Metascore
55

Mixed or average reviews - based on 30 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 12 out of 30
  2. Negative: 1 out of 30
  1. 83
    The Joneses turns out to be a smart little comedy that tosses some sharp little darts at our consumer-driven culture.
  2. The beauty of The Joneses is that the salesmen are as much the victims as the people they're deceiving.
  3. 75
    The Joneses manages a deft blend of the sexy, the sad and the silly. And Borte doles out his secrets and surprises in ways that make it easy to keep up with these Joneses.
  4. Before it gives itself a chance to deliver on that promise, however, it morphs into something different -- something often resembling a soap opera, just with prettier sets and less-passionate smooching.
  5. 75
    Surprising, inventive and crisply, merrily written and directed by Derrick Borte, The Joneses is a brisk, captivating entertainment. Think Ozzie and Harriet on speed.
  6. 75
    Except for slipping on a third-act soapbox, The Joneses is a deft allegory of the greed and coveting that led to the recession. At times, you wonder if something like this scam could really happen, or does.
  7. A sharp sendup of suburban conformity and American materialism, The Joneses does burn through its credit by the end. But it's flashy enough to catch our eye, and keep our interest nearly all the way through.
  8. 63
    Though it's entertaining when the tone is light, The Joneses can't quite keep up with this sort of complexity.
  9. Reviewed by: Claudia Puig
    63
    Crass materialism and ridiculous marketing ploys are skewered by writer/director Derrick Borte in this uneven cautionary tale that starts off incisively funny, then devolves into preachiness.
  10. Reviewed by: Dan Kois
    63
    Unfortunately, the movie's second half drags, never again achieving the first half's level of narrative dexterity.
  11. 63
    Solid performances from David Duchovny (in a cleaned-up version of his Californication character), Demi Moore (defying age), Ben Hollingsworth, and Amber Heard can't save the movie when the screenplay goes as limp as a noodle and turns into a long string of clichés.
  12. The spoof of consumerism scores some predictable points, but the tidy ending is a sell-out to the ultimate marketing machine: Hollywood.
  13. Reviewed by: Helen O'Hara
    60
    A meta-satire that doesn't quite come off.
  14. His (Borte) film would have been much better had it stuck to its guns as social commentary and not lapsed into a predictable, and predictably lame, love story.
  15. Borte supports his jewel of a story idea with dead-on casting, stunning images and product placement that's intentionally heavy-handed.
  16. Reviewed by: Michael Ordona
    60
    The ending feels a bit rushed and incongruous, but the film never leaves behind the humanity of its characters.
  17. This cautionary tale might be easier to swallow if all that stuff didn't look like it came from a Sky Mall catalog.
  18. 58
    The inevitable breakdown on this commercial façade might have led The Joneses into more disturbing territory, but Borte goes the other direction, away from jagged comedy and toward well-meaning homilies. No sale.
  19. What could have been a biting black comedy taking product placement to the logical extreme instead is so obviously predictable that even a savvy cast led by David Duchovny and Demi Moore can't sell it.
  20. 50
    Either this is a tragic family or a satirical one, and the film seems uncertain which way to jump.
  21. Duchovny and Moore have their moments; they're like two preening sharks working on commission.
  22. An overobvious and underwhelming satire about American consumerism run amok.
  23. 50
    It’s cute and clever to a point -- especially if you don’t know much about the film’s premise going in -- but then the cleverness runs on like the one-note punch line of an interminable “Saturday Night Live’’ sketch, sponsored by Audi.
  24. Borte may have lost his way on this film, but there is one thing he has done for America: He has demonstrated the correct way of spelling the plural of the surname Jones. Grammarians, if few others, will be satisfied.
  25. Reviewed by: Robert Wilonsky
    50
    What plays hard and dark for the film's first half goes squishy and blindingly bright as calamity and then outright tragedy lead to the saw-it-coming resolution writer-director Derrick Borte thinks is more sincere than it actually plays.
  26. 50
    As the shills reveal their souls, the movie turns into an exercise in the very phoniness it initially set out to expose. And since you’ve already paid for the ticket, you might end up feeling cheated.
  27. Reviewed by: John Anderson
    50
    If The Joneses were pure farce, which it isn't, Borte could have gotten away with a lot. Likewise, the picture might have succeeded if it were all a bit funnier and a little less mean-spirited about spending, debt and envy.
  28. 50
    Writer-director Derrick Borte brings a heavy hand to the comedy and an even heavier one to the drama.
  29. Reviewed by: Aaron Hillis
    40
    The spot-on cast almost holds the movie together, but whatever potential this timely premise has is wasted on reworking the same gag about overconsumption.
  30. 38
    Slick as a pig and reeking of phony sympathy for recession-wracked consumers, The Joneses is a black comedy about stealth marketing made by a filmmaker who's evidently much too close to the subject to bite the hand that feeds him.
User Score
6.8

Generally favorable reviews- based on 33 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 7 out of 8
  2. Negative: 0 out of 8
  1. Feb 4, 2013
    5
    This review contains spoilers, click full review link to view. The Joneses, or how to come up with a great idea and be unable to do anything with it. Why? Lazy writing. What started out to be a great satire, dark and cynical, turns out to be a soft romantic comedy in between Duchovny and Moore, with all the other characters being solely here as extras (what was the point of the son's coming out again?!?!??! And the daughter's love story with a married guy?!?!?). And once again, Hollywood couldn't help but make a cheesy happy ending with the two ending together, and the movie ends on a let's-not-piss-our-audience-off-this-is-entertainment-goddam-it note, that clearly states that over consumption and credit card debt should in no way be blamed on irresponsible consumers behavior (let's not insult our audience please) but only on those mean and evil marketing guys who mess up with our brains and make us wanna get always more stuff. The film almost feels as if Derrick Borte started writing it with pure intentions and then some advertising executive stormed into his office and made him write the second and third act of the script with a gun to his head. Full Review »
  2. Aug 24, 2012
    7
    This was a surprisingly enjoyable film. I had never heard of the film before I saw it on TV but the premise intrigued me so I took a chance. Mulder acted extremely well, Amber Heard probably gave her best performance and as per usual Gary Cole was phenomenal. The storyline was fantastic and had it been paced ever so slightly quicker I think I would have given this a 9. I felt it waned ever so slightly in the middle. Still, more than worth a view and I would definitely recommend it! Full Review »
  3. Jun 6, 2011
    6
    David Duchovny is excellent in this movie. Its a good movie but I cant help feeling that the studios saw a movie that was too dark ( which it scratched towards the latter part of the movie ) and polished it off. The result has changed what could have been a dark movie into an enjoyable Sunday afternoon movie. The ending kills off any notion of it being alternative. I liked it, just felt that there was something else there which was unfortunately sidelined. Full Review »