Mixed or average reviews - based on 33 Critics What's this?

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Generally favorable reviews- based on 183 Ratings

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  • Starring: ,
  • Summary: Brennan Huff is a sporadically employed thirty-nine-year-old who lives with his mother, Nancy. Dale Doback is a terminally unemployed forty-year-old who lives with his father, Robert. When Robert and Nancy marry and move in together, Brennan and Dale are forced to live with each other as step brothers. As their narcissism and downright aggressive laziness threaten to tear the family apart, these two middle-aged, immature, overgrown boys will orchestrate an insane, elaborate plan to bring their parents back together. To pull it off, they must form an unlikely bond that maybe, just maybe, will finally get them out of the house. (Sony Pictures) Expand
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 13 out of 33
  2. Negative: 5 out of 33
  1. 88
    There is too much funny here for a movie (even though it continues into the closing credits). Step Brothers should be a TV show.
  2. Reviewed by: Jenni Miller
    Step Brothers is a hard R, for good reason. While it's somewhat sweeter, if you will, than a typical Apatow flick, the ludicrous situations call for equally ludicrous behavior and statements.
  3. 63
    Starting at infantile and regressing hysterically from there, Step Brothers flies on the comic chemistry of Will Ferrell and John C. Reilly.
  4. 50
    This is a loud, ugly, foul comedy whose shortcomings extends far into the supporting cast.
  5. Reviewed by: Reyhan Harmanci
    Essentially a throwaway film.
  6. Are Will Ferrell and director Adam McKay getting tired of their own shtick?
  7. There's a good subject for satire here, the extended adolescence of American kids. But satire presupposes maturity, or at least some perspective. The movie's calculation is that its subjects and audience share the same point of view. The results are truly ghastly.

See all 33 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 53 out of 74
  2. Negative: 20 out of 74
  1. Andrew
    Jul 24, 2008
    Best Movie Of The Summer!
  2. Purgs
    Aug 1, 2008
    Hilarious! My expectations were low and it blew me away with shit-your-pants laughter! Awesome!
  3. Aug 12, 2010
    I own very few movies, but I do own Step Brothers on DVD. For my money, it doesn't get better than Step Brothers. The characters are extremely over-the-top, the plot is hilarious and the jokes never stop. From the opening credits to the final scene, this movie delivers the funny. You can't expect any high-brow humor here. But the cursing, potty humor, clever plot twists, obscure references and subtle comedy is by far one of my favorite movies. It's full of one-liners that you feel compelled to imitate. As a side note, the DVD has great extra features. If you get a chance, listen to the commentary. It's just as funny as the movie itself. Best: John C. Reilly and Will Ferrell's AWESOME comedic chemistry.
    Worst: No sequel.
  4. DanielC.
    Aug 24, 2008
    If you can handle a lot of crude humor, this one is highly recommended.
  5. ChadS.
    Jul 26, 2008
    1987 is not just the address of the Doback household; the innocuous number also serves as a disquieting reminder for a seemingly imperturable father, that his quiet, middle-class life since Ronald Reagan's last days in the Oval Office, can be encapsulated thusly, in short order: lemons, or lemonade. 1987 is the year his son Dale(John C. Reilly) stopped growing up. During the course of some out-of-state business-related speaking engagement, anti-serendipidity stares him in the face from his podium on the stage. Enter Nancy(Mary Steenburgen). She has baggage, too. In fact, it's matching; hirsute baggage, with no silver lining, just like Robert's(Richard Jenkins). Don't let the presence of Will Ferrell fool you. As Brennan Huff, a(holy crap!) Pablo Cruise fan(in Adam Rapp's "Winter Passing", Ferrell's character stops wearing eyeliner because it's "too Adam Ant"), the former-SNL performer carries around his usual bag of absurdist schtick, but this time, his lavish buffoonery is framed by a setting that unsettles the viewer with complicated laughs. Inside "Stepbrothers" beats an indie heart that inevitably receives a dose of Hollywood atenonol, but not before the pathology of arrested development becomes self-evident, when the elder Doback's good will for his son is finally all tapped out. For a few tantalizing moments, the surface gloss that effaces the familial corrosion underneath the lowbrow hijinks of Ferrell and Reilly's physical comedy, is smudged. Something substantially dark manages to peek through. There's real anguish in Jenkins' face over his disappointing son that goes beyond standard comedy fare. Before the two brothers complete their character arcs, "Stepbrothers", in the time being, discomfits Hollywood protocol by being "The Brady Bunch" meets "Chuck and Buck"(Miguel Artega's 2000 film about a man-child who tries to reconnect with his romper room buddy). "Stepbrothers" has more in common with Todd Solondz's "Happiness" than Adam McKay's previous film "Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby". It's a shame that the institutionalized norm of major studio films, especially summer fare, dictates that all stories must strive to end happily, which predicates a change in narrative trajectory, that ultimately, feels grafted on, and ends up ringing false to the viewer. Especially, in this instance, because things get surprisingly hairy in "Stepbrothers" for awhile there, and I'm not talking about John C. Reilly's self-described "pube fro". Expand
  6. Mar 24, 2011
    What might one expect from the combination of Will Ferell and John C Reilly? They gave us that inane Nascar race flick, so we should know well just what exactly their product would be. I do like their daring and resourcefulness though - in a time of serious, realistic movies, they dare producing something so inane and ludicruously and purposely-funny and yet, they turn in performances that are just right for their parts. The movie's theme might be a bit too unusual, but both Ferell and Reilly are perfect in their depictions. I do wonder - if a 40-year-old man WERE unemployed and staying home with their parents, would they also be as child-like and immature like these two? Or is it just a comedy no-brains flick that Ferell and Reilly would have us believe?? I would like to hope that there is a social message here somewhere, but of course, if they had acted like grownups, that might have totally ruined it! Robert Jenkins and Mary Steenburgen are good together, but at times, I really cringed at how low Jenkins might stoop to - his character is empty and has absolutely no substance. I do feel for Steenburgen, her empathy for her two sons, her moving-on-with-what-my-life-really-is countenance is impressive. But obviously, if the perfect ending hadn't happened, if Jenkins and Steenburgen's characters hadn't got back together again, and the elder brother, Derek, hadn't piped down, it wouldn't have been a comedy flick, would it? Seriously, Ferell's testicle-scene was the last straw - it was totally unnecessary and absolutely disgusting. But then again, what reason and logic do we expect from Ferell anymore? I'd go with his Megamind depiction anyday than this disgust of a movie! This doesn't mean that he's not funny, he is, but at times, he can just be too uncontrollable and too inane. If only Ferell-Reilly could come up with a serious, mature subject and show their true talents, I'd be delighted! Expand
  7. Paulle
    Jul 24, 2008
    This is a stepping down stone of Adam McKay career. This film is filled like Epic movie dumb and vomit humor inspired like. This is the worst picture of 2008. Adam is making the wrong thing for his film for his r rated film. Totally unfunny and very mean spirited. Expand

See all 74 User Reviews