6.8/10
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66 user 129 critic

Ben Is Back (2018)

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A drug addicted teenage boy shows up unexpectedly at his family's home on Christmas Eve.

Director:

Peter Hedges

Writer:

Peter Hedges
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Popularity
198 ( 54)
1 win & 8 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Julia Roberts ... Holly Burns
Lucas Hedges ... Ben Burns
Courtney B. Vance ... Neal Beeby
Kathryn Newton ... Ivy Burns
Rachel Bay Jones ... Beth Conyers
David Zaldivar ... Spencer 'Spider' Webbs
Alexandra Park ... Cara K.
Michael Esper ... Clayton
Tim Guinee ... Phil
Myra Lucretia Taylor Myra Lucretia Taylor ... Sally
Kristin Griffith ... Mrs. Crane
Jack Davidson ... Dr. Crane
Mia Fowler ... Lacey Burns-Beeby
Jakari Fraser ... Liam Burns-Beeby
Cameron Roberts ... James Lamson
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Storyline

Follows the charming yet troubled Ben Burns (Hedges), who returns home to his unsuspecting family one fateful Christmas Eve. Ben's wary mother Holly Burns (Roberts) welcomes her beloved son's return, but soon learns he is still very much in harm's way. During the 24 hours that may change their lives forever, Holly must do everything in her power to avoid the family's downfall.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for language throughout and some drug use | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Official Sites:

Official Facebook | Official Site | See more »

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

5 December 2018 (Spain) See more »

Also Known As:

Ben Is Back See more »

Filming Locations:

New York, USA See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$13,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$80,733, 9 December 2018, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$3,703,184, 21 February 2019
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Most daytime footage was filmed before the team broke up for the holidays. In January 2018, the production turned the night scenes, while the story darkens, literally as well as figuratively. Director Peter Hedges remarks that his actors showed great sensitivity in the way they played the growing tension between mother and son. See more »

Quotes

Neal Beeby: If you were black, you would be in jail right now.
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Soundtracks

O Holy Night
Written by Donny Marrow
Courtesy of FirstCom Music
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User Reviews

 
Julia Roberts on top of her game
8 October 2018 | by KarenAMSee all my reviews

Ben Is Back follows a story of a young addict returning home for holidays by putting the lives of his family members and those who he had affected as an addict dramatically changes within 24 hours. A triumphal performance of Julia Roberts as the mother, who is fighting for salvation of her child, is probably one of the best of her career. Lucas Hedges, who plays Ben, also son of the director Peter Hedges, is on a phenomenal rise, appearing in not one but two Oscar-worthy performances this year, proving that Hollywood can still hold on the line with decent young actors such as Hedges as old talents slowly fade out. A passionate project that is ambitious, raw and tender, centered on the redemption addicts can get from their family.


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