October 28th, 2005



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Still of Vincent D'Onofrio, Tilda Swinton and Chase Offerle in ThumbsuckerStill of Vincent D'Onofrio in ThumbsuckerTilda Swinton at event of ThumbsuckerStill of Lou Taylor Pucci in ThumbsuckerStill of Lou Taylor Pucci in ThumbsuckerStill of Keanu Reeves and Lou Taylor Pucci in Thumbsucker

Justin throws himself and everyone around him into chaos when he attempts to break free from his addiction to his thumb.

Release Year: 2005

Rating: 6.7/10 (14,004 voted)

Critic's Score: 69/100

Director: Mike Mills

Stars: Lou Taylor Pucci, Tilda Swinton, Vincent D'Onofrio

Justin is a teenager boy, who has an oral obsession with his thumb. His mother seems to be a normal housekeeper, but she has her own obsessions as well, like a crush on a TV-star. The only person who's aware of Justin's problem is his father, manager in a store, but none of his advices seem to be working for Justin. The kid is signed up in a debate workshop, but the thing isn't going well, because he has his mind in a pretty classmate and, of course, in his thumb, affecting all the rest of his classes. So, Justin is a loner kid in the school, who prefers to lock himself in the bathroom and suck his thumb. Justin's dentist, a mystical-hippie person, will try to help to overcome his thumb problem, through the hypnosis. But the school's psychologist will diagnose Justin with the Attention Deficit Disorder, and will prescribe him some drugs. Suddenly, Justin's problem with his thumb will disappear...

Writers: Walter Kirn, Mike Mills

Ted Beckman - Stoner Guy
Benjamin Bratt - Matt Schramm
Vincent D'Onofrio - Mike Cobb
Arvin V. Entena - Perry Lyman's Assistant
Tyler Gannon - Stoner Chick
Kelli Garner - Rebecca
Allen Go - Biology Teacher
Dakota Goldhor - Girl on Plane
Walter Kirn - Debate Judge
Kit Koenig - Principal
Sarah Lucht - English Teacher
Eric Normington - Hotel Desk Clerk
Nancy O'Dell - Herself
Lanette Prazeau - School Nurse
Lou Taylor Pucci - Justin Cobb (as Lou Pucci)


Official Website: Sony Pictures Classics [United States] |

Release Date: 28 October 2005

Filming Locations: Beaverton, Oregon, USA

Box Office Details

Budget: $4,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend: $85,327 (USA) (18 September 2005) (9 Screens)

Gross: $1,325,073 (USA) (4 December 2005)

Technical Specs


Did You Know?

The director saw over 100 actors for the role of Justin.

Errors made by characters (possibly deliberate errors by the filmmakers): It is stated that Ritalin and cocaine have only three molecules different. Both are actually single molecules. Although similar in shape, there are several atoms difference.

Dr. Perry Lyman: I stopped trying to be anything. I accepted myself in all my human disorder. You might wanna do the same.

User Review

good movie after all

Rating: 7/10

I was really expecting to not like Thumbsucker. I don't care for "teen angst" movies. Now having seen Thumbsucker, I'm really confused as to why Sony would market it in this genre (teen angst = teen $, I guess) and why its below the 5-star mark here at IMDb. It's really a remarkable movie. When it hits its stride, about 30 minutes in, it gets to places that few movies ever get to with respects to growing up, family dynamics, being a teen, being an adult, just generally being human.

When I saw Thumbsucker, the screening was followed up with Q&A with the director and a few of the actors. Apparently they were all pretty dedicated to their rehearsals and developing the character's relationships. Their hard work paid off with an exceptional movie.


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