Box art for Hesher


  • Rated R
  • HD and SD formats available


Loud music. Pornography. Lighting fires. These are a few of Hesher's favorite things. And they are what Hesher brings into the lives of TJ, and his father Paul when he takes up residence in the garage uninvited.

Rotten Tomatoes® scores

  • Critic Score
  • Audience Score

common sense

0 out of 5
Drinking, drugs, & smoking
4 out of 5
5 out of 5
Positive messages
0 out of 5
4 out of 5
Positive role models
0 out of 5
3 out of 5

Coming-of-age dramedy is too dark, edgy for kids.

what parents need to know

Parents need to know that HESHER is a very bleak, dark comedy/drama set in a grimy Southern California suburb, in some unspecified time near the present (there are no computers or cell phones on view). It deals with a grieving father and 13 year-old son after the death of the boy's mother. Into this family comes Hesher, a mysterious, long-haired metalhead with bad habits who eventually provides some perspective. The movie is filled with wall-to-wall foul language and graphic sexual innuendo (as well as some sexual images), and a somewhat negative attitude toward women. There is also some violence and general destruction, as well as cigarettes, beer-drinking, and pot-smoking. Nearly all of this occurs near or revolves around the 13 year-old. Parents should think twice before allowing any kids or teens to see this unsupervised.

what families can talk about

  • Families can talk about Hesher's behavior. What might cause him to smoke, drink, destroy things, talk about sex, and do other iffy things? Does he have a good side? What kind of role model is he?
  • What are the consequences of having 13-year-old T.J. be exposed to Hesher and his actions? What kind of effect does it have on him? How does he deal with his troubles? How does he deal with the bully at school?
  • What are the movie's messages? Are they clear amid the characters' behavior?

movie reviews from Rotten Tomatoes®

  • Tomatometer®

    reviews counted: 6
    see all Hesher reviews
  • Audience


Top Critic Reviews

Fresh: Gordon-Levitt's Hesher is raw destruction and aggro comedy punctuated with a blast of crunching metal.

- Amy Nicholson, Boxoffice Magazine, Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Fresh: exactly the kind of film I was hoping I'd see at Sundance

- Chris Bumbray, JoBlo's Movie Emporium, Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Fresh: It manages to succeed with a pastiche of great casting and an unapologetic slant towards being anti-touchy-feely. Until it needs to be.

- Erik Childress, Cinematical, Thursday, June 24, 2010

Audience Reviews

3 stars

A truly weird, but still watchable train-wreck of a film anchored by a more than capable cast, with Joseph Gordon-Levitt once again showing why he is one of the best actors working right now. There is a lot going on here, and the film could have done a slightly better job hinting at the fact that Hesher (Gordon-Levitt) might in fact be the more violent, older alter ego of young TJ (Devin Brochu), something I was hoping they would do, but for the most part this is powerful stuff. It does push the dramatic envelope a bit too much, notably at its ultra slow-motion finale, but as said, the title character is a unique and intriguing one, and Rainn Wilson (really liking his body of work performance wise recently), Natalie Portman (nails her part and does what she can with her character) and Brochu are all really terrific. Not a film for everyone, and it is not a fun one to sit through, but it is an unpredictable vehicle careening all over the place, and for some inexplicable reason, it stays in control of its own chaos and delivers some powerful, memorable scenes as a result.

- fb619846742, Friday, October 21, 2011

3 stars

Metallica tracks!! so interesting, big advantage , but what genre would this going to be? is it a family movie, drama, violent, sentimental, uncomfortable comedy ??!! really don't know, but I kind of liked it

- Crashinkov, Saturday, December 17, 2011

3 stars

A stereotypical badass shows a grief-stricken family how to live again. Devin Brochu as young TJ is quite sad and broken-hearted over his mom's death, but he and the script itself don't seem to know how to handle Hesher's badassery. There's just too much "What are you doing?" and "What are you doing here?" which is like the opposite but equally annoying, "Let me explain." There really is no rhyme or reason to Hesher's sociopathy. His actions aren't clearly to defend TJ nor to teach him a lesson. On a similar note, NaPo is kinda cute and dorky, but there's no real reason for it. Her character isn't particularly "different," nor do big-framed glasses make a dent on NaPo's She's All That face. Rainn Wilson is surprisingly catatonic as the father though, and the penultimate scene of the three men "taking a walk with Grandma" is predictable but nevertheless moving.

- aliceinpunderland, Sunday, July 15, 2012