MOVIEmeter
Top 500
Up 137 this week

The Way Way Back (2013)

 -  Comedy | Drama  -  26 July 2013 (USA)
7.4
Your rating:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Ratings: 7.4/10 from 89,071 users   Metascore: 68/100
Reviews: 187 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.

Directors:

,

Writers:

,
Watch Trailer
0Check in
0Share...

Watch Now

From $0.00 on Amazon Instant Video

Editors' Spotlight

Fall TV Premiere Week

Many of your favorite shows are coming back, along with plenty of series premieres. Here's a list of the shows premiering between Sunday, September 21 and Friday, September 26.


User Lists

Related lists from IMDb users

a list of 21 titles
created 03 Jan 2013
 
a list of 33 titles
created 9 months ago
 
a list of 32 titles
created 8 months ago
 
a list of 43 titles
created 7 months ago
 
a list of 30 titles
created 6 months ago
 

Related Items


Connect with IMDb


Share this Rating

Title: The Way Way Back (2013)

The Way Way Back (2013) on IMDb 7.4/10

Want to share IMDb's rating on your own site? Use the HTML below.

Take The Quiz!

Test your knowledge of The Way Way Back.

User Polls

4 wins & 24 nominations. See more awards »

Videos

Photos

Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

Three teenage friends, in the ultimate act of independence, decide to spend their summer building a house in the woods and living off the land.

Director: Jordan Vogt-Roberts
Stars: Nick Robinson, Gabriel Basso, Moises Arias
Comedy | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

Three magazine employees head out on an assignment to interview a guy who placed a classified ad seeking a companion for time travel.

Director: Colin Trevorrow
Stars: Aubrey Plaza, Mark Duplass, Jake Johnson
Ruby Sparks (2012)
Comedy | Drama | Fantasy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

A novelist struggling with writer's block finds romance in a most unusual way: by creating a female character he thinks will love him, then willing her into existence.

Directors: Jonathan Dayton, Valerie Faris
Stars: Paul Dano, Zoe Kazan, Annette Bening
Win Win (2011)
Comedy | Drama | Sport
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

A struggling lawyer and volunteer wrestling coach's chicanery comes back to haunt him when the teenage grandson of the client he has double-crossed comes into his life.

Director: Thomas McCarthy
Stars: Paul Giamatti, Amy Ryan, Jeffrey Tambor
Comedy | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

A hard-partying high school senior's philosophy on life changes when he meets the not-so-typical "nice girl."

Director: James Ponsoldt
Stars: Miles Teller, Shailene Woodley, Kyle Chandler
Enough Said (2013)
Comedy | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

A divorced woman who decides to pursue the man she's interested in learns he's her new friend's ex-husband.

Director: Nicole Holofcener
Stars: Julia Louis-Dreyfus, James Gandolfini, Catherine Keener
Comedy | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

A middle-aged husband's life changes dramatically when his wife asks him for a divorce. He seeks to rediscover his manhood with the help of a newfound friend, Jacob, learning to pick up girls at bars.

Directors: Glenn Ficarra, John Requa
Stars: Steve Carell, Ryan Gosling, Julianne Moore
Comedy | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

A clinically depressed teenager gets a new start after he checks himself into an adult psychiatric ward.

Directors: Anna Boden, Ryan Fleck
Stars: Keir Gilchrist, Zach Galifianakis, Emma Roberts
Adventure | Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

A day-dreamer escapes his anonymous life by disappearing into a world of fantasies filled with heroism, romance and action. When his job along with that of his co-worker are threatened, he takes action in the real world embarking on a global journey that turns into an adventure more extraordinary than anything he could have ever imagined.

Director: Ben Stiller
Stars: Ben Stiller, Kristen Wiig, Jon Daly
Adventure | Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  

A family determined to get their young daughter into the finals of a beauty pageant take a cross-country trip in their VW bus.

Directors: Jonathan Dayton, Valerie Faris
Stars: Steve Carell, Toni Collette, Greg Kinnear
Edit

Cast

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

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:

 »
Edit

Details

Official Sites:

Country:

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:

|

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

The film was originally supposed to take place in 1984, but was moved into the present due to budgetary constraints. Owen's comment about how the water park "hasn't been upgraded since 1983" and Duncan's REO Speedwagon sing-along are both references to this fact. 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

Recess
Written by Eli Husock, Ryan Spraker and Pat DiCenso
Performed by Eli Paperboy Reed
Courtesy of Q-Dee Records
Under license from Hitcher Music
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

 
Don't miss this one
17 June 2013 | by (Philadelphia, PA) – See all my reviews

There are some movies which sound so simple that it's hard to convey to people just how good they are. The Way, Way Back is one of those movies. It's simply a coming-of-age story about a 14-year-old boy over the course of his summer break. There are no big action scenes or special effects here, just really good writing with actors who can bring such a realistic story to life.

The movie begins with the boy, Duncan, riding in a car with his family to his mother's boyfriend's beach house. As the mother sleeps in the passenger seat, the boyfriend asks Duncan to rate himself on a scale of 1 to 10. After replying with a 6, the boyfriend insists that he's just a 3. What's surprising is that this seemingly heartless guy that the mother is dating is played by Steve Carell. Carell is known for playing lovable and funny characters. But he switches it up with this role. That scene sets the tone for how little Duncan is looking forward to this summer trip. And it doesn't help that his mother doesn't really set her boyfriend straight even when she is awake.

To escape the annoyances at his new temporary home, Duncan takes a bike to ride around town with. When he finds a way into the local water park, he meets one of the middle-aged operators there named Owen. Duncan seems fascinated by Owen (played by Sam Rockwell) and how he uses humor in almost everything he says. It seems like he's never met anyone like him who's so worry-free and exudes such confidence all the time. (Sam Rockwell is perfect at playing this care-free kind of man-child.) Owen manages to get Duncan a job at the park where he tries to instill some of that same confidence in him as well. It becomes clear that as they bond with each other, Duncan wishes this would be the kind of guy his mother would date instead. The job at the water park also opens up a whole new fun side that this 14-year-old kid didn't even know he had in him.

If not for the occasional Google or iPad reference, this movie could easily have taken place in the 1980's. The setting as well as the way people dress and talk to each other is right out of an 80's film - is it a coincidence that all of the music played in the movie is from that era? There's a very natural and wholesome vibe to it, especially in the water park scenes - nothing looks too modern or high-tech; it's just a place where people go to have an old-fashioned good time. While Steve Carell may be the most popular name on the poster, the movie has a great cast altogether. Toni Collette (The Sixth Sense, Little Miss Sunshine), in particular, does an amazing job as the mother torn between defending her son and trying to make things work with the arrogant boyfriend who doesn't always treat them right. But it's the scenes between Duncan and his new older friend Owen that are the heart of the movie. Sometimes it just takes the right person to bring out someone else's true colors and help them be comfortable in their own skin. And sometimes it takes the right movie to make you feel like a kid again. This one will have you yearning for the days when things were a little simpler.


129 of 149 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
Objectification of women? goo-goo-ga-ga
Yikes! Steve Carrell plays a good dick, or he really is one..... WickedMMGirl
Why is the job a secret? jdlexus
homoeroticism anyone? gab-casnu
LOVED IT ajl41994
Why is it... jannghi
Discuss The Way Way Back (2013) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for:
?