User Score
6.4

Generally favorable reviews- based on 99 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 73 out of 99
  2. Negative: 9 out of 99

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  1. Sep 21, 2011
    4
    Typical precious indie comedy, way too pleased with itself to make it worth watching. It's one of those films the critics love to love, but audiences don't really enjoy.
  2. Aug 27, 2011
    6
    It's a fun movie with plenty of laughs - Rudd doesn't cross the line into annoying. He's a good foil from which to call his sisters' faults into focus, and they are all terrific. Coogan is hilarious as the jerk husband. And Ned's ex-girlfriend and her BF are awesome. So go in with modest expectations and you'll enjoy this.
  3. Oct 2, 2011
    10
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. Elizabeth and her sisters think that Ned is an idiot. Only their half-employed hippie brother, a biodynamic farmer, would sell marijuana to a policeman. Worse yet, this bust was no undercover sting in which a plain clothes cop posed as some chronic in order to entrap the unsuspecting seller. Uniformed and on-duty, Ned could plainly see it was a cop, and yet he still made the unwise transaction, in broad daylight, no less, with a little rhubarb on the side for appearance's sake. The Rochlin girls don't suffer fools gladly, so the moviegoer can imagine Ned's sisters regaling themselves with the same story, while their brother grew a Jesus beard during his eight-month sentence in prison. But you had to be there, and you have to know the son of God, whose job it was to heal the sick, so Ned, Jesus incarnate, seeing that the law officer needed Mary Jane for his weary soul, offered the man her services, then pays the price. Ned is a christ figure. While crashing with Liz, in his capacity as the cool uncle, he introduces Inspector Clouseau, the idiot detective, to her sheltered boy River by showing him "The Pink Panther". The Peter Sellers film establishes a subtext, but it's not the bumbling Frenchman's genetic code that courses through Ned's blood, since slapstick, with the exception of the familial freeloader slamming the door on his nephew's fingers, is not the comedy tradition at work here; it's satire, of the deadpan variety, as Paul Rudd channels the mentally retarded gardener from "Being There", where at the end of the 1979 classic, Chauncey Gardiner walks on water, like Jesus. This miracle explains why the man who raised Chauncey never allowed him to leave the premises. Maybe the government would lock his boy up; a government that would resist ceding their power back to the church, transforming the country back into a theocracy. In the seventies, there was still such a thing as separation from church and state. Apparently, Ashby saw the future. "I like to watch," Chauncey says, who spends his whole life in front of a T.V., just as earth must be one big program to god, a couch potato himself, in the sense that all he does is observe the human struggle with the same indifference as the idiot gardener. Whereas "Network" anticipated FOX news, "Being There", anticipated the rise of the evangelical president. The two films complete each other. In the final scene, after taking leave from his rich friend's funeral, Chauncey wanders through the woods, faintly recalling former President George W. Bush on his ranch. Back at the service, the gardener's name is bandied about among the pallbearers as a potential presidential candidate; pallbearers who seem to hold the real power. The aging men need Chauncey because they lack his charisma and don't look good on television. Ben, a conservative ideologue, perhaps, knew all along that Chauncey was an idiot, and knew he would make the perfect chief executive puppet for his people to pull the strings on, and be at their beck and call. Maybe Ned had the makings of a president, but like Harold(Sellers, again), in "I Love You Alice B. Toklas", some hippie chick(maybe it was that dognapper Janet) baked him some pot brownies and transformed him into a bohemian. Like Chauncey, whose ruminations on the garden turns the general public into idiots, misconstruing his every prosaic utterance as minimalist wisdom, Ned also has the talent of making imbeciles out of folks by simply being there. While all the Wall Street devils who were selling false dreams to a duped nation got off scot free, a cop sends an immaculate agriculturist to prison. Jesus Christ, indeed. Later, as a favor to his wife, the documentary filmmaker husband lets Ned assist him, and on one of