Critic Reviews



Based on 18 critic reviews provided by
The Guardian
It's ambitious enough to aim at polished, intelligent character drama, and pulls it off successfully.
The Dissolve
The story’s overall trajectory is familiar, and sometimes clichéd, but it still has the power to surprise and startle from moment to moment, which is what really counts.
It’s too long and wildly uneven. And the longer it goes on, the more uneven and oddball it seems.
This tame exercise never quite jives and sometimes just bombs with one-note melodrama, but always maintains Thornton's conviction about the material.
Billy Bob Thornton's ensemble Southern family dramedy fails to subvert its cutesy formula often enough.
Characters scream, throw glasses, screw, and strip nude for the self-gratifying viewing pleasure of others, but Jayne Mansfield’s Car never musters up even the faintest trace of Tennessee Williams-style hothouse drama.
A fine cast can only do so much with the script’s pileup of generational conflict and long-winded introspection, resulting in a willfully out-of-step picture.
There’s ambition here, but little in the way of insight or genuine feeling — just a heavy-handed thesis and some extraneous Southern eccentricity.
Thematically diffuse, tonally inconsistent and blighted by an inauthentic feel for its story’s time and place, it sits awkwardly between sober human drama and lighter dysfunctional-family turf, constantly striving for unearned emotions.
The handful of redeeming moments in Jayne Mansfield’s Car belong to Duvall in the role of a septuagenarian who finds himself more and more at odds with a changing world.

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