Universal acclaim - based on 21 Critics What's this?

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Generally favorable reviews- based on 30 Ratings

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  • Summary: Suffering from acute kidney failure, Uncle Boonmee has chosen to spend his final days surrounded by his loved ones in the countryside. Surprisingly, the ghost of his deceased wife appears to care for him, and his long lost son returns home in a non-human form. Contemplating the reasons for his illness, Boonmee treks through the jungle with his family to a mysterious hilltop cave – the birthplace of his first life… In his signature cinematic style, the acclaimed Thai filmmaker delivers a strange and mystical world of visionary beauty. (Strand Releasing)

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 19 out of 21
  2. Negative: 0 out of 21
  1. Reviewed by: Scott Tobias
    Mar 3, 2011
    A moving, gently reassuring tale that softens the boundaries between humanity and nature, life and the afterlife.
  2. Reviewed by: Keith Uhlich
    Feb 28, 2011
    What you see and hear always seems perfectly natural, even if you can't exactly say why. Who needs words when you have cinema?
  3. Reviewed by: Lisa Schwarzbaum
    Mar 2, 2011
    Spirit, animal, and human worlds coexist in dreamy harmony in this remarkable drama.
  4. Reviewed by: J. Hoberman
    Mar 1, 2011
    A work of unostentatious beauty and uncloying sweetness, at once sophisticated and artless, mysterious and matter-of-fact, cosmic and humble, it asks only a measure of Boonmeevian acceptance: The movie doesn't mean anything-it simply is.
  5. Reviewed by: Wesley Morris
    Apr 7, 2011
    As Apichatpong erases, once again, the barriers between the celestial and terrestrial, he also does away with the cordons between film genres - this is sci-firomancefamilyreligiousthrillercomedyporn. No video service has a section for that. The only suitable shelf is the one in your soul.
  6. Reviewed by: Richard Mowe
    Feb 28, 2011
    A whimsical essay about the final days of a villager suffering from kidney failure it is undoubtedly one of the filmmaker's most accessible works.
  7. Reviewed by: David Denby
    Mar 23, 2011
    I'm more than ready to welcome a new style and a new metaphysic, but I still respond with skepticism and exasperation to Weerasethakul's work, which is sensuous and ruminative but also flat, almost affectless. [28 March 2011, p. 116]

See all 21 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 4 out of 9
  2. Negative: 4 out of 9
  1. Jan 2, 2012
    These other users don't know what they're talking about. This movie is a cinematic marvel. Every scene feels natural even though many of them are surreal, and it leaves you with a great feeling. It's beautiful. Expand
  2. Jun 18, 2012
    Probably the weirdest film I've ever watched but it is because of this unusual weirdness that constructs the most unique and remarkable movie in Thai film's industry. it also shows downfall of Thai morality- how temptations were seen as ordinary compensation. How humans are now living in 2 totally different world - the world of their own selves and the world that has been built by society which highly provokes the sense of importance of self-notification, nothing is true unless you've experienced with it. Expand
  3. Nov 21, 2012
    All the performances are very good (with my usual caveat that it
  4. Aug 5, 2011
    I understand asian culture and how they relate to death and ghosts in a whole other way. However, I just can't get pass this simple fact. How can your dead daughter appear next to you and you not be shocked and then your dead son turn into a monkey and you act as if that isn't a big deal either. What the hell is going on in asia!!! Expand
  5. Mar 17, 2011
    My favorite part of this movie came when I needed to go to the bathroom during a sequence when the main characters are walking through a forest. Music is playing, they are walking through the forest saying nothing, and I thought, "This movie is really slow and that diet coke has worked it's way to my bladder - time to go." So I went to the bathroom, checked my e-mail, listened to my phone messages, then walked back in to the theatre. They were still walking. I'm not kidding. Now, I'm a fan of Buddhism, I've been to Thailand...but this movie bored me to pieces. It has ten minutes of interesting spiritual/conceptual stuff, stuck in a loooong, sloooow, movie. Pretentious people will love this movie, because it will make them feel smart for liking it. Smart people will rent the dvd and watch it at ten times speed. Expand
  6. Apr 15, 2012
    This movie is one of the worst I have ever seen, and we generally like art films. It is so poorly done it would get a failing grade as a junior high school video project (and they'd have to delete the fish... don;t ask, it;s boring too). In retrospect I wish I had made at least one trip to the restroom, as another reviewer said they wisely did, to relieve the boredom. For me the highlight of the movie (weak though it was) was the ridiculous black shag rug costumes (which zipped up the front) with ridiculous glow-in-the-dark red eyes that the "monkey ghosts" wore. A truly unrelieved snoozer, without a scrap of interest or socially redeeming merit to be had. Save you time and your money! Expand
  7. Oct 21, 2012
    Although, this isn't the reason I had a problem with it, this movie is very slow moving, and very artsy. There are people who hate movies like this no matter what, and there are people who love movies like this no matter what. I think the former is generally more mindful, and able to think for themselves. For me personally, like with any type of movie, a slow moving artistic movie has to be well made, and be able to achieve what it is intending to accomplish more me to like it. This was not that movie. The premise basically gives you every piece of philosophical insight this movie has to offer. A man is dying, and looks back on his past lives. That's it. It doesn't go anywhere from there. It just shows what happens in this guy's past lives, without any sort of insight into this character's mind, and what he's going through, or any sort of commentary on life and death, which you might have expected from the premise. Usually, if a movie is slow moving, it is to provoke emotion, not to make a two hour movie out of 30 minutes worth of script. Expand

See all 9 User Reviews

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