The Friend

The Friend Image

Generally favorable reviews - based on 7 Critics What's this?

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  • Summary: This story about two college students addresses the cultural divisions facing us in the 21st Century and the spread of terrorism that can foment and stem from these divisions. (Films Philos)
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 4 out of 7
  2. Negative: 0 out of 7
  1. 88
    Akhavan plays each change brilliantly in a film that is so tightly controlled that the mere glimpse of a new beard or a prayer mat being unrolled becomes a moment of horror.
  2. 70
    Shot on DV, the film looks awful, but this homemade quality fosters an authenticity that allows for startling suspense as Yunes's secret life comes to light.
  3. Reviewed by: Deborah Young
    After a tedious start building up the boys' lives and friendship, feature bow by Elmar Fischer becomes deeply engrossing in its second half, as the viewer learns of the hero's anguish and doubts.
  4. Actors do an excellent job portraying young people struggling with an almost manic paranoia.
  5. If his ambitious first feature isn't entirely successful, it nevertheless poses genuinely provocative questions and opens a window into the way the 9/11 disaster looks from outside the U.S.
  6. Some may be offended by this film's use of Sept. 11 as a plot device, but ultimately The Friend is less concerned with the politics of terror than with its psychology.
  7. The film's elliptical structure seems little more than a device to compensate for the thin dramatic material, but it's saved by a fine ensemble cast and Akhavan's convincing transformation from a naive romantic to a disturbing reactionary.
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 1 out of 1
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 1
  3. Negative: 0 out of 1

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