Metascore
61

Generally favorable reviews - based on 27 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 15 out of 27
  2. Negative: 0 out of 27
Watch On
  1. Picks up steam from the ominous opening scene and ends as a quietly suspenseful thriller.
  2. The movie that deserved to win the Oscar for foreign-language film, and one of the best movies ever made about life behind the Iron Curtain.
  3. Feels like an old-fashioned movie in the way it deals with bold sacrifices made in the name of love, while its setting and chary view of the era's political machinations mark it as distinctly modern.
  4. A grand, old-fashioned movie of spies and Communist repression.
  5. Has the sensibility of a Hollywood "woman's picture" of the '40s -- the weepie saga of a married woman trapped in an untenable situation.
  6. Wargnier's sumptuous, moving new film, captures both the hope of the returning Russians and their brutal betrayal.
  7. Takes the most somber of predicaments, and makes it involving, romantic and ultimately intensely suspenseful.
  8. 75
    One of the unique virtues of the cinema is its ability to bring history to life with engrossing detail and gripping immediacy; East-West does this.
  9. With its fiery tone and fierce intensity, East-West offers a profile of a country suspended in fear as well as of one woman's indomitable passion for freedom.
  10. Has great themes and great actors.
  11. 70
    It's Deneuve, in little more than a cameo, who commands your attention and doesn't release you until she's good and ready.
  12. Reviewed by: Richard Schickel
    70
    This complex, heartbreaking film recounts the brutal struggle of one couple to survive.
  13. The two-hour film never feels a minute too long.
  14. 63
    The movie as a whole lacks the conviction of a real story. It is more like a lush morality play, too leisurely in its storytelling, too sure of its morality.
  15. Reviewed by: Jay Carr
    63
    Isn't always easy to sit through, but it repays patience. It's an honorable film, and it earns its undertow of poignancy derived from.

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