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Generally favorable reviews - based on 18 Critics What's this?

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Generally favorable reviews- based on 18 Ratings

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  • Summary: Jackie works as a CCTV operator. Each day she watches over a small part of the world, protecting the people living their lives under her gaze. One day a man appears on her monitor, a man she thought she would never see again, a man she never wanted to see again. Now she has no choice, she is compelled to confront him. (Tartan Films) Collapse
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 16 out of 18
  2. Negative: 0 out of 18
  1. Arnold reminds us that the best thrillers don't settle for taking the audience away from their everyday experience; rather, they burrow inward and, by sheer power of cinematic observation, make it hard for us to look away lest we miss something--on a screen or off.
  2. Reviewed by: Ken Fox
    Academy Award-winning live-action-short director Andrea Arnold makes a startlingly assured debut with this low-key psychological chiller.
  3. Reviewed by: Ella Taylor
    No one does poetic British with more remorseless hyper-realism than the Scots, and Arnold, who amassed a raft of reputable awards for her 2003 short film "Wasp," directs with a precociously sure touch and a raw taste for graphic sexuality rare in a woman helmer. It shocks, yet feels organic to the paranoid, loveless milieu portrayed in Red Road.
  4. It's a taut, unexpected study that asks many questions about retribution and redemption.
  5. You might call the film "Rear Window Times 100."
  6. Its story -- and eerie allure -- comes from our evolving perception of Jackie (Kate Dickie), a surveillance operator in Glasgow, Scotland, who spends long days and nights monitoring the screens.
  7. Reviewed by: Ty Burr
    The movie trades the paranoia of modern omni-cam culture for a tighter, more personal drama, and while it sticks with you, you feel the missed opportunity like a phantom leg.

See all 18 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 5 out of 6
  2. Negative: 0 out of 6
  1. JacquelineH.
    Sep 29, 2008
    Deep, disturbing and I spent half of my time asking "What are you doing Jackie?". Very intense and the shots of Jackie watching the CCTV screens and using them to assist her in her revenge worked brilliantly. The ultimate twist leading to the answers she needed which result in her learning to let go were well thought out and still left the viewer guessing to the end at what would happen. The potential for a grim and uncomfortable end with no resolution lasts to the final confrontation and Dickie is wonderful at passing from confused retaliation to grudging forgiveness without hitting the schmultz button. Wonderful directing with enough power in the script and strong acting to take things slowly. Expand
  2. KenG.
    May 17, 2007
    For a film where there is not really much going on, this riveting movie was masterfully done, and very well acted.
  3. PaulK.
    Jun 21, 2007
    It starts off slow, building bits and pieces, keeping the central plot a mystery, and despite a forced/clunky scene that spells out a little too much, this film stays on track and true to it's charm. Gritty, raw, lots of hand held camera work, amazing acting and the guts of this thing should make you feel some emotion and/or at least think about the morality or what's right and what's wrong. Is big brother watching in Glascow or what?! This was great. I loved it. If you get a chance, see it in the theater. Expand
  4. RitB.
    May 14, 2007
    This film is being billed as a 'gripping thriller' but I would call it an intriguing mystery that unfolds slowly for the first hour but in such a way that it will hold your interest. The ending has surprises that will usurp your assumptions about the characters. I would give this movie a 10 rating if the director had ditched the hand-held camera. Note to Directors and Film Makers: There's a reason why the Steadicam and tripod were invented. If I wanted to experience motion sickness I'll go to an amusement park and jump on the rollercoaster. Also, stop with the extreme close-ups that go in and out of focus. I don't want to be a microbiologist and I don't want to count the pores on Kate Dickie's face. While I find it interesting that she has a hole for a nose stud, that doesn't add to my movie going experience. Last but not least, be aware that there is a sex scene that might make the real life spouses or partners of Tony Curran and Kate Dickie -- pretty angry. Expand
  5. AndrewK.
    May 27, 2007
    This isn't the most amazing film around, but it's still one of my favorites this year because it does something which very few films do anymore: it doesn't beat you over the head with what it's trying to say. In fact, it doesn't make it at all apparent what it's trying to say. I guess you could take from it that revenge is not the way to find peace. But there are many things to be learned from this film. It is very sad at times and always very real. I like quiet films like this. I would not say that there is "not really much going on." Just because people aren't talking or you're not getting specific plot information shoved in your face every two seconds does not mean that there is nothing going on. The film is like observing real life, much the way the protagonist does when watching her security cameras. I have to say, though I know it's naive, I didn't realize that such a thing existed in the world. That neighborhoods are under watch by security cameras. Is that real? Or just a construct of the film? Creepy. I would also like to point out that the sex scene is extremely hot. So close to being porn I couldn't believe it. But not inappropriate for the film. And what the main character does after that, I never saw coming. This film was made by a director that respects her audience's intelligence by not spelling out anything. And for that, I respect her. Expand
  6. May 23, 2012
    i thought that the movie was well acted, and it had something going for it. i was hoping the tone would step up a little. i didn't have fun watching this movie. however much i agree with everyone with everyone who gave this movie an 8 or a 9, i guess i was just hoping to see another movie. wow. this s the first time i disagree with metacritic. Expand