Dylan's shoots, a ballet academy, he catches both the director and dancer in various states of undress. When he recounts the incident to Miranda, the middle sister can't beleive how her brother fell for the adulterer's story about his nakedness being part of an artistic process. But as a christ figure, Ned wouldn't consider nudity a sin. Genesis teaches us that Eve wasn't conscious of her exposed body until she took a bite from the serpent's apple, so Tatiana, with her ballerina's reputation for eating very little, would explain why Ned saw nothing wrong with the set-up. Metaphorically, the apple went untouched. Ned knows his commandments though, punishing Natalie for breaking number 7("You shall not commit adultery") when she cheats on Cindy, and then punishing Miranda for breaking number 9("You shall not steal"), after the Vanity Fair writer takes the words from a socialite to use in her article, which were only meant for Ned's ears. The idiot brother also creates miracles; he doesn't walk on water, but how can you explain a dog named Willie Nelson meeting another dog name Dolly Parton? That's more than mere happenstance; that's a divine act. Expand
  4. Aug 29, 2011
    6
    As a rule of thumb, I like quirky movies. The ones that work best are over the top quirky (a la Little Miss Sunshine). I wish this movie would have taken it one step further into quirkiness. It was a little too serious at times with long stretches of no humor, but still held my interest. I thought the best part of the movie were the scenes with Billy, played by T. J. Miller. He played the over the top stereotypical hippie to perfection. I wish the other characters were as over the top as he was and were as memorable. I did like Paul Rudd in his role and overall the movie works, but could have been better. Expand
  5. Sep 5, 2011
    8
    Just a fantastic Paul Rudd movie. His overall character was a great idea and the movie flowed very well with its subtle humor. It kept me laughing all the way through, just don't expect a "laugh-out-loud" movie but its still a must-see.
  6. Aug 31, 2011
    7
    Paul Rudd is one of current cinema's most charming and affable personalities, so this role is perfect for him (his comic abilities are a bonus). He plays trusting guy whose unfailing honesty gets him and people around him into trouble. After a stint in jail, he moves in with each of his three sisters (Elizabeth Banks, Emily Morton, Zooey Deschanel), where he wrecks havoc on their lives and relationships. This good-natured comedy isn't hilarious or outrageous, but it's winning cast and genuine charms make it an appealing diversion. Expand
  7. Nov 30, 2011
    10
    What a wonderful movie about life, family, friends, relationships and stupidity. This movie has so much charm, it hurts. Don't expect a hilarious comedy, it has it's moments, but for me, it works as much more as a drama than as a comedy. Love the characters. They are so memorable.
  8. Dec 29, 2011
    6
    Our Idiot Brother is a good-hearted movie, with a great cast. After a while though, you just start wishing it would go somewhere, or at least a little deeper. It's totally enjoyable- Ned is so lovable and so familiar you can just feel him throughout the movie. The whole cast is so familiar that you can just feel like it's your own family battle going on. But halfway through the movie, I was able to see how the general events would fold out, and there didn't really turn out to be too many surprises along the way. While the writing was great and the casting was fantastic, there was a lack of depth to the story that left me feeling really disappointed. Expand
  9. Dec 23, 2012
    9
    Paul Rudd is at his best in this hilarious comedy. All the cast gives a fantastic performance, and it's extremely well written. If your a Paul Rudd fan this is a must watch, you wont be disappointed.
  10. Sep 7, 2011
    7
    It was okay. Unfortunately, it really wasn't that funny. It was much more sad than funny. The funny bits were in the previews, which everyone had seen a hundred times already. The end kind of redeemed it a bit. That's why it doesn't receive an even lower rating.
  11. Aug 29, 2011
    7
    Honestly, this movie was not what I expected but that was not a bad thing. A little less comedy than the trailers display, but the overall goodness of Ned's character makes the audience (as well as other characters) feel the need to be better. I must say the movie was also very well cast from Ned down to Janet's new boyfriend. Not a great movie, but definitely worth checking out.
