100

Premiere

By Glenn Kenny
It's a rare film that can be convincingly tender, bitterly funny, and ruthlessly cutting over the course of fewer than 90 minutes. The Squid and the Whale not only manages this, it also contains moments that sock you with all three qualities at the same time.
Full Review
100

Chicago Tribune

By Allison Benedikt
Steering clear of phony melodrama and indie pretense, Baumbach captures a crisis in one family's life that, though it shakes the foundation, leaves all four Berkmans drifting toward highs and lows unknown, each of them only dimly aware that, no matter what the movies tell us, we never really come of age.
Full Review
91

Entertainment Weekly

By Lisa Schwarzbaum
In hovering, The Squid and the Whale becomes its own realistic display of family entropy, as cautionary as it is educational.
Full Review
88

Philadelphia Inquirer

By Carrie Rickey
Insightful, funny-sad memoir of divorce, intellectual style and emotional rebirth.
Full Review
88

New York Daily News

By Jami Bernard
A great divorce movie. It's also one of the canniest comedies ever made about a certain kind of literary pretension.
Full Review
88

Boston Globe

By Ty Burr
This is one cinematic novella that stays with you for quite a while.
Full Review
88

USA Today

By Claudia Puig
The young actors' performances are particularly haunting.
Full Review
88

Rolling Stone

By Peter Travers
Without jerking tears or reducing the acid content of his wit, Baumbach's humane movie gets under your skin.
Full Review
75

San Francisco Chronicle

By Mick LaSalle
An entertaining and perceptive film with one big problem.
Full Review
40

Wall Street Journal

By Joe Morgenstern
The absence of any nuance in the father's character bespeaks the filmmaker's unwillingness to trust his audience. Making the movie may have been therapeutic for him, but I can't say the same about watching it.
Full Review
82 out of 100
Universal acclaim
Metascore® based on all critic reviews. Scores range from 0 to 100, with higher scores indicating more favorable reviews.