While We're Young

Critics Consensus

Poignant and piercingly honest, While We're Young finds writer-director Noah Baumbach delivering some of his funniest lines through some of his most relatable characters.



Total Count: 202


Audience Score

User Ratings: 20,550
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Movie Info

Noah Boaumbach's comedy While We're Young stars Ben Stiller and Naomi Watts as Josh and Cornelia, a childless New York married couple in their mid-forties. As their other friends all start having children, the couple gravitates toward a young hipster couple named Jamie (Adam Driver) and Darby (Amanda Seyfried). He's an aspiring documentary filmmaker, a vocation Josh already has. Soon the older couple begins enjoying the energy they feel haging out with the younger generation, but eventually Josh begins to suspect his new best friend might not be as straightforward and trustworthy as he thought. While We're Young screened at the 2014 Toronto International Film Festival.


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Critic Reviews for While We're Young

All Critics (202) | Top Critics (47) | Fresh (169) | Rotten (33)

  • Baumbach has a great sense of the ridiculous, and a sensitive instinct for keeping the attack under control.

    Apr 16, 2015 | Rating: 4/5 | Full Review…
  • The wonderful thing about While We're Young and the relationship that develops between Josh and Cornelia and Jamie and Darby is that it's less about resentment than it is a celebration of romantic love. At least initially.

    Apr 10, 2015 | Rating: 3.5/4 | Full Review…
  • While We're Young may provide the fusion of two disparate narrative packages but the glass is only half-full.

    Apr 10, 2015 | Rating: 2.5/4 | Full Review…
  • Baumbach, whose films include the searingly funny, autobiographical The Squid and the Whale and the brilliantly uncomfortable Margot at the Wedding, writes wry, sharp, poignant stuff.

    Apr 10, 2015 | Rating: 3/4 | Full Review…
  • Baumbach plays with universal themes about the uncertainty of aging, the elusive nature of "cool" and the acceptance that comes with settling down ...

    Apr 10, 2015 | Rating: B- | Full Review…
  • For a while much of this contemporary comedy is great fun - until the party ends and you're ready for these people to go home.

    Apr 9, 2015 | Rating: 2.5/4 | Full Review…

Audience Reviews for While We're Young

  • Oct 08, 2015
    A middle-aged couple befriends a younger couple and embarks on a documentary project. Writer/director Noah Baumbach fashions a simple but affecting story contrasting youth and mortality, balanced with a rather pedestrian story about the making of a documentary. It's clear that he wants to explore the former group of themes and occasionally digress into pedantry about the nature of art in documentary films, but While We're Young's primary strength is that it avoids too much didacticism. Ben Stiller, Naomi Watts, Adam Driver, and Amanda Seyfried all give excellent performances, but it's Stiller who most clearly understands Baumbach's unique blending of character development and thematic exploration, and his performance is the most honed -- probably the result of his experience in other Baumbach films. The film's resolution (its final moments, not the genius send-up of "the great detective's reveal") is far too pat for my tastes, but that doesn't besmirch the fact that so much of what came before hit all the right notes. Overall, while not all that profound, Baumbach proves to be an excellent story-teller and fascinating artist.
    Jim H Super Reviewer
  • Sep 15, 2015
    Hitting Generation X right in their Millennials, Noah Baumbach's latest comedy hilariously asks Y of Middle Age as it winningly straddles the generational divide. Peter Pan never grew up, but - if he did - he hopefully wouldn't emulate Brooklyn hipsters. Ben Stiller and Naomi Watts, however, hilariously fall into this trap in an on-the-nose film that's deeper and more convoluted than at first glance. In fact, the film hands out some winning Reality Bytes to this twosome and anyone who pines for their younger days. One 40-something character - so genuinely tough on Stiller's new choice of friends at the outset - confesses that, despite admitting that having a baby imbues you with a deep-seeded love, the most important person in his life remains himself. It's a startling revelation that's not a revelation. In fact, it's honest and very human-one of the many truisms emerging here we hate to admit. In this R-rated comedy from Noah Baumbach (Margot at the Wedding, Greenberg), a middle-aged couple's (Stiller, Watts) career and marriage get overturned when a disarming young couple (Adam Driver, Amanda Seyfried) enters their lives. It's smart if you fall outside of the age pools depicted here and it smarts if you fall within, especially if you're approaching the big Four Oh from either direction. Astute and unsettlingly honest observations get leveled by peers their own age as Stiller and Watts envy the perpetual motion and spontaneity of modern 20-somethings as well as their unbridled passion for vintage items (i.e., "everything that we threw away"). Both of them - young and young at heart - want what the other has, however, and each for selfish and ulterior motives. Baumbach drives this home with his usual insightful wit and in-the-moment camerawork. It's not his best, but doesn't fall far from his gold standard (The Squid and the Whale, Frances Ha). Bottom line: Over the Hill of Beans
    Jeff B Super Reviewer
  • Aug 04, 2015
    Noah Baumbach is becoming an expert in this kind of quirky little movie centered on irritating characters who are seen as inexplicably adorable by the public (like Frances Ha), and even if it is funny and enjoyable, I really can't relate to most of its ideology that young people are idiots.
    Carlos M Super Reviewer
  • Aug 02, 2015
    Muddled and pretentious. An uneven delivery that meanders and stalls.
    Chrisanne C Super Reviewer

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