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38

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

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6.8

Generally favorable reviews- based on 19 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 aThe 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
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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. Reviewed by: Ella Taylor
    40
    Moviegoers may mistake The Life Before Her Eyes for an unduly long L'Oreal commercial featuring softly lit film stars moving languidly with swinging hair through overbearingly premonitory weather.
  5. 38
    When the big twist is revealed at the end of The Life Before Her Eyes, you might think the only way to appreciate its cleverness is to see the film again. I did that. It didn't help.
  6. 30
    Perelman never overcomes the disjuncture of having two familiar actresses play the same grown character, and despite the endless crosscutting, the two halves settle respectively into ghoulish foreboding and murky psychological drama.
  7. What this heavy-handed film mainly has to endure is a clunky story structure and an ending that wasn't original when it was seen four decades ago on "The Twilight Zone."

See all 25 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 4 out of 6
  2. Negative: 1 out of 6
  1. Richard.
    May 4, 2008
    10
    The critics could not be more wrong. This is the most profound and emotional film of the year so far. It's sad that many people will not The critics could not be more wrong. This is the most profound and emotional film of the year so far. It's sad that many people will not see it based on the copycat critics reviews. Expand
  2. 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 onYes, 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
  3. Brynhotness
    Apr 24, 2008
    10
    I thought this movie was phenomenal and i watched some of this movie was shot on the street right next to mine and i think all fo the actors I thought this movie was phenomenal and i watched some of this movie was shot on the street right next to mine and i think all fo the actors and actresses did a teriffic job!!!!!!!! Expand
  4. ChadS.
    May 2, 2008
    8
    When the good girl met the bad girl in Catherine Hardwicke's "Thirteen", the bad girl exerted her will on the good girl, and the good When the good girl met the bad girl in Catherine Hardwicke's "Thirteen", the bad girl exerted her will on the good girl, and the good girl became bad. The good girl was played by Evan Rachel Wood. This time, in "The Life Before Her Eyes", she's the bad girl, who meets a good girl, and she becomes a good girl, too. The good girl is played by Eva Amurri. Diana McFee(Uma Thurman) can thank Maureen for the woman she is today. But where is Maureen? The last time we saw her, she was in a high school girls' bathroom with her best friend and the gunman. Since "The Life Before Her Eyes" predicates itself as a sort of "Donnie Darko" for women, Maureen's fate isn't wholly determinisitic, because the past is present, the past is fluid, as Diana rewrites her history, her husband and child's history, and especially, Maureen's history from a contemporary epoch(the weeks leading up to the fifteenth anniversary of the massacre) that runs parallel to the past. Like Alejandro Agresti's "The Lake House", this "My So-Called Elephant" is sci-fi for women who don't like sci-fi. Collapse
  5. Enrique
    May 4, 2008
    4
    Barely convincing. Uma Thurmann is fine but the script is too contrived. A big disappointment.
  6. PaulB.
    Apr 20, 2008
    2
    Uma Thurman continues her losing streak in a poorly-constructed script punctuated with ridiculous lines such as, "I don't know about you Uma Thurman continues her losing streak in a poorly-constructed script punctuated with ridiculous lines such as, "I don't know about you but I could use some soup!" Expand

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