Metascore
83

Universal acclaim - based on 22 Critics What's this?

User Score
8.3

Universal acclaim- based on 12 Ratings

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Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 21 out of 22
  2. Negative: 0 out of 22
  1. Reviewed by: Andrew O'Hehir
    Dec 20, 2013
    100
    It’s so assured and accomplished, so rigorous on both a human and technical level, and so clearly driven by love for this harsh landscape and its hardened people, that I was entirely swept away by its characters and their story.
  2. Reviewed by: Robbie Collin
    May 27, 2013
    100
    So hauntingly perfect is Barnard’s film, and so skin-pricklingly alive does it make you feel to watch it, that at first you can hardly believe the sum of what you have seen.
  3. Reviewed by: Paul Bradshaw
    Oct 24, 2013
    100
    Carried aloft by the remarkable performances of her two young leads, Clio Barnard’s poignant, unflinching slice of hard-knock-life grips tight and lingers long. Britain’s definitely got talent.
  4. Reviewed by: Neil Young
    May 27, 2013
    80
    [A] solidly effective addition to Britain's social realism tradition, elevated by excellent performances by the young leads and some unexpectedly poetic touches.
  5. Reviewed by: Noel Murray
    Dec 19, 2013
    80
    The Selfish Giant is a harsh movie, but it isn’t devoid of hope, because Barnard understands that everything has value—even if it can’t be realized until after an object’s been tossed out.
  6. Reviewed by: Dave Calhoun
    Oct 22, 2013
    80
    It’s not a pretty story, but its warmth lies in its fondness – love, even – for the two boys at its heart.
  7. Reviewed by: Sara Stewart
    Dec 20, 2013
    50
    It is admirably unsparing and gloomily atmospheric. And I looked at my watch a bunch of times.

See all 22 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 3 out of 3
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 3
  3. Negative: 0 out of 3
  1. Aug 5, 2014
    10
    "The Selfish Giant" is an unexpectedly excellent working-class friendship movie. A strong and first-class first-time performance from two young leading actors make a tale about friendship, lost and desperation going quietly emotional and being a proof that British cinema has a film even better than Hollywood. Expand
  2. Mar 25, 2014
    9
    A surprisingly good movie, unexpectedly exceeded all my expectations and put me on speechless. It was inspired by the Oscar Wilde story which portrays two English boys who are suspended from their school for misbehaving. They are inherited from the poor family which led them to work for a local scrap dealer. After sometime the things changes between them and decides to move in different directions, which ends in a shocking tragedy.

    The story was told in a straight forward flow in a raw form with a possible realistic approach. Great performance by the two inexperience kids and a fine direction. One of the best British movie in a recent past with a good message carrying in it.

    The Story of a two kids with different characteristic nature, but same interest which puts them together. The relationship between them and the path they choose to travel in life was clearly depicted. And so the nature of unexpected accident that strike without a warning. All together this movie became a solid piece of cinema, but a bit rough in parts.

    Since 'Paranoid Park' I have not disturbed by any film scenes. The whole day I was thinking about the disaster that happened in this movie. For that scene alone this movie deserves to be R rated. Also, there are many bad words used in dialogues which is not suitable for kids. I love British movie, if you do as well then don't miss this movie.
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  3. Jun 5, 2014
    9
    a movie not many will see. a shame. it is, head and shoulders, better than 99.9% of the crap coming out of hollywood. unflinching, unsentimental, but very moving and sensitive. i missed a good quarter of the dialogue because i couldn't sort out the Northern accent. which really didn't matter. the story was so well conveyed cinematically and through the actors, it is easily grasped. outstanding. Expand

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