Universal acclaim - based on 34 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 31 out of 34
  2. Negative: 0 out of 34
  1. Reviewed by: Steve Persall
    Jun 8, 2011
    Incendies is a gallery of nightly news atrocities - a bus massacre, rape, children with guns - yet it's made intensely personal under the director's steady hand.
  2. Reviewed by: Michael O'Sullivan
    May 27, 2011
    It knocks you off your feet and leaves you shaken.
  3. Reviewed by: Michael Phillips
    Apr 28, 2011
    Incendies is no mere riff on a Greek mainstay. It is its own entity, delicate and fierce. Already I've risked making it sound like homework. It's not; it's an enthralling drama of survival.
  4. Reviewed by: Bob Mondello
    Apr 25, 2011
    The storytelling in Incendies strikes me as primal the way Greek tragedy is primal. Shattering. Cathartic. It is a breathtaking film.
  5. Reviewed by: Joe Morgenstern
    Apr 21, 2011
    Denis Villeneuve's screen adaptation of a play by the Lebanese-Canadian playwright Wajdi Mouawad tells a story-masterfully-of courage, cruelty, family mysteries and a chain of anger that can only be broken by love.
  6. Reviewed by: Joshua Rothkopf
    Apr 19, 2011
    A staggering political drama that could put you in mind of the intimate sweep of Bernardo Bertolucci, Incendies feels like a mighty movie in our midst.
  7. Reviewed by: Owen Gleiberman
    Apr 19, 2011
    The movie is a bumpy road of twists that leads to a revelation that has the shock and force of Greek tragedy.
  8. Reviewed by: Bill Goodykoontz
    May 12, 2011
    Villeneuve's telling of her story - and of her children's - is painful, searing and something close to brilliant.
  9. Reviewed by: Stephen Farber
    Apr 19, 2011
    Although the film runs more than two hours, the story is so compelling and the production so beautifully controlled that we are gripped by the characters' quest right up to the shocking end of the story.
  10. 90
    The movie doesn't quite jell, but you'll feel its sting for hours.
  11. Reviewed by: Mike Scott
    Jul 15, 2011
    A story of hope amid the ruins -- one that everybody can appreciate, no matter their politics.
  12. Reviewed by: Steven Rea
    May 19, 2011
    Reverberates with the power and passion of Greek tragedy.
  13. Reviewed by: Rene Rodriguez
    May 19, 2011
    The movie, engrossing as it is intentionally horrifying, is capped by a last-minute revelation that brings the story to a haunting, powerful close.
  14. Reviewed by: Ty Burr
    May 12, 2011
    A mystery, a melodrama, a prison film, and a love story, Incendies is foremost a scream of rage at a society destroyed by religion and by men.
  15. Reviewed by: Roger Ebert
    Apr 27, 2011
    Most people do not choose their religions but have them forced upon themselves by birth, and the lesson of Incendies is that an accident of birth is not a reason for hatred.
  16. Reviewed by: Peter Travers
    Apr 21, 2011
    A devastating mystery thriller from Quebec filmmaker Denis Villeneuve that grabs you hard and won't let go.
  17. Reviewed by: Eric Kohn
    Apr 21, 2011
    The climax is a little too clever and far-fetched-an unnecessarily neat finale for a movie that works fine when dealing in broad strokes, some of which are nothing short of masterful.
User Score

Generally favorable reviews- based on 66 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 16 out of 19
  2. Negative: 1 out of 19
  1. Apr 28, 2011
    A tremendous film. Even though there's a lot going on, and there's much to unpack, the way the story unfolds is so effortlessly handled, and it's quite a story - packs an enormous punch. Throughout, I kept having to resist my yearning for more historical & geographical context, but I'm guessing the writer/director wanted to keep the focus on Marwan and her personal struggles and tortured history. Highly recommended. Full Review »
  2. Apr 27, 2011
    A wonderful piece of motion art with a disturbing conclusion . Its a painting of a harrowing scene told in the most beautiful strokes. It stays with you long after. Full Review »
  3. Oct 15, 2011
    Greatly made building up suspense until it dazzle's you with it's shocking finish. One of the best movies of last year!