Focus Features | Release Date: November 2, 2018
7.6
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Generally favorable reviews based on 30 Ratings
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10
united001Nov 10, 2018
I attended this movie showing with a good friend who is gay but had not read the book upon which the movie is based and only had vague awareness of anything specific but the general theme of gay conversion therapy. By halfway through theI attended this movie showing with a good friend who is gay but had not read the book upon which the movie is based and only had vague awareness of anything specific but the general theme of gay conversion therapy. By halfway through the movie, he had to leave the theater for a short period of time because the movie upset him. Turns out although he was never in formal gay conversion therapy he told me that the religiosity of the movie was accurate so much that it was like watching a bit of a nightmare of his own experiences in religious circles as well as with his own father. At the end of the movie, he stated that he was very glad to have seen the movie, but like a PTSD survivor, he said that he would never watch the movie again. He did comment that he would consider sending a copy of the movie upon its release in that manner to his father who in many ways resembled Jared's father. I found the movie slow in places and it does jump back and forth through time, but that is how the book was written by Mr. Conley. I have not seen the other gay conversion movie recently released. This movie takes seriously what "But I'm A Cheerleader" made fun of and was entirely useless to point out the extreme emotional damage done by such practices that still go on today and are not labeled as crimes of child abuse, which is what gay conversion attempts really are. The acting was off the charts good. Lucas Hedges perfection. Nicole Kidman, Russell Crowe spectacular. Joel Edgerton was spectacular. The score is superb, Troye Sivan very good in his minor role, but his singing as always perfect for the occasion. In my opinion, Boy Erased took a good book that was somewhat muted in emotion until the very end and used it to create an extremely powerful screenplay that is both appropriately emotional as well as instructive in a way the movies sometimes need to be when such ignorance such as gay conversion therapy needs a voice to point out what society still allows that is still so wrong on so many levels.
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9
Compi24Dec 4, 2018
Actor-turned-actor/director Joel Edgerton follows up his 2015 chiller "The Gift" with a film that holds a surprising candle to it in terms of shock value. But what makes "Boy Erased" more sobering, important, and -- ultimately -- better thanActor-turned-actor/director Joel Edgerton follows up his 2015 chiller "The Gift" with a film that holds a surprising candle to it in terms of shock value. But what makes "Boy Erased" more sobering, important, and -- ultimately -- better than its predecessor, is the unshakably sobering truth behind the events depicted in the film. Edgerton's adaptation of the eponymous memoir is, simply put, one of the most impactful, moving, and significant cinematic experiences of the year for me. It's not the easiest watch, strictly speaking, but I'm glad I did see it.
1 of 1 users found this helpful10
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9
Brent_MarchantNov 17, 2018
A well-made fact-based drama that effectively skewers the fallacy of conversion therapy without becoming shrill, resorting to cliches or getting tied up in rhetoric either before or against the idea. With fine performances by Lucas Hedges,A well-made fact-based drama that effectively skewers the fallacy of conversion therapy without becoming shrill, resorting to cliches or getting tied up in rhetoric either before or against the idea. With fine performances by Lucas Hedges, Russell Crowe, Nicole Kidman and Joel Edgerton, the film delivers a solid, well-told story, full of empathy, sincerity and heart by all concerned while exposing a sham treatment for what it sadly is. This strong awards season contender is sure to give many other laudable releases a run for their money.
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9
MarkHReviewsDec 6, 2018
Fortunately and unfortunately, “Boy Erased” is a true story. Unfortunate because the trauma and suffering inflicted on the main character are based on the author’s real-world experiences. Fortunate because the entire film is imbued with anFortunately and unfortunately, “Boy Erased” is a true story. Unfortunate because the trauma and suffering inflicted on the main character are based on the author’s real-world experiences. Fortunate because the entire film is imbued with an unmistakable authenticity that is riveting to watch.

Based on the book by the same name, (author Garrard Conley becomes Jared Eamons in the film) the story chronicles Jared’s late-adolescent awkwardness and his increasing suspicion that he is gay. Jared’s father (Russell Crowe), a Baptist minister who also runs the local Ford dealership, believes that homosexuality is sin and that the only way forward is to send Jared to a gay conversion camp. The results are heart-wrenching, with the young man earnestly, guilelessly trying to anchor his life in a belief system that rejects the core of his being. While Jared’s pain is heartbreaking, the screenplay creates no scapegoats, even if some would be well-deserved. Director-Writer-Actor Joel Edgerton has used extraordinary sensitivity in conveying the good intentions of all concerned. Even those running the conversion therapy program, which is a true horror show, are portrayed as earnest and sincere. Although no one is written off as stupid or evil, the consequences for Jared and the other unfortunates experiencing conversion therapy are no less devastating. In a too-bizarre-to-not-be-true postscript at the end of the film, it is noted that the aggressive leader of the gay conversion program now lives in Texas – with his husband.

