Search - Pumpkin on DVD

Actors: Christina Ricci, Hank Harris, Brenda Blethyn, Dominique Swain, Marisa Coughlan
Directors: Adam Larson Broder, Anthony Abrams
Genres: Comedy, Drama
R     2002     1hr 53min

Silly, sweet, farcical and subversive, Pumpkin pushes the boundaries of teen melodrama to anabsurd pitch, resulting in a film that is bracing, hilariously funny, and quite often, and in unexpected ways, touching (A.O. Sc...  more »

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Movie Details

Actors: Christina Ricci, Hank Harris, Brenda Blethyn, Dominique Swain, Marisa Coughlan
Directors: Adam Larson Broder, Anthony Abrams
Creators: Christina Ricci, Adam Larson Broder, Albert Berger, Andrea Sperling, Betsy Danbury, Francis Ford Coppola
Genres: Comedy, Drama
Sub-Genres: Romantic Comedies, School Days, Love & Romance
Studio: MGM (Video & DVD)
Format: DVD - Color,Full Screen,Widescreen,Anamorphic - Closed-captioned,Subtitled
DVD Release Date: 11/05/2002
Original Release Date: 01/01/2002
Theatrical Release Date: 01/01/2002
Release Year: 2002
Run Time: 1hr 53min
Screens: Color,Full Screen,Widescreen,Anamorphic
Number of Discs: 1
SwapaDVD Credits: 1
Total Copies: 1
Members Wishing: 0
MPAA Rating: R (Restricted)
Languages: English
Subtitles: English, Spanish, French

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Movie Reviews

Taken too seriously
Kero351 | Phoenix, AZ, USA | 04/04/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)

"If some of you haven't noticed, this movie isn't meant to be hardcore reality. Its supposed to be a story, and thats what the directors wanted. Not a detailed look into the life of a surroity, not a perfect student, just a normal girl who falls in love but doesnt want to really. I thought this was a really good movie. It's supposed to show almost a sense of surreality. I never would have thought everyone whould have such negatory reviews toward it. Perhaps all these people are just like the people in the movie. Afraid of something diffrent."
My interpretation...
J. F. Rick | Atlanta, GA USA | 06/02/2006
(5 out of 5 stars)

"If you'll notice, this movie gets incredibly mixed reviews with some people hailing it as "Brilliant!" while others call it exploitive or horribly uneven. I have a theory that can reconcile these two interpretations.

(Spoilers ahead) My interpretation is simple: Carolyn succeeds at suicide. The rest of the movie, after the suicide attempt, is simply her imagined happy ending as she slips into the beyond.

This perspective explains many of the problems others have with the movie. A common complaint is that the ending does not match the beginning. But, if the ending is Carolyn's fantasy, it doesn't have to. Until the suicide episode, the movie plays out as a dark comedy. Brenda Blethyn chasing Christina Ricci while shouting "you raped my son!" is as funny as anything Heathers offers. After the suicide episode, Pumpkin becomes a farce. The fight and Ken's redemption after his car accident is incredibly funny as farce. Ken becomes Pumpkin's coach in no time at all! Given a realistic timeline, this could never have happened. But, as a dream of Carolyn's, this makes perfect sense. The farce is picking on the cliched plot devices of melodramatic made-for-TV movies.

I enjoyed both the beginning and ending of this movie, but only if I view it from this angle. Then, it actually becomes a consistent movie. It is a dark comedy throughout. Is there anything more darkly comedic than Carolyn's farcical death dream?

Like Adaptation, the movie does not confine itself to a single reality. So, it can be confusing for audience members who are used to the one-reality convention. If there is a flaw to Pumpkin, it is that the filmmakers are a bit too subtle about the transition. I didn't arrive at this interpretation until the day after I saw the movie for the first time."
...Who can you laugh at?
Celeste Wetzel | 11/21/2002
(5 out of 5 stars)

"First off, a minor correction for the offical review of this film. These two may be first time co-directors, but this wasn't their first film. They're the writing team behind "Dead Man on Campus".And no, a lot of people aren't going to like this movie. If you liked "But I'm a Cheerleader", you'll probably love it. I did. The characters are drawn in much the same way: earnest, but completely lunatic.The subject matter is also, like 're-orienting' queerfolk, generally considered not appropriate comedy material, and as such, there are some folks who will hate this movie no matter how the subject is approached, because there "just isn't anything funny about the mentally disabled". I thought it did a good job of staying between the sort of flat-out mean fun that "Something About Mary" made of disabled kids, and the smarmy "our poor wounded angels" attitude so many people adopt when portraying the mentally disabled. This movie treats their subjects like normal people - some of them are mean, some of them are nice, some of them are better than others."
Who needs character develpoment? Look Deeper.
Celeste Wetzel | 04/09/2004
(4 out of 5 stars)

"Despite the obvious lack of character development, which it hardly needed, this movie was very touching, and at times funny, but not from the "American Pie" point of view that it seemed to be billed as in the previews. In truth the movie was not at all what it seemed, a shallow attempt at risky comedy, in fact I found it quite profound, and at times a bit deep. One of the points that reviewers have stated is that the movie needed more character development, and to that I ask where? With the exception of Pumpkin and at times Carolyn, all the characters where shallow, ignorant, and very stereotypical Southern California rich yuppies who care more about appearances and judge people by them rather than what is inside. And, in reality, that is all the story is about. Pumpkin, who is slightly mentally challenged, is really more introverted than retarded, this from years of repression from his shallow mother. Enter Carolyn, who despite being extremely intelligent, finds herself fitting in with the shallow crowd, being popular, vice being herself, but this separates her from the rest of the characters who, though popular, really have no moral standing and are too quick to judge the new romance between Carolyn and Pumpkin. In the end, though, we find that she has been the inspiration to all of the characters and amazingly, and painfully, they all learn a little something from her and finally begin to see though the shallowness of their past.
On a stranger note, there was one particular quirk in the movie I must address, because, from a humor stand point it is pretty funny, but from a drama/realistic stand point, not so much. After Carolyn's ex is humiliated by Pumpkin at the dance, he, the ex, runs off to his car. His car appears to be a charger or some other car of a similar make. He swerves, and next thing you see is supposed to be his car flying off the cliff, however it's a limo now, which after a few seconds bursts into flames and crashes on the rocks below. The next day he is in the hospital, not a scratch, bruise or burn on his body. So, was this a metaphor? a dream? a bit of "Hollywood" joking? or jus bad film making? I also found a bit of interest in the look of the film, how the characters all looked to be from the late 50's or 60's and a line that Carolyn says at the dance "Pumpkin's not riding on the back of the bus any more", seems to point that the movie may have originally been written as a interracial work, but as that is not the hot topic it once was, it was rewritten to be a bit racier by today's standards. But maybe it's just me."