Parents' Guide to

At Any Price

By Jeffrey Anderson, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 17+

Indie drama's messages undercut by weak story, racy content.

Movie R 2013 105 minutes
At Any Price Poster Image

A Lot or a Little?

What you will—and won't—find in this movie.

Community Reviews

age 15+

Based on 1 parent review

age 15+

Somewhat Enjoyable.

Pretty good film! 3.5 stars if I could. The story was interesting and held my attention. I watched this on a whim without really knowing much about it. If you like movies with a farm/agricultural feel with a troubled son & father relationship added into the mix, then you may enjoy it too. It's basically about a family who owns a farm, growing corn, and competing with other farmers. Henry (Dennis Quaid) is cheating on his wife, he gets himself into trouble when he's caught selling genetically manufactured seeds. If that is not enough for him, his youngest son Dean (Zac Efron) wants nothing to do with the farming business or his father even after Henry offers to give him the farm. Dean prefers racing cars and getting into trouble. But when things go way too far including cheating on his girlfriend and later being dumped by her, Dean finds himself in a scary situation involving a fight with another racer that actually brings him and his father somewhat closer. The story has a lot of drama, Zac Efron was no different in this than any other film he's done with minimal emotion in his acting. His character is very selfish, shallow and arrogant and he never seems to lose the attitude. However, great cast! Language is strong with several f-words followed by more common cursing. Violence has arguing, racing cars and a crash, a fight with pushing and shoving, hitting and a hammer is bashed into a characters head. A gun is used to shoot the front window of a store and something is stolen. Sexual content has nudity in a porn magazine, two couples kiss and embrace when she takes off her top but no nudity, a man cheats on his wife with another woman and sex is implied with moaning at one point, the same woman seduces a younger guy and he straddles her from behind - you see her hand on the wall and hear moaning. There is drinking but not frequent. Certainly not for kids or anyone under 16!!!

This title has:

Too much violence
Too much sex
Too much swearing

Is It Any Good?

Our review:
Parents say (1):
Kids say (1):

Writer/director Ramin Bahrani made three acclaimed, character-based independent movies (Man Push Cart, Chop Shop, and the lovely Goodbye Solo); it's baffling that this one's so shallow and clumsy. It seems to want to say something about the plight of corn farmers in America today, and it imparts its information clearly -- but apparently at the expense of everything else.

The actors seem to have been asked to give very clipped, elevated performances, especially Quaid, whose character is a smarmy salesman. Efron, on the other hand, responds to every situation with his usual blank, dead-eyed stare. Several plot threads, especially one about racing cars, seem clumsily dropped, and a potentially interesting female teen character is likewise abandoned. Aside from its potential educational value around farming, At Any Price is just a mystifying waste of time.

Movie Details

  • In theaters: April 24, 2013
  • On DVD or streaming: August 27, 2013
  • Cast: Dennis Quaid, Kim Dickens, Zac Efron
  • Director: Ramin Bahrani
  • Inclusion Information: Middle Eastern/North African directors
  • Studio: Sony Pictures Classics
  • Genre: Drama
  • Run time: 105 minutes
  • MPAA rating: R
  • MPAA explanation: sexual content including a strong graphic image, and for language
  • Last updated: February 22, 2023

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