Tiny Furniture

2010, Comedy/Drama, 1h 39m

98 Reviews 10,000+ Ratings

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critics consensus

Agonizingly funny, Tiny Furniture marks an observant study of a failure to launch and an auspicious debut for writer-director Lena Dunham. Read critic reviews

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Movie Info

After graduating from film school, Aura (Lena Dunham) returns to New York to live with her photographer mother, Siri (Laurie Simmons), and her sister, Nadine (Grace Dunham), who has just finished high school. Aura is directionless and wonders where to go next in her career and her life. She takes a job in a restaurant and tries unsuccessfully to develop relationships with men, including Keith (David Call), a chef where she works, and cult Internet star Jed (Alex Karpovsky).

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Critic Reviews for Tiny Furniture

All Critics (98) | Top Critics (34) | Fresh (78) | Rotten (20)

  • an interpersonal chamber-piece that succeeds as well as it does thanks to the unabashed intimacy it has with its own diminutive subject matter. Call it a mumblecore mumblepiece.

    November 13, 2013 | Full Review…
  • Dunham's satirical intentions can't quite compensate for the pain of spending almost 100 heartless minutes in the company of irredeemably unlikeable characters.

    March 30, 2012 | Rating: 3/5 | Full Review…
  • It's best enjoyed, like Aura's life, as a work in progress, promisingly tangy and archly amusing.

    March 30, 2012 | Rating: 3/5
  • Quote not available.

    March 30, 2012 | Rating: 4/5 | Full Review…
  • Dunham's critics are circling but this is well-written and funny.

    March 29, 2012 | Rating: 4/5 | Full Review…
  • Dunham's on-screen mixture - essentially all the S's (sadness, structurelessness, serendipity) - is stirred so skilfully it makes recent indie cinema of extemporisation, from mumblecore to Miranda Otto, seem like am-dram.

    March 29, 2012 | Rating: 4/5 | Full Review…
  • an interpersonal chamber-piece that succeeds as well as it does thanks to the unabashed intimacy it has with its own diminutive subject matter. Call it a mumblecore mumblepiece.

    November 13, 2013 | Full Review…
  • Dunham's satirical intentions can't quite compensate for the pain of spending almost 100 heartless minutes in the company of irredeemably unlikeable characters.

    March 30, 2012 | Rating: 3/5 | Full Review…
  • It's best enjoyed, like Aura's life, as a work in progress, promisingly tangy and archly amusing.

    March 30, 2012 | Rating: 3/5
  • Quote not available.

    March 30, 2012 | Rating: 4/5 | Full Review…
  • A refreshingly frank and unencumbered narrative, just as funny and charming as it is melancholy and moving.

    August 5, 2019 | Rating: 3/4 | Full Review…
  • Through Dunham's spot-on, methodical compositions, each and every interaction between characters, each sly glance and body movement represent the varying characters' personalities and attitudes more than dialogue ever could.

    August 14, 2018 | Rating: 4/5 | Full Review…

Audience Reviews for Tiny Furniture

  • May 17, 2014
    I liked this film because of how real and relatable it is. It may seem self indulgent but the point is to show how a recent college graduate deals with her issues and tries to figure out her identity as an independent woman in the real world. So, of course, the film features this character's (Aura's) flaws and virtues in ways we may not always like... just like every other human being on this earth. We are sometimes ugly, awkward, pathetic, depressed, and whiny. We get involved with people who aren't worth our time and appreciate others who we sometimes ignored out of sheer ignorance. I like how this film captures those concepts and tries to make us see that Aura is a work-in-progress. She still has a lot of maturing to do, but those stupid decisions she's making now (and which her mother made as well), will (hopefully) make her a better woman in the future.
    Wildaly M Super Reviewer
  • Aug 06, 2013
    It's a quiet, slow film that features beautiful cinematography, smart writing, and some hilarious moments. However, its pacing is off-putting and not much is accomplished. Nonetheless, it has its moments of affability, and does showcase Lena Dunham's ability to make a dry, black comedy that (if a little more tweaking had been to it) might have been a success.
    Matthew Samuel M Super Reviewer
  • Mar 16, 2013
    Upon returning home to reside in her mother's(Laurie Simmons) apartment in New York City at least temporarily after graduating college, Aura(Lena Dunham, who also wrote and directed) is angry that her younger sister Nadine(Grace Dunham) has claimed her room for her own special space. At least there will be more space for Aura when their mother takes Nadine on a tour of college campuses. In the meantime, Aura reconnects with Charlotte(Jemima Kirke), an old friend, who not only lands her a job but also introduces her to Jed(Alex Karpovsky) who asks her out. However, their date is cut short due to lack of funds, meaning they lose the opportunity to check out whatever cool French film is playing at the Film Forum and instead head back to Aura's place. With her first feature, the flawed "Tiny Furniture," Lena Dunham shows a great deal of promise as a first director, especially on the visual end of the spectrum. That's sadly not the case with either writing or acting.(Merritt Wever steals the movie in her brief time onscreen which speaks volumes to the last category.) But instead of saying anything meaningful or moving on from her semi-autobiographical meanderings, Dunham only moves physically and creatively across the Williamsburg Bridge for her television series "Girls." And negative points for hating on foreign films, by the way.
    Walter M Super Reviewer
  • Jan 19, 2013
    It's pretty tough to judge "Tiny Furniture" without judging its creator, Lena Dunham. The film is Lena Dunham, or at least a snapshot of her. That's the awesome thing about the movie - by directing, writing, and starring, Dunham has made something so personal that its hard to not be constantly impressed with her. But the problem remains that she is self-absorbed. And thus, so is the film. She knows it, acknowledges it in her script, and has gone on to acknowledge it in Girls, but the truth is, she can't make anything that isn't about her, and she can't stay out of it. She wants people to see how she thinks, feels, and what she desires. And while this is an interesting film for exactly that reason, it also feels like listening to someone go on about their insecurities without a single thought given to anything outside of their bubble. Lena Dunham continues to create in this way. She whines, though she is privileged, as if begging us to believe that she has problems too, and they are just as bad as everyone else's. And while such an experience in real life can be eye-opening, it can also be quite annoying - especially when it lasts an hour and a half.
    Sam B Super Reviewer

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