Metascore
65

Generally favorable reviews - based on 12 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 9 out of 12
  2. Negative: 0 out of 12
  1. Everything in Water Lilies is more guarded, more complex and far more interesting than it seems.
  2. 75
    Though the material is familiar, Sciamma has a light touch and avoids many teen-movie cliches.
  3. 70
    Dismissed in some quarters as trash because it depicts a sexual act (of sorts) between two teenage girls, Water Lilies struck me instead as a hypnotic and wholly convincing look at teen culture from the inside, with all its courage, cruelty and unspoken codes of silence intact.
  4. Reviewed by: Nick Pinkerton
    70
    French director CĂ©line Sciamma doesn't quite have the stun of discovery--mortified adolescent sexuality is something of a national specialty, after all--but she inexhaustibly endeavors after the indelible image.
  5. The elegant Water Lilies is not about answers but about discovery of self and of others in all its pain and pleasure.
  6. Reviewed by: Lisa Nesselson
    70
    The painfully spot-on essence of teen angst meets the spirit of Esther Williams in Water Lilies. First film by gifted scripter-helmer Celine Sciamma nails the aching doubts and offhanded cruelty of 15- and 16-year-old girls.
  7. It's a world where every emotion feels like the earth moving, and where the shifting tectonics of young lust and friendship, along with the lifelong lessons of a broken heart, have never felt more real.
  8. 63
    Though Water Lilies endlessly teases the audience with its sapphic subtext and young female flesh, Sciamma seems most interested in showing how extremely cruel adolescent girls can be to each other.
  9. 63
    A distant thematic and artistic cousin of Sofia Coppola's "The Virgin Suicides" and Lucrecia Martel's "The Holy Girl."
  10. Although a little too open-ended to be wholly satisfying, Water Lilies is still an excellent directorial debut.
  11. Water Lilies is a nice, watchable, attractive, minor work. What it lacks is a sense of purpose, a commitment not just to its characters but also to its own reason for being.
  12. Reviewed by: Joe Neumaier
    50
    With no adults to add melodrama, the sweet Water Lilies depends on the emotion in its young performers' faces to move forward.

There are no user reviews yet.