(I) (2010)

Critic Reviews

70

Metascore

Based on 19 critic reviews provided by Metacritic.com
90
This unpretentious comic tale of a youngster's growing relationship with a long-absent father has a surprising rhythmic genius: joy juxtaposed with humiliation, silliness with sadness, fantasy with reality, and none of it formulaic. The editing feels fresh, as does the film.
83
In its third act, this funny, bittersweet, tonally assured coming-of-age story grows unexpectedly poignant as Rolleston comes to realize he doesn't need a super-cool buddy or co-conspirator in his misadventures. He needs a father, and Waititi's stunted man-child is fatally unsuited and unqualified for that role.
80
Mr. Waititi, a popular standup comic in New Zealand, is wonderfully droll and entertaining in this acting role, which isn't all that far, geography and culture notwithstanding, from Steve Zahn at his stoner best.
75
This charming kid's-eye movie, full of comical and vivid detail about the lives of these cheerful children, has the loose, lanky feel of a memoir and of French New Wave films.
75
It's a lovely oddity, and one that will probably hit home for preteen audiences all over the world.
60
Waititi retains his quirky style, but it feels meaningful here, a valid effort to explore the difficulties in coming of age during tough times.
50
Slant Magazine
Less concerned with rendering the specifics of its setting (a small Maori town on the New Zealand coast) than in calling on bouts of whimsy and superficial cultural signifiers to approximate the headspace of its central characters.
50
Writer-director and co-star Taika Waititi ("Eagle vs Shark") never builds much momentum for his largely uneventful if sometimes inventive story.
40
Boy needn't be pop-culturally fluent to be relatable; believable human characterizations would have sufficed.
40
Village Voice
The abundant charm of first-time actor James Rolleston, playing the 11-year-old of the title in Boy, doesn't quite save the aimless, nostalgia-woozy second feature from Taika Waititi (2007's Eagle vs. Shark).

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