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  1. Aug 29, 2014
    5
    This is definitely not the film I was expecting based on its Oscar nominated pedigree. To say that I was disappointed is to put it mildly. The story concerns twin brothers who are sent to live with their un-loving grandmother at the time of World War 2 and are requested by their father to keep a notebook of their experiences. The scenes involving the grandmother are indeed the best in theThis is definitely not the film I was expecting based on its Oscar nominated pedigree. To say that I was disappointed is to put it mildly. The story concerns twin brothers who are sent to live with their un-loving grandmother at the time of World War 2 and are requested by their father to keep a notebook of their experiences. The scenes involving the grandmother are indeed the best in the film. However, the boys evolution from weak to strong, in both body and spirit, is at times too simplistically presented and at others un-necessarily over stated. Their blank stares into the camera when occupying the same cinematic frame often makes them come over as twins of evil from a hammer horror film. To this end the limited music score ominously conspires, its notes of doom seemingly belonging to another film entirely. The actress who plays the grandmother is very good, but the scenes involving cruelty to animals (often a requisite in Foreign Language films for some reason) are as distasteful as they are unwanted. Expand
Metascore
57

Mixed or average reviews - based on 21 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 12 out of 21
  2. Negative: 1 out of 21
  1. Reviewed by: Mike Scott
    Oct 10, 2014
    60
    There's something haunting going on in The Notebook -- in the story, in the performances, in the overall atmosphere -- that makes it hard to look away from, and equally hard to forget.
  2. Reviewed by: Ty Burr
    Oct 2, 2014
    63
    An elegantly made, almost unbearably depressing tale of WWII-era deprivation and survival.
  3. Reviewed by: Tirdad Derakhshani
    Sep 26, 2014
    75
    A bleak, despairing testament to the cruelty of war, and how it mangles and defaces everyone it touches.