Parents' Guide to

Diminished Capacity

By James Rocchi, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 15+

Bland indie comedy has some iffy alcohol content.

Movie NR 2008 92 minutes
Diminished Capacity Poster Image

A Lot or a Little?

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

Community Reviews

age 9+

Based on 1 parent review

age 9+


Kind of a nice movie that dealt with important issues in a manageable way. A bit vanilla, but kind-hearted

This title has:

Great role models

Is It Any Good?

Our review:
Parents say: (1):
Kids say: Not yet rated

Directed by Terrey Kinney and adapted from Sherwood Kiraly's novel, Diminished Capacity is a great showcase for two talented actors: Broderick and Alda. The supporting cast, including Madsen, Dylan Baker, Louis C.K., and Bobby Cannavale, is also excellent. But something in Diminished Capacity doesn't quite work; the film veers between drama and comedy, personal relationships and scrambling comedy fist-fights. And while Alda's work is impressive, Broderick seems to be coasting a little bit here.

The film's relationship subplot, with Cooper rekindling a decades-old flame with Charlotte, also feels a bit familiar; since Sideways, Madsen's becoming the patron saint of women who love flawed-but-descent men, and it's a role that forces her to react, not act. Even though Diminished Capacity is superbly made, and the supporting parts give it life (Louis C.K.'s repentant alcoholic is so open and honest it's funny; Cannavale's unscrupulous collectibles dealer gives him a great chance to play a jerk) the plot elements feel a little standardized, and you can feel the movie stretching to provide every character with their big moment of challenge and triumph. Diminished Capacity isn't bad or broken, just a little bland.

Movie Details

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