6.2/10
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193 user 135 critic

Running with Scissors (2006)

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2:29 | Trailer
Young Augusten Burroughs absorbs experiences that could make for a shocking memoir: the son of an alcoholic father and an unstable mother, he's handed off to his mother's therapist, Dr. Finch, and spends his adolescent years as a member of Finch's bizarre extended family.

Director:

Ryan Murphy

Writers:

Ryan Murphy (screenplay), Augusten Burroughs (book)
Nominated for 1 Golden Globe. Another 3 wins & 6 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Annette Bening ... Deirdre Burroughs
Brian Cox ... Dr. Finch
Joseph Fiennes ... Neil Bookman
Evan Rachel Wood ... Natalie Finch
Alec Baldwin ... Norman Burroughs
Joseph Cross ... Augusten Burroughs
Jill Clayburgh ... Agnes Finch
Gwyneth Paltrow ... Hope Finch
Gabrielle Union ... Dorothy
Patrick Wilson ... Michael Shephard
Kristin Chenoweth ... Fern Stewart
Dagmara Dominczyk ... Suzanne
Colleen Camp ... Joan
Jack Kaeding ... Six-Year-Old Augusten Burroughs
Gabriel Guedj Gabriel Guedj ... Poo
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Storyline

The story of how a boy was abandoned by his mother and how he, later, abandoned her. The year he'll be 14, the parents of Augusten Burroughs (1965- ) divorce, and his mother, who thinks of herself as a fine poet on the verge of fame, delivers him to the eccentric household of her psychiatrist, Dr. Finch. During that year, Augusten avoids school, keeps a journal, and practices cosmetology. His mother's mental illness worsens, he takes an older lover, he finds friendship with Finch's younger daughter, and he's the occasional recipient of gifts from an unlikely benefactor. Can he survive to come of age? Written by <jhailey@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

He's looking forward to a memory he won't have to suppress See more »

Genres:

Comedy | Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for strong language and elements of sexuality, violence and substance abuse | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

27 October 2006 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Running with Scissors See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$12,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$226,108, 22 October 2006

Gross USA:

$7,022,827

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$7,460,797
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

(DVD)

Sound Mix:

DTS | SDDS | Dolby Digital

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Julianne Moore was originally attached to play Deirdre Burroughs. See more »

Goofs

In the first scene with Deirdre's poetry circle, set in 1978, Dierdre says that Anne Sexton gave a poetry recital the week before. Sexton died in 1974. See more »

Quotes

Augusten Burroughs: According to Hope, Freud died of kitty Leukemia. According to me, Freud died of being trapped in a laundry basket for four days without food or water.
See more »

Connections

Featured in The 64th Annual Golden Globe Awards (2007) See more »

Soundtracks

Re: Person I Knew
Written by Bill Evans
Performed by The Bill Evans Trio
Courtesy of Concord Music Group, Inc.
See more »

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User Reviews

In the spirit but not the success of Royal Tenenbaums
25 October 2006 | by jdesandoSee all my reviews

"The 'family' has clearly emerged anew in the late 1970s as a central subject for discussion, debate, research and writing in both scholarly and popular arenas. Anxiety over whether or not the family as a basic social institution is dying has diminished. In its stead has emerged a fairly broad consensus around the position that the family is "here to stay," but that it certainly is changing." Sheila B. Kamerman

"Where do I begin to tell the story of how my mother left me, and then I left her?" This promising opening, narrated by Augusten Burroughs (Joseph Cross), is followed by a scene in his 1972 Massachusetts home with his mother, Deirdre (Annette Bening) reciting tepid poetry composed for sending to The New Yorker into a microphone at a mock poetry reading. After that interesting scene, director Ryan Murphy, adapting the 2002 successful novel of the same name, piles on sometimes funny scenes in the spirit but not the success of Royal Tenenbaums and Little Miss Sunshine.

Eventually given up for adoption to an aging and unstable shrink, Dr. Finch (Brian Cox), Augusten samples a fringe life of turd gazing in a toilet, a masturbatiorium room for the doctor, and shock treatments for fun. In all of the seemingly eccentric scenes, there is no character, not even the narrator (played too remotely) who commands sympathy or with whom an audience can identify. Deirdre is too outré to be believable (although Bening is impressive in the devolution of the only possibly sympathetic character), and the doctor would be better played as Cox did the first Hannibal Lecter.

The minor characters such as Evan Rachel Wood's Natalie seem to exist for amusement rather than touchstones for what makes this house dysfunctional. The connections of love or even hate among family members do not bind as they did for the Tenenbaums. After a while, no jokey set up garners a laugh. What does happen, though, is a desire to go to the book to enjoy the faultless deadpan narration that endears readers to Augusten.


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