In a surprisingly strong performance, [John] Cleese puts a sharp spin on his portrayal as mentor to Spud [Troye Sivan], whose rites-of-passage journey avoids the usual cliches.
- Jim Schembri, 3AW, June 30, 2012
A hugely entertaining coming-of-age tale, grounded in realism. Sivan's note-perfect portrayal of the diminutive hero is matched by a razor-sharp Cleese.
- Ed Gibbs, The Sun Herald, April 22, 2012
If there was satirical intent, it is leached from the film.
- Julie Rigg, MovieTime, ABC Radio National, April 20, 2012
I think largely because of the completely innocent-seeming performance of Troye Sivan, it won me over and I found myself actually quite moved by the end.
- Margaret Pomeranz, At the Movies (Australia), April 20, 2012
This is a film most will like - especially fans of last year's Submarine.
- Scott Murray, The Age (Australia), April 20, 2012
You and your kids will have seen it all before but, if you're looking for a less brutal take on the ordeals of adolescence than the one offered by The Hunger Games, this could work.
- Sandra Hall, Sydney Morning Herald, April 20, 2012
Teens will find much to like about Spud but older audiences may find it familiar.
- Leigh Paatsch, Herald Sun (Australia), April 20, 2012
A touch more quirky than the average coming-of-age tale, there's a bit of schmaltz here, but this also brims with humour, heart and honesty.
- Cara Nash, FILMINK (Australia), April 20, 2012
The film struggles to find an even tone, swinging from overstatement and farcical to sentimental and earnest. But it strives to be a faithful adaptation of this popular novel and comes together well in the second half
- Andrew L. Urban, Urban Cinefile, April 13, 2012
- Dennis Harvey, Variety, June 20, 2011