Metascore
65

Generally favorable reviews - based on 21 Critics What's this?

User Score
7.1

Generally favorable reviews- based on 18 Ratings

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  • Summary: The Dead Girl is a quintet of stories about seemingly unrelated people whose lives converge around the murder of a young woman. (First Look Pictures)
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 16 out of 21
  2. Negative: 2 out of 21
  1. Reviewed by: Ken Fox
    100
    All behave in ways that may at first seem incomprehensible, but through Moncrieff's expert storytelling, each woman is finally rendered merely human.
  2. Reviewed by: Jenni Miller
    88
    Dark little indie thriller.
  3. There is no surprise or justice or sense to the whole thing. Just sadness. And a sense of all the lonely people and where they all come from.
  4. Reviewed by: Robert Koehler
    70
    More ambitious than her 2002 debut, "Blue Car," Moncrieff's new film maintains her focus on women, expanding to include a range of ages, circumstances and psychologies. Picture's drama, however, is deliberately fractured into a quintet of stories that vary considerably in their overall impact.
  5. 70
    The universe of The Dead Girl is an almost uniformly dreary one, whose women are all either dowdy or whorish.
  6. The way Moncrieff has structured The Dead Girl, it's catnip for actors: Divided into five chapters, the script affords juicy roles requiring only a few days' work from each member of its impressive ensemble.
  7. Just when it seems as though the language of insult and humiliation couldn’t get any nastier, the movie escalates the barrage.

See all 21 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 4 out of 8
  2. Negative: 3 out of 8
  1. CallenK.
    Jul 5, 2007
    10
    A terrific movie from start to finish. The acting is wonderful throughout and the plot lines are fresh. This is a woman's movie par excellence.
  2. MichaelL.
    Jun 2, 2007
    9
    Excellent film with an excellent cast. Yes, it's unpleasant, but it's real. The dysfunction and damage family systems create can wreak havock on lives for generations to come. This is truly a horror film--with a brain, unlike Eli Roth's torture porn. Because we know these people and we know these situations. Thank God there are filmmakers with intellect who are brave enough to tell stories that effect us more deeply than watching someone dismembered by a chainsaw. Expand
  3. ChadS.
    May 16, 2007
    8
    The title, as we soon learn, is metaphorical as well as literal. There's more than one dead girl in "The Dead Girl". Six or seven, actually; more than one per chapter in some cases. During the first story, we can see that Arden's mother(Piper Laurie, reviving the role she played in "Carrie") murdered her daughter(Toni Collette) a long time ago. Next up is Leah(Rose Byrne), a coroner-in-training, who(along with her mother) died the day her younger sister went missing. She'd rather hang out with corpses than with James Franco. Both women are on the verge of being reborn when it's thought that the "Jane Doe" Leah is working on might be their missing family member. "The Dead Girl" is not so much a downer, but it can be sobering, especially the final story; the story of the "dead girl", who ironically, turns out to be the most alive girl in the story. Krista(Brittany Murphy) had a hard-knock life, but she was, as they say, making lemonade out of lemons. Murphy is fierce. She really loved Rosetta(Kerry Washington). In life, Ruth(Mary Beth Hurt, from the chapter "The Wife"), stuck with her scumbag of a husband(Nick Searcy), is dying the slow death of an underappreciated housewife. "The Dead Girl" is always intelligent, always dead-on about the facts of life...and death. Expand
  4. JamesM.
    May 16, 2007
    4
    Grim, bleak and uninvolving film whose premise is better than its execution. Given the divergent, fractured narrative, those involved are given to histrionics to compensate for the inherent shallowness. Mercifully brief at 90 minutes or so, although the opening sequence is so lifeless and inert, that those who choose to continue will inevitably be checking their watch. Expand
  5. TayborneL.
    May 24, 2007
    3
    In the neo-indy tradition of racing to to bottom and trying to hit the most depressing note thats possible, this film succeeds. In term of being artful about it, ya, it's well made. But it still aims for the bottom, which is easy. The film makers here took the easy way out. Expand
  6. SamJ.
    Jan 14, 2007
    1
    What an unfocused, trashy film this is. A downer across the board.
  7. BeQ.
    Jun 19, 2007
    1
    This movie starts with the anticipation of good development of a story. However, it tanks at the end. This reminds me of the movie "Crash" in that is has separate vignettes of each character - but that is as close as it gets to Crash (good movie). Don't bother trying to find any answers - nothing is really related nor interconnecting - it's just garbage. Expand

See all 8 User Reviews

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