6.6/10
19,424
93 user 115 critic

Thumbsucker (2005)

Justin throws himself and everyone around him into chaos when he attempts to break free from his addiction to his thumb.

Director:

Writers:

(novel),

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5 wins & 4 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Ted Beckman ...
Stoner Guy
...
...
Arvin V. Entena ...
Perry Lyman's Assistant
Tyler Gannon ...
Stoner Chick
...
Allen Go ...
Biology Teacher
...
Girl on Plane (as Dakota Goldhor)
...
Debate Judge
...
Principal
Sarah Lucht ...
English Teacher
Eric Normington ...
Hotel Desk Clerk
...
Herself
Lanette Prazeau ...
School Nurse
...
Justin Cobb (as Lou Pucci)
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Storyline

Justin is a teenager boy, who has an oral obsession with his thumb. His mother seems to be a normal housekeeper, but she has her own obsessions as well, like a crush on a TV-star. The only person who's aware of Justin's problem is his father, manager in a store, but none of his advices seem to be working for Justin. The kid is signed up in a debate workshop, but the thing isn't going well, because he has his mind in a pretty classmate and, of course, in his thumb, affecting all the rest of his classes. So, Justin is a loner kid in the school, who prefers to lock himself in the bathroom and suck his thumb. Justin's dentist, a mystical-hippie person, will try to help to overcome his thumb problem, through the hypnosis. But the school's psychologist will diagnose Justin with the Attention Deficit Disorder, and will prescribe him some drugs. Suddenly, Justin's problem with his thumb will disappear, becoming an hyperactive genius, winning several debate contests and the admiration from his... Written by Alejandro Frias

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Genres:

Comedy | Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for drug/alcohol use and sexuality involving teens, language and a disturbing image | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Details

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Language:

Release Date:

7 October 2005 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Age Difficile Obscur  »

Box Office

Budget:

$4,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$85,327 (USA) (18 September 2005)

Gross:

$1,325,073 (USA) (4 December 2005)
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Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Director Mike Mills saw over one hundred actors for the role of Justin. See more »

Goofs

It is stated that Ritalin and cocaine have only three molecules different. Both are actually single molecules. Although similar in shape, there are several atoms difference. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Audrey Cobb: You're good at stuff like this. I have to find something distinctive about myself.
Justin Cobb: You're beautiful, Audrey.
Audrey Cobb: Seriously.
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Crazy Credits

A special thank you to the following people and organizations for their support: ... Everyone at Rock Paper Scissors ... Everyone at Tualatin High School ... See more »

Connections

Referenced in Ebert Presents: At the Movies: Episode #2.1 (2011) See more »

Soundtracks

Trouble
Written by Cat Stevens
Performed by Elliott Smith
Courtesy of DreamWorks Records
Under license from Universal Music Enterprises
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User Reviews

 
Not your typical teenager
8 October 2005 | by (New York) – See all my reviews

"Thumbsucker", one of the most original movies playing locally, deserves to be seen by a wider audience. Mike Mills, its director, has adapted Walter Kirn's novel with honesty and integrity, giving the viewer a picture of a young man and his family at a difficult time in their lives and how they relate and cope with the situation. This is no typical teenage coming of age as interpreted by Hollywood.

The film is an intelligent account of Justin's life and what makes him act the way he does. His home life seems to be the root of all the problems and his addiction to suck his thumb is a way to escape reality because he finds comfort in doing so. Justin is clearly a teenager in turmoil because he doesn't fit in the large scheme of things.

"Thumbsucker" makes a valid point about how easy it is to prescribe drugs for what seems to be afflicting Justin: Attention Deficit Disorder. In fact, what those pills are doing are creating a false security blanket for the young man, who awakens in time to realize the drug he is taking a form of "speed".

The work by Lou Taylor Pucci in the film is amazing. As Justin he shows an intelligence and naturalness well beyond his years. Tilda Swinton and Vincent D'Onofrio are seen as the confused parents. Keanu Reeves and Vince Vaughn make excellent appearances in roles that are different to what they usually play.

The film work because the good ensemble Mike Mills assembled for the movie.


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