Boyhood - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

Boyhood Reviews

September 22, 2016
Calling it a sum of its parts can be a backhanded compliment, but it feels like especially worthy praise for Boyhood, considering how much went into making it feel whole.
January 2, 2015
We can quibble with small stuff in Boyhood. Supporting performances are variable, the sister drops out as a dramatic character ... I could go on. But the cumulative power is tremendous.
January 2, 2015
While everything about Boyhood is done with extraordinary care, the master stroke was clearly the casting, 13 years ago, of a little Texas boy named Ellar Coltrane.
January 2, 2015
It's like a time-lapse photo of an expanding consciousness.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/4
January 2, 2015
A word about the film's epic length. Boyhood is 166 minutes long. Yet it is so affecting, so much a thing of wonder, that it could run forever and I would still keep watching.
January 2, 2015
Linklater's casual hand at storytelling, dealing out reel after reel of naggingly forthright enlightenment, turns this simple tale of a mother trying to do her best into something worth every second of the time it took to produce.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/5
January 2, 2015
Boyhood is proof that a strange magic can still bloom amidst the tragedy that buffets human life.
August 10, 2014
An exceptionally well-crafted coming-of-age story.
Full Review | Original Score: 3.5/4
July 31, 2014
The closest thing to a lived life that fictional cinema has yet produced.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/4
July 30, 2014
Linklater has crafted what may be the most ingenious film of the century here and given it a tone like no other ...
Full Review | Original Score: A+
July 25, 2014
Is it dumb to say, "Wow?" I don't care. Wow.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/4
July 24, 2014
The year's most captivating narrative experiment, and possibly the most engrossing coming-of-age movie in the history of the genre.
Read More | Original Score: 4/4
July 24, 2014
Boyhood understands the tumult of childhood and adolescence as well as it does the hurdles and satisfaction of raising children.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/4
July 24, 2014
Richard Linklater's latest feels more like living a life than watching a movie. It's a one-of-a-kind experience.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/4
July 21, 2014
Any film that takes twelve years to shoot should be commended for its stamina alone; yet no sense of grind, still less of fatigue, attends this Richard Linklater project.
July 20, 2014
I can't help but think there may have been a better movie still lurking in his accumulated footage, one that with a mild shift in emphasis might have been titled, more ambitiously, Adulthood.
July 18, 2014
Few filmmakers ever make a great movie. Fewer still ever make a movie that expands what movies can express. Richard Linklater does both with Boyhood.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/4
July 17, 2014
So, while it's tempting to say that nothing happens in Boyhood, that would be wrong. What happens is everything.
| Original Score: 5/5
July 17, 2014
"Boyhood" is a stunt, an epic, a home video, and a benediction. It reminds us of what movies could be and - far more important - what life actually is.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/4
July 17, 2014
To say Boyhood wouldn't be that special if it were shot in a conventional manner is kind of like saying that elephant in the zoo wouldn't be so big if it weren't so big.
Full Review | Original Score: A
July 17, 2014
Linklater's writing is typically warm and insightful, and the cast is uniformly excellent, including Ellar Coltrane as the quiet, down-to-earth hero.
July 17, 2014
"Boyhood" is not just a great movie, it's a landmark achievement in film.
Full Review | Original Score: 5/5
July 17, 2014
As a film that dares to honor small moments and the life they add up to, "Boyhood" isn't just a masterpiece. It's a miracle.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/4
July 17, 2014
"Boyhood" is a cinematic gift, a compassionate and sometimes amusing drama about growing up that extracts truths out of what appear to be life's most random moments.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/4
July 16, 2014
To sit with this movie and witness the concentrated passage of time is to watch, in a true, moving way, your life unspool before your eyes, without fanfare or idealism or romance.
July 16, 2014
In completing this simple, beautiful project Linklater took his time. And he rewards ours.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/4
July 14, 2014
Boyhood, at its best, boasts qualities that are usually under-valued in avant-garde work: tingling observations, unforced comedy and quirky, enduring charm.
Full Review | Original Score: B+
July 13, 2014
One of the most remarkable moviegoing experiences I've ever had.
