• Unrated, 1 hr. 34 min.
  • Drama, Comedy
  • Directed By:
    Marshall Lewy
    In Theaters:
    Nov 30, 2012 Limited
    On DVD:
    Mar 4, 2013
  • Strand Releasing


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California Solo Reviews

Page 1 of 2
Tomas Hachard
Slant Magazine

Robert Carlyle's performance compensates for the film's less successful elements and even makes you wonder if they might be strengths.

Full Review Source: Slant Magazine | Original Score: 2.5/4

November 24, 2012
Annlee Ellingson
Paste Magazine

Carlyle gives a nuanced performance--perhaps too nuanced, as the character's overall arc amounts to a blip of resignation.

Full Review Source: Paste Magazine | Original Score: 5.8/10

December 31, 2012
Avi Offer
NYC Movie Guru

Clunky and lacks bite, but mostly engrossing thanks to Robert Carlyle's heartfelt, nuanced performance that adds complexity which the screenplay lacks.

Full Review Source: NYC Movie Guru | Original Score: 5.95/10

December 1, 2012
Nick Schager
Village Voice
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Any transformation feels like a device, and any modest hopefulness comes across as simply the unearned wishful thinking of the filmmaker.

Full Review Source: Village Voice

November 27, 2012
Robert Koehler
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Lewy's script is less attuned to the way rock 'n' rollers talk, and more concerned with pressing character and story details in as direct a fashion as possible.

Full Review Source: Variety

January 26, 2012
Mark Olsen
Los Angeles Times
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In some sense, "California Solo" is like meeting an engaging stranger: At first there's a certain air of enigmatic mystery that makes you want to spend time with them, but eventually things turn awkward and you just want to get away.

Full Review Source: Los Angeles Times | Original Score: 2.5/5

December 6, 2012
John Esther
UR Chicago Magazine

It is not that the film is bad or boring so much as it is forgettable.

Full Review Source: UR Chicago Magazine

December 8, 2012
Liam Lacey
Globe and Mail
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Lewy's script doesn't cop out with any sentimental redemption, but neither does it establish why the self-destructive Lachlan deserves our sympathy.

Full Review Source: Globe and Mail | Original Score: 2/4

March 1, 2013
Sam Adams
Time Out New York
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Lewy's film functions largely as a delivery system for Carlyle's performance. Luckily, Carlyle's tough, tender turn is strong enough to carry the load.

Full Review Source: Time Out New York | Original Score: 3/5

November 27, 2012
Ella Taylor
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It treats its themes of guilt and responsibility with delicate tact and a precise eye for the neglected commitments that stubbornly dog a man trying his damnedest to efface himself from the world.

Full Review Source: NPR

November 29, 2012
Robert Levin

Anchored by Robert Carlyle's strong, naturalistic performance, in which he relies on his big smile and sad eyes in equal measure.

Full Review Source: amNewYork | Original Score: 3/4

November 30, 2012
Kyle Smith
New York Post
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The story trickles to a disappointing close. But Carlyle, who first gained attention here for his unforgettable work in "Trainspotting," remains an essential character actor.

Full Review Source: New York Post | Original Score: 2.5/4

November 30, 2012
Cole Smithey

One of the U.K.'s unsung character-actors, Carlyle sinks his teeth in and gives a remarkable performance.

Full Review Source: ColeSmithey.com | Original Score: B-

November 23, 2012
Eric Kohn

Even as California Solo plays like a track we've heard before, it's still worth a listen.

Full Review Source: indieWIRE | Original Score: B

November 29, 2012
Amber Wilkinson
Eye for Film

Lewy avoids the trite path to redemption, choosing instead to keep this a study of man in midlife crisis, understated and realistic.

Full Review Source: Eye for Film | Original Score: 3.5/5

June 17, 2012
Lisa Schwarzbaum
Entertainment Weekly
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There's a lovely gravity and specificity to the story that transcends instances of bumpy filmmaking.

Full Review Source: Entertainment Weekly | Original Score: B

November 28, 2012
Miles Fielder
The List

Carlyle carries the film with a typically dedicated performance. And he can carry a tune, too.

Full Review Source: The List | Original Score: 3/5

June 27, 2012
Jeannette Catsoulis
New York Times
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A wry, mournful study of midlife crisis ...

Full Review Source: New York Times | Original Score: 5/5

November 29, 2012
Walter V. Addiego
San Francisco Chronicle
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Mainly worth seeing as a showcase for the appealing Scottish actor Robert Carlyle, who plays a has-been rocker reduced to eking out a living on an organic farm in Southern California.

Full Review Source: San Francisco Chronicle | Original Score: 3/4

January 11, 2013
David Rooney
Hollywood Reporter
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Robert Carlyle's layered performance as an embittered musician facing his demons gives this fragile drama some emotional heft.

Full Review Source: Hollywood Reporter

January 26, 2012
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