Metascore
38

Generally unfavorable reviews - based on 25 Critics What's this?

User Score
7.2

Generally favorable reviews- based on 18 Ratings

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  • Starring: , ,
  • Summary: The Life Before Her Eyes is an intense and visually evocative drama about the loss of youth, investigating how a single moment in time can define an entire life. Based on Laura Kasischke's visionary novel, the story hinges on a pivotal confrontation: two high school girls held captive by a gunman and forced to make the terrifying choice as to who will live and who will die. The Life Before Her Eyes explores the reverberations stemming from the collision of past and future, reality and dream. Life can end in an instant--yet the echoes of possible futures remain inescapable. Moving backward and forward in time, it combines the dramatic intensity of Sophie's Choice with the eerie mystery of a ghost story like The Others. (Magnolia) Expand
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 6 out of 25
  2. Negative: 11 out of 25
  1. Emotionally sophisticated, humane and worth talking about for hours.
  2. Though atmospheric and occasionally suspenseful, its gimmickry keeps it from being transcendent.
  3. Boasting two terrific performances by Uma Thurman and Evan Rachel Wood as the adult and teenage versions of the same character.
  4. Tidy, predictable, excruciatingly fussy in its details and lacking the tiniest glimmer of humor, The Life Before Her Eyes contradicts the director’s claim in the production notes that the movie “is not a perfectly ordered experience with clear causes and effects.”
  5. Reviewed by: Glenn Kenny
    38
    While "House of Sand and Fog" remained (somewhat precariously) balanced on the knife-edge that can turn tragedy into bathos, this picture doesn't fare nearly as well, and begins weighing down the viewer with its putative significance only minutes after its opening credits.
  6. Perelman eases the transitions between the past and the present with echoing phrases and situations, but they all seem rather pat and contrived. Does he really think that repeated refrains from the Zombies oldie, "She's Not There," won't be a dead (so to speak) giveaway?
  7. Consider this more a consumer warning than a movie review: The Life Before Her Eyes will draw you in, then intrigue you, then bore you, then bewilder you, then make you crazy with its incessant flashbacks and flash forwards, and finally leave you feeling like the victim of a fraud.

See all 25 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 4 out of 6
  2. Negative: 1 out of 6
  1. Aug 24, 2013
    10
    Yes, this movie is definitely the best thriller I've seen so far. It is very emotional and profound, and I like the fact the movie reflects on the adulthood messed up by a psychological drama. Expand

See all 6 User Reviews