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Roger Dodger (2002)



Average Rating: 7.4/10
Reviews Counted: 122
Fresh: 107 | Rotten: 15

The movie could have benefited from a more experienced director, but a great cast and script overcome any first time jitters the director may have had.


Average Rating: 7.3/10
Critic Reviews: 33
Fresh: 29 | Rotten: 4

The movie could have benefited from a more experienced director, but a great cast and script overcome any first time jitters the director may have had.



liked it
Average Rating: 3.6/5
User Ratings: 7,930

My Rating

Movie Info

Writer/director Dylan Kidd got a chance to make his script for Roger Dodger into a feature film when he boldly approached Campbell Scott in a café in Greenwich Village and made his pitch. Eventually, Scott would agree to executive produce and star in the film, and was responsible for bringing Jennifer Beals and Isabella Rossellini onboard. Scott stars as the eponymous Roger, a successful New York ad man and self-proclaimed master of reading and manipulating women. The film begins with Roger out


Drama, Comedy

Dylan Kidd

Mar 18, 2003


Artisan Entertainment

Watch It Now


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All Critics (134) | Top Critics (36) | Fresh (107) | Rotten (15) | DVD (24)

A fascinating, uneven first feature from the young writer-director Dylan Kidd.

January 16, 2003 Full Review Source: New York Magazine/Vulture
New York Magazine/Vulture
Top Critic IconTop Critic

We journey from appreciating Roger as the ideal over-drinks conversationalist to someone we would cross the street to avoid.

January 3, 2003
Orlando Sentinel
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Scott's low-key portrayal makes Roger interesting.

December 5, 2002 Full Review Source: USA Today
USA Today
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Doesn't really add up to much.

November 15, 2002 Full Review Source: Miami Herald
Miami Herald
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Roger Dodger is an impressive first-time effort by Dylan Kidd, the director and writer. But like the teen in the movie who is trying to lose his virginity, the film never quite scores.

November 15, 2002 | Comment (1)
Atlanta Journal-Constitution
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Even at its grimmest, the movie hums along, thanks to the edgy, hand-held, on-the-fly cinematography and the snappy performances.

November 9, 2002 Full Review Source: Slate
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Scott's hilariously hateful hauteur is able to counteract some falsely fuzzy notes in the ending.

January 27, 2009 Full Review Source:

Some have condemned this film for 'filthy content.' That's like condemning a hospital for being a place of disease. Kidd deals with 'filth' the way a surgeon treats a tumor.

December 6, 2004
Looking Closer

The dialogue addresses our expectations, gets us laughing and stops the movie from becoming too obvious a character study.

September 7, 2003 Full Review Source: UK Critic

Kidd's story is a bitter pill to swallow - many will find the portrayal of Roger as some kind of hero bizarre.

August 15, 2003 Full Review Source: Teletext | Comment (1)

Blatantly arrogant, unapologetically misogynistic, morally repugnant, and absolutely hypnotic. All these descriptions and more can be applied to the character of Roger Swanson (Campbell Scott)

June 16, 2003 Full Review Source:

Kidd says he wants the extras to act as a 'film school in a box,' but the overall effect is more 'it takes a village,' indie-style ...

May 12, 2003 Full Review Source: Premiere Magazine
Premiere Magazine

...Rogers's mouth never stops shut about the war between the sexes and how to win the battle.

May 11, 2003 Full Review Source: Movie Magazine International
Movie Magazine International

Other than the slightly flawed (and fairly unbelievable) finale, everything else is top shelf.

May 6, 2003
Planet Sick-Boy

The best American debut since Reservoir Dogs.

April 8, 2003 Full Review Source: Montreal Film Journal
Montreal Film Journal

Sharply written by Dylan Kidd.

March 26, 2003
Creative Loafing

Dylan Kidd writes quotable dialogue and monologues that have the muscle of early Mamet without the attendant sameness of every character.

March 17, 2003 Full Review Source: Film Freak Central
Film Freak Central

Roger Dodger is an enjoyably bruising tale of the inflated male ego that takes a hammering thanks to a little ironic justice.

March 9, 2003 Full Review Source: Sunday Times (Australia)
Sunday Times (Australia)

An older cad instructs a younger lad in Zen and the art of getting laid in this prickly indie comedy of manners and misanthropy.