  12. Sep 1, 2011
    7
    whos the dueche spaming shoe promotions in every review? someone needs to fix that problem... anyway movie was good. and um i really just wanted to say that this deuche needs to be deleted.
  13. Dec 21, 2011
    7
    Our Idiot Brother is really a fun movie, Maybe not "Ha Ha" Funny but its really entertaining . Story was amazing and the way they put it all together with The Three sis and Their "Idiot" Brother is really well done . Paul did really good playing the idiotic character .Jesse Peretz's did good directing this . Its was a total fun to watch . Some part was a bit disgusting . It could work as a good family film too(of course without "Those Part" IYKWIM ). Overall i enjoyed Our Idiot Brother the whole time. Expand
  14. Sep 1, 2011
    7
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. Ned (Paul Rudd) believes that if you give people the benefit of the doubt and see their best intentions, they will want to rise to the occasion. What a wonderful motto to live by. Certainly there are exceptions, but for the most part, I can get on board with his train of thought. Ned takes it to extremes however when he sells marijuana to a uniformed police officer. To be fair, he did try to just give the weed to the officer; he was forced to name a price. So because of one very evil officer, our idiot heads to jail, but is paroled for good behavior, being named most cooperative inmate 4 months in a row. Once released, he realizes his girlfriend has left him for another version of himself and she refuses to let him take his dog, Willie Nelson, which he loves dearly. He then house jumps from sister to sister, disrupting their not so perfect lives. Ned Expand
  15. Aug 31, 2011
    4
    I'd like to blame the aimlessness of this flick on the script but honestly there was plenty of acting that could have been done to save the movie..and it just wasn't. The interesting cast including Steve Coogan, Zoe Deshanel, Paul Rudd, Rashida Jones and Elizabeth Banks turn in uneven performances. Banks and Jones deliver when they are allowed on screen but they aren't allowed to gel with other characters. Meanwhile Rudd--who is funny and charming in the flick--delivers a cartoonish performance that throws off the balance of the rest of the cast. Steve Coogan, a fave of mine, is put to poor use as a dour, cheating husband. And Zoe Deshanel, who is given an extremely compelling character still thinks that opening her eyes wider is acting. She mumbles her way through the piece. This performance is even worse than the one she delivered in all-time-terrible flick The Happening. *Cringe* How does she still get work? The director needed to decide here between cute and real and the decision was never made. It is a trend in indie comedies that needs to die quickly. See--Cedar Rapids, Cyrus, Greenburg. All had a spark of something but could not pick a side. The funniest moment in the movie comes while the credits role. Take that for what you will. Expand
  16. Sep 12, 2011
    8
    See-it - Paul Rudd is the nicest moron on the planet, and quite possibly the funniest. Don't miss the second best comedy of the summer (Bridesmaids is #1) about that one sibling that everyone can relate to (only took my sister an hour to further investigate this statement).
  17. Sep 20, 2011
    4
    Very average, middle of the road movie. I wasn't expecting much, and didn't receive much. Rudd's performance was admirable, but his sisters were weak...especially Elizabeth Banks. The screenplay needed plenty of work but never got it. It's a shame because Paul Rudd deserves better than to be stuck in a tiresome film that was billed as a laugh out loud comedy...hardly!
  18. Mar 24, 2012
    3
    so much potential to be funny! But the movie misses its mark. Plays out more like a drama then a comedy.
    watch it, if there nothing else on! Dont expect big laughs or get drawning into the situation
  19. Nov 6, 2011
    6
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. Too American for me/the only 3 people in the film who were not attractive. The mother, the policeman at the market at start and the policeman who closed the jail cell 2wards the end. In a family there are all sizes and looks, not in this one-typically American. Could have done more to make it FUNNY because it wasn't. I agree with BobbyG it is the one critics love to love but the everyday person doesn't really. Expand
  20. Nov 16, 2011
    8
    Paul Rudd is incredibly endearing as the lovable screw up and the movie does a good job with it's handling of family dynamics. It's not the kind of movie where you are going to be rolling on the floor laughing but it has more than enough heart to make up for it.
