The Young and Prodigious T.S. Spivet Image
Metascore
53

Mixed or average reviews - based on 11 Critics What's this?

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6.7

Generally favorable reviews- based on 6 Ratings

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  • Summary: A 12-year-old cartographer secretly leaves his family's ranch in Montana where he lives with his cowboy father and scientist mother and travels across the country on a freight train to receive an award at the Smithsonian Institute.

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Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 6 out of 11
  2. Negative: 1 out of 11
  1. Reviewed by: Joe Walsh
    Jun 18, 2014
    80
    T.S. Spivet is a dreamlike fairytale, which swims in the romanticism of childhood and the decay of the American Dream.
  2. Reviewed by: Jay Weissberg
    Oct 1, 2013
    80
    The Young and Prodigious T.S. Spivet is the perfect 3D vehicle and Jeunet takes full advantage, offering a feast of amusing visual flourishes suited to the book’s playfulness.
  3. Reviewed by: Jonathan Holland
    Jun 18, 2014
    70
    The film's greatest achievement is in the way the accomplished 3D treatment -- this is Jeunet’s first foray into the format -- emerges entirely naturally, as the precise expression of a gifted child’s vivid imagination.
  4. Reviewed by: Liam Lacey
    Jul 27, 2015
    63
    Jeunet’s major achievement is to capture the book’s complicated museum clutter and hothouse-flower sensitivity.
  5. Reviewed by: Paul Bradshaw
    Jul 27, 2015
    60
    With more whimsy than a Wes Anderson wedding – and a clunky third act that potholes the plot – Jeunet’s American comeback is beautiful, heart-warming and a bit of a mess.
  6. Reviewed by: Ian Nathan
    Jun 18, 2014
    60
    For all it boasts in ingenious style, this genial American yarn lacks the delicious bile of Jenuet’s early days.
  7. Reviewed by: Peter Bradshaw
    Jun 18, 2014
    20
    The two adjectives in the title should be replaced with "annoying" and "unendurably tiresome".

See all 11 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 2 out of 4
  2. Negative: 1 out of 4
  1. Jul 14, 2016
    8
    Sure, everyone finds their pine tree.

    The film was produced by three countries from three different continents, carved by one of my
    Sure, everyone finds their pine tree.

    The film was produced by three countries from three different continents, carved by one of my favoutire French directors that talks of a prodigy child. An English language film set in the American soil. If you had liked his films, then you would like this one as well. Like all his films, it was visually fantastic and it was his first digital 3D project. One of the underrated film of the recent time. A road adventure and a coming-of-age film that neatly rendered especially for the family and children film fans.

    More like it was a kid version of 'Amelie' and now I realise why the author picked this particular foreign filmmaker for the cinematic translation. This is not some kid's summer vacation tale or the school related stuff, but a rural kid and his weird family. They're united by family, but divided by their field of interest. Born in such family, the film focused his life and mostly the fighting of his loneliness.

    It was based on the book about a 12 year old boy T.S. Spivet who lives on a ranch in the Rockies with his family. He's a scientific research enthusiastic and so one day he receives an unusual call from the Washington DC that he had won a prestigious award for his invention. After a sudden tragedy in the house he set to travel by his own to the other side of the country. The adventure begins as he hitchhike to his destination where he learns many things.

    "The amazing thing about water drops, is that they always take the path of least resistance. For humans, it's exactly the opposite."

    The kid was brilliant, it was his perspective story. In one of the scenes when he gets hurt, that felt like it was real. His co-stars supported him all the way, but not as a game changer. You might agree with me that it is not a great story, somewhat familiar too, but the film topic is inspiring like how an atypical family cooperates during the bad times that compared with their negligence to each other at one point before. There are a few fun moments, but also gets emotional at the final part.

    The train journey had lots of effects on the narration, because I'd seen a road movie, but this is a very rare, especially it gives us some glimpse over awesome landscapes of different part of the country. Like I said, the cinematography was the best part of the film followed by many others. In the end, I was very satisfied for it is being somewhat simple with having an extraordinary boy character. Because, you know, genius boy means usually the writers goes for an extra mile to make him shine with his brain powers to perhaps face the bad guys or the bad situations for which the audience sets to go awe.

    Really very sad that it was not as popular as 'Hugo' where everyone who saw it comparing with, especially for the digital 3D visuals. That tells how much the people are addicted to Hollywood and of course marketing was not upto the standards as against the film's standard. In fact, it took me two years to learn such film is exist. So I definitely recommend it to all. If you have not seen it yet, just do it, you might like it, surely you would enjoy it.

    8/10
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  2. May 8, 2016
    7
    A movie about a weird family on a ranch in Montana. The young son receives an award from the Smithsonian and travels there alone (this isA movie about a weird family on a ranch in Montana. The young son receives an award from the Smithsonian and travels there alone (this is definitely fiction) on a freight train! If you can't suspend reality, you won't like this movie. During the journey, we learn about his family via flashbacks. An interesting story and great acting job by the young boy. Expand
  3. Aug 1, 2015
    6
    This is the latest from fanciful French director Jean-Pierre Jeunet and it exhibits many of his signature flourishes: quirky characters, richThis is the latest from fanciful French director Jean-Pierre Jeunet and it exhibits many of his signature flourishes: quirky characters, rich visuals and momentary flights of fantasy. Spivet is a brilliant 10-year-old boy who invents the perpetual motion machine and travels across the country by himself to receive an award from the Smithsonian. After a setup on his family farm in Montana, the mildly adventurous trip cross country ends up with his celebration in DC. The performances are engaging and the creativity is undeniable, but it sometimes feels more forced than delightful. It's a bit bland and takes too long, but not without some cinematic charm. Expand
  4. Aug 17, 2015
    3
    As whimsical and enlightening as it may be to some, I wholly did not enjoy it. I admire and respect a quirky film with a playful set ofAs whimsical and enlightening as it may be to some, I wholly did not enjoy it. I admire and respect a quirky film with a playful set of characters, but it becomes too mawkish as it goes on, and the ending was completely blotched. A mawkish tale with an extremely mawkish ending that spoiled what would have been an almost fun film for me. It's just not my cup of tea. Expand

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