7.4/10
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The Way Way Back (2013)

PG-13 | | Comedy, Drama | 26 July 2013 (USA)
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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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5 wins & 30 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Pam
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Kip
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Adam Riegler ...
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:

Everybody has a summer that changes their life. See more »

Genres:

Comedy | Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

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

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Details

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Release Date:

26 July 2013 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

The Way Back  »

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Box Office

Budget:

$5,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$552,788 (USA) (7 July 2013)

Gross:

$21,501,098 (USA) (15 November 2013)
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1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

A documentary called Wagonmasters (2012), released the year before this movie, discusses the importance of the "wayback seat." Promotional items released for _Wagonmasters_ included bumper stickers and buttons declaring proudly, "I sat in the wayback." See more »

Goofs

When Duncan meets Owen, Owen is in the middle of a game of Pac-Man on Level 1. He says he's never made it to Level 2. When we see the screen a number of dots and one of the power-pellets are missing. When Duncan loses Owen's last life, still on Level 1, the screen shows an earlier point in the game. See more »

Quotes

Steph: Enjoy therapy!
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Connections

Referenced in The Tonight Show with Jay Leno: Episode #21.170 (2013) See more »

Soundtracks

Power Hungry Animals
Written by Michael Ford, Michael Harris, Brett Moore and Kellen Wenrich
Performed by Apache Relay (as The Apache Relay)
Courtesy of Nomadic Recordings
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User Reviews

 
Earnest, Relateable and Endearing - We've All Been Here Before
5 November 2013 | by (Bradenton, FL) – See all my reviews

A sweet, funny, earnest coming-of-age dramedy that plays out like a period piece, even though it's set in the present day. Tempering a plucky spirit and subtle, pointed sense of humor with an introverted lead character and a familiar, bittersweet atmosphere, it's a spiritual successor to the John Hughes golden age of the mid-80s. Liam James is beautifully awkward as the quiet, brooding young teenager at the story's epicenter, aided by a thoroughly deep, entertaining supporting cast. No matter how minor, every character enjoys a purpose and a motivation, enriching the scenery and tickling the viewer's curiosity with a tangle of warm, colorful subplots. Steve Carell will get plenty of attention in his unexpected turn as the boy's self-centered douchebag stand-in father, but Sam Rockwell's deeper-than-he-seems burnout splash park manager is the real show stealer. A strong, heartfelt and meaningful return visit to adolescence for anyone who's ever felt out-of-place in their own skin.


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