User Score

Generally favorable reviews- based on 57 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 35 out of 57
  2. Negative: 6 out of 57

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User Reviews

  1. MargaretG.
    Aug 11, 2008
    Powerful. Beautiful. Intense.
  2. JohnC.
    Aug 2, 2008
    Excellent Penelope Cruz! Amazing film by one of my favorite filmmakers: Isabel Coixet.
  3. Brianne
    Apr 30, 2009
    A stunning film,I cried throughout,the acting is superb and the story really is so lovely yet very deep and emotional.I'm really wanting to go and read the book now.This film deserves way more advertisement then it got.
  4. Albert
    Oct 11, 2008
    Penelope Cruz and Patricia Clarkson, they are the best of this movie. But it isn't the best movie by Isabel Coixet.
  5. AnnM.
    Aug 10, 2008
    A good movie. Cruz's performance is the best of it. Nice for romantic people.
  6. LarryW.
    Sep 2, 2008
    What a beautifully acted, photographed, edited, intelligently movie. A little heavy, but if you are a grown up you can't miss it. The acting alone is spectacular.
  7. MaxL
    Sep 9, 2008
    Performances are what made the movie watchable. Storywise, it's old and well-travelled already. Patricia Clarkson should be mentioned along Cruz and Kingsley as giving the movie life. Otherwise, it's a real downer as it goes on.
  8. ClaireM.
    Aug 9, 2008
    Lovely film and terrific performances by Penelope Cruz and Ben Kingsley.
  9. MarcyS.
    Sep 20, 2008
    This is an excellent movie...great acting, directing, producing, etc. We were shocked that we had not heard more about it before seeing it.
  10. NoelT
    Jan 22, 2009
    A beautiful reflection on life, love, mortality, relationships and yes, sex. At first I feared it was just another "Lolita" story (older man/ much younger girl) but I was so wrong. It is a story of passion, love, trust, honesty, fear, regret, loss and discovery. A movie for a mature viewer, maybe someone who has experienced some of the trials of living. Gimmicky movie? I think not!
  11. Maurice
    Dec 7, 2009
    Brilliant performances and enough memorable quotes and moments to stimulate conversation long after viewing. This is not a popcorn movie, it's a red wine movie, for those who care for the latter on occasion.
  12. ThomasM.
    Dec 23, 2008
    A great film about the most basic fear most of us carry deep within--the feeling that we are not worthy of love. Contains one of Sir Ben's greatest performances with stunning cineamatography. A sad, honest, and beautiful film.
  13. HeidiB
    Aug 23, 2008
    Loved this film. I rarely cry at movies but this one just hit me in a way that many don't. Penelope Cruz was fantastic.
  14. ElizabethK
    Dec 5, 2009
    What a sad and beautiful film set in pure simplicity. It's such an honest film. Excellent acting by both leads. Finally! A film not only worth seeing, but seeing again. It makes you think, cry, wonder, question who you are and your own life. Now I need to read the book!
  15. Dec 26, 2015
    An interesting character study of a May December romance. And what does his best friend advise? And what does his estranged son want to talk to him about? There's a lot more going on around these two lovers and that makes the movie enjoyable.

Generally favorable reviews - based on 32 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 22 out of 32
  2. Negative: 1 out of 32
  1. Cruz's performance deserves to be seen widely, and it should place her again in line for prizes, but the story's pretensions and downbeat mood will not endear the film to audiences.
  2. 70
    Sparse, low-budget drama, helmed by Spaniard Isabel Coixet, intelligently translates Roth's meditation on lust and mortality without soft-pedaling its narrator's brutally honest, unabashedly sexist views.
  3. A spare, melancholy film that is so far in spirit from its source, Philip Roth's "The Dying Animal."