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Generally unfavorable reviews - based on 13 Critics What's this?

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6.5

Generally favorable reviews- based on 4 Ratings

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  • Starring: , ,
  • Summary: Rebecca is a young girl who, haunted by her father’s suicide, enrolls in an elite boarding school for girls. Before long, Rebecca’s friendship with the popular Lucy is shattered by the arrival of a dark and mysterious new student named Ernessa. Lucy falls under Ernessa’s spell and becomes emotionally and physically consumed by her glamorous new friend. Rebecca, whose overtures of concern are rejected by Lucy, finds herself lost and confused. She begins to develop a crush on her handsome English teacher, Mr. Davies and immerses herself in the Gothic vampire novel Carilla for his class. Rebecca starts to suspect that Ernessa is a vampire, but, despite the suspicious deaths that begin to occur, her fears are treated as simple girlish jealousy. As the bodies of young girls pile up and the line between reality and the supernatural starts to blur, Rebecca decides to take matters into her own hands and get rid of Ernessa. Who can say what is real and what is unreal to the heart consumed by passion and a mind afire with loss? (IFC Films) Collapse
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 3 out of 13
  2. Negative: 5 out of 13
  1. Reviewed by: Joseph Jon Lanthier
    Apr 15, 2012
    80
    With bubbles of nascent arousal frothing at the film's feminine surface, Moth Diaries' commercial potential is likely to hinge on whether or not audiences can stand to be confronted with the confusion they felt as adolescents.
  2. Reviewed by: Stephanie Zacharek
    Apr 19, 2012
    70
    It offers glancing pleasures of the atmospheric kind – the impact is the equivalent of a filmy cobweb brushing against your cheek. It tickles more than it bites.
  3. Reviewed by: Andrew Schenker
    Apr 14, 2012
    63
    This is one vampire film whose sexless, generic ending betrays a promise of revisionist complexity.
  4. Reviewed by: Justin Chang
    Apr 15, 2012
    40
    The body count runs high at Brangwyn boarding school, but tension, surprise and viewer interest are the real casualties in The Moth Diaries.
  5. Reviewed by: Neil Young
    Apr 15, 2012
    40
    Suspenseless, uninvolving and underdeveloped, it wastes the talents of an almost entirely distaff cast that deserves much stronger material.
  6. Reviewed by: Scott Tobias
    Apr 18, 2012
    33
    Writer-director Mary Harron, a supremely intelligent adaptor who did wonders with the screen version of Bret Easton Ellis' "American Psycho," simply doesn't have the chops to give this story the florid kick it needs.
  7. Reviewed by: David Fear
    Apr 17, 2012
    20
    They've taken an intriguing story about female neuroses with gothic overtones and turned it into a graceless, butt-ugly attempt at Twilight-lite.

See all 13 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 1 out of 1
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 1
  3. Negative: 0 out of 1
  1. Jan 31, 2013
    7
    When the new girl in school starts to come between Rebecca and her best friend, Lucy, she begins to suspect that there is something far more sinister behind their relationship. Rachel Klein's modern update on traditional Gothic storytelling is brought to life in Mary Harron's screen adaptation of THE MOTH DIARIES, from 2011. Rebecca and the other girls transpose their teenage anxieties like anorexia, depression, suicide, and sexuality on to their ghostly classmate as a means of dealing with their internal struggles. While Ernessa may not be seen physically drawing the blood from her victims, her presence at the school certainly saps the other girls of their strength and happiness, leading them in to despair. The lesbianic undertones that are present in the plot also draw strongly from the classic tale of Carmilla, which is frequently referenced throughout the girls' schoolwork. Harron takes a timely approach in developing the characters and mood of the picture, but unfortunately, her deliberate pacing begins to wear during the long periods of inaction and leaves the audience feeling deprived as the film draws to its anticlimactic ending. Still, we are left on a positive note, having grown with Rebecca as she overcomes her pain and loss to find a renewed strength in herself. THE MOTH DIARIES ultimately falls short of becoming a modern classic, but it does provide another unique and emotionally charged vampire tale in the same vein as LET THE RIGHT ONE IN. Expand

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