Jack the Bear - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

Jack the Bear Reviews

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September 5, 2016
DeVito is great, despite the incredibly flawed plot.
August 18, 2016
Alcoholic father attempts to raise his family after the death of his wife.
Super Reviewer
July 28, 2016
I was happy to see that another reviewer equated this movie to 'To Kill a Mockingbird'. While 'To Kill a Mockingbird' is a classic on a much larger scale, both movies depict small children coming of age, innocent but exposed to prejudice, and mother-less with a caring father. The way the author shows moments of childhood is raw, not over-stated, or "Hollywood"... just honest. However, I did not like the title. It was a turn-off. Nor am I a Danny DeVito fan, but I did like him in this movie. Glad I watched this movie anyway. Many people rave about DeVito's acting, but it was the two children who amazed me. HOW did they get a toddle to act so naturally?!? Usually, little kids over-act (and are annoying), but not these two. When older brother stuck his younger brother by the evil dogs, the toddler cried in fear, and it was so realistic, it was frightening. And when the older boy cried, "Daddy!" on the tree limb near the end, again, it was so realistic, so it wasn't corny. However, there were a few flaws. Mostly, the older brother's haircut was painful to see. And when the children were laughing hysterically to DeVito's jokes, it felt a little forced, because he wasn't that funny. And why did the girlfriend dump Jack so suddenly? Maybe because this is what happens in real life, and this movie was all about r-e-a-l l-i-f-e... no Hollywood. That's also why it had a Mockingbird feel.
April 8, 2015
It's a shame DeVito's best performance is in a bad movie.
½ August 8, 2014
Well acted drama about a child and his family trying to live with the loss of the mother in a new neighborhood and survive a run-in with the neighborhood psycho, played by Gary Sinise in a role he would elaborate on in Ransom.
½ April 25, 2014
Danny Devito plays a man who is the host of a kid comedy kid show as his job, and is a father to two sons at home. Although he always good intentions and you can tell he is as good man, his temper leads to the most tragic events that take the most toll on his oldest son Jack. The story is portrayed from the point of view of Jack who views his father as drastic as a funny clown to a dangerous monster. Jack the Bear is a powerful family film that shows how quickly life can change from being on the top of the world, to the dark abysses of fear and hatred all due to the fact
there are so many external events in life that you cannot control.
March 17, 2014
Great movie! It will have you in tears by the end. The music is fantastic and the actors even more so. This film is a Diamond in the rough and should be added to anyone's movie collection. My only issue is we spend so much time on one subject that we don't delve deeper as to why exactly certain events are happening.
½ March 1, 2014
heres the formula: 'TV's 'the wonder years" + 'to kill a mockingbird'= this one
June 6, 2013
"Jack the Bear," a mostly likable first feature from "thirtysomething" co-creator Marshall Herskovitz, concerns a boy who discovers that monsters are to be found not only on television but also in real life. A clever portrayal of eccentric fatherhood by Danny DeVito and a socko performance from young Robert J. Steinmiller Jr. as the eponymous hero are major assets. DeVito gives an interesting portrayal as the fond father whose personal problems hinder his relationship with his sons, and it's not his fault that the small-fry steal the film. Steinmiller's performance is especially good in its range and feeling. In his debut as a feature film director, Marshall Herskovitz, co-creator of the TV series Thirtysomething, has fashioned an emotionally riveting film about the monsters adults and children must confront in a world convulsed with loss.

VERDICT: "High-Quality Stuff" - [Positive Reaction] This is a rating to a movie I view as very entertaining and well made, and definitely worth paying the full price at a theatre to see or own on DVD. It is not perfect, but it is definitely excellent. (Films that are rated 3.5 or 4 stars)
January 9, 2013
A father who is a celebrity and a Late night movie host is a widowed father of two children after his wife was killed in a car wreck. He is a loving father who is somewhat a child himself. They have to live around some crazy neighbors including one who is a nazi and wants John (Devito) to vote fur a white supremist. John goes on his show and cuts him down and the guy ends up kidnapping johns youngest son. I thought Danny devito was good. The movie in general was good but not that great that I would want to watch it again. I thought it was kind of bland and just the way the movie was is kinda weird. Good for one watch but for a revisit I don't think so.
December 7, 2012
Would like to see at some stage.
May 23, 2012
Good drama! Has some sad moments in this movie. Its worth watching though. I enjoyed this movie a lot! Very heartwarming and touching.
March 10, 2012
As the monster-host of a late night horror show, John (Danny DeVito) delights the neighborhood kids with his silly ghoulish antics - but his embarrassed 12-year-old son, Jack the Bear (Robert J. Steinmiller), is not amused. The other dysfunctional lunatics on the block - and his monster crush on the cute girl at school, Karen Morris (Reese Witherspoon) - don't make things any easier for Jack. But when a family crisis hits, will Jack's dad be able to lift the grownup burden from his young son's shoulders?

also stars Julia Louis-Dreyfus, Gary Sinise, Erica Youhn, Stefan Gierasch and Bert Remsen.

directed by Marshall Herskovitz.
½ January 25, 2012
I had my suspicions of the film, but i watched it and found it to be a very emotional and yet fantastic film. Based on the book itself, Jack the Bear is a drama about John Leary a single father who is the host of a Saturday night horror film showcase and looks after his two sons Jack and Dylan. Seen through the eyes of Jack the film goes on one hell of an emotional turn for each character in the film. When one of the sons is missing John must put down his childhood mannerisms and begin to take on the responsibility of the father he should be. Danny Devito does really well for his role giving it his best. Robert Steinmiller is the one who has to pull all the emotional strings here as the title character. While Gary Sinise and a young Reese Witherspoon keep the film going with their excellent supporting roles. The film is a definite one to watch
½ August 17, 2011
Underrated powerful drama with heart. DeVito gives his best dramatic performance, outshining everything else he has done.
April 24, 2011
This movie will always have a special place in my heart, watching this movie at 7 years old it was the first movie to make me cry. It's too bad no one really knows about this movie. It still is a good movie and my all time favourite coming of age story. It's also funny to see Reese Witherspoon as a little girl (or pre teen I suppose). Either way a good movie, a movie I enjoyed as a kid and even more now.
January 11, 2011
Terrific acting, I could never have believed that it would be this good!
It's also a miracle how Reese Witherspoon grew up from being a boys crush in this movie to be winning an oscar for playing June Carter in Walk the line.
Really enjoyed this movie, I was hooked to the screen during the whole movie!
October 26, 2010
This started out as a nice family film, but turned dark toward the end. At least it has a happy ending. BTW... the young Reese Witherspoon is a cutie pie in this film.

Danny De Vito is a professional clown, whose wife's death in a car accident has left him to care for his two young boys. Loving, but useless at the daily job of fathering, the onus falls on plucky Jack the Bear (Robert J. Steinmiller Jr.). De Vito's conscience, and a quantity of alcohol leads him to denounce a neo-fascist candidate on his children's TV program.
½ June 13, 2010
Good coming-of-age movie with Danny DeVito as a sympathetic single dad. I liked this one.
November 12, 2009
Pretty good movie about a single dad raising his two kids as best as he can.
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