Metascore
60

Mixed or average reviews - based on 16 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 6 out of 16
  2. Negative: 0 out of 16
Watch On
  1. 88
    The movie is successful largely because [DiCaprio] is a good enough actor to hold his own in his scenes with De Niro, so that the movie remains his story, and isn't upstaged by the loathsome but colorful Dwight.
  2. Reviewed by: Staff (Not Credited)
    88
    In capturing the compelling battle between a boy and his abusive stepfather, director Michael Caton-Jones cannily avoids obvious sentimentality, opting to let a rather brutal story tell itself.
  3. 75
    The film is well-paced and expertly edited, allowing scenes to flow naturally into one another.
  4. Reviewed by: Terrence Rafferty
    90
    Barkin and DiCaprio are sensational. Every time De Niro threatens to take over the picture, they snatch our attention right back, and always with something casual: a look or a gesture that conveys how thoroughly this mother and son understand each other.
  5. 70
    Barkin's succulence and De Niro's showboating lend sizzle and ferocity to the proceedings, but the film draws its poignancy from 18-year-old DiCaprio's performance.
  6. He [Caton-Jones] has made the film all of a piece, making sure that the three lead performances complement rather than overwhelm each other. [9 Apr 1993, p.F1]
User Score
3.7

Generally unfavorable reviews- based on 39 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 1 out of 1
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 1
  3. Negative: 0 out of 1
  1. Mar 13, 2013
    8
    It's great that i'm the first user to review this masterpiece. The acting is amazing, the story is great and realistic. It's a must watch forIt's great that i'm the first user to review this masterpiece. The acting is amazing, the story is great and realistic. It's a must watch for all DeNiro or DiCaprio fans and drama lovers. I still have the original VHS in my collection. My final score for "This Boy's Life" is 8/10 Full Review »