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Child Of God (2014)

tomatometer

36

Average Rating: 4.8/10
Reviews Counted: 45
Fresh: 16 | Rotten: 29

An obviously reverent adaptation that fails to make a case for the source material being turned into a movie, Child of God finds director James Franco outmatched by Cormac McCarthy's novel.

35

Average Rating: 4.4/10
Critic Reviews: 23
Fresh: 8 | Rotten: 15

An obviously reverent adaptation that fails to make a case for the source material being turned into a movie, Child of God finds director James Franco outmatched by Cormac McCarthy's novel.

audience

26

liked it
Average Rating: 2.4/5
User Ratings: 1,938

My Rating

Movie Info

Directed by acclaimed filmmaker James Franco, and based on the chilling novel by Cormac McCarthy, Child of God, tells the provocative story of Lester Ballad (Scott Haze), a dispossessed, violent man, attempting to exist outside the social order. Consecutively deprived of parents and housing and driven by famished loneliness, Ballard descends literally and figuratively to the level of a cave dweller as he falls deeper into crime and degradation. Set in a small town in the foothills of the

R,

Mystery & Suspense, Drama

Oct 28, 2014

$37.9k

Well Go USA - Official Site External Icon

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All Critics (45) | Top Critics (23) | Fresh (16) | Rotten (29)

Beautifully shot, well acted, and the score is lovely, but the film has nothing to say about the human degradation in which it wallows. If you're gonna make me smell dung for two hours, at least fertilize my lawn.

August 3, 2014 Full Review Source: TheWrap
TheWrap
Top Critic IconTop Critic

There's no denying Franco's ambition, and in "Child of God" you can see evidence (almost for the first time) that he's reaching for something he may one day attain.

August 1, 2014 Full Review Source: Salon.com
Salon.com
Top Critic IconTop Critic

"Child of God" fascinates like a song sung just out of tune but rhythmically sturdy enough to keep you listening in the hopes it'll right itself.

August 1, 2014 Full Review Source: Los Angeles Times
Los Angeles Times
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Surprisingly pretty good.

August 1, 2014 Full Review Source: New York Magazine/Vulture
New York Magazine/Vulture
Top Critic IconTop Critic

This wrong-headed adaptation of Cormac McCarthy's taut 1973 novel, as interpreted by director James Franco, spends too much time trying to create an element of compassion for this devilishly aberrant killer.

July 31, 2014 Full Review Source: USA Today
USA Today
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Too bad all this grungy intimacy renders him neither knowable nor fascinating as he hunkers down in a shack and then in a cavern that doubles as a crypt.

July 31, 2014 Full Review Source: Orange County Register
Orange County Register
Top Critic IconTop Critic

James Franco should be hailed for taking a crack at such dense and unforgiving material, but the relentless grimness leaves you numb rather than enlightened.

August 10, 2014 Full Review Source: amNewYork
amNewYork

For obvious reasons too, it's a tough undertaking to endear sociopaths, serial killers and their ilk as something more, something human.

August 7, 2014 Full Review Source: Paste Magazine
Paste Magazine

This drama loses its momentum when it focuses too much on its mentally unstable main character and never builds a solid narrative around him.

August 5, 2014 Full Review Source: John Hanlon Reviews
John Hanlon Reviews

An ambitious but uneven attempt to translate McCarthy's book to the screen.

August 2, 2014 Full Review Source: One Guy's Opinion
One Guy's Opinion

If (and this is a big if) you can get past the breaking of taboos, Child of God is a deeply affecting look at loneliness, survival and the cracking of the line between civilization and savagery.

August 1, 2014 Full Review Source: Film School Rejects
Film School Rejects

The physical experience of watching this no-frills movie is difficult.

August 1, 2014 Full Review Source: Common Sense Media
Common Sense Media

A good faith but blank retelling of McCarthy's first major statement.

August 1, 2014 Full Review Source: RogerEbert.com
RogerEbert.com

The Coens and John Hillcoat used McCarthy's novels as inroads and put their individual stamps on the material; Franco, meanwhile, contents himself with exploitation.

August 1, 2014 Full Review Source: Movie Mezzanine
Movie Mezzanine

His handheld cameras dodge and weave, but that's all they do. Good handheld requires stealth craft; this is just someone flailing with a camera in their hands.

July 31, 2014 Full Review Source: Metro
Metro

A horror film that challenges us to never exclude anyone from our hearts.

July 31, 2014 Full Review Source: Spirituality and Practice
Spirituality and Practice

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