June 25th, 2011

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Still of Joseph Gordon-Levitt in HesherStill of Joseph Gordon-Levitt in HesherStill of Natalie Portman and Devin Brochu in HesherStill of Spencer Susser in HesherHesher

A young boy has lost his mother and is losing touch with his father and the world around him. Then he meets Hesher who manages to make his life even more chaotic.

Release Year: 2010

Rating: 7.1/10 (15,538 voted)

Critic's Score: 45/100

Director: Spencer Susser

Stars: Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Devin Brochu, Natalie Portman

Hesher is a loner. He hates the world and everyone in it. He has long greasy hair and homemade tattoos. He is malnourished and smokes a lot of cigarettes. He likes fire and blowing things up. He lives in his van, until he meets TJ.

Writers: Spencer Susser, David Michôd

Joseph Gordon-Levitt - Hesher
Devin Brochu - T.J.
Rainn Wilson - Paul
Piper Laurie - Grandma
Natalie Portman - Nicole
Brendan Hill - Dustin
John Carroll Lynch - Larry
Monica Staggs - Mom
Mary Elizabeth Barrett - Meryl
Audrey Wasilewski - Coleen
Lyle Kanouse - Jack
Frank Collison - Funeral Director
Van Epperson - Angry Driver
Helen Slayton-Hughes - Mrs. Rosowski
Paul Bates - Mr. Elsberry

Taglines: Sometimes life gives you the finger and sometimes it gives you...


Official Website: Official site | Official site [Japan] |

Release Date: 25 June 2011

Filming Locations: Los Angeles, California, USA

Box Office Details

Budget: $7,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend: $126,046 (USA) (15 May 2011) (42 Screens)

Gross: $382,946 (USA) (31 July 2011)

Technical Specs


Did You Know?

Elephants make several appearances in the film. Rainn Wilson's character is watching a TV show about elephants and we hear them in the background, the car dealership has a large pink elephant on the roof and beside t.j's bed there is a figurine of another elephant.

Errors made by characters (possibly deliberate errors by the filmmakers): When Hesher is thrashing around in the pool reenacting a scene from Star Wars, he yells "R2! Shut down all the trash compactors on the detention level!". However, in the original Star Wars movie, Luke is talking to C-3PO on the comm unit, and is yelling "3PO", not "R2".

Hesher: You lost your wife. And you lost your mom. I lost my nut.

User Review

HESHER---best film I saw at Sundance 2010

Rating: 10/10

I saw "Hesher" at Sundance and your review is so far off the mark it is unbelievable. "Hesher" IS very original and very funny. It will also leave a lump in your throat. Believe me, I saw 12 films at Sundance and "Hesher" was far and away the best. Perhaps your reviewer was confused because "Hesher" is really both funny and serious and a clever script nails it on both counts. From the first frame until the ending, there is not one dull moment and the cast is fabulous. At first, the character "Hesher" is sort of not likable but the way that Joseph Gordon-Levitt plays him, with a ' Cary Grant-ish' twinkle in his eye and his tongue placed firmly in his cheek, you can't help but cheer for this twisted rocker. The rest of the cast is a really great ensemble...you want ORIGINAL! They are all playing "against type." Besides Joseph Gordon-Levitt's captivating performance there is Natalie Portman, playing a homely looser without self esteem. She is so good you would never dream that this poor thing is a major movie star. Then there is Rainn Wilson playing a part so totally different than his 'Dwight Schroot' on the 'Office" that, with the beard he wears, most people will not even know it's him. He plays a man that is so devistated by his recent loss that he hasn't really decided if he wants to keep on living or not. A wonderfully touching performance by an actor known mainly as a doofus on a TV show. Devin Brochu, who plays the young boy T.J., doesn't seem like he's acting at all. A great job of directing by Spencer Susser is evident by the way he has molded this young actor, with very little experience, into a character who's pain you can feel. Lastly, kudos are in order for Piper Laurie, the attractive young leading lady of yore (she played Paul Newman's girlfriend in the "Hustler") and more recently was the witch of a mother in "Carrie", who makes the grandmother who is slowly loosing her marbles, a great friend and confidant of Hesher. The two of them, the near-Alzheimerland grandma and the wild and crazy (like a fox) Hesher are two very unlikely philosophers that have not been seen before in any film that I recall. If that is not an ORIGINAL concept I don't know what is! My suggestion: have your reviewer see it again, this time with his or her eyes OPEN. Otherwise, you will be missing one of the best films of this or any year.

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