Critics Consensus

Tully delves into the modern parenthood experience with an admirably deft blend of humor and raw honesty, brought to life by an outstanding performance by Charlize Theron.



Total Count: 266


Audience Score

User Ratings: 3,526
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Movie Info

A new comedy from Academy Award (R)-nominated director Jason Reitman ("Up in the Air") and Academy Award (R)-winning screenwriter Diablo Cody ("Juno"). Marlo (Academy Award (R) winner Charlize Theron), a mother of three including a newborn, is gifted a night nanny by her brother (Mark Duplass). Hesitant to the extravagance at first, Marlo comes to form a unique bond with the thoughtful, surprising, and sometimes challenging young nanny named Tully (Mackenzie Davis).


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Critic Reviews for Tully

All Critics (266) | Top Critics (46) | Fresh (229) | Rotten (37)

Audience Reviews for Tully

  • Sep 20, 2018
    Theron is good, however the movie leans all the way in on a pretty flimsy twist that completely unravels whatever point it was trying to make about motherhood.
    Alec B Super Reviewer
  • Jul 09, 2018
    There is a point in the first ten to fifteen minutes of Jason Reitman's Tully where it's fair to think this is going to be "one of those movies". One of those movies that chronicles the small, but sometimes enormously stressful lives of middle-class suburbanites that have become increasingly difficult to feel sorry for in the climate of a world gone off the rails. Everyone has their issues, their problems, their struggles, and they come to be dealt with just as uniquely or just as commonly as the problems themselves might be, but there is no point in asking an audience, who is paying hard-earned money to be entertained, to feel sorry for someone who is going through some of the same experiences they've likely had. This is the key, the turning point really, for Tully in that the movie never asks the viewer to feel sorry for its protagonist and it never asks for forgiveness for her actions either. In fact, the titular character that comes to be embodied by Mackenzie Davis and who is described as a "night nanny", never passes a single judgement on Charlize Theron's Marlo thus encouraging the viewers to do the same; or to at least hold that judgement until we are delivered the entirety of the picture. And so, in many ways Tully simply asks the viewer to either sympathize or empathize with its characters plight, knowing that said viewers might be able to relate, rather than necessarily making a stand about opening up a hidden world beyond the greeting card society we all like to pretend we exist within. The film, written by Diablo Cody (Juno, Young Adult), is best when it gets specific and Cody is known for excelling at this. There are multiple moments of unfiltered truth that capture the essence of what it feels like to be a parent to a newborn that, given how tired and how on auto-pilot new parents are, it's a mystery how Cody had the forethought to write examples of as much down or even find the humor in certain situations, but she does and it is in these small truths, these everyday instances and challenges where the movie consistently keeps it real and yet moves on as we all have to do that the viewer is able to appreciate what Tully is doing, what it is saying, and what it becomes rather than dismissing it as another in a line of narratives that purport to pull back the curtain on the middle. read the whole review at www.reviewsfromabed.com
    Philip P Super Reviewer
  • Jun 05, 2018
    Here is a decent film that seems to be in desperate search of a conflict (any conflict, at each and every turn) to justify its existence, so much that it simply comes up with an implicit twist in the end to sound profound - a twist that actually does work despite, well, being a cliché.
    Carlos M Super Reviewer
  • May 29, 2018
    Although he has had a few missteps in my personal opinion, director Jason Reitman has always had a soft spot in my heart, at least in terms of how much I love his movies. Say what you will about how Juno holds up nowadays, but I still find that to be a fantastic picture, as well as thinking that Up in the Air may be one of my favourite films, period. His most recent outing in Tully has finally hit the big screen and I can pleasantly say that he has another great on his hands. This is a film that markets itself as a movie about a mother who struggles to deal with her children, and while that's definitely the setup, there's so much more under the surface. Here's why I believe Tully is worth checking out. Following Marlo, as she has already had a difficult life dealing with two children that aren't exactly perfect, she is now burdened with having a newborn as well. With her kids not really seeing life properly and her newborn reminding her of the times that she thought were behind her, she hires a night nanny to take care of her baby as she sleeps. This sparks into them having a nice relationship and some pretty incredible interactions come about. This is a very dialogue-heavy movie, but it's not riddled with too much backstory or exposition. These are two characters that you will more than likely grow to love throughout the movie and their arcs are more than paid off. Charlize Theron has always been a standout performer and her role as Marlo is absolutely no exception to that notion. The way she devotes herself to being this mother and making you believe she might have gone through scenarios throughout her real life was nothing short of inspired acting. That being said, Mackenzie Davis has been known for her work on many indie films and breaking out in last year's Blade Runner 2049. Their chemistry was magnetic and since their scenes together take up more than half of this movie, I was glued to the screen from beginning to end. Each character was given the perfect amount of exploration to make you feel a certain way about them. For myself, it all comes down to the writing and direction of a film like this. Yes, scores, editing, and cinematography (as well as many others) all play an important role in every film, but a film about raw human emotion truly comes down to the dialogue and performances. If you can't buy into what these characters are saying to each other or where they are at the beginning of the film in comparison to its conclusion (emotionally), then the movie will have lost my complete attention immediately. This is the type of film that knew how to perfectly cast its characters and flesh out a story that feels earned by the final few scenes. Tully is a film that is full of surprises throughout its third act. Whether it's a specific character decision or a literal shocking moment, this is a film that doesn't shy away from the harsh reality of real life. Theron and Davis are both incredible here and appearances by Mark Duplass and Ron Livingston can't ever hurt your film either. I can see where some viewers may be turned off completely during a specific moment in the final act, but if you are able to immerse yourself in the scene itself and looking back on the entire movie, I promise that the payoff will feel earned. Tully is riddled with impressive aspects and I can't talk highly enough about it. I have my issues here and there, but it's more than worth your time. Fantastic movie.
    KJ P Super Reviewer

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