Box art for Simon Birch

Simon Birch

  • Rated PG


The smallest kid in town, knows that he was born to do something big!

Rotten Tomatoes® scores

  • Critic Score
  • Audience Score

common sense

ON for kids age 10
Drinking, drugs, & smoking
2 out of 5
2 out of 5
Positive messages
4 out of 5
Positive role models
3 out of 5
2 out of 5
2 out of 5

Tearjerker is touching but too intense for younger kids.

what parents need to know

Parents need to know that the lead character, Simon Birch, is a dwarf who is the subject of continuous intolerance and ridicule by adults, children, and the local religious leader. The film depicts the 12-year-old boy as a child who is wise beyond his years and believes that God has made him small for a higher purpose. Simon's best friend, Joe, was born out of wedlock and is also an outcast in the community. Language includes words like "s--t" and "bastard," and there are references to an adolescent girl's breasts. An accidental death at the hands of Simon leads Joe on a search of his biological father. There's a bus accident where children are in peril, and a main character dies saving everyone. The movie is based on John Irving's A Prayer for Owen Meany, and fans of the book should know that the movie is very different.

what families can talk about

  • Families can talk about how the movie portrays children with physical challenges and the reactions of the physically-abled community. What does your own religion and culture tell you about those with physical disabilities and those with higher callings?
  • Discuss child neglect, the death of a parent, and how guardianship works. What message does the movie send about the difference between a biological parent and an adoptive parent?

movie reviews from Rotten Tomatoes®

  • Tomatometer®

    reviews counted: 18
    see all Simon Birch reviews
  • Audience


Top Critic Reviews


- Amy Taubin, Village Voice, Saturday, January 1, 2000


- Dennis Harvey, Variety, Saturday, October 18, 2008


- Derek Adams, Time Out, Thursday, February 9, 2006

Audience Reviews

2 stars

Simon Birch, is a comedy-drama that tries with intensity move the audience and captivate the heart, but the sentimentalist spoiler the entire movie. Despite have good intentions, Simon Birch becomes boring and awfully emotional. Rotten.

- fb100002359227440, Monday, November 21, 2011

2 stars

With good intentions and well meaning written all over it, this one is like a bowl of corn flakes, a little soggy. "Boyhood chums face some of life's challenges" might be a kind way to describe it, and though it has it's moments ultimately it sinks under the weight of it's own corn.

- ApeneckFletcher, Wednesday, June 15, 2011

0 star

A very boring and unspired film. This is suposed to be emotionally charged, hell this is just a stupid boring film with no direction. The midget in this film is annoying and ugly as fuck, and the storyline and is beyond terrible, sappy and stupid. Theres some terrific actors in this film, which are wasted on this sorry excuse of a film. I've never seen something so boring, and hokey. I can think of a lot of better family films than this one. This is the worst family film ever. Pass on this one.

- TheDudeLebowski65, Saturday, August 28, 2010