Palo Alto (2014) - Rotten Tomatoes

Palo Alto (2014)

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Critic Consensus: A promising debut for director Gia Coppola, Palo Alto compensates for its drifting plot with solid performances and beautiful cinematography.

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Movie Info

Shy, sensitive April (Emma Roberts) is the class virgin -a popular soccer player and frequent babysitter for her single-dad coach, Mr. B. (James Franco). Teddy (Jack Kilmer) is an introspective artist whose best friend and sidekick Fred (Nat Wolff) is an unpredictable live wire with few filters or boundaries. While April negotiates a dangerous affair with Mr. B., and Teddy performs community service for a DUI - secretly carrying a torch for April, who may or may not share his affection - Fred seduces Emily (Zoe Levin), a promiscuous loner who seeks validation through sexual encounters. One high school party bleeds into another as April and Teddy finally acknowledge their mutual affection, and Fred's escalating recklessness spirals into chaos. (C) Tribeca

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Cast

Val Kilmer
as Stewart
Zoe Levin
as Emily
Atlanta de Cadenet
as Girl at Party
Colleen Camp
as Sally Grossman
Timothy Starks
as Police Officer
Micah Nelson
as Michael
Genevieve Penn
as Court Clerk Woman
Jake Nordwin
as Art Student #1
Don Novello
as Mr. Wilson
Jamal Hammadi
as Art Student #2
Janet Song
as Mrs. Stevenson
Talia Shire
as Mrs. Ganem
Janet Salter
as Elderly Woman
Grear Patterson
as College Boy #1
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News & Interviews for Palo Alto

Critic Reviews for Palo Alto

All Critics (114) | Top Critics (39)

A pale imitation of the early novels of Bret Easton Ellis, who wrote about young ennui and aimlessness from the inside out.

June 13, 2014 | Rating: 2/4 | Full Review…
Miami Herald
Top Critic

Ultimately, "Palo Alto" is a messy yet haunting portrait of a particular time in life.

June 12, 2014 | Rating: 2.5/4
Seattle Times
Top Critic

It's accurate to say that "Palo Alto" is another movie by another Coppola about the lives of the rich, bored and disaffected, but that description sells the movie short.

May 29, 2014 | Rating: 3.5/5 | Full Review…
Arizona Republic
Top Critic

While it shows Coppola has talent, it's also as aimless as her characters' self-absorbed, self-medicated, joyless lives.

May 24, 2014 | Rating: 2/5 | Full Review…
Fort Worth Star-Telegram/DFW.com
Top Critic

That Coppola finds occasional grace and spirit here shows understanding and compassion. Her next assignment? Make a movie that's not about the troubles of the privileged and bored.

May 23, 2014 | Rating: B- | Full Review…
Detroit News
Top Critic

These slippery slices of life feel like the most honest, relevant film portrait of adolescence in ages.

May 22, 2014 | Full Review…
Minneapolis Star Tribune
Top Critic

Audience Reviews for Palo Alto

½

The meandering quality of the film's plot (which may put most viewers off) is in fact what I like the most about it, while the solid performances, nice cinematography and Gia Coppola's firm direction help make this a solid debut for her as a filmmaker.

Carlos Magalhães
Carlos Magalhães

Super Reviewer

The reviews for this aren't great, but I kind of liked it. It has that 90's indie film feel to it (it's not set in the 90's, or not so I could tell, but it really reminded me of films like Kids, All over me, Freeway etc). Just the kind of thing I love. My main criticism is that it doesn't have a true ending. It really felt like something was going to happen, but it didn't. And Emma Roberts is not a favourite of mine either, but she's not too awful in this one. I wasn't very impressed with all the smoking either. Is it really necessary to glamorise that disgusting habit? Those few sticking points lost it the star. But I did enjoy it overall and I think I need to watch it again, because it is subtle on some points. I suspect I missed a lot. The young cast do a good job. The actors playing Teddy and Emily were standouts.

Nicki Marie
Nicki Marie

Super Reviewer

Gripping teenage drama.

Matt Goodman
Matt Goodman

Super Reviewer

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