Labor Day

Critics Consensus

Kate Winslet and Josh Brolin make for an undeniably compelling pair, but they can't quite rescue Labor Day from the pallid melodrama of its exceedingly ill-advised plot.



Reviews Counted: 196

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Audience Score

User Ratings: 20,558


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Average Rating: N/A
Reviews Count: 0
Fresh: 0
Rotten: 0


Average Rating: 3.4/5

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Movie Info

"Labor Day" centers on 13-year-old Henry Wheeler, who struggles to be the man of his house and care for his reclusive mother Adele while confronting all the pangs of adolescence. On a back-to-school shopping trip, Henry and his mother encounter Frank Chambers, a man both intimidating and clearly in need of help, who convinces them to take him into their home and later is revealed to be an escaped convict. The events of this long Labor Day weekend will shape them for the rest of their lives. --(C) Paramount

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Josh Brolin
as Frank Chambers
Kate Winslet
as Adele Wheeler
Gattlin Griffith
as Henry Wheeler
Tobey Maguire
as Adult Henry Wheeler/Narrator
James Van Der Beek
as Officer Treadwell
Tom Lipinski
as Frank Chambers (young)
J.K. Simmons
as Mr. Jervis
Dylan Minnette
as Henry (16)
Maika Monroe
as Mandy Chambers
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Critic Reviews for Labor Day

All Critics (196) | Top Critics (51)

  • The really baffling thing is that this clunker has been written, directed and produced by Jason Reitman, whose previous movies include Juno and Up in the Air. What was he thinking?

    Mar 21, 2014 | Rating: 2/5 | Full Review…
  • Labor Day lacks this film-maker's usual sophisticated wit: it is bizarrely unconvincing, sugary and humourless, like a Walt Disney version of The Night of the Hunter.

    Mar 20, 2014 | Rating: 1/5 | Full Review…
  • Director Jason Reitman comes a-cropper with this unconvincing Southern melodrama starring Kate Winslet and Josh Brolin.

    Mar 20, 2014 | Rating: 2/5 | Full Review…
  • If you have even the tiniest cynical bone in your body, avoid. You'll find Labor Day more sugary than a cronut.

    Mar 18, 2014 | Rating: 3/5 | Full Review…

    Cath Clarke

    Time Out
    Top Critic
  • Jason Reitman forgot the tapioca.

    Feb 1, 2014 | Full Review…

    Dana Stevens

    Top Critic
  • "Labor" isn't just a word in the title of Jason Reitman's new film, it's a description of what it feels like to sit through the movie.

    Feb 1, 2014 | Rating: 2/4 | Full Review…

Audience Reviews for Labor Day

A unique drama/romance that should have amazed audiences, yet the script was lacking of dialogue and lacked any real direction. The actors had very little to work with and the flashbacks were confusingly chucked in! A ridiculas uninteresting, unamusing and uninspiring so called movie.

Film Crazy
Film Crazy

Super Reviewer

I'm surprised at the bad reviews. I liked this movie. Set mostly in 1987, this was a winner for me straight away for the nostalgic feel. Very realistic to the time period, but not kitschy or bright as often happens in an 80's set movie made today. Quite dull colours (but nice) and looked like a realistic small town setting. Voiced over by a young teenage boy, Henry, who lives with his mother, Adele, who has had some trauma in her past, which is revealed slowly in flashbacks throughout the movie. Adele rarely leaves the house, but on the pairs once monthly visit to the supermarket for supplies, they meet Frank, who is an escaped murder. Frank makes some loosely implied threats to Henry to convince Adele to take him home so he can hide out. Slowly, Adele falls in love with him, which sounds creepy as hell, but actually it works. Hard one to describe, but beautifully shot and cast. Well worth a watch.

Nicki Marie
Nicki Marie

Super Reviewer

There must be better books deserving to be turned into movie format.

familiar stranger
familiar stranger

Super Reviewer


The premise of this movie sounds decent. A single mom(Kate Winsley) and her son are being held hostage, sort of, by an escaped convict(Josh Brolin). He hides out at their place and he and Winslet fall in love. It reminded me of a Clint Eastwood movie called "A Perfect World". Only that movie wasn't slow and boring, and it actually went somewhere. This doesn't. A lot of it doesn't make any sense, and it's very melodramatic. It took Emily and I 2 nights to finish it, and when it was over we both just shrugged our shoulders and went "meh". Winslet and Brolin are both good, but the material here just isn't very strong. You don't care what happens to them by the end of the movie. I'm sure there are a lot of women who like this movie, it is ultimately a chick flick. But guys, it's not worth the time for ya.

Everett Johnson
Everett Johnson

Super Reviewer

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