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65

Generally favorable reviews - based on 30 Critics What's this?

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6.8

Generally favorable reviews- based on 12 Ratings

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Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 23 out of 30
  2. Negative: 1 out of 30
  1. Reviewed by: Ken Fox
    88
    Lawrence delves deep into the moral dilemma at the heart of Carver's deceptively simple tale. By deliberately making the young woman in the river aboriginal, the film also opens up yet another dimension in the reaction to the men's inaction: Would they have acted any differently had the murder victim been white?
  2. Jindabyne's strength and power come from a number of factors: its origin, its current landscape and the unusual way its writer-director, Ray Lawrence, has chosen to work.
  3. Writer-director Ray Lawrence, well regarded for his two previous films, "Bliss" and "Lantana," expands Carver's work into an indictment of colonialism and an examination of the chasm that supposedly exists between men and women over matters of the heart.
  4. 70
    Too many extraneous elements have been added--the victim here is an aborigine, which prompts a racial backlash against the men and their families--but at the movie's center lies the knotty story of a marriage poisoned by amorality.
  5. 70
    Hand it to Lawrence and Christian. Jindabyne is a soberly, if sluggishly, crafted movie in which the bitterness never stops.
  6. Adapting a great short story, like Carver's "So Much Water So Close to Home," into a movie poses a dilemma: How to flesh it out to feature length without destroying what made it great in the first place?
  7. 25
    A depressing and tedious movie.

See all 30 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 3 out of 5
  2. Negative: 1 out of 5
  1. MM
    Aug 7, 2007
    9
    A lovely take on ambivalence and the delicate balance among human beings. Linney and Byrne, and the child actors, are excellent and the A lovely take on ambivalence and the delicate balance among human beings. Linney and Byrne, and the child actors, are excellent and the setting is often spectacular. Although at times it seemed a little long, I would readily watch it over again. Expand
  2. Crossoverman
    Apr 23, 2007
    9
    One of the great Australian films of all time. This fleshes out Raymond Carver's story in a complex and complicated way, layering in One of the great Australian films of all time. This fleshes out Raymond Carver's story in a complex and complicated way, layering in themes of race and childhood amongst the very strong story about men and women and how they deal with emotion. Incredible. Expand
  3. MichaelL.
    May 19, 2007
    9
    A deeply compelling yet deceptively disturbing meditation on the uncertain morality that can reside in all of us when confronted with a A deeply compelling yet deceptively disturbing meditation on the uncertain morality that can reside in all of us when confronted with a situation of unordinary and horrendous proportions. It's "What would you do?" plotline builds to a quietly powerful climax that had me paralyzed in the darkened theater long after the closing title sequence had ended. Expand
  4. MichaelE.
    Jun 15, 2007
    4
    First the good: we get a typically strong performance by Laura Linney . Some of the scenes are good, but it takes most of the movie before we First the good: we get a typically strong performance by Laura Linney . Some of the scenes are good, but it takes most of the movie before we get anything like a sense of drama between the chaarcters. I've seen some people complain about the photography (all in natural light), but that is actually one of the film's true charms. The subplot about racism is heavy-handed and obvious, a far deviation from the Carver source material that hurts the story instead of adding to it. The film has to be jammed with padding to make a full two hours and some of this padding, like the lingering shots of the Australian countryside (which could be interpreted as sentimental, also working against the film's points) is painfully obvious. Jindabyne certainly does not compare favorably with the version in Robert Altman's Short Cuts from 13 years ago. Some of the scenes exist in both versions, and those analog scenes in Jindabyne are far too similar to the original. Somehow I doubt we'll be talking about this one in a year. Expand
  5. BillS.
    Jun 1, 2007
    3
    I'm afraid I have to disagree with the previous contributors. Lantana was a grown-up tale of how tragedy can result from credible people I'm afraid I have to disagree with the previous contributors. Lantana was a grown-up tale of how tragedy can result from credible people making plausible decisions. This, on the other hand, was about caricatures (repressed Irish boozehound? Neurotic world-citizen?) making unrecognisable choices. Sadly, as a result neither characters nor situation provoke empathy. The richness of the camerawork almost justifies the languorous pacing, but ultimately a stronger script would have been needed to avoid a sense of self-indulgence. I have no issue with the murderer simply being used for exposition, but in that case I should not have to watch him eating breakfast. For an intelligent (and entertaining) view of the complexities of human interaction, The Lives of Others was a vastly superior offering this year. Expand

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