Free Radicals


Mixed or average reviews - based on 9 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 5 out of 9
  2. Negative: 1 out of 9

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Critic Reviews

  1. 75
    Brims with energy, carefully drawn characters and fine acting.
  2. Deftly intercutting between several tenuously-connected lives, Barbara Albert's astringent drama is transformed by bright flashes of compassion.
  3. The parallel stories don't always dovetail with each other smoothly, but the acting is strong and the atmosphere is powerful.
  4. 70
    An intelligent, viscerally intellectual exercise in ensemble acting and associative montage, enlivened with some terrific visual and dramatic ideas.
  5. 70
    Austrian auteur Barbara Albert uses complex mathematics, chaos theory and the music of Dutch pop sensation A-Ha to explore the connections that link a group of disparate characters.
  6. Reviewed by: Derek Elley
    An often compelling drama, marbled with dry humor and flecked with the supernatural, that provides food for thought but doesn't quite reach the brass ring.
  7. Despite the melodramatic plot twists, there's little emotional resonance to the proceedings, and the film's attempts to link them in metaphysical fashion prove overly ambitious and pretentious.
  8. Although Free Radicals overflows with messy feelings, it maintains such a measured distance from the gathered cries and whispers that it is difficult to empathize with the characters' fears and sorrows. Most of the women are victims, most of the men selfish pigs, and their stories are jarringly punctuated by brutish, joyless bouts of sex.
  9. At first I thought this was a Michael Haneke knockoff, but it's more depressing and less edifying than most of those narrative experiments, which is why I eventually tuned it out.
User Score

No user score yet- Awaiting 2 more ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 1 out of 1
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 1
  3. Negative: 0 out of 1
  1. ChadS.
    Jan 21, 2006
    The ghost in "Free Radicals" is so benign, only a book award committee for genre; like science-fiction, like horror, would acknowledge the The ghost in "Free Radicals" is so benign, only a book award committee for genre; like science-fiction, like horror, would acknowledge the supernatural presence as being a part of their literary heritage, even though the storyline is ultimately all-encompassing. "Free Radicals" also wants to be the arthouse "Pretty in Pink". There also seems to be a tip of the cap to Catherine Breillat, "Fat Girl, in particular, when we see the barely legal underdog get it on with the big man on campus. Is it a coincidence that A-ha's "Take on Me" came out the same year as the John Hughes youth classic? I think not. While watching "Free Radicals", I was reminded of psuedo-horror novels like Alice Sebold's "The Lovely Bones" and Stewart O'Nan's "The Night Country", two books with ghosts as its protagonist that are used in a non-horror fashion. If there is a flaw in the script, it's the fact that the boy behind the wheel never seems to acknowledge the crash's second victim, who faced a even more deadly consequence. The filmmaker wants her multiple storylines to brush up against each other, not to intersect, but this reproach of conscience feels a little convoluted. Full Review »