The Mudge Boy
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Writer/director Michael Burke makes his feature-length debut with the coming-of-age drama The Mudge Boy. Known as a weird kid, Duncan Mudge (Emile Hirsch) is a naïve 14-year-old farm boy with an aging father, Edgar (Richard Jenkins), and very little social life. When Duncan's mother suddenly dies, he develops a strange fascination with her clothes, speaks in her voice, and spends his time with his pet chicken. His father and the other people in the town just don't understand his behavior, while the other kids make fun of him. A drunken group of older boys call him names, but they… More
Rotten Tomatoes Score: 77%

Critic Reviews from Rotten Tomatoes

"Condescending tone ... contrivance ... and cliché."
‑ Matt Weitz, Dallas Morning News
"Because the camera so closely follows Duncan -- there's scarcely a scene he's off-frame; his awkwardness is bold and unapologetic -- he sticks close to our sympathies."
‑ Robert K. Elder, Chicago Tribune
"Tender, touching and tragic ... it's also rewarding and redemptive."
‑ Steve Rhodes, Internet Reviews
"You can hardly fault the details, the resonant silences, the sudden gushers of pent-up feeling."
‑ David Elliott, San Diego Union-Tribune
"Like a sturdy, well-observed short story, its narrative pieces put together with a plain elegance."
‑ Steve Murray, Atlanta Journal-Constitution
"A little picture -- the names of the entire cast would fit on half a sheet of paper -- but it's more heartfelt than movies with 50 times the budget."
‑ Ruthe Stein, San Francisco Chronicle
"The seriousness is too often undercut by plot turns that are unintentionally risible...Hirsch and Jenkins are certainly the chief reasons to see it."
‑ Frank Swietek, One Guy's Opinion
"Though more offbeat than it needs to be, Boy takes an unflinching look at a gentle spirit trapped in a macho, violent world."
‑ , E! Online
"The Mudge Boy is odd and intense, very well acted, and impossible to dismiss."
‑ Roger Ebert, Chicago Sun-Times
"It's not an easy film to watch, but it is a memorable one."
‑ Lisa Rose, Newark Star-Ledger
"It may seem like just another movie about a boy and his father and the chicken that comes between them, but there's a heart-touching story underneath all the feathers."
‑ Cherryl Dawson and Leigh Ann Palone,
"This story must have been much more comfortable and rewarding to read on paper than it is to watch on screen."
‑ William Arnold, Seattle Post-Intelligencer
More reviews for The Mudge Boy on Rotten Tomatoes