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84

Universal acclaim - based on 30 Critics What's this?

User Score
8.0

Generally favorable reviews- based on 31 Ratings

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  • Summary: Anyone who has waited for treatment in an emergency room or chafed under the less than devoted care of a disinterested doctor will recognize Mr. Lazarescu's dilemma. A 60-ish widower, living alone in Bucharest with his cats, he feels sick enough one evening to call an ambulance. This is the beginning of his Dantesque odyssey deep into the bowels of a big city medical establishment. It's a story that could take place anywhere and Mr. Lazarescu could be your next-door neighbor – or he could be you. (Tartan Films) Expand
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 28 out of 30
  2. Negative: 1 out of 30
  1. Mr. Lazarescu is that rich and riveting a film of universal small human moments and big-system failure.
  2. Reviewed by: Ken Fox
    100
    It's full of humor, pathos and a deep humanism that comes as a warm blast in this age of lifeless, cinematic junk.
  3. 100
    Like "United 93" and the work of the Dardenne brothers, it lives entirely in the moment, seeing what happens as it happens, drawing no conclusions, making no speeches, creating no artificial dramatic conflicts, just showing people living one moment after another, as they must.
  4. Reviewed by: Jay Weissberg
    90
    Picture's dour take on the dehumanizing process of medical treatment is leavened by black humor and dialogue that always rings true.
  5. Reviewed by: Duane Byrge
    70
    In this deep probe into modern-day medicine, the old guy is shuttled from hospital to hospital in a surreal, horrifying ordeal of errors, missed diagnoses and institutional malaise. At two hours and 34 minutes, we, seemingly, also endure his agony -- part of this Romanian film's power and, also, its Achilles heel.
  6. Reviewed by: Kyle Smith
    38
    It's supposed to be about a Kafkaesque experience. Instead, it IS a Kafkaesque experience. Why are we here? Is everything absurd? Is anyone in charge?

See all 30 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 9 out of 13
  2. Negative: 3 out of 13
  1. BogdanP.
    Feb 5, 2007
    10
    The drama on the screen is no more powerful than the real drama. Yet the true power of the movie is that it portrays reality as no one believes it could be. Deeply human. Sad nonetheless. Expand
  2. PeterM.
    Oct 19, 2006
    10
    Harrowing film depicting the last hours in the life of Mr. Dante (no mistake about that name) Lazarescu, leavened with dollops of back humor modeled on the disconnect between the dialogue and what we see on the screen. Expand
  3. CraigS.
    Jan 7, 2007
    10
    Best statement on humanity or lack of humanity that I've seen. It will help turn most viewers into beings who care more for each other.
  4. StefanC.
    Aug 31, 2006
    9
    One of the most entrenching films coming from a Romanian director, "Moartea domnului Lazarescu" truly becomes a profound experience throughout its viewing. The drama of daily life, people portayed as people and not their avatars, and the humorous tragedy of Mr. Lazarescu ammount to quite an achievement from Cristi Puiu. Hopefully, only the first in many to come. Expand
  5. GabrielS.
    Apr 23, 2007
    9
    This movie was made in 2004, 15 years through Romania's painful transition to free-market economy and all that the 'west' brings with it. Attitudes - so Romanians, in their devoidness of showy love as most westerners are used to - are both bleak and humane and I liked the way Cristi Puiu portrayed that naturalness. Top film. Bitter, but good medicine for the soul. Expand
  6. JenniferM.
    Oct 22, 2006
    6
    I, too, didn't get the humour in it. I found it painfully realistic and bleak. Great performances and highly original though.
  7. JasonK.
    Jan 22, 2007
    1
    The most depresssing film I've seen in years, it made me feel ill. Why on earth does it get such a high rating?

See all 13 User Reviews