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Garden State 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.

  • 40

    out of 100

    Wall Street Journal Joe Morgenstern

    Mr. Braff's idea of self-discovery is my idea of narcissism.

  • 75

    out of 100

    USA Today Claudia Puig

    Though unlikely to have the lasting quality of "The Graduate," it feels a bit like that seminal film for today's generation.

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  • 75

    out of 100

    Entertainment Weekly Lisa Schwarzbaum

    Certainly Garden State is a very American specimen of debut indie form, its loose, goof-about scenes of comic melancholy reinforced with the glue of quirkiness over cracks in the narrative development.

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  • 80

    out of 100

    The Hollywood Reporter

    Writer/director Zach Braff has threaded a powerful and intelligent personal story through a genre all too rare today – romantic comedy.

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  • See all Garden State reviews at

For Families provided by Common Sense Media

Pause for kids 16 & under

Smart drama for mature older teens and up.

What Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that this movie has extensive substance abuse. Characters smoke, drink, and take a lot of drugs. There are brief but explicit sex scenes and many sexual references, including a young man who is unhappy about his mother's affair with a younger man. Characters use very strong language and engage in risky and foolish behavior. There is a discussion of suicide and mental illness. One character is a thief. A strength of the movie is its positive portrayal of a person with a disability.

  • Families can talk about why it was so difficult for Largeman to talk to his father. Why was it important to the story that his father is a psychiatrist?

What to watch for
  • violence false0

    Violence: Tense emotional scenes, reference to suicide.

  • sex false5

    Sex: Brief but explicit sex scenes and many sexual references.

  • language false5

    Language: Very strong language.

  • consumerism false0

    Consumerism: Not applicable

  • drugsalcoholtobacco false5

    Drinking, drugs and smoking: Frequent drug and alcohol use and smoking.