It would be easy to suggest that “Boy Erased” is a star-making vehicle for Lucas Hedges as Jared. However, since he already has an Oscar nomination (for Manchester by the Sea, 2016) and key roles in three excellent recent films - Lady Bird, Three Billboards … and Mid90s – it’s impossible to suggest that he is a revelation. That said, his performance is absolutely magnificent. His totally convincing portrayal of adolescent confusion, earnest faith and burgeoning self-regard are the essence of this film’s excellence. In minor roles, Russell Crowe (Marshall Eamons) and Nicole Kidman (Nancy Eamons) make solid contributions. Kidman, particularly, as a strong Southern belle (a “steel magnolia” if you will) is particularly essential to the story and skillful in her performance.

In the final analysis, “Boy Erased” is not just a story about the difficulties of coming out in a conservative Southern community. The inevitable pain of that experience is effectively, honestly counterbalanced by the demonstration that a mother’s love for her son can redeem even the most difficult situation.
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8
BHBarryNov 11, 2018
> "Boy Erased" is a film dealing with gay conversion therapy and stars Lucas Hedge, Nicole Kidman and Russell Crowe. Based on the real life memoir of writer Garred Conley the film was written and directed by Joel Edgerton who also plays one> "Boy Erased" is a film dealing with gay conversion therapy and stars Lucas Hedge, Nicole Kidman and Russell Crowe. Based on the real life memoir of writer Garred Conley the film was written and directed by Joel Edgerton who also plays one of the "counselors" in the controversial facility. This is not simply a message film but rather a deep and emotional exploration into the workings of an Arkansas family and the life style choices its members are forced to make. Kudos to Ms. Kidman and Mr. Crowe for their fine performances but the film really belongs to Lucas Hedge who, although subjugated to supporting roles in "Manchester by the Sea", "Lady Bird" and "3 Billboads in Montana", brings an honest and moving portrayal of a troubled teen seeking asylum and peace in a world not of his making. I give the film an 8.0 with a reminder that of our 50 states, 34 of them still have not banned this archaic and medieval attempt to change an individual's sexual preference.
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8
netflicDec 3, 2018
It is an honest and emotional drama about a homosexual young man being put thru a conversion therapy by his religious patents.
Based on real events.
I was a bit reluctant to see the movie, expecting it to be just another Hollywood bashing of
It is an honest and emotional drama about a homosexual young man being put thru a conversion therapy by his religious patents.
Based on real events.
I was a bit reluctant to see the movie, expecting it to be just another Hollywood bashing of Christianity. Went to see it by accident: wanted to see Rome but it was sold out.
I am glad I saw this film. It is done with great actors and lots of talent.
What are you expected to do when you believe in God, know that homosexuality is a sin but you also love you child and try to protect him or her from harm? Are you ready to believe in God *less* or to loose you child? It is an extremely difficult choice. Yet you have to make such a choice because there is no room for compromise.
There are plenty of big names in this movie:
Joel Edgerton is not only a director for this film (this is his directorial debut) but he also co-wrote the script and was one of the stars there.
Nicole Kidman, Lucas Hedges, Russel Crowe, to name a few. As you can see, the cast is very impressive, and they deliver.

Overall, it is an excellent movie about decent people struggling to do what they think it is right.
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8
BrianMcCriticNov 23, 2018
Boy Erased is one of the scariest horror films of the year. The performances are all strong and Joel Edgerton follows up The Gift with another well directed film. I found myself getting more and more angry as this film went on and that is aBoy Erased is one of the scariest horror films of the year. The performances are all strong and Joel Edgerton follows up The Gift with another well directed film. I found myself getting more and more angry as this film went on and that is a compliment to everyone involved. Overall a solid 8 an A-.
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7
moviemitch96Nov 17, 2018
Joel Edgerton wrote, starred in, and directed this film about a young man who finds himself coming out as gay to his parents following a traumatic experience with another man at college. He is subsequently sent to a gay conversion therapyJoel Edgerton wrote, starred in, and directed this film about a young man who finds himself coming out as gay to his parents following a traumatic experience with another man at college. He is subsequently sent to a gay conversion therapy center run by a highly religious therapist who is much more harsh and judgmental than he initially appears. This is such important and tender subject matter that I was hoping the film wouldn't have shyed away from as much in favor of focusing more on melodramatic moments, but there are still a couple of scenes that really left a big impact and showcased the difficulties and oppressions those in the LGBT community face all the time sadly. The acting is also the film's biggest highlight, with Lucas Hedges giving a tender and at times highly moving lead performance, as well as some great supporting performances from Nicole Kidman and Russell Crowe as his parents. Edgerton's turn as the intimidating religious head therapist of the conversion center also leaves a strong and lasting impact during several scenes. Overall, it's themes and subject matter are played out relatively safe often times unfortunately, but it's the committed cast and their great scenes and performances alongside each other that really makes the film.
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6
TVJerryNov 22, 2018
In August, a movie about a teenage lesbian going to gay conversion therapy played theatres (The Miseducation of Cameron Post). With its star power and autobiographical credentials, I naturally assumed this movie would be more effective. I wasIn August, a movie about a teenage lesbian going to gay conversion therapy played theatres (The Miseducation of Cameron Post). With its star power and autobiographical credentials, I naturally assumed this movie would be more effective. I was wrong. Lucas Hedges plays the son of a Baptist pastor (Russell Crowe, the most compelling performance in the film) who's sent to this film's version of conversion. Too much of the story is spent with the leader of the therapy (played by the film's writer/director Joel Edgerton) ranting, with too little time spent to develop the characters. There are lots of close-ups of a mostly-deadpan Hedges that lack emotional heft, although Nicole Kidman, as his mom, does brighten up the screen. Sadly, the solemn pacing and dreary attitude keep this film from ever getting much emotional traction.
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6
The3AcademySinsDec 8, 2018
In spite of powerful performances from Lucas Hedges, Nicole Kidman, and Joel Edgerton, Boy Erased flounders with it's over padded and overly dramatic script. It's two hour run time feels like three and a half, thanks to many scenes thatIn spite of powerful performances from Lucas Hedges, Nicole Kidman, and Joel Edgerton, Boy Erased flounders with it's over padded and overly dramatic script. It's two hour run time feels like three and a half, thanks to many scenes that either don't go anywhere, or subvert Lucas Hedge's character's journey as opposed to highlighting it or world building.