February 11, 2003 Full Review Source: Netflix

Quite the most shocking thing about this out-to-shock indie is the discovery that it was shot on film, not on video. I wasn't even aware that it was possible to make film look this amateurishly bad.

February 5, 2003 Full Review Source: Mountain Xpress (Asheville, NC)
Mountain Xpress (Asheville, NC)

There is greatness here.

January 7, 2003 Full Review Source: Hot Button
Hot Button

Campbell Scott finds the ideal outlet for his flick-knife diction in the role of Roger Swanson.

January 3, 2003 Full Review Source: Orlando Weekly
Orlando Weekly

...there is an unflinching quality to the film that makes it impossible to dismiss as just another character study of an unhappy man

December 28, 2002 Full Review
Arkansas Democrat-Gazette

What sounds on the surface like another generic sex comedy is actually a bitingly funny character study.

December 28, 2002 Full Review Source: Aisle Seat
Aisle Seat

Audience Reviews for Roger Dodger

Gotta love high-functioning sociopaths like HIMYM's Barney Stinson and Campbell Scott's titular Roger in this dark, delicious gem. Roger's tried-and-true tricks aren't just cheesy pick-ups, but carefully honed skills that show off the Darwinningest male. Jesse Eisenberg, in his first film role, is sweet and endearing with a hint of rebellion, and the brief roles of 80s-90s dream queens, Elizabeth Berkley and Jennifer Beals, make for a bittersweet sex education. It was so bittersweet that I wished something would happen for Nick and Sophie at the end - not necessarily sex but just SOMETHING instead of Uncle Dad once again aiding and abetting a lame flirtation with high school queen bee whom the audience hasn't gotten the chance to know and fall in love with yet.
May 20, 2013

Super Reviewer

A fast-paced, dialogue-driven, well-constructed little film about the immorality of our times, specifically playboy Roger (Campbell Scott) and how he decides to give his 16-year old nephew (Jesse Eisenberg) in town a crash course in how to get laid after his nephew asks for his help. It is at times a little unbelievable, but still irrefutably fascinating despite its shortcomings and uneven pacing. This is mostly due to Scott's powerhouse performance as a man stripped of any conceivable morals, which serves as a fascinating though depressing study of sex and its agonizing grip on some individuals lives. Eisenberg is also fantastic playing the insecure, virgin character he and Michael Cera have made a living off of for a little over a decade now. It is explicit, sometimes a little full of itself, and sometimes lacking some editing, but is is nevertheless a successful, memorable look on the lack of morality in our culture.
May 5, 2012
Dan Schultz

Super Reviewer

By displaying to audiences a severely dishonest human being, Roger Dodger's thought-provoking script is able to reach a surprising level of honesty. While Campbell Scott plays a hugely unlikeable character (which wouldn't be a problem if the script didn't want audiences to sympathize with him), Jesse Eisenberg is as good as always in his first-ever movie.
February 6, 2012
Sam Barnett

Super Reviewer

A "ladies man," who, despite his claims, routinely "fails" with the ladies, instructs his nephew in the ways of meeting women.
This film is truly fantastic, with some witty, sharp dialogue, but its freeze-frame ending, which I won't give away, isn't satisfactory. I really like the idea of Roger's character: it is sharply written by Dylan Kidd, and Campbell Scott plays the oblivious yet confident player to perfection. Jesse Eisenberg is also wonderfully honest and charming as his protege.
Overall, I was ready to give this film five stars until the ending, which might appeal to some, but I'm saying too much when I note that there isn't enough change or struggle not to change in a character.
August 4, 2011
Jim Hunter

Super Reviewer

    1. Nick: What is this?
    2. Roger: Rum and coke. I told him to mix it weak. We got a long way to go here.
    3. Nick: Okay. I don't drink.
    4. Roger: You kidding me? Take a drink.
    5. Nick: I don't put alcohol into my body.
    6. Roger: You drink that drink.
    – Submitted by Benjamin A (2 years ago)
    1. Roger: You drink that drink! Alcohol has been a social lubricant for thousands of years. What do you think, you're going to sit here tonight and reinvent the wheel?
    – Submitted by Benjamin A (2 years ago)
View all quotes (2)

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