The Bad Seed
The Bad Seed (1956)

Young Patty McCormack received an Oscar nomination for her performance as a murderous child in this chilling dramatic horror classic. Shocking at the time of its release in 1956, The Bad Seed remains unsettling to this day as a single… More

Directed By:
Rated: Unrated
Running Time:
Release Date: September 12, 1956
DVD Release Date: August 10, 2004
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Critic Score: 65% Rotten Tomatoes™ Critic Reviews
TIME Magazine

Director LeRoy has been overly faithful to the play script.

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Time Out

1956 was way too soon for an unfettered treatment of the central premise.

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Felix Vasquez Jr.
Cinema Crazed

A near perfect thriller...

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Variety Staff

This melodrama about a child with an inbred talent for homicide is pretty unpleasant stuff on its own.

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Dave Kehr
Chicago Reader

Overlong, stiff, and about as suspenseful as a detergent commercial.

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Matthew Sorrento
Film Threat

The 'secret' villain is the missing father - or we should say, the mother for trying to child-rear by herself ... The bad seed is dead - but single parents, be warned.

Bosley Crowther
New York Times

Mervyn LeRoy, who produced and directed, has lost a great deal of the bite of the play.

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Barbara Shulgasser
Common Sense Media

Evil little girl hides her murderous ways in dated classic.

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Peter Canavese
Groucho Reviews

The dark drama that launched a genre of evil-kid movies. [Blu-ray]

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More reviews for The Bad Seed

Flixster Audience Score: 83% Flixster User Reviews
Spencer S.
Originally a play, written by Maxwell Anderson, director Mervyn LeRoy stays virtually faithful in his adaptation. He even cast original actors Patty McCormack,… More
Aj V
I love this movie it's a dark comedy and a horror movie based on a play. It's very interesting.
Lewis C.
"Now there's a little ray of sunshine, that one." An occasionally riveting movie from the 50's about a sunny, charming, sociopathic little… More
Tim Salmons
Fantastic little film.
Melvin White
The Bad Seed is second to only The Omen when it comes to evil child horror films. Patty McCormack is amazing as the evil but deceptively sweet little girl… More
Randy Tippy
Considering Mervyn LeRoy was handed a small budget, a mediocre cast and an uninspired screenplay, this isn't a bad film. Not much here that's… More