Generally favorable reviews - based on 39 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 33 out of 39
  2. Negative: 1 out of 39
  1. Reviewed by: Claudia Puig
    Dec 6, 2012
    This gritty examination of physical and psychological wounds offers a superb performance by Marion Cotillard, who speaks volumes with her eyes, and a less convincing one by her lead co-star.
  2. Reviewed by: Rex Reed
    Nov 20, 2012
    Proving again that her Best Actress Academy Award for playing Edith Piaf in "La Vie en Rose" was no fluke, the marvellously sensual Marion Cotillard, with her wounded doe eyes and look of permanent unfulfilled longing, delivers another kidney punch as a double amputee in love with an illegal bare-knuckle fighter in the French shocker Rust and Bone.
  3. Reviewed by: Jesse Cataldo
    Nov 16, 2012
    It runs a complicated bait and switch on its audience, passing ostensible exploitation fodder through a high-toned prestige filter.
  4. Reviewed by: Mike Scott
    Jan 18, 2013
    Rust and Bone is somber and gritty if nothing else, a movie that takes itself very, very seriously, even as it struggles at times to find its focus.
  5. Reviewed by: Joe Morgenstern
    Dec 6, 2012
    Why are certain films less than the sum of their appealing parts?
  6. Reviewed by: Kyle Smith
    Nov 21, 2012
    The visual effects are amazing, but they don't make up for acting that is restrained to an uninsightful fault.
  7. Reviewed by: Owen Gleiberman
    Nov 20, 2012
    Cotillard, with stringy long hair and a coal fire of severity in her eyes, has what it takes to play a woman who feels that she's lost everything. But she's forced to flail and mood-swing from scene to scene. In an insult to the disabled, there is never much to her but her hellacious injury.
  8. Reviewed by: Joe Neumaier
    Nov 23, 2012
    Though Rust and Bone aims for a blasé attitude toward disabled drama - in a far more artificial way than another French film, "The Intouchables," did earlier this year - it's underwritten characters and hoary approach plunk it into mediocrity. As wheelchair-bound Stephanie practices her whale-training motions to Katy Perry's "Firework," it's eye-rollingly obvious.
  9. Reviewed by: Melissa Anderson
    Nov 20, 2012
    Audiard himself might have benefited from a simple reminder of left from right; his rudderless film confuses a pileup of preposterous, sentimental scenarios with genuine emotion.
User Score

Generally favorable reviews- based on 69 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 19 out of 21
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 21
  3. Negative: 2 out of 21
  1. Nov 23, 2012
    Just beautiful! Marion Cotillard really excels in expressing feelings with the less word possible. Audiard mixes love, sex and brutality like it's actually a natural thing. This drama is so down to earth and well acted that you accept every aspect of Ali & Staphanie's tough personality, even if they are not very lovable. They don't try to make you love them, they just tell a story with it's simplicity and all of it's complexity at the same time. Another Audiard and Cotillard home run. Full Review »
  2. Dec 3, 2012
    fascinating, poignant and spectacular life message, Rust and Bone plays with the lives of these people in a way enigmatic, offer to a Marion Cotillard providing her best performance from La Môme. Full Review »
  3. Jan 15, 2014
    Rust and Bone is a brilliant movie, nothing like I have seen before. It is amazing how this film manage to show so much with little things, and those are a father with a son in need, a woman with an uncommon job and a dysfunctional love relationship. The director also apply small camera shots and low lighting, in order to demonstrate in a better way the emotions of the characters and the cruelty of the reality. The idea of the story is to exhibit Ali, a man that suddenly becomes in charge of his son, but the thing is that he does not know how to do it. When he or his son gets hungry, he looks for food scraps or steals from a store. If he needs money, he works in whatever it takes, no matter if other people get hurt. And when he is angry or stressed, he goes to a fight club. The protagonist is like an animal, does what he wants when he wants. So out of nowhere, he meets Stephanie, a killer whale trainer. And as the same as her whales, she will train Ali to face the world correctly. That is why he is rust, like a metal that cannot withstand the environment. And he needs to become bone, like Stephanie, that resists every obstacle in life. The most overwhelming part is the scene after the accident when she is on the rooftop of her building, practicing the old routine with the killer whales. You can notice that when she raises her arms, her eyes reflect an ineffable feeling of nostalgia, but with a willing of fighting. Full Review »