Generally favorable reviews - based on 7 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 6 out of 7
  2. Negative: 0 out of 7
  1. Electric Shadows is committed to movies-as-escape swoonery, but the script's late disasters are also predicated on cinema and filmgoing, suggesting an ambivalence the rest of the film seems oblivious to.
  2. Reviewed by: Andrew Sun
    With her debut, Xiao Jiang has created the Chinese equivalent of "Cinema Paradiso." The Beijing Film Academy graduate's confident first feature is a lovely, elegant paean to the joy and liberty that films offer as a symbol.
  3. 88
    Xiao's bittersweet film is superficially a swoony love letter to the cinema. But her valentine has a hidden sting, rooted in some hard truths about movie mania.
  4. 75
    The Chinese pleaser Electric Shadows belongs to a genre they don't teach in film school: Triple S, as in sweet, sappy and sentimental.
  5. Things take several turns for the worse as the story plays out, and the film loses much of its charm. But it's a fascinating artifact, and never more so than when it features clips from Chinese and, of all things, Albanian propaganda films.
  6. Plays as an enthralling but implausible Asian soap opera.
  7. Reviewed by: Derek Elley
    A fairly conventional heartwarmer, lifted by likable performances, good-looking production values and (for movie buffs) a story centered on an outdoor cinema in rural China.

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