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critics consensus

Thomas Haden Church and Elisabeth Shue do their best with what they're given, but Don McKay is too confused and far-fetched to be taken seriously as a noir, and too inconsistent to work as a black comedy. Read critic reviews

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Don McKay Photos

Movie Info

Everything appears off-kilter when a man (Thomas Haden Church) returns to his hometown after 25 years to visit his former lover (Elisabeth Shue).

Cast & Crew

James Rebhorn
Dr. Lance Pryce
Ted Arcidi
Officer Randall
Stephen Benson
Principal Edwards
Lonnie Farmer
Det. Winnoker
Jake Goldberger
Screenwriter
Thomas Haden Church
Executive Producer
Jim Young
Producer
Steven Bramson
Original Music
Phil Parmet
Cinematographer
Aleta Shaffer
Production Design
Amy R. Strong
Set Decoration
Andrew Poleszak
Costume Designer
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News & Interviews for Don McKay

Critic Reviews for Don McKay

All Critics (26) | Top Critics (9) | Fresh (10) | Rotten (16)

  • Goldberger gets a few good tonal feints in, especially when he consults the Coen recipe book for the disorienting effect of blood (and bloody violence) on American simple folk.

    April 7, 2010 | Rating: B- | Full Review…
  • When you pack your movie with performers like Mr. Church, Ms. Leo, Mr. Rebhorn and Keith David (as Don(TM)s old friend), all with faces and deliveries that can slide easily between comedy and menace, you(TM)re holding a full house.

    April 2, 2010 | Rating: 3/5 | Full Review…
  • Don McKay certainly has its moments, but it never manages to maintain the consistent tone so crucial if a black comedy is going to actually be funny.

    April 2, 2010 | Rating: 2/4 | Full Review…
  • I can't fully endorse or recommend 'Don McKay'--it's too messy and all-over-the-place for that--but it certainly isn't boring. I'll give it that much.

    April 2, 2010 | Full Review…
  • This is a movie that, if you can make it to the last 30 minutes, starts to make some sense. It seems the plot twist is the only good idea in the script.

    April 1, 2010 | Rating: 2/4 | Full Review…
  • An admirable attempt even if the film only works spottily.

    April 1, 2010

Audience Reviews for Don McKay

  • Jun 16, 2011
    A lukewarm Lynch-like film that leaves much to be desired, especially from stiff-jointed actress Elisabeth Shue. The movie's a series of curve balls without any real dramatic tension. It also can't make up its mind tonally. One minute it's a serious thriller, the next a black comedy. It's very rough and with a little work it could have been a bit more interesting. It's just a mess of a movie that will only mildly entertain.
    Tim S Super Reviewer
  • Apr 11, 2011
    Thomas Hayden Church (as Don McKay) has been around for a loooong time, as an actor...I saw this and wasn't disappointed at all!!! What a twisting, dark and delirious movie of a man that kept a secret for years and saved it to the very end.See this...his secret will stun and move you.
    Fascade F Super Reviewer
  • Sep 15, 2010
    Cast: Thomas Haden Church, Rachel Harker, Stephen Benson, M. Emmet Walsh, Melissa Leo, Elisabeth Shue, Amanda Donaghey, James Rebhorn, Keith David, Pruitt Taylor Vince, Lonnie Farmer Director: Jake Goldberger Summary: At the urging of his ex-girlfriend, Sonny (Elisabeth Shue), who has been diagnosed with terminal cancer, high school janitor Don McKay (Thomas Haden Church) returns to his hometown for the first time in 25 years and finds himself ensnared in a web of conspiracy, deception and murder. My Thoughts: "I really don't know how I feel about this film. It's not your typical thriller. It's pretty average to say the lease. The character's are odd and sometimes unbelievable in their parts. The acting was semi good. Elisabeth Shue's acting was between good and bad. I'm not sure if that was how her character was to be played, or if it was indeed her acting. Thomas Haden Church played an quiet, sad, but kinda interesting character. He just seemed very lonely, but by the ending of the film you understand why. The last 30-40 minutes of the film, in my opinion, is the only part worth watching. That's when you get interested in where it's going. Unfortunately you have to sit through the rest of it to understand the ending. But the ending and the twist is disappointing as well. Even unrealistic. There was some dry humor, but not much. The script left something to be desired. Not sure if many will like this film."
  • Jul 15, 2010
    With an old time feel, complete with faded and grainy film stock, Don McKay becomes a one man show with a mishmash plot and no real reason for a viewer to care. The lasting impression left from this film is simply hoping that all parties involved can do better next time. http://proofinpicture.wordpress.com/2010/07/10/don-mckay/
    Christopher H Super Reviewer

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