  21. Nov 10, 2011
    2
    This movie just promised a lot, and not even the wonderful cast could save it. The story was weak: Ned, the main character does not change, evolve or learn anything of value. Paul Rudd plays it cool but he is no Duderino. He is presented as this hipster messiah come to save us from our vain lives and teach us humility by doing... nothing. The sad truth is that hippies are as prompt to be shallow, egotistical liers as anyone else from this planet. Being lazy and aimless does not make you an honest, kind or caring person. The joke is lost because the film never manages to laugh at itself and is not nearly as illuminating as it pretends to be. Expand
  22. May 18, 2012
    6
    Laughs were had but they were few and far between and merely chuckles every now and then. While this isn't a bad film (it's not exceptional either) I didn't find it to be particularly funny. I would classify it more as an independent spiritual awakening with an element of dramatic flair than anything else. The cardboard storyline and simple dialog won't win any awards but the characters themselves are quite interesting especially Paul Rudd who portrays the lead as the "idiot brother". It's no surprise this flick debuted at Sundance as it emulates that indie vibe. Expand
  23. Dec 3, 2011
    9
    To be honest when I first saw the trailer for this movie I was on the fence, I wanted to see it but I didn't expect much. I was pleasantly surprised when I walked out of the theater and couldn't stop talking about how much I enjoyed it. This movie is the quintessential feel good movie, and a great watch for anyone who likes quirky, charming movies.
  24. Dec 16, 2011
    9
    I loved this movie! It's shocking to see that "Friends with Benefits" scores higher than this movie on metacritic! That just doesn't make any sense to me. Our Idiot Brother is a charming comedy with a solid ensemble cast. The cast is so great together that I just wish more had happened in the movie... But anyway, for what it was I loved it.
  25. Jan 12, 2014
    4
    I agree 100% with Bobby G. It's the kind of film that critics may love but audiences will not enjoy. Our Idiot Brother is a dramedy that tries far too hard to be funny (when it's not) and the attempts at funniness ruins the serious drama aspect of the film as well. The acting is great and it has a star studded cast, It's the poorly done script that ruined it.

    It's the kind of film that
    is very tough to sit through let alone enjoy. I would not recommend it at all. Expand
  26. Mar 24, 2012
    3
    Our Idiot Brother has some minor funny moments but hey almost every film does. in a movie with some fine actors you would think it would be more interesting, sorry to say it didn't meet expectations.
  27. Jun 22, 2013
    8
    A pleasant film that provides balanced comedy and heart. Fascinating and likable characters played by talented actors worked well for this film. It was strange, but quite enjoyable.
  28. Nov 7, 2012
    5
    Paul Rudd's likability saves this one from disaster. The sisters aren't well thought out, and that's a big whoops, since they're a major part of the movie. Zooey Deschanel does what she can with her role, but it still felt sloppy to me.
  29. Apr 22, 2013
    6
    This was better than I had expected. I love Paul Rudd and would marry him in a heartbeat so him just being in a movie makes me somewhat enjoy it. This movie was alright while you were watching it but it's utterly forgettable. You will barely remember it the next day.
Metascore
60

Mixed or average reviews - based on 39 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 22 out of 39
  2. Negative: 2 out of 39
  1. Reviewed by: Marjorie Baumgarten
    Sep 1, 2011
    50
    Ultimately a shambling tale told with genial grace but little substance. It provides a pleasant buzz while it unfolds but vanishes quickly in a puff of smoke.
  2. Reviewed by: Rick Groen
    Aug 28, 2011
    50
    The ensemble is unwieldy and the attendant yarn much too cluttered.
  3. Reviewed by: Claudia Puig
    Aug 26, 2011
    75
    Watching Rudd bring dimension to what could have been a clownish caricature is the best reason to see this good-natured family comedy.