Metascore
65

Generally favorable reviews - based on 10 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 6 out of 10
  2. Negative: 0 out of 10
  1. Reviewed by: Andrew O'Hehir
    Jan 27, 2011
    90
    Aladag's point, I think, is that no matter how righteous we may feel about this kind of zero-sum cultural collision, for the human beings involved it often results in unbearable tragedy.
  2. Reviewed by: Scott Tobias
    Jan 27, 2011
    83
    When We Leave is a film without villains. Instead, it features a set of circumstances that inevitably and needlessly spin out of control.
  3. Reviewed by: Joe Williams
    Apr 15, 2011
    75
    This melodrama about spousal abuse and honor killings might be too grim to bear, but Kekilli keeps it centered.
  4. Reviewed by: A.O. Scott
    Jan 27, 2011
    70
    It is frequently gripping and sincere in its intentions, but never quite as revelatory, or as devastating, as it should be.
  5. Reviewed by: Nick Pinkerton
    Jan 25, 2011
    70
    Kekilli, more than an unofficial spokeswoman for rebellious Euro-Muslim youth, sells a simple and deterministic story through her sheer presence and precise reaction shots.
  6. Reviewed by: Ty Burr
    Mar 31, 2011
    63
    As powerful as the movie is, it stays on the outside of a culture looking in.
  7. Reviewed by: Joe Neumaier
    Jan 28, 2011
    60
    Kekilli sensitively portrays Umay's conflicted despair, and the relationship with her son is beautifully rendered.
  8. Reviewed by: Walter Addiego
    Mar 3, 2011
    50
    A doleful melodrama. There are some intense, moving sequences, but too much emotional badgering and a general shortage of finesse.
  9. Reviewed by: V.A. Musetto
    Jan 28, 2011
    50
    Kekilli delivers a perfectly tuned performance. Too bad the script is often clunky and melodramatic, as the first-time director, Vienna-born Feo Aladag, tries to manipulate viewers' emotions.
  10. Reviewed by: Keith Uhlich
    Jan 25, 2011
    40
    The film has the look of unflinching truth, yet it too often feels like a calculated ploy to stoke viewers' liberal-guilty consciences.

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