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Year One Review Critics


Dave White Profile

In "Year Two" they become astronauts. Read full review

Other Critics provided by

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

  • 2.0

    out of 100

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

  • 40

    out of 100

    The Hollywood Reporter Frank Scheck

    A lot of comedic talent founders in this new Harold Ramis comedy that doesn't exactly recall his glory days of "Caddyshack" and "Groundhog Day."

    Read Full Review

  • 50

    out of 100

    USA Today Claudia Puig

    The humor, largely centered around bodily functions and bathroom habits, is almost exclusively sophomoric.

    Read Full Review

  • 63

    out of 100

    Chicago Tribune Michael Phillips

    It's the knockabout biblical lark Mel Brooks never got around to making.

    Read Full Review

  • 67

    out of 100

    Entertainment Weekly Owen Gleiberman

    This is just silliness run mildly wild.

    Read Full Review

  • See all Year One reviews at

For Families provided by Common Sense Media

Pause for kids 14 & under

Old Testament meets old jokes in rough, unfunny comedy.

What Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that this farcical romp through the Book of Genesis -- which was originally rated R but got edited down to an edgy PG-13 -- is full of slapstick violence, crude sexual material, strong language (including "f--k"), and stereotypes. Since it stars Jack Black and Michael Cera, it's pretty clear that this isn't The Flintstones: There's lots of gross-out humor (bear feces are viewed up close, an obese hairy man gets an oil massage, a eunuch carries his removed testicles around in a small pouch, etc., etc.) and some fairly pointed mocking of the ideas and concepts of the Old Testament. Whether that adds up to ribald fun or offensive insults will depend on your perceptions.

  • Families can talk about the comedic appeal of putting modern characters and ideas into the ancient world -- is the point to make us laugh at the shortcomings of the past or to encourage us to look at our own era's ideas and assumptions with clearer eyes?
  • Why do you think the filmmakers chose to gofor a PG-13 rating instead of an R? Can you sense where the edges of the film weresmoothed down for a PG-13? How different do you think it would havebeen if it had stayed R?

The good stuff
  • message true0

    Messages: Much of the movie mocks prehistoric/Old Testament-era attitudes about everything from worship to gender relations ("give her a little tap on the head -- women really respond to that"). It's clearly satirical, but it can be difficult to separate the satire from the depiction of questionable acts. There's also lots of potty humor (including one character eating feces and another peeing on his own face), extensive discussion of sex, violence, and some strong racial and gay stereotyping. It's all meant in fun, but it's regrettably not that funny.

  • rolemodels true0

    Role models: Although the two main characters generally mean well, they're not really meant to be seen as role models -- Zed acts rashly and doesn't consider the consequences of his behavior, while Oh is a little too passive and often gets caught up in situations against his will. Women are frequently objectified, and characters are routinely portrayed in stereotypical fashion.

What to watch for
  • violence false3

    Violence: Scuffling, mostly for comedic purposes. Cain repeatedly beats his brother Abel with a stone, a man is speared in the shoulder, virgins are hurled into a sacrificial flame (a high priest doused with oil also wanders a little too close...), characters are stoned in public, a woman is punched in the face, characters are attacked by a cougar and a snake, a soothsayer reads bloody entrails, characters are whipped, and prisoners are hung upside down.

  • sex false4

    Sex: Extensive discussion of sex, sexual acts, and techniques; many jokes about "sodomy," as much of the plot takes place in the ancient city of Sodom. References to "laying with"; at one point it's implied that a character has "lain with" their mother. One character explains that she's "into girls," plus other references to homosexual acts (including between priests and boys). Also references to coerced sex, orgies, enuchs, and virginity (and its absence). Kissing, scantily clad women and men. Discussion of castration, circumcision, and more.

  • language false3

    Language: Pretty frequent strong language, including "suck," "a--hole," "ass," "f--ked the pooch," "s--t," "crap," "hell," "dick," "poop," "bastards," 'bulls--t," and more. Discussions of "sodomy."

  • consumerism false0

    Consumerism: Not applicable

  • drugsalcoholtobacco false3

    Drinking, drugs and smoking: Characters drink wine and liquor and smoke pipes. References to "killer hemp."