her standup stuff is pathetically bad---Lenny Bruce without teeth trying to be ingratiating. The abortion at the end was heartening--this character should not reproduce. Full Review »