The Runaways

2010

The Runaways (2010)

TOMATOMETER

Critic Consensus: Viewers expecting an in-depth biopic will be disappointed, but The Runaways is as electric as the band's music, largely thanks to strong performances from Michael Shannon, Dakota Fanning, and Kristen Stewart.

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Movie Info

The film follows two friends, Joan Jett and Cherie Currie, as they rise from rebellious Southern California kids to rock stars of the now legendary group that paved the way for future generations of girl bands. Joan and Cherie fall under the Svengali-like influence of rock impresario Kim Fowley, played by Michael Shannon, who turns the group into an outrageous success and a family of misfits. With its tough-chick image and raw talent, the band quickly earns a name for itself -- and so do its two leads: Joan is the band's pure rock' n' roll heart, while Cherie, with her Bowie-Bardot looks, is the sex kitten.

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Cast

Kristen Stewart
as Joan Jett
Dakota Fanning
as Cherie Currie
Michael Shannon
as Kim Fowley
Stella Maeve
as Sandy West
Riley Keough
as Marie Currie
Johnny Lewis
as Scottie
Tatum O'Neal
as Cherie's Mom
Brett Cullen
as Cherie's Dad
Jill Andre
as Aunt Evie
Ray Porter
as Band Member
Kiaya Snow
as Cashier
Allie Grant
as Club Girl
Aaron Parker Mouser
as Fat Employee
Peggy Stewart
as Grandma Oni
Robert Romanus
as Guitar Teacher
Jay Thames
as Headliner's Roadie
Masami Kosaka
as Japanese Journalist
Masayuki Yonezawa
as Japanese Photographer
Hiroshi Sakata
as Japanese Promoter
P.D. Mani
as Cake Shop Manager
Mickey Petralia
as Record Executive
Antonella Sigismondi
as Rockabilly Saleslady
Nick Eversman
as Rocker Boy
Keir O'Donnell
as Rodney Bingenheimer
Lisa Long
as Sandy's Mom
J.R. Nutt
as Skinny Employee
Alejandro Patino
as Grocery Store Manager
John Konesky
as Studio Engineer
Tim Winters
as Wolfgang
Adam Silver
as Boy in Audience
Koji Wada
as Announcer
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News & Interviews for The Runaways

Critic Reviews for The Runaways

All Critics (185) | Top Critics (43)

The audience is meant to relate to Jett's indignation-the band's success should hinge on their sound, not their looks-but it feels like a bogus position, since we, in watching the scene on the lawn, have been made complicit in Cherie's objectification.

Feb 7, 2018 | Full Review…

The result is an entertaining mess: lively and stylish, but frustratingly inconsequential.

Sep 8, 2010 | Rating: 3/5 | Full Review…

The Runaways is cool, but the Runaways were just so much cooler.

Jul 6, 2010 | Full Review…
Newsday
Top Critic

Aside from following the clichéd (if real) storyline, The Runaways is plagued by something of a split personality, thanks to its two young stars.

Apr 9, 2010 | Rating: C+ | Full Review…
Detroit News
Top Critic

Excess is abundant in photographer and music-video director Floria Sigismondi's energetic debut.

Apr 9, 2010 | Rating: 3/4

There's a flinty integrity in this movie's look at the rock grind, and Stewart and Fanning are intensely watchable.

Apr 9, 2010 | Rating: B | Full Review…

Audience Reviews for The Runaways

½

Sex, drugs and rock'n roll get the once over in this nearly Disneyed take on the Runaways. There's "shocking" as two girls in their underwear kiss!!! They trade pills, but not boyfriends. Only the manager, Shannon as Fowley, seems cut from cloth made of something real, so see it for his performance as opportunist manager.

Kevin M. Williams
Kevin M. Williams

Super Reviewer

½

Kristen Stewart at her best. and Dakota Fanning is amazing as usual.

Cynthia S.
Cynthia S.

Super Reviewer

½

This wasn't very good. Maybe I'd have been more entertained if I actually cared about the people portrayed in the movie. Then again, if I did, I'd be disappointed because this movie doesn't delve very deep into anything. It's just there. Weak effort. Unless you're a fan of the band, avoid. And if you are a fan of the band, reevaluate your taste in music.

Jason Calvin
Jason Calvin

Super Reviewer


The opening scene. A drop of menstrual blood hits the pavement. It´s not necessary much more to understand that it´s a movie about girls. With a sort of disappointment, I already knew what to and what to not expect, an apprehension confirmed right in the next scenes, dialogues between the sisters. It´s not only a film from a girl´s point of view, but it is also like any other music biography we´ve already seen. Something like: turn up the sound and (try to) enjoy it. The film tells the story of the beginning of the band, its success and fall, but it´s not exactly a film about The Runaways. It focus on Cherie Currie and Joan Jett, letting Lita Ford, Jackie Fox and Sandy West "in the backstage", being West the only one who has more scenes with them. With the exception of Cherie Bomb and I Love Rock N´Roll, we don´t see a daily band routine, the artistic process of writing and arranging songs, what would be more interesting than the pattern "sex, drugs and rock n´roll". Yes, it´s the year of 1975, they are the first all-girl rock band, but all this we already know. It´s difficult to conceive that so young girls had so much freedom to do whatever they had in mind when we look to Dakota Fanning, still too "little" girl to convince us that she is the fox we've been waiting for. However, the times are others. If the real Runaways looked like what today would be twenty something, Fanning and Stewart fits perfectly into those seventeen years old. Cherie Currie was much wilder for sure (what can be perceived in her voice) but Fanning makes a great job. Like I´ve read somewhere , she is making the transition from child actor to a grown up actress in a strong way. Speaking about looks, if you, like me, didn´t really know The Runaways, but in the other hand knew The L Word, Kristen Stewart will look so much like Shane that will be hard to properly enjoy or take in consideration her portrait of Joan Jett. Too bad! After watching some old videos of The Runaways on youtube, I can say she is very good as Jett. Watching their live in Japan, in 1977, it´s incredible how Scout Taylor-Compto is very alike to Lita Ford.

Rubia  Carolina
Rubia Carolina

Super Reviewer

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