Generally favorable reviews - based on 22 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 19 out of 22
  2. Negative: 0 out of 22
  1. Reviewed by: Peter Rainer
    Feb 21, 2014
    A lousy title for a marvelous movie.
  2. Reviewed by: Kenneth Turan
    Feb 20, 2014
    A ferocious psychological drama with the pace of a thriller, Child's Pose combines, as have the best of the Romanian new-wave films, a compelling personal story about mothers and sons with an examination of socio-political dynamics in a way that is both intense and piercingly real.
  3. Reviewed by: Ann Hornaday
    Mar 13, 2014
    A compelling, complex, confounding film.
  4. Reviewed by: Peter Keough
    Mar 6, 2014
    Of all the great monster mothers in cinema history, Cornelia Keneres (Luminita Gheorghiu, who sets the standard other performances should be judged by this year) ranks high on the list.
  5. Reviewed by: Sheila O'Malley
    Feb 21, 2014
    It's an extremely strong and upsetting film, yet another example of the fascinating things going on in Romania's new wave, with a breathtaking lead performance by Luminita Gheorghiu as Cornelia.
  6. Reviewed by: Jeff Baker
    Apr 16, 2014
    Throw in an unbearably gloomy plot involving overbearing or grieving parents and a pointed commentary on the corrupt, classist nature of modern Romania, and you're in for a downbeat evening. "The Lego Movie," this isn't.
  7. Reviewed by: Bill Goodykoontz
    Apr 3, 2014
    A Romanian political allegory — in Romanian — might sound like tough sledding, but thanks to a searing performance by Luminita Gheorghiu, Child's Pose is anything but.
  8. Reviewed by: Joe Morgenstern
    Feb 20, 2014
    Growth is the film's subtext, and finally its subject. Never has a line of dialogue been more freighted with symbolism, or more grounded in literal reality, than when Barbu says, ever so quietly, "Mother, please unlock me."
  9. Reviewed by: Jordan Hoffman
    Feb 20, 2014
    The movie creates its own tightening vice grip.
  10. Reviewed by: Andrew O'Hehir
    Feb 20, 2014
    A gripping psychological thriller built around the luminous and terrifying performance of Luminita Gheorghiu, who is something like the Meryl Streep of Romania.
  11. Reviewed by: Michael Atkinson
    Feb 18, 2014
    With Child's Pose, the Romanian tide enters its Cassavetes phase, where the thin ice of haute bourgeoisie life cracks and opens wide.
  12. Reviewed by: Keith Uhlich
    Feb 18, 2014
    A complex final scene — in which everyone finally lets the tears flow — only deepens the sense that well-meaning mother love can be as poisonous as it is nourishing.
  13. Reviewed by: Peter Bradshaw
    Nov 3, 2013
    Calin Peter Netzer's Child's Pose is a gripping new drama from Romania and another demonstration of how that country's new wave is developing a distinctive kind of real-time slice-of-life cinema with characterisation in extreme, pitiless closeup.
  14. Reviewed by: Kyle Smith
    Feb 19, 2014
    As subtle and careful and slyly disturbing as Child’s Pose is though, it and many others of its genus suffer from an airlessness, pacing like the growth of algae, a dishwater color palate and a dirge-like monotone.
  15. Reviewed by: Jessica Kiang
    Jul 9, 2013
    The last quarter of Child's Pose is so remarkably strong that it makes a sometimes grim journey worth sticking with to its destination.
  16. Reviewed by: Scott Tobias
    Feb 19, 2014
    Through it all, Gheorghiu finds the perfect pitch between a mother’s love for her child and a kind of pathology.
  17. Reviewed by: Mike D'Angelo
    Feb 19, 2014
    Sporting a blonde dye job and a haughty, impervious manner, Gheorghiu makes Cornelia a consistently compelling figure, at once monstrous and pathetic.
  18. Reviewed by: Ella Taylor
    Feb 21, 2014
    Like the (far superior) recent Russian film "Elena," Child's Pose paints a compelling portrait of post-Soviet capitalism in all its uncorked appetites, its brash cronyism and graft, its pretensions, its clueless philistinism.
  19. Reviewed by: Jesse Cataldo
    Feb 17, 2014
    The film thrives on ambiguity, keeping all things blurry outside its main character's focused perspective, its myopia sustained by Luminița Gheorghiu's tough, quietly intense performance.
  20. Reviewed by: Manohla Dargis
    Feb 18, 2014
    It’s too bad that the filmmakers don’t allow an occasional breath of air into the sepulchral proceedings or ease up on the increasingly heavy-handed lessons.
  21. Reviewed by: Tom Dawson
    Nov 3, 2013
    The restlessness of the camerawork may drive you to distraction, but director/co-writer Calin Peter Netzer’s film is held steady by Gheorghiu’s staunch performance.
  22. Reviewed by: Trevor Johnston
    Oct 29, 2013
    Child’s Pose plays its thematic cards far too early, but it’s sustained by Gheorghiu’s compelling central turn as the endlessly self-deluding grande dame.
User Score

Generally favorable reviews- based on 8 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 1 out of 1
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 1
  3. Negative: 0 out of 1
  1. Mar 1, 2014
    It is a story of a tyrannical, overbearing mother Cornelia whose nickname is Controllia.
    Her only son, while driving recklessly on a highway,
    accidentally kills a teenager.
    Cornelia, not doubting that her son is guilty, uses her connections to meddle with police investigation to avoid her son's prosecution.
    Her motherly love turned her only son into a distorted, spoiled wreck of a human being who desperately tries to get out of his mother's iron grip.

    The movie is filmed with a hand-help camera which I found extremely annoying combined with necessity to read subtitles.

    The authors of this movie allow us a glimpse into the modern corrupt Romania, skewed morality of it's upper class. This film is definitely worth seeing.
    Full Review »