While you wouldn't think that world building wouldn't be a necessity in a real-life drama, I found that a lot of the character motivations and behaviors were completely alien to me. Russel Crowe's character suffers the most from this, and you never really get inside his head. You also never understand why these gay conversion camps operate in the way that they do. As a result, a lot of scenes are frustrating, or overly talky, or take the cheap way out with an overly dramatic delivery of a line or development of a plot element we never see again. While there were many moments I enjoyed, there were an overwhelming amount of moments that I could have slept through and not missed anything in the movie.
1 of 1 users found this helpful10
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6
MetaflixDec 8, 2018
The primary intention going into 'Boy Erased' was to see if Lucas Hedges could solidify himself as an unquestionably talented actor and--for the first time--carry a film as its leading man.

He wasn't very compelling in 'Manchester By the
The primary intention going into 'Boy Erased' was to see if Lucas Hedges could solidify himself as an unquestionably talented actor and--for the first time--carry a film as its leading man.

He wasn't very compelling in 'Manchester By the Sea' (despite an Oscar nomination!). Alternatively, he was terrific in 'Ladybird' and 'Mid90s.' So what's the final verdict after seeing his latest performance? Hedges is undoubtedly a top-notch actor and his recent string of well-developed roles in equally fantastic films is no fluke.

Everything else about 'Boy Erased' is a bit more pedestrian than we had hoped, but we still remain appreciative of the fact that Joel Edgerton was able to bring such a important project to fruition as it's writer, director, and supporting actor. For those who really enjoyed this film, we also recommend seeing 'The Miseducation of Cameron Post,' which is the better version of the two.
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5
GreatMartinNov 16, 2018
This past summer there was a film about a young lesbian sent to a Christian 'conversion camp' "The Miseducation of Cameron Post" and in my review I wrote: "Before the film started there was a preview of a coming movie called “Boy Erased”This past summer there was a film about a young lesbian sent to a Christian 'conversion camp' "The Miseducation of Cameron Post" and in my review I wrote: "Before the film started there was a preview of a coming movie called “Boy Erased” about the son of a Baptist preacher who is forced to participate in a church-supported conversion starring Lucan Hedges, Nicole Kidman, Russell Crowe and Cherry Jones. I am hoping this is what I wanted “Miseducation” to be and wasn’t." Unfortunately "Boy Erased" fails in the same way that "Miseducation" did in not going deeper into what happens at these 'conversion' camps except in a fleeting way.

It certainly goes further into the child and his parents with the father being a preacher and the mother and 'obedient' Christian wife. With the father played by Russell Crowe and the mother played by Nicole Kidman, each having their moments, the relationship with their son hits many an emotional note.

Lucas Hedges, as the son, gets every nuance of a boy who doesn't know himself, who goes to a place where people are trying to make him something he isn't. We meet him just before he is sent off to the camp and because the movie is not told in a linear fashion it takes time to find out he was sexually assaulted and his father finding out about that is what starts his going to the camp. Hedges goes through the complete arc of a boy becoming a man accepting himself as he is and expecting others to and if they won't not being in his life.

A cameo by Cherry Jones got applause from the mainly gay audience. Talking about that audience it was one of the biggest crowds I have seen at a matinee without it being a holiday show and most of the after talk in the lobby was about the recent spate of movies being non-linear and photographed so darkly. Also, Joel Edgerton who directed and wrote the screenplay based on the memoir by Gerrard Conley plays one of the camp's therapists carrying on the latest fad of one person doing too many jobs on a film.

The last half hour of "Boy Erased" is worth sitting through the first slow-moving emotionally divorced hour and a half. What positive thing many writers and directors are doing is adding additional information at the end of based on a true story film and this does supply the audience with a lot of information about the results of these camps, what has happened to the people involved and, in this case, how much Russell Crowe looks like the boy's real father!

I am still waiting for a movie to really look at the gay conversion therapy camps, what they do, the physical and emotional abuse they put the children through and all the money they make.
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4
LamontRaymondDec 1, 2018
I have to agree with the Guardian critic here. It's a plodding picture, and there's just not a lot of character development going on at all. Highly disappointing.
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