• Studio: erbp
  • Release Date: Apr 5, 2013
Metascore
81

Universal acclaim - based on 27 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 24 out of 27
  2. Negative: 0 out of 27
  1. Reviewed by: Trevor Johnston
    Aug 27, 2013
    100
    If you’ve ever sat at your desk wondering whether there’s more to life, or been kept awake by an insidious hum in the darkness, this will speak to your soul – even as its enveloping, disturbing, uplifting story sends your mind reeling with giddy possibilities.
  2. 88
    Dense, richly textured, and emotionally fraught - uplifting and devastating in equal parts - Shane Carruth's masterful sophomore effort is an abstract, elusive, but emotionally engaging love story that's more tone poem than drama.
  3. Reviewed by: Bill Goodykoontz
    Apr 25, 2013
    90
    It’s all a neat trick. Or exercise. Or brain-teaser. Whatever you want to call it, Upstream Color is like nothing you’ve ever seen before. But once you have seen it, once isn’t going to be enough
  4. Reviewed by: Marc Mohan
    Apr 18, 2013
    91
    Upstream Color culminates in a wordless final act that is among the most transcendent passages of pure cinema in memory.
  5. Reviewed by: Kenneth Turan
    Apr 11, 2013
    100
    Part science fiction scare movie, part offbeat romance, part completely unclassifiable, "Color" is also one-man filmmaking of a remarkable sort.
  6. Reviewed by: Peter Keough
    Apr 11, 2013
    88
    Henry David Thoreau plays an enigmatic role in Shane Carruth’s hypnotic thriller — an oxymoronic term to describe a film that is truly sui generis.
  7. Reviewed by: Simon Abrams
    Apr 3, 2013
    88
    A romance, a thriller, and a science-fiction drama, Upstream Color tantalizes viewers with an open-ended narrative about overcoming personal loss.
  8. Reviewed by: Scott Tobias
    Apr 3, 2013
    100
    It might be fair to argue that the resonances of Upstream Color are too obscure and internal — many viewers have and will be baffled by it — but it’s the type of art that inspires curiosity and obsession, like some beautiful object whose meaning remains tantalizingly out of reach.
  9. Reviewed by: Calum Marsh
    Mar 19, 2013
    88
    Upstream Color is lush, rhythmic, and deeply sensual, a film of exceptional beauty.
  10. Reviewed by: William Goss
    Feb 26, 2013
    83
    As willfully oblique as his first film was densely foreboding, a rumination on the perils and pleasures of interpersonal connection that would seem to refuse any easy connection with even the most curious of audiences.
  11. Reviewed by: Rodrigo Perez
    Feb 5, 2013
    100
    You may not be able to figure it out, but that's part of the point of this sensually-directed, sensory-laden experiential (and experimental) piece of art that washes over you like a sonorous bath of beguiling visuals, ambient sounds and corporeal textures.
  12. Reviewed by: Eric Kohn
    Feb 5, 2013
    91
    Upstream Color is routinely confusing but not oppressively so; its final exquisite moments explain little yet still manage to invite you in.
User Score
6.9

Generally favorable reviews- based on 81 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 14 out of 25
  2. Negative: 10 out of 25
  1. Apr 10, 2013
    0
    The achievements of a filmmaker should not be measured by the amount of headscratching he is able to generate among his viewers, and yet this seems to be the criterium according to which most critics (with the laudably honest exception of Stephanie Zacharek) are willing to grant Carruth the benefit of the doubt. Upstream Color is, for all its putative ambition, shallowly developed, indiscriminately written, portentously paced, cast ridiculously and acted woefully. You won't spend two more irksome hours in front of a screen, small or large, anytime soon. Full Review »
  2. Apr 14, 2013
    0
    Sometimes I think the less movie critics understand a movie the higher their ratings will be.
    This movie just proves my point. There is
    nothing to understand yet the ratings are through the roof.
    If I had to measure a level of confusion in a movie I would give this movie 10 out of 10 as well. But I do not think getting confused should be the reason why people go to movies. Artsy, maybe. Getting better near the end? Too bad, not everybody will stay that long watching God knows what…
    Full Review »
  3. May 15, 2013
    1
    I would say this is the worst film i've seen this year, except that it isn't really a film at all, at least not by the usual definition. There is no real plot, close to zero acting on display, and is almost as interesting as watching paint dry. Have you ever wondered what it would be like to collect a bunch of film clips of the same people, sometimes doing familiar things, and at other times doing strange things that make no sense and string them together in a random array such that any hope of an audience actually following something akin to a story would be impossible? Yeah, me neither. Do yourself a favor, skip this one. Full Review »