Generally favorable reviews - based on 32 Critics What's this?

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Universal acclaim- based on 397 Ratings

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  • Starring: ,
  • Summary: This modern-day fable is set on the rusted mean streets of Coney Island, Brooklyn. The dual storyline parallels four people who set out in pursuit of a better life. (Artisan Entertainment)
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 22 out of 32
  2. Negative: 4 out of 32
  1. Aronofsky has fashioned a chilling vision that lives up to the caustic irony of its title and gives us a nightmare that is not lightly forgotten.
  2. 91
    Burstyn is astonishing, forsaking all vanity to make silly biddy Sara a fully dimensioned human being.
  3. 88
    Aronofsky brings a new urgency to the drug movie by trying to reproduce, through his subjective camera, how his characters feel, or want to feel, or fear to feel.
  4. 70
    This bleak vision directed by Darren Aronofsky ("Pi") is pointless with good reason.
  5. May be an elaborate stunt, a bungee jump, but even so, it's forceful enough to leave a rare palpitating residue.
  6. To be fair, Aronofsky has a knack for stylistic overkill, and his hammering onslaught is undeniably riveting, at first anyway.
  7. In the end the movie goes nowhere a hundred movies haven't already been and tells us nothing we don't already know. It does so with so much violent energy, however, it's like four brutal years at film school crammed into an hour and a half.

See all 32 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Negative: 12 out of 146
  1. May 16, 2011
    Fine piece of work. From every aspect. You can tell the cast and crew worked so hard to compose a phenomenal film, like nothing you have seen before. Expand
  2. Mar 31, 2013
    Not only does it paint the consequences of perhaps reaching too far, but Requiem for a Dream also tells a tragic tale of the troubles of being alone, and the lengths people may go to just to be counted.
    Sara (Ellen Burstyn) is a widowed mother who spends her days watching the same game show, while also fantasising about being thinner and fitting into the red dress she wore to her son Harry's (Jared Leto) graduation, she decides to start a diet which eventually leads her to start taking prescription diet pills.
    Harry, meanwhile, is a heroin addict, and soon gets himself into the trade around Coney Island, along with his friend Tyrone (Marlon Wayans) and his girlfriend, Marion (Jennifer Connolly). They make extreme amounts of money from their deals and dream of opening a fashion store.
    As the two stories unfold, we watch as each of the four peoples addiction grows out of control and the effects to which their lives begin to spiral, the title truly bears fruit to the lengths these individuals go to for what they believe to be a better life.
    Elllen Burstyn puts in an emotionally stirring performance as Sara, forever fantasising of her life in a gameshow, and her struggle to come to grips with reality are perfectly portrayed here, simply for the love of her son.
    The multi-talented Jared Leto continues to shine, playing the conflicted Harry, who we never quite understand just how much he loves his mother, as when he is around her he seems uneasy. his characters relationship with is also addicted girlfriend starts off quite simple, but we soon realise that he will do anything he can to please her, whatever his actions.
    Darren Aronofsky's superb filmmaking comes in with a bang in this film, combining close up shots with a montage of quick cuts to emphasise the speed and evolved nature of each persons addiction, and he tells a wonderful story as how the ambitions can indeed be dangerous, many things that people reach for could have tragic consequences, but unfortunately an idea can spread.
    Combining expert filmmaking and a gripping story, along with a superb cast, Aronofsky has created a truly breathtaking yet tragic film, one that will not be forgotten, simply because of its meaningful story and heartbreaking finale.
  3. JayF.
    Jul 4, 2006
    The most brilliantly directed film in American motion picture history. How Ellen Burnstyn did not win the Academy Award for this film is far, far beyond my realm of thinking. Expand
  4. JackL.
    Jul 25, 2007
    This is a great movie. Very stylish and thought provoking. The movie slowly sucks you in the leaden nightmare in which is filled up with harrowing truths, deep thoughts and breathtaking performances, especially by Ellen Burstyn. Expand
  5. Jun 20, 2013
    This film is fascinating. The direction is excellent and the actors are fabulous. Ellen Burstyn gave an excellent performance. The ending was really sad. I thought it would not be such good a film but Requiem for a dream fascinated me. A masterpiece. Aronofsky made again an extraordinary picture Expand
  6. Kazumi&Daisy
    Oct 14, 2008
    Amazing! Can't find any word to describe except the one I just used. - Kazumi Kazum Hotogishi I never watched the movie but my husband said it was absolutely fabulous, I'm very posh and he's Jap - Daisy Elizabeth Hotogishi Oh I forgot to brush my teeth!! Expand
  7. Oct 2, 2010
    Requiem for a Dream was extremely boring. i really can't believe that anyone saw any good in this worthless trash of a film. there was no point in the movie that was even remotely entertaining and the only good thing about it was that everything i did over the following couple of days after seeing it seemed a lot more interesting in comparison. It was just bad. Expand

See all 146 User Reviews