Ida Image

Universal acclaim - based on 31 Critics What's this?

User Score

Generally favorable reviews- based on 30 Ratings

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  • Starring: , , ,
  • Summary: Poland, 1962. Anna (Agata Trzebuchowska), an eighteen-year-old novitiate nun is on the verge of taking her vows when she discovers a dark family secret dating back to the years of the Nazi occupation.
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 30 out of 31
  2. Negative: 0 out of 31
  1. Reviewed by: Godfrey Cheshire
    May 2, 2014
    Riveting, original and breathtakingly accomplished on every level, Ida would be a masterpiece in any era, in any country.
  2. Reviewed by: Michael Phillips
    May 22, 2014
    One of the year's gems.
  3. Reviewed by: Steven Rea
    May 30, 2014
    A road trip at once tragic, hopeful, and unforgettable.
  4. Reviewed by: Aaron Cutler
    Apr 29, 2014
    Ida unfolds partly as chamber play and partly as road movie, following the two women on a search for their dead beloveds' anonymous graves.
  5. Reviewed by: Farran Smith Nehme
    May 1, 2014
    Both actresses are extraordinary, but Kulesza — bitter, sarcastic and tragic — carries the movie’s soul.
  6. Reviewed by: Marc Mohan
    Apr 3, 2014
    Just as austere and demanding as you'd expect a black-and-white film about a Polish nun to be. Don't let that scare you, though.
  7. Reviewed by: Peter Debruge
    Apr 29, 2014
    It’s one thing to set up a striking black-and-white composition and quite another to draw people into it, and dialing things back as much as this film does risks losing the vast majority of viewers along the way, offering an intellectual exercise in lieu of an emotional experience to all but the most rarefied cineastes.

See all 31 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 12 out of 15
  2. Negative: 2 out of 15
  1. Jun 15, 2014
    A splendid film about subjects done a million times before – coming of age (but this time it’s a young Catholic novice) and the Jewish tragedy of WW2 and its consequences, but in Poland. Done in black and white (yes, with subtitles), each shot was beautifully framed (I kept thinking of early Polanski), the actresses were riveting, and the audience dead silent and totally engaged. This is a deeply emotional gem with a profound sense of existential mystery. Expand
  2. Jun 23, 2014
    The brilliance of Ida exists within its understated elegance, which both belies its weighty subject matter and showcases it, layering themes of contrast and burden throughout the film to great effect. Expand
  3. Jul 1, 2014
    A rare gem of a film that shows you the surface and allows you to plumb the depths in your own mind. A novitiate is told to visit her (previously unknown) Aunt by her Mother Superior. Reluctant, but obedient she visits the woman and finds her world over turned. Abandoned as a child to a Catholic Orphanage she has her unknown history revealed, born Jewish to a family killed by the local Poles, and all it's property stolen. We see little of what she thinks of all of this revelation, the film focuses mainly on the Aunt's transparent rage , grief, and guilt. The choices Ida makes next are not what many viewer's might wish, but the Director rules. Expand
  4. May 4, 2014
    great film - it's simple yet powerful, classic yet modern, little yet expansive. deals with important issues of religion, holocaust, relationship and choices in life. Although the decision of the main character was not exercised enough, "Ida" felt too short. Expand
  5. May 9, 2014
    Polish with subtitles.
    Poland, 1960.
    A young nun is about to take her wows when she is told to meet her Aunt Wanda for the first time in her
    life. That aunt is her only living relative. When Ida meets her aunt she discovers many things about herself and her family that she did not know.
    The movie is artsy, it is shot in black and white, and that is done superbly. It depicts darkest moments of the last century.
    Not every detail is spelled there, there is a lot left for one's imagination. In short, I would describe the film as classy and powerful.
  6. Jul 30, 2014
    Saw this at the Music Box Theater in Chicago. Perhaps it was the theater that helped (a wonderful one if you have the chance to visit) but I was very pleasantly surprised by IDA. This film has a subtle style about it. It takes place in the early sixties (roughly) and specifically follows the cultural momentum of the relevant jazz music at the time, notably Coltrane. This helps to create a wonderful environment around the occurrences of the story.

    Also, the interplay between the two main characters, Ida and her aunt, is very well done.

    Definitely watch this one

  7. Jul 8, 2014
    boring, not engaging, extremely over praised. critics are so desperate for something that's not total junk, they go berserk when a film has a cinematic/thoughtful quality. this one certainly had a multi-layered potentially intriguing story. beautiful b+w cinematography, too. but nothing to draw me into the story. take the 80 min and rewatch a bresson, tarkovsky, or dreyer film. Expand

See all 15 User Reviews

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