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The Way Way Back (2013)

 -  Comedy | Drama  -  26 July 2013 (USA)
7.4
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Ratings: 7.4/10 from 91,034 users   Metascore: 68/100
Reviews: 190 user | 261 critic | 41 from Metacritic.com

Shy 14-year-old Duncan goes on summer vacation with his mother, her overbearing boyfriend, and her boyfriend's daughter. Having a rough time fitting in, Duncan finds an unexpected friend in Owen, manager of the Water Wizz water park.

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Pam
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Kip
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Steph
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Roddy
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Lewis
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Neil
Jeremy Weaver ...
Jason
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Storyline

Duncan (Liam James) is not a popular kid and it doesn't look like the summer is going to offer anything better for him. His mother's boyfriend has invited them to his beach house where Duncan is expected to improve his personality and physical appearance, and meet girls. But his would-be step-sister doesn't want anything to do with him and his shy demeanor makes it difficult for him to meet anybody new. When Duncan wanders into the Water Wizz, the local water park, he meets adult employees who are just having fun. Owen (Sam Rockwell) lets Duncan work with him and their new-found bond will help each other mature and find their place in life. Which for Duncan means standing up to his would-be step-father, having a conversation with the girl next door and being more comfortable with who he is. Written by napierslogs

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

We've All Been There.

Genres:

Comedy | Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for thematic elements, language, some sexual content and brief drug material | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Official Sites:

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Language:

Release Date:

26 July 2013 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

The Way Back  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Box Office

Budget:

$4,600,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$552,788 (USA) (5 July 2013)

Gross:

$21,501,098 (USA) (15 November 2013)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

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Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Sam Rockwell (Owen) Previously starred in The Search for One-eye Jimmy (1994) as One-eye Jimmy. This foreshadows his line to Peter about wishing he had a squint eye like that. See more »

Goofs

In the first scene at the water park, Owen is eating a pop-tart. Throughout the scene, the amount of pop-tart eaten and the direction it is facing in his hand changes several times. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Trent: Duncan! On a scale of 1 to 10, what do you think you are?
Duncan: A 6!
Trent: I think you're a 3! Since I've been dating your mom, I don't see you putting yourself out there bud! You could try getting that score up at my beach house this summer!
See more »

Connections

References Footloose (1984) See more »

Soundtracks

Last Legs
Written by Justin Kennedy, Louie Schultz and Douglas Randall
Performed by Army Navy
Courtesy of The Fever Zone
By arrangement with Bank Robber Music
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Absolutely charming
14 July 2013 | by (Washington, DC) – See all my reviews

There's nothing to dislike about this movie. The actors do a terrific job all around--from the scene-stealing eyepatch kid to Allison Janey's lush to Steve Carrell's first role as a d-bag. Kudos to the kid playing Duncan and the guy playing his...boss? mentor? friend? saviour?--or all of the above. The scenery is lovely and convincingly real--no beach McMansions with $6,500 Wolf ranges. It shows what a real beach community looks like. The '70 Buick Estate Wagon is sublime and had me kvelling.

But it's the story that really makes the viewer smile. Duncan is a lost, lonely, mess...14, stuck with his mom whom he loves (but doesn't really respect), her douchebag boyfriend, boyfriend's daughter, and not much else. He finds his way in a way that defines a coming-of-age story. The Water Wizz guy--channeling Bill Murray in Meatballs in an obvious homage--does a great job, never losing sight of his own challenges in life while helping young Duncan emerge from his painful shell.


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