Generally favorable reviews - based on 37 Critics What's this?

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Generally favorable reviews- based on 144 Ratings

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  • Starring: , ,
  • Summary: Kathy, Tommy and Ruth live in a world and a time that feel familiar to us, but are not quite like anything we know. They spend their childhood at Hailsham, a seemingly idyllic English boarding school. When they leave the shelter of the school and the terrible truth of their fate is revealed to them, they must also confront the deep feelings of love, jealousy and betrayal that threaten to pull them apart.(Fox Searchlight Pictures)
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 27 out of 37
  2. Negative: 0 out of 37
  1. 100
    This is a good movie, from a masterful novel.
  2. Reviewed by: Steven Rea
    Dec 24, 2010
    A beautifully mopey adaptation of Kazuo Ishiguro's much-praised novel.
  3. 83
    Best approached with little to no advance information or expectations, which is the same way the film's characters experience their lives.
  4. Never Let Me Go isn't the kind of movie you talk about on the drive home -- it's even better. It's the kind that makes you sit quietly and think, rolling it around in your head and considering the angles.
  5. 67
    The world depicted in Mark Romanek's Never Let Me Go is among the more beautiful dystopias in film history.
  6. 63
    It is an accepted truth that adapting a sublime novel does not always result in a sublime movie. To an extent, this is the problem with Never Let Me Go.
  7. 40
    Never Let Me Go is in such good taste that we never feel any horror over the idea at the center of it.

See all 37 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 24 out of 38
  2. Negative: 11 out of 38
  1. Nov 7, 2010
    This movie was excellent. The premise of the story intrigued me so I purchased my ticket and entered the theater with a skeptical expression. I had seen the island but I knew that this movie was approaching it from a wholly different angle, providing the aesthetic foresight accompanying the characters and their destinations. I felt immensely invested in the characters; suffice it to say Carey Mulligan's performance gripped me and elicited a strong sense of nostalgia as she progressed through the film. I seldom cry I'm movies but the story of this film, the tribulation they undergo is one that connects to the innermost rivers of emotion we experience as we face the end of something, namely life, and by the end of the film tears streamed from my eyes. The premise of the film sits on the assumption that society accepts the system presented to us in the film, and many elements of the film allow that assumption to flow quite nicely. I look forward to the novel and I encourage all to watch the movie. Expand
  2. Sep 28, 2010
    Creating a haunting yet provocative science fiction piece of art, director Mark Romenek creates a film that will consume its audience with heartbreak and despair. Never Let Me Go is best approached with little information of the sequential plot in Ishiguro's novel. In trying to simplify the premise, the film follows the life of three students deriving from Hailshaim school. The highlight of the film is the performance by Carey Mulligan. She creates so much pathos in her character, it is surreal how real her emotions are. Mulligan executes this film with so much poise; Even her subtle facial expressions create goosebumps. This film is a masterpiece. The cinematography in the film is memorizing; The natural shots and the exposure of the characters reactions add to the chilling manner of the film overall. Moreover, the emotions that are enabled by the casts performances are simply haunting and heart-crushing. I have never seen so many people cry in one movie theater, it is really a defining film in combining drama with science fiction. Technique-wise, Romeneks film is the pinnacle of perfection; But many of its small flaws keep it from being an overall unblemished film. The films pace is much too slow and it some times experiences a directionless path, where it seems that the film is heading towards nowhere. At times there was a lack of forwards which negatively influences the films effectiveness. In addition, while the film does create some great heartbreak, there is somewhat a distance between the characters and the audience. While the cast is not at fault, the plot and given details make the characters only somewhat relatable, it seems as if they derive too much from an alternate world to be one of our time. But in the end, the film is an emotion-provoking film that will strike the heart of its audience in a way that is devastating yet memorable. It does not quite reach perfection, but the beauty, heart, and thought of the film covers its small blemishes. Expand
  3. Jun 27, 2011
    A simple love story. Still films like Atonement and this one bring new elements, twists and turns to the table. Making for a more enjoyable experience as we continue to think about the human condition. There is no need for a screenplay on this one, the director of this film took it page by page through the story. Refreshing and new, this film will please all fans of the award winning novel. Expand
  4. Sep 1, 2014
    A powerful look at dystopia--carried with great performances from an astonishing cast and a well-written script. Never Let Me Go is non-traditional as far as dystopian dramas go--not that dystopia is at all typical. Expand
  5. Jon
    Feb 5, 2011
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. I had no expectations to this film, I just read the introduction to what the plot of the film was and then I pressed play. After twenty minutes the film finally reveals what the plot is about, so anyone who have not read the cliffnotes will have no idea what it is about.
    I'm gonna sum up this movie in a short dialog.

    "Do you want to die?"
    - No.
    "Too bad, because eventually we will kill you."
    - Please don't kill me.
    "What are you going to do about it?"
    - I'm gonna go sit down in that corner over there and start crying.

    I'm not joking, this is seriously the plot of the movie. It is boring, it won't make you think about the theme after you've watched it and you won't feel anything for any of the characters in this movie.
  6. Apr 24, 2011
    I suffered thru the first 20 minutes, skipped a bit forward and suffered some more. It just drags along and it must expect that its audience has an immense reserve of patience as i had to cut it short. Perhaps something happens in the movie but i would rather read the summary than having to endure such a slow death. Expand

See all 38 User Reviews