(2012)

Critic Reviews

42

Metascore

Based on 14 critic reviews provided by Metacritic.com
80
Packed with fine performances, this attack on suburban conformity is surprising, darkly hilarious and cleverly leaves the insanity judgement to its audience.
63
Not every cute movie about the mentally ill is Oscar worthy, but this touching and riotous one from Down Under works well enough.
60
The Guardian
It's always a pleasure to see Collette, a performer who always cranks up the energy, and yet here, as so often, she gives the impression of a ferocious screen intelligence somehow not being used to the full.
58
The more dramatic moments feel unanchored to the more farcical, and the humor ranges erratically from scatological to tender/heartwarming and back to cheap shots at slightly uncomfortable stereotypes. "Uneven" would be the kind way of putting it, but "messy" is probably nearer to the truth.
58
Not content to make his point through sharp-tongued comedy, Hogan ends up beating a dead horse -- or shark, as the case may be.
50
Village Voice
Mental skewers the easy-on and -off labels of psychiatry, but some sequences, particularly one of "bad dreams," are sophomoric. The movie's real mess-up was to move Shaz into melodrama at the movie's end.
40
Once a scarred shark hunter (Liev Schreiber) enters the fray, the film’s tone shifts from madcap to maudlin, and the narrative from being merely grating to actually galling. Artistic inspiration can be close to madness, but Mental is just plain nuts.
40
There is a lot of yelling and emoting and it all gets strident very quickly — as in, the first 10 minutes. Hogan keeps everything self-consciously quirky, with lots of bright primary colors all over the place, but it feels like wild overkill.
30
Mental wildly overplays the kookiness and quirk.
30
Writer-director P.J. Hogan may have based Mental on an actual incident from his childhood, but the crazy quilt of a movie that resulted feels anything but real.

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