Metascore
61

Generally favorable reviews - based on 25 Critics What's this?

User Score
6.6

Generally favorable reviews- based on 7 Ratings

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  • Starring: , ,
  • Summary: Nazneen’s life is turned upside down at the tender age of seventeen. Forced into an arranged marriage to an older man, she exchanges her Bangladeshi village home for a block of flats in London’s East End. In this new world, pining for her home and her sister, she struggles to make sense of her existence – and to do her duty to her husband. A man of inflated ideas (and stomach), he sorely tests her compliance. Told from birth that she must not fight her fate, Nazneen submits, devoting her life to raising her family and slapping down her demons of discontent. Until the day that Karim, a hot-headed local man, bursts into her life. Against a background of escalating racial tension, they embark on an affair that finally forces Nazneen to take control of her life. Set in multicultural Britain, Brick Lane is a truly contemporary story of love, cultural difference, and ultimately, the strength of the human spirit. (Sony Pictures Classics)
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Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 16 out of 25
  2. Negative: 0 out of 25
  1. 88
    Tells a story we think we already know, but we're wrong: It has new things to say within an old formula.
  2. 75
    The movie has a vibrant, sturdy pathos in the manner of Dickens.
  3. While the film pivots around Nazneen, perhaps at the expense of other characters, it doesn't sell her short. This is a rich, revealing and elegant portrait, and one well worth spending time with.
  4. A thoughtful and often evocative drama of identity and assimilation, but she leaves Nazneen so cocooned in her protective shell of disconnection that we can't connect emotionally.
  5. The arc of Nazneen's character, from drudge to feminist heroine, is predictably saintly. Chanu is a far more intriguingly human figure, the redeemed fool.
  6. 58
    Brick Lane comes far too late to be groundbreaking, and tries to do too much to be fully coherent, but its talent for avoiding obvious choices on all fronts, narratively and stylistically, make it worth a look.
  7. For most of the movie, we feel as trapped as she does, and the lurching narrative seems anything but novelistic.

See all 25 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 2 out of 2
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 2
  3. Negative: 0 out of 2
  1. JayH.
    Jan 10, 2009
    7
    Fine drama, beautifully acted, poignant story. Well thought out direction, good screenplay, fine cinematography. It has a few slow stretches, but overall a very rewarding film. Expand
  2. HarrietC.
    Jul 22, 2008
    6
    Full of promise but falls short on the delivery. Beautiful story and lovely cinematography but I was waiting to be touched, deeply touched as the story had the opportunity to do. Maybe that was the intention but as a film goer I want to be swept into it all. Expand

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