Generally unfavorable reviews - based on 10 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 4 out of 10
  2. Negative: 4 out of 10
  1. Reviewed by: John Engstrom
    The director gives us a small, sincere and nearly perfectly realized film about adolescence in Oklahoma, aptly entitled The Outsiders. [24 Mar 1983]
  2. 10
    Francis Ford Coppola's gang film is as moony about death as "One From the Heart" was over romance; the film is unremitting in its morbid sentimentality, running its teenage characters through a masochistic gamut of beatings, killings, burnings, and suicides.
  3. 63
    Coppola's teenagers seem trapped inside too many layers of storytelling.
  4. 75
    Francis Coppola's revision of his 1983 film of S.E. Hinton's best seller The Outsiders is funny, touching and revelatory, with twenty-two minutes of added footage and a new soundtrack featuring Elvis Presley. [Review of re-release]
  5. This is an honestly moving, ungainly film. [25 Mar 1983]
  6. It is spectacularly out of touch, a laughably earnest attempt to impose heroic attitudes on some nice, small characters purloined from a ''young-adult'' novel by S.E. Hinton, the woman who wrote the novel on which ''Tex'' was based.
  7. Reviewed by: Richard Corliss
    Alas, The Outsiders is not quite a good one. Because it falls in with the undulating rhythm of the life of its heroes, for whom a fatal fight and a quiet night have almost equal importance, the picture never manages to reach the peaks of satisfying Hollywood melodrama.
  8. Reviewed by: Staff (Not Credited)
    The charismatic Dillon is a believable delinquent and gets solid support from a cast that went on to populate some of the better youth pictures in years to come. [Review of re-release]
  9. Reviewed by: Staff (Not Credited)
    Francis Coppola has made a well acted and crafted but highly conventional film out of S.E. Hinton's popular youth novel, The Outsiders.
User Score

Generally favorable reviews- based on 26 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 8 out of 12
  2. Negative: 1 out of 12
  1. Jan 2, 2013
    Let me just say that I read "The Outsiders" in novel form before having seen this movie. Viewing "The Complete Novel" edition, I felt that this adaptation did not serve the book the glory it should have. While the locations and sets were fitting to the story, and the plot is very faithful to its source material, the problem is the unconvincing acting. Thomas C. Howell lead in one of his early roles as Ponyboy, a greaser from Oklahoma. His friend Johnny, played by Ralph Maccio, becomes responsible for a murder of one of the Socs, a class of rich teens, and the two have to face the trouble they've made.

    Howell's performance just kills it for me. He shows such little emotion in his expressions and tone, which does not worm for a deep and sensitive character such as Ponyboy. The same can be said about Maccio, whose crying scene is incredibly forced. I understand that, according to Metacritic's "15 Films that Critics Got Wrong," what makes this movie so "great" is that its stars would go on to become big names in Holywood, but their lack of experience at the point this was made is actually a flaw to me. To top it all off, they use ridiculous fake southwestern accents that make it hard to take seriously. See it only if you are that big of a fan of the book.
    Full Review »
  2. Apr 3, 2014
    The Outsiders was a very good book, but the movie doesn't even come close. Right from the get-go, the story dwindles and the actors portray their characters awkwardly, almost as if they have no clue what type of character they should be playing. Add this to the list of another one of Coppola's bombs. Full Review »
  3. Jan 25, 2014
    So **** stupiD! The book is even worse. I am being super super super super super nice with this review! it is a -0.0000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000001/100 stars. And that is super nice too. the worst author and movie ever Full Review »