The Descendants
The Descendants (2011)

From Alexander Payne, the creator of the Oscar-winning Sideways, set in Hawaii, The Descendants is a sometimes humorous, sometimes tragic journey for Matt King (George Clooney) an indifferent husband and father of two girls, who is forced… More

Directed By:
Rated: R
Running Time:
Genre: Drama, Comedy
Release Date: November 18, 2011
DVD Release Date: March 13, 2012
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Rotten Tomatoes™
Critic Score
89%
Flixster
User Score
79%

Available Online



Critic Score: 89% Rotten Tomatoes™ Critic Reviews

Consensus: Funny, moving, and beautifully acted, The Descendants captures the unpredictable messiness of life with eloquence and uncommon grace.

David Thomson
The New Republic

The Descendants is humane, decent, and close to real quality.

Full review…
Tom Long
Detroit News

One of the year's best films, a bubbly meditation on family and responsibility that weighs just enough to matter.

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Mark Jackson
Epoch Times

Director Alexander Payne is a master storyteller of the huge life transition. 'Sideways' is one stellar example, 'About Schmidt', another. 'Descendants' easily rivals 'Sideways.'

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Dave Calhoun
Time Out

Payne is an unobtrusive director, a filmmaker who lets the script do the walking - in this case, perhaps too much.

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Rene Rodriguez
Miami Herald

In the hands of writer-director Alexander Payne, Clooney has rarely seemed so much at home.

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Bill Newcott
AARP Movies for Grownups

Clooney and Payne share an uncanny knack for that wistful smile in the face of havoc; for conveying the peace that comes from having lived a life, from having seen disasters come and go, and from knowing that, one way or another, this too shall pass.

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Leonard Maltin
indieWIRE

The challenge in describing the film is that it doesn't neatly fit into any pigeonhole. It's a serious movie that happens to have a sense of humor, because Payne and his collaborators see the absurdity in everyday existence.

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Joe Williams
St. Louis Post-Dispatch

In playing an everyman stranded between anger and duty, Clooney earns an emotional payoff that a lesser actor would simply demand.

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Martin Tsai
Critic's Notebook

Mr. Payne's undeniable knack for naturalism makes "The Descendants" a wholly persuasive and heartfelt experience.

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More reviews for The Descendants

Flixster Audience Score: 79% Flixster User Reviews
Carlos Magalhães
A predictable pseudo-indie drama lazily written by someone who seems to have no clue about real people's lives, built around artificial conflicts and… More
Sanjaya 丘耀文
I don't expect too high for Alexander Payne's movies because even though a lot of people love his work, especially the critics, but he clearly… More
_kelly .King
Boring and vacuous. Would have been better if the story was not focused on Matt (George Clooney) but an Arrested Development style ensemble examination of the… More
Chris Weber
I honestly don't know how he does it. This is the 4th out of 5 films directed by Alexander Payne that I've seen, and he once again knocks it out of… More
Kevin M. Williams
Clooney is an unlikely lawyer in Hawaii preparing for the deal of the century when his wife goes into a coma through an boating accident. What happens next,… More
Al S
A masterpiece. A film that has such a real and intense punch but still manages to bring your spirits up. One of the years best and most extraordinary movies. An… More