Thirteen (2003) - Rotten Tomatoes

Thirteen (2003)



Critic Consensus: An emotionally wrenching, not to mention terrifying, film about the perils of being a teenager.

Movie Info

At the edge of adolescence, Tracy is a smart straight-A student--if not a little naive. When she befriends Evie, the most popular and beautiful girl in school, Evie leads Tracy down a path of sex, drugs and self-mutilation. As Tracy transforms herself and her identity, her world becomes a boiling, emotional cauldron fueled by new tensions between her and her mother--as well as, teachers and old friends.more
Rating: R (for drug use, self destructive violence, language and sexuality - all involving young teens)
Genre: Drama
Directed By:
Written By: Catherine Hardwicke, Nikki Reed
In Theaters:
On DVD: Jan 27, 2004
Box Office: $4.5M
Fox Searchlight Pictures - Official Site


Holly Hunter
as Melanie
Nikki Reed
as Evie Zamora
Cece Tsou
as Businesswoman
Jamison Yang
as Science Teacher
Frank Merino
as Tattoo Artist
Steven Kozlowski
as Skanky Guy
Java Benson
as Rapper No. 1
as Rapper No. 2
Yasmine Delawari
as English Teacher
as Himself
Show More Cast

News & Interviews for Thirteen

Critic Reviews for Thirteen

All Critics (163) | Top Critics (44)

Explicit peer pressure story for older teens.

Full Review… | December 29, 2010
Common Sense Media

An excellent film with a great script, incredible acting, and a truly blunt cautionary tale...

Full Review… | April 29, 2009
Cinema Crazed

A horror tale about a subculture in which impressionable girls drift under group pressure into drugs, piercing, self-mutilation, anorexia and shoplifting

Full Review… | November 1, 2005

A rather basic tale about the perils of going along with the in-crowd and the extremes to which teenagers will act out for attention.

Full Review… | May 4, 2005
Lessons of Darkness

a sober-sided Freaky Friday -- a chance to look through the eyes of a child

Full Review… | January 29, 2005
Arkansas Democrat-Gazette

What power does a teenage girl have?

Full Review… | June 13, 2004

Audience Reviews for Thirteen

How is this ugly, depressing pile entertainment?

jay nixon

Super Reviewer


Thirteen is a decent teen drama concerning two troubled teens that started off well enough, but decided to take the rebellious route. I enjoyed the film somewhat, but I was pretty disturbed too. The performances from the two lead actresses were what made this film much better than what it turned out to be. This for me is not a film that warrants multiple viewings, as the troubled teen format is not something that really interests me. I've seen many teens act this way when I was in High School, all those years ago, and it just infuriates me seeing this. The story is interesting, but it does lack in some areas and it could have been done much better too. The film flawed, and it is hard to really enjoy because it's a dark film after all, one that showcases the rebellious behavior of teenagers and it's not something that is pleasant to watch. The film, like I said is a decent affair, but it never becomes anything more than what it should have been. This should have been an accomplished drama, but in the end it's just a so-so movie that feels like it's trying way too hard at being a work that portrays the darkest side of teenage angst. I really didn't like the characters, and found them to be primadona's and it just was a film that was quite depressing. Well acted with a decent story, Thirteen could have been a far better film as well. I really wanted to enjoy the film, but it's one of those films that just leaves a lot to be desired.

Alex roy

Super Reviewer


This film evokes a veritable plethora of negative emotion; I hated almost everything that occurred, but I didn't hate the film. This film explores the anguish caused by the immaturity of adolescence: the competition, the bullying, the need for conformity. Its characters are like those found in Larry Clark films, however 'Thirteen' has none of the sleazy, gratuitous perversion that Clark relishes. This film explores all the vices, it depicts the worst of impressionable adolescence, but the camera never lingers luridly.

The story is familiar, one that everyone can relate to. It's about Tracy (Evan Rachel Wood), a painfully impressionable teen who desperately wants to fit in with the 'cool' crowd, who ironically are anything but. The 'cool' kids are repugnantly crass - truly revolting people. Tracy unfortunately thinks otherwise, becoming best friends with the utterly amoral prize bitch Evie (Nikki Reed). Her influence upon Tracy is immediate, and their activities together soon escalate; Tracy quickly becomes a scheming, stupid and cruel little bitch, too. Her descent is exasperating to watch, partly through how powerless Tracy's suffering mother (Holly Hunter) is.

The performances are remarkably natural, they really are. It will never age in this respect, peak realism is shown here. Hunter and Wood have scenes of intense emotion, the kind of emotion so desperately strong that it transcends everything. The excitable exchanges between Wood and Reed are also commendable for their credibility. The film could be a real eye-opener to teens that are experiencing similar situations. The film would show them that Tracy isn't cool or radical; she's just another kid in the midst of a predictable, cringe-worthy cycle that has been experienced by millions from all generations.

'Thirteen' will have you wanting to commit acts of extreme violence. If you can restrain your temperament throughout the many scenes of vast obnoxiousness, gross injustice and scores of vulgar, idiotic characters - I salute you. All of this, however, is testament to the power of the film. It's an unpleasant watch, but the provocation it causes is interesting, I've written this review faster than usual!

Jack Hawkins
Jack Hawkins

Super Reviewer

Thirteen Quotes

– Submitted by Lea L (4 years ago)
– Submitted by Lea L (4 years ago)

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