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Dummy (2003)



Average Rating: 6.1/10
Reviews Counted: 33
Fresh: 23 | Rotten: 10

Dummy is a sweet family comedy that succeeds due to charming performances, even if the final product feels slightly undercooked.


Average Rating: 5.5/10
Critic Reviews: 11
Fresh: 7 | Rotten: 4

Dummy is a sweet family comedy that succeeds due to charming performances, even if the final product feels slightly undercooked.



liked it
Average Rating: 3.6/5
User Ratings: 7,764

My Rating

Movie Info

The sophomore effort from writer and director Greg Pritikin, who previously co-directed and acted in 1998's Totally Confused, Dummy stars Oscar winner Adrien Brody (The Pianist, Summer of Sam) as Steven, a recently unemployed ne'er-do-well who has difficulty expressing himself. Steven's best friend is Fanny, an aspiring singer played by Milla Jovovich (The Fifth Element, Resident Evil) who, along with Steven, is just looking for her niche. Eventually Fanny takes a shine to Yiddish music and


Drama, Comedy

Gregory Pritikin

Feb 17, 2004

Shoreline Entertainment - Official Site External Icon

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All Critics (37) | Top Critics (12) | Fresh (23) | Rotten (10) | DVD (4)

Definitely lives down to its name -- you can see the lips moving on this wooden thing.

September 26, 2003 Full Review Source: Globe and Mail
Globe and Mail
Top Critic IconTop Critic

[T]he best ventriloquist -stalker -family-drama -romantic -comedy I've seen in, well maybe forever.

September 15, 2003 Full Review Source: Ebert & Roeper
Ebert & Roeper
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Pritikin's shrewd comedy-drama catches a fine flock of family emotions on the wing, and not the over-exposed ones.

September 12, 2003 Full Review Source: Newark Star-Ledger
Newark Star-Ledger
Top Critic IconTop Critic

What could have been a biting dark comedy is, instead, uninspired and generic.

September 12, 2003
New York Post
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Brody is a real talent, and Illeana Douglas is a riot as his older sister.

September 12, 2003 Full Review Source: New York Daily News
New York Daily News
Top Critic IconTop Critic

A mildly engaging addition to that curious sub-genre of American independent filmmaking, the whimsical comedy of Long Island alienation.

September 11, 2003 Full Review Source: New York Times
New York Times
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Pritikin may be asking his audience to pay attention and embrace small successes, but with Dummy, he has pulled off a great one.

December 9, 2004 Full Review Source:

Pritikin's movie succeeds...thanks to its spirited, oddball humor and winning performances

September 30, 2004

Like its mini-mouthpiece, as pleasantly entertaining as Dummy often is, this ultimately hollow film sounds a few too many wooden notes and creaky jokes.

January 29, 2004
Vue Weekly (Edmonton, Canada)

Set at an odd pitch, one best described as shrill.

September 26, 2003 Full Review Source: National Post
National Post

The characters are all strangely endearing, and the real pleasure of the movie is just watching them interact.

September 26, 2003 Full Review Source: Jam! Movies
Jam! Movies

Surprisingly endearing in moments thanks to finely tuned comic performances, especially from Brody.

September 15, 2003 Full Review Source: Citysearch

Dummy might have been a better movie if Greg Pritikin had done a few more rewrites on his script, and if he'd had more than a few weeks in which to shoot it.

September 13, 2003 Full Review Source: Film Journal International
Film Journal International

It's a sweetly sad and sadly funny tale, conceived with quirky sensitivity, but, though its actors are adept, it only just hangs together, like a sitcom still in rehearsal stages.

September 12, 2003 Full Review Source: Boxoffice Magazine
Boxoffice Magazine

It's repetitive and obvious but somehow endearing, like a truly ugly dog with sweet eyes.

September 12, 2003 Full Review Source: TV Guide's Movie Guide
TV Guide's Movie Guide

The result is the kind of oddball independent film that's almost a parody of the genre.

September 11, 2003 Full Review Source: E! Online
E! Online

Brody shot this film pre-Pianist and performed all the puppetry and ventriloquism himself, and it's pretty impressive watching the Oscar-winning actor externalize his expressions on the dummy's face.

September 11, 2003 Full Review Source: Premiere Magazine
Premiere Magazine

Audience Reviews for Dummy

Its contrived and sometimes, er, wooden, but the characterizations and charm are better than the flaws in this typical romcom where the eternal nerd eventually wins the girl of his dreams. Adrian Brody is again good but the film is nearly stolen by a surprising and animated Milla Jovovich.
May 14, 2012

Super Reviewer

It's awkward humor that works. Milla Jovovich, as Fanny/Fangora, the consummate clueless wannabe rockstar, is brilliant, and you'd never know it from her later films. Everyone else is delightfully awkward/quirky/believable. Sadly, it all ends in all-too typical rom-com fashion, but it's certainly worth watching anyway.
July 13, 2011

Super Reviewer

I actually really admire that Adrien Brody chose to follow up The Pianist with Dummy. This movie is all kinds of bizarre and really nails a sense of awkwardness without having that typical "indie" look. It's genuinely funny and I can honestly say that I laughed out loud multiple times, which doesn't happen too often. Adrien Brody's nerdy performance as a makeshift ventriloquist is way too hilarious and impossible to not enjoy. Also, Milla Jovovich's wacko grunge character is great too. It's a unique comedy that doesn't alienate, but really just attempts to try new things with a familiar formula.
April 7, 2011

Super Reviewer

This was a great movie!! If you love adriend Brody or even if you dont like him I highly highly recommend seeing this movie. So much quirky comedy. Milla Jovovich's character almost steals the show! She is great and this movie showed she really is an actress with range. I believed her the whole time and she is just hillarious! I love it when Brody plays awekward unsure guys, He is just adorable!! and with the puppet (wich is usually pretty creepy) he managed to actually make me laugh instead of cringe! This is just a fun funny movie. See it for Adrien Brody and Milla Jovovich's performances alone! :D that is how I felt watching this movie. :D
August 5, 2010
Morgan Salem

Super Reviewer

    1. Michael: Heidi, take a good look at this face couse you will never ever see it again.
    – Submitted by Alenor L (2 years ago)
    1. Fangora aka 'Fanny': I brought a gift for you.
    2. Steven: Oh no.
    – Submitted by Alenor L (2 years ago)
View all quotes (2)

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