Full Review | Original Score: 5/5
July 13, 2014
Linklater and his team have done something incredibly difficult and made it look effortless. The result is easily one of the best films of the year.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/4
July 11, 2014
I have long maintained that Richard Linklater is the most gifted and audacious director of his generation. His new movie, Boyhood, which runs 2 hours and 44 minutes, is a stunning reconfirmation.
Full Review | Original Score: A
Top Critic
July 11, 2014
The film gives every appearance of happening exactly the way life does, And exactly the way life does, it makes you care.
Full Review | Original Score: 10/10
July 11, 2014
The film ends and the credits come up and you ask the same question that you ask at the end of an evening spent with old, dear friends: where did the time go?
Full Review | Original Score: 4/4
July 11, 2014
A marvelous, minimal epic of a movie ...
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
July 10, 2014
There isn't anything else quite like "Boyhood" in the history of cinema, although that wouldn't matter one-fifth as much if it weren't a moving and memorable viewing experience in the end.
July 10, 2014
An extraordinarily intimate portrait of a life unfolding and an exceptional, unconventional film in which not much else occurs. Never has so little meant more.
July 10, 2014
Boyhood is an epic masterpiece that seems wholly unconcerned with trying to be one.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/4
July 10, 2014
These are people you know, maybe people like you.
July 10, 2014
On rare occasions a movie seems to channel the flow of real life. "Boyhood" is one of those occasions.
July 10, 2014
The film is lengthy -- almost three hours -- and without much plot, but I sat rapt for every minute.
July 10, 2014
"Boyhood" is a transporting experience about the simplest of subjects. The movie telescopes artfully - but never pretentiously - the experience of growing up.
Full Review | Original Score: 5/5
July 10, 2014
Boyhood shimmers with unforced reality. It shows how an ordinary life can be reflected in an extraordinary movie.
July 10, 2014
It's a collage of ordinary fragments that, in the end, add up to a greater whole.
Top Critic
July 9, 2014
There's never been a movie quite like Boyhood, and it may be years before anyone works up the gumption to match its achievement.
Full Review | Original Score: A
July 9, 2014
I can think of few feature films in the history of the medium that have explored the power, and the melancholy, of film's intimate enmeshment with time in the way Richard Linklater's Boyhood does.
July 9, 2014
A heady film experience packed with so many telling details about life in the United States over the past 12 years - and one that makes you care such much about the struggles and foibles of its imperfect characters.
Full Review | Original Score: 3.5/4
July 9, 2014
Richard Linklater's coming-of-age tale is the best movie of the year, a four-star game-changer that earns its place in the cultural time capsule.
Read More | Original Score: 4/4
July 8, 2014
A quiet stunner of a movie that yields to time rather than try to bend it to its will.
July 7, 2014
As he has throughout his career, Linklater proves himself as a filmmaker unconcerned with flash and dazzle but thoroughly compassionate and empathetic to a wide range of characters.
July 7, 2014
If there was ever project that demanded to be informed by the history of its making, "Boyhood" is it. Epic in scope yet unassuming throughout, Linklater's incredibly involving chronicle marks an unprecedented achievement in fictional storytelling
Full Review | Original Score: A
March 31, 2014
Boyhood fills you with openhearted happiness and awe at its scope and daring. It's a low-key masterpiece, a wistful comedy that never forgets to keep genuine emotions foremost.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/4
January 27, 2014
Linklater's third masterpiece in the past decade should only affect anyone who's ever been someone else's sibling, child, parent, lover or friend.
January 21, 2014
Perhaps never has the long arc of the journey from childhood to college been portrayed as cohesively and convincingly as Richard Linklater has done in a film that can be plain on a moment-to-moment basis but is something quite special in its entirety.
January 21, 2014
There's a rough-edged, organic quality to "Boyhood" that recalls the work of those European helmers Linklater so admires: Fassbinder, Bergman, Bresson.
January 21, 2014
The film has that deadpan Linklater tone of slacker haphazardness, but you could also say that it's almost Joycean in its appreciation of the scruffy magic of everyday life.
January 21, 2014
Boyhood is a narrative drama, but it unfolds like documentary truth.
January 21, 2014
Unshakable, witty and deeply felt, the film will be paying emotional dividends for a long, long time.
Full Review | Original Score: 5/5