White Boy Rick

Critics Consensus

Solid work from the cast - particularly a scene-stealing Matthew McConaughey - helps White Boy Rick make up for a number of missed opportunities in the script.

58%

TOMATOMETER

Total Count: 153

50%

Audience Score

User Ratings: 1,666

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Movie Info

Rick Wershe is a single father who's struggling to raise two teenagers during the height of the crack epidemic in 1980s Detroit. Wershe sells guns illegally to make ends meet but soon attracts attention from the FBI. Federal agents convince his son, Rick Jr., to become an undercover drug informant in exchange for keeping his father out of prison. When young Rick gets in too deep, he finds himself seduced by the lure of easy money and becomes a drug dealer himself.

Cast & Crew

Matthew McConaughey
Richard Wershe Sr.
Richie Merritt
Rick Wershe Jr.
Bel Powley
Dawn Wershe
Jennifer Jason Leigh
FBI Agent Snyder
Brian Tyree Henry
Detective Jackson
Rory Cochrane
FBI Agent Byrd
RJ Cyler
Rudell "Boo" Curry
Jonathan Majors
Johnny "Lil Man" Curry
Eddie Marsan
Art Derrick
Taylour Paige
Cathy Volsan-Curry
Andy Weiss
Screenwriter
Logan Miller
Screenwriter
Noah Miller
Screenwriter
Georgia Kacandes
Executive Producer
Matthew W. Krul
Executive Producer
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News & Interviews for White Boy Rick

Critic Reviews for White Boy Rick

All Critics (153) | Top Critics (34) | Fresh (88) | Rotten (65)

  • Director Yann Demange ('71) seems uncertain whether to play the material as searing drama or black comedy, and so he gives up on establishing a recognizable tone altogether.

    March 4, 2020 | Full Review…
  • When you ask yourself: "What's so special about Rick?" The answer is: not much.

    December 9, 2018 | Rating: 3/5 | Full Review…
  • There's an honesty to the hardscrabble family portrait that makes it worthwhile.

    December 7, 2018 | Rating: 3/5 | Full Review…
  • The issue is not that the film focuses on a white kid, but that it doesn't seem much interested in the black lives hit disproportionately hard by the war on drugs.

    December 7, 2018 | Rating: 3/5 | Full Review…
  • Mostly good fun with some bold performances.

    December 7, 2018 | Rating: 3/5 | Full Review…
  • Yet roughing up his pretty-boy looks and playing people destined for defeat rather than Hollywood endings has become a cliché for McConaughey.

    December 7, 2018 | Rating: 2/5 | Full Review…

    Ed Potton

    Times (UK)
    Top Critic

Audience Reviews for White Boy Rick

  • May 26, 2019
    Worth a view for its solid acting and super cinematography, White Boy Rick, lacks the storytelling chops to be memorable.
    Aldo G Super Reviewer
  • Feb 03, 2019
    Forgettable. I guess I theoretically could feel sorry for the actual person this movie was based around? Maybe? But not for this character. Nothing about White Boy Rick grabbed me, least of all the utterly never-congenial Matthew McConaughey, who I seem unable to escape recently, desperate though I am to do so.
    Gimly M Super Reviewer
  • Dec 10, 2018
    "You clean up well, Ricky, but you crooked." White Boy Rick is the kind of story that sounds crazier in its broad strokes than it feels when your in the midst of the motions, not realizing what your in the midst of. Director Yann Demange ('71) boils the "based on a true story" events down into a movie about the fragility of family and the relationships in our lives-namely that of the father/son relationship here. It also doesn't hurt that Demange and his team have fully re-created the look and feel of what one imagines mid-80's Detroit looked and felt like for the lower/middle class. I mean, everything in every frame is on point. One of the best soundtracks of the year, undeniably. A host of great showings from the likes of McConaughey, Jonathan Majors, and newcomer Richie Merritt, but ladies and gentleman I needed more of Eddie Marsan in this role! There's a lot of talk of "up selliing" in White Boy Rick, but the magic of what Demange pulls off here is that he executes his story in such a fashion, by dialing in on the familial theme rather than focusing on how "crazy" it all is, that he doesn't have to offer any fries with the burger to convince us we're getting more than we bargained for. We get exactly what we ordered without the typical gimmicks only to find a pie we didn't have to pay for in the bag after the fact.
    Philip P Super Reviewer
  • Sep 30, 2018
    A potentially good to great movie is in there somewhere, somewhat lost in uneven direction, bad pacing and a lack of focus. Matthew Mcconaughey seems underutilized, but nonetheless excels. 3.5/5
    Jeffrey M Super Reviewer

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