Reviews provided by RottenTomatoes
Detroit Free Press:
[Cunningham] has preserved his book's romantic, idealistic integrity, as well as its acknowledgment of the role music played in forming a generation.
It may sound like grade-A melodrama, but A Home at the End of the World turns out to be much more ambitious -- and, unfortunately, less interesting.
Vital nuances are lost, and what's left, despite good intentions and some redeeming qualities, is cloying sentimentality wrenched from dated material.
Never less than watchable and often quite moving, especially when Colin Farrell (as Bobby) or Sissy Spacek (Alice) are on screen.
San Francisco Chronicle:
The problem is not just that Bobby is hard to believe but that he's not interesting enough to make us want to believe him.
Ebert & Roeper:
... everything about this movie was so contrived and it feels so written.
Although the actors do a magnificent job with the piffle, the characters hardly ever act the way real people do in the situations they are presented with. They act, instead, the way characters in a movie act.
Roberts, Farrell, and Penn don't appear to be in the least bit self-consumed; you really believe they're thinking about each other.
Los Angeles Times:
An emotional wipeout, the effect of which may well prove indelible, much like the films of James Dean.
Most of the movie feels like Farrell's performance: deeply sincere, and more showy than convincing.
Globe and Mail:
The problem here isn't exactly a descent into sentimentality; instead, it's more like a surfeit of niceness, the relentless kind that leaves no room for emotion, even cheap emotion.
Dallas Morning News:
The best reasons [to see it] have to be the subtle, nuanced performances of Mr. Farrell, newcomer Dallas Roberts, a never-better Robin Wright Penn and the endearing evergreen Pride of Quitman, Texas, Sissy Spacek.
The jarring and crucially weak link is Farrell, a talented actor woefully miscast and comically uncomfortable here.
A resonant chamber piece for its talented actors.
New York Daily News:
Features strong performances from Colin Farrell as bi-guy Bobby, Robin Wright Penn as hetero Clare and Dallas Roberts as gay Jonathan.
New York Observer:
Lyrical, sweet-natured, touching, sexy and very funny, A Home at the End of the World is also beautifully served by an exemplary cast.
New York Times:
So thoroughly decent in its intentions and so tactful in its methods that people are likely to persuade themselves that it's better than it is, which is not very good.
Despite some very good acting in most roles, the people on the screen seem like types with labels.
Farrell is astonishing in the movie, not least because the character is such a departure from everything he has done before.
We never fully know what those characters are thinking or feeling.
Minneapolis Star Tribune:
We give the filmmakers a lot of credit for reaching out of their comfort zone, even if they reached a bit too far.
Sincere, heartfelt and mostly hopeless, A Home At The End Of The World is a well-intentioned wetnap of a movie about the re-configured post-nuclear family.
An intriguing look at an unconventional definition of family, whose members don't speak in Hollywood cliches.
In the book, the strong-but-silent Bobby's interior monologues gave him a semblance of an inner life, but Cunningham's Cliff's Notes adaptation shrinks the character to a monosyllabic man-child with a puppy-dog stare.
What keeps the movie going, far longer than the screenplay deserves, are fine performances all around.
An adaptation of another Cunningham book that, like The Hours, comes with its own set of challenges, which director Michael Mayer handles forthrightly, with precise emotional pitch.