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In Director Tony Kaye's Detachment, Adrien Brody stars as Henry Barthes, an educator with a true talent to connect with his students. Yet Henry has chosen to bury his gift. By spending his days as a substitute teacher, he conveniently avoids any emotional connections by never staying anywhere long enough to form an attachment to either students or colleagues. When a new assignment places him at a public school where a frustrated, burned-out administration has created an apathetic student body, Henry soon becomes a role model to the disaffected youth. In finding an unlikely emotional… More

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Rotten Tomatoes Score: 57%

Critic Reviews from Rotten Tomatoes

"A loud, grating wallow in dime-store despair."
‑ Rene Rodriguez, Miami Herald
"There's something weirdly effective about the artistic desperation, which includes inserts of chalkboard animation and to-the-camera testimonials."
‑ Robert Abele, Los Angeles Times
"A bizarre, well intentioned mess, at the very least, Detachment is never dull...even as the film is bad, it's compulsively watchable."
‑ Cory Everett, The Playlist
"Even a talented director like Tony Kaye (American History X) and a great performance from Brody can't save a mess like this."
‑ Jeff Beck,
"The acting is excellent but the movie is the sort of thing that gives pessimism a bad name."
‑ Philip French, Observer [UK]
"The film is guilty of reverse sentimentality, where the relentless unhappiness comes to seem as manufactured and artificial as the schmaltz in a romcom."
‑ Rick Groen, Globe and Mail
"Everywhere you turn in Detachment, someone is trying to make you feel like hell."
‑ Mary F. Pols, TIME Magazine
"It's a film so well paced with a message so relevant that it deserves an audience bigger than what it got and it deserves more of an emotional impact than will resonant throughout."
‑ Ashley Norris, HeyUGuys
"Detachment is the sort of film-of-the-week that ought to appeal to anyone who loves movies in the purest sense."
‑ Graham Young, Birmingham Post
"Despite its title and central theme, Tony Kaye's complicated lament for values abandoned and children betrayed leaves little room for indifference."
‑ Anton Bitel, Film4
"Detachment gets an A for enthusiasm but a C for execution."
‑ Linda Barnard, Toronto Star
"Detachment gets to you. It hits hard."
‑ Peter Travers, Rolling Stone
"While Adrien Brody gives it his all in his performance, the film suffers greatly from an attempt to equalize its multiple plotlines."
‑ Jeff Beck, We Got This Covered
"Detachment has such original energy and is so infused with righteous anger that it proves hard to dismiss."
‑ Donald Clarke, Irish Times
"Admittedly, the film is heavy-handed in places, but it still makes you sit up and take notice."
‑ Stella Papamichael, Radio Times
More reviews for Detachment on Rotten Tomatoes