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Bottle Rocket Review

Other Critics provided by

Critics scores range from 0 to 100, with higher scores indicating more favorable reviews.

  • 4.0

    out of 100

    Generally favorable reviews
    based on a weighted average of all
    critic review scores.

  • 50

    out of 100

    Chicago Sun-Times Roger Ebert

    Entertaining if you understand exactly what it is: if you see it as a film made by friends out of the materials presented by their lives and with the freedom to not push too hard.

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  • 63

    out of 100

    ReelViews James Berardinelli

    sStarts and finishes strong, but, somewhere in the middle, it loses its focus and its way.

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  • 75

    out of 100

    USA Today Mike Clark

    Rocket flies with comic-kaze crooks. [21 February 1996, p. D6]

  • 75

    out of 100

    Chicago Tribune Michael Wilmington

    It's a cool breeze of a comedy, with a slant on things that's dark but compassionate. Watching Bottle Rocket doesn't just make you laugh. It makes you smile between the laughs, think beneath the smiles.

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  • 80

    out of 100

    Variety David Rooney

    Full of surprising warmth and charm, unexpected plot turns and droll characters that bounce off each other in refreshing ways.

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  • 83

    out of 100

    Entertainment Weekly

    The title refers to cheap fireworks that fizz before they flame out quietly, and that's what three Southwestern slackers do in this amiable heist movie-cum-road flick.

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  • See all Bottle Rocket reviews at

For Families provided by Common Sense Media

Iffy for 15+

The first Anderson/Wilson offbeat, talky comedy.

What Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that this indie dramedy follows three best friends who become bumbling small-time crooks in hopes of getting in on a real heist. There is a lot of R-rated language plus one love scene (no nudity is visible, however). The overall theme of seeking excitement from planning and executing a robbery may not be suitable for younger children, but there's a great deal of humor to offset the "life of crime" elements.

  • Families can talk about risk-taking and peer pressure. Did Anthony seem like he really wanted to go along with Dignan, or was he just humoring him? Kids: Was Dignan using Bob for his money? What would you do if friends asked you to do something illegal?

The good stuff
  • message true0

    Messages: Three friends seek out the excitement of a life of petty heists.

What to watch for
  • violence false3

    Violence: The cops beat up a suspect; Dignan gets into a brawl at a bar and ends up with a bloody gash on his face; Dignan gives Anthony a bloody nose; Bob's brother beats him off camera, and he subsequently wears a bandage around his ear.

  • sex false3

    Sex: Anthony and Inez kiss on a few occasions and make love once (no nudity). A woman flirts with Anthony.

  • language false3

    Language: R-rated language: "f--k," "s--t," "asshole," "c---sucker," etc.

  • consumerism false0

    Consumerism: Not an issue

  • drugsalcoholtobacco false3

    Drinking, drugs and smoking: The guys drink at a bar; partygoers drink cocktails and smoke cigars/cigarettes.