Lonesome Jim

Critics Consensus

Though Lonesome Jim is leavened by sweet, understated humor, it's hard to root for such a morose, self-defeating protagonist.

60%

TOMATOMETER

Total Count: 89

57%

Audience Score

User Ratings: 22,367
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Movie Info

Jim begrudgingly returns to his hometown in rural Indiana after failing to make it on his own in New York. He soon remembers why he left: a doting but overbearing mother, a distant father, and a depressed older brother whose "accidents" seem suspect at best. Jim is soon forced to take on his brother's duties -- working at his parent's factory and helping out with his two rambunctious nieces. Crippled by obligations and anxieties, Jim trudges on though every day monotones and the family's collapse after mom is mistakenly taken for a suburban drug smuggler. Almost miraculously, hope springs from his developing relationship with a local nurse and her young son, and Jim slowly learns to move forward without leaving anyone behind.

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Critic Reviews for Lonesome Jim

All Critics (89) | Top Critics (30)

  • Steve Buscemi's third film as a director is a low key affair delivered with a wry sense of humour.

    Apr 11, 2008 | Rating: 3/5 | Full Review…

    Paul Arendt

    BBC.com
    Top Critic
  • Though this clash of picket-fenced, down-home values and big city oafishness was handled with a little more delicacy in 2005's superb 'Junebug', Buscemi's film has lots to say about this fruitful dynamic.

    Apr 11, 2008 | Rating: 4/6 | Full Review…
    Time Out
    Top Critic
  • Manages to be bitter, dispiriting and utterly pointless all at once.

    May 19, 2006 | Rating: 2/4 | Full Review…
  • It all feels very slight.

    May 19, 2006 | Rating: 2/4
  • Affleck plays this as a one-note turn, all dour. What a life-force like Anika would see in him is a mystery.

    May 12, 2006 | Rating: 3/5
  • The problem is that a little of this minimalist kitchen-sink farce goes a very long way, and after a while Lonesome Jim starts to dry up.

    May 5, 2006 | Rating: 2.5/4 | Full Review…

    Ty Burr

    Boston Globe
    Top Critic

Audience Reviews for Lonesome Jim

  • Nov 18, 2009
    I felt like the experimental film style is what made this movie good. The script is so-so, it got a little predictable and became sort of like Garden State. The acting was mediocre, a lot of the characters were played lazy and bitter rather than depressed. I think the overall meaning of the movie is non-existent, it doesn't say anything or mean anything. It seems like they just got a bunch of weird situations thrown together.
    Conner R Super Reviewer
  • Oct 16, 2009
    GREAT movie with a GREAT ending
    Brody M Super Reviewer
  • Jul 06, 2009
    Casey Affleck, Liv Tyler, Mary Kay Place, Jake La Botz, Kevin Corrigan DIRECTED BY: Steve Buscemi Jim begrudgingly returns to his hometown in rural Indiana after failing to make it on his own in New York. He soon remembers why he left: a doting but overbearing mother, a distant father, and a depressed older brother whose "accidents" seem suspect at best. Jim is soon forced to take on his brother's duties -- working at his parent's factory and helping out with his two rambunctious nieces. Crippled by obligations and anxieties, Jim trudges on though every day monotones and the family's collapse after mom is mistakenly taken for a suburban drug smuggler. Almost miraculously, hope springs from his developing relationship with a local nurse and her young son, and Jim slowly learns to move forward without leaving anyone behind. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ This movie tells a real story of depression and the struggles it brings along with it. Casey Affleck's character Jim is a really sad character. You can just feel the weight of despair coming from him. Casey gives a great performance as Jim. Liv Tyler's character Anika was like Jim's happy pill. She is what he needs to bring him back alive out of his 'chronic despair'. It was a good movie. Not for most. But after seeing Casey in Gone Baby Gone, I wanted to see him in other roles and that's when I came across this one. I think he has amazing acting skills. Plus I LOVE indie films. They in my opinion, are the most interesting and honest movies made.
  • Nov 27, 2008
    I had low expectations on this one, so I have to say I was very pleasantly surprised. Similar in tone to Buffalo 66, this deals with people who don't quite fit in, and while the plot is small, it has a lasting impact. Liked it a lot.
    Nicki M Super Reviewer

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