• R , 1 hr 55 min
  • Drama
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This Boy's Life Synopsis
Hip 1950s teen (Leonardo DiCaprio) butts head with his rude stepfather (Robert De Niro).

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Critic Ratings


The New Yorker

Barkin and DiCaprio are sensational. Every time De Niro threatens to take over the picture, they snatch our attention right back, and...
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Chicago Sun-Times

By Roger Ebert
The movie is successful largely because [DiCaprio] is a good enough actor to hold his own in his scenes with De Niro, so that the movie...
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TV Guide

In capturing the compelling battle between a boy and his abusive stepfather, director Michael Caton-Jones cannily avoids obvious...
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Los Angeles Times

By Kenneth Turan
He [Caton-Jones] has made the film all of a piece, making sure that the three lead performances complement rather than overwhelm each...
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By James Berardinelli
The film is well-paced and expertly edited, allowing scenes to flow naturally into one another.
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By Angie Errigo
Despite its admirable strengths and the fact of it being a true story, there is somehow a failure to completely connect with the fierce...
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Rolling Stone

By Peter Travers
De Niro's decision to make Dwight a loony from the get-go throws the delicate symmetry of the story out of whack.
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The Globe and Mail (Toronto)

By Rick Groen
The process of remembering that drives the book is gone from the film, boiled away until all that's left is the mundane residue of memory -...
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Entertainment Weekly

By Owen Gleiberman
For This Boy's Life to work as ominous domestic drama, it's essential that we see Dwight as a flesh-and-blood monster. De Niro,...
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Austin Chronicle

By Marjorie Baumgarten
Director Caton-Jones ("Scandal", "Memphis Belle") once again shows his flair for period detail though he never here exerts his grip on the...
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Rated R