A24 | Release Date: October 6, 2017
7.2
USER SCORE
Generally favorable reviews based on 256 Ratings
USER RATING DISTRIBUTION
Positive:
194
Mixed:
26
Negative:
36
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4
BeeceeOct 23, 2017
Here is another indie movie that I can't say I enjoyed. Although the visuals are very interesting, showing the sleazy underbelly near Disneyworld in Orlando, and there is some good acting, particularly by Willem Dafoe, the movie wasHere is another indie movie that I can't say I enjoyed. Although the visuals are very interesting, showing the sleazy underbelly near Disneyworld in Orlando, and there is some good acting, particularly by Willem Dafoe, the movie was seriously flawed. Moonie's unemployed stripper mother was hardly sympathetic. The ending of the film was predictable, the film itself was repetitive and slow moving, and I found myself impatiently waiting for the inevitable conclusion. Expand
3 of 6 users found this helpful33
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6
MetaflixNov 13, 2017
One realizes about halfway through 'The Florida Project' that the entirety film is going to continue along a rather offbeat and non-traditional track. The film is more atmospheric than plot driven, similar in that regard to last year'sOne realizes about halfway through 'The Florida Project' that the entirety film is going to continue along a rather offbeat and non-traditional track. The film is more atmospheric than plot driven, similar in that regard to last year's breakout hit 'Moonlight.' Both the production team and acting talent on 'The Florida Project' did a phenomenal job at world-building, creating a realistic setting filled with distinct characters that oftentimes felt like watching a documentary. However, it's the overall structure of the movie that makes it a flat-out chore to sit through. Stories need a beginning, middle, and end. 'The Florida Project' is all middle. Worse, it hardly has a main character. Or at the very least it lacks any kind of protagonist/antagonist relationship in the traditional sense. And by the time the asynchronous ending appeared on the screen, I was screaming in my head for the end credits to finally roll, as the two hour run-time felt more like three and I just wanted to go home. Expand
2 of 5 users found this helpful23
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5
didntloveitNov 12, 2017
This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. Despite the exuberance of the children in the movie and the appealing character played by Willem Dafoe, I couldn't get past the aspects of the film that were off-putting, including the circumscribed setting, the abrasive the mother of the child at the center of the film (thank you to hobocrit for this word that perfectly captures her) and the feeling of dread as I anticipated what horrors awaiting both the unsupervised children and the mother who did not seek out sustainable ways of making a living.This movie is set in a large city, but because the camera stays focused on a short stretch of roadway, you never get a sense that the people in the film live in a major metropolitan area. While this circumscribed setting mirrors the constraints limiting the character's lives, it also limits how much the viewer can enjoy watching the movie. I wish we learned more about what other attempts the mother had made to find a job, given that her maternal instincts were strong enough to keep her from becoming drug addict despite her circumstances. It's like the filmmaker is telling us that it doesn't matter how she got into her current situation, and that something bad is going to happen to the kids, but of course it matters. Whenever you sensing bad outcomes lurking, because you know the characters are facing circumstances that commonly lead to the worst possible things happening, I think it is important to show why those things haven't happened yet to the characters.

I think it is important that we take seriously the precariousness of people's lives in our wealthy (by per capita measures) country. However, I think the abrasiveness stands in the way of us fully experiencing the humanity of mother and daughter. The daughter's joyousness is infectious, but at the end of the movie her fear seems forced to me.

See this movie to watch Willem DaFoe's heroic motel manager (although we never find out why despite living in this world, he manages to stay above the difficulties his tenants face and not become hardened by it) and the performances of the kids but be prepared to be frustrated by the limited amount we see of the physical environment and the lives of the characters.
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2 of 6 users found this helpful24
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5
ChesterFTOFFeb 11, 2018
Of all of the Awards Season hopefuls going into the Oscars, this one seems to be getting snubbed the hardest. At least, that’s what I’d heard going in to this particular film. The Florida Project has received only one Oscar nod (for WillemOf all of the Awards Season hopefuls going into the Oscars, this one seems to be getting snubbed the hardest. At least, that’s what I’d heard going in to this particular film. The Florida Project has received only one Oscar nod (for Willem Defoe’s supporting role). Much to my surprise, however, I agree with it’s singular nomination, however I would have liked to see it get a nod for it’s cinematography, also.

As an antisocial person, I feel this film unintentionally captures my general outlook on the world, so in a way, I can derive my own meaning from it. The parts I enjoy greatly feature almost no people. The cinematography is astoundingly gorgeous, and the locations, however bleak they may be, are beautiful in their desolation. The lighting looked very natural and as a result, many of the scenes felt rather intimate, almost mirroring real life. This effect would have been accomplished perfectly, if it weren’t for the main issue I had with the film: the performances.

The characters, which many have claimed to be one of the defining features of the picture, almost ruined the film for me entirely. With a cast weighing heavily with children, however, The Florida Project was fighting an uphill battle to win my favour. I don’t know why I seem to despise both children, and child actors, but regardless, the only performance I didn’t mind in recent memory was Dafne Keen’s Laura, featured within Logan. Still, having heard the rave reviews before going in, I was actually hopeful. Those whom I was with at the time seemed incredibly pleased with the performances, commenting on how good they were multiple times throughout the film. I was less than impressed. Right from the first scene, I found them grating. Not only are the performances (in my opinion!!) lacking, the characters themselves are infuriating. The children are written to be obnoxiously loud, and terribly rude. I completely understand why this is, but regardless, it doesn’t make it any less painful for a viewer such as myself.

Bria Vinaite is giving her first performance in a film. She was actually an instagram model, with no prior experience. Again, I completely understand why this casting decision was made, and I actually agree with it for the most part. Still, I felt her lack of experience was hard to ignore. Caleb Landry Jones (whom, might I add, has had a wonderful year in cinema: This, Three Billboards outside of Ebbing, Missouri, Get Out, and American Made) is barely in the film long enough to notice. I can remember two scenes, in which he does barely anything. The one performance which I actually enjoyed was Willem Defoe (which is rather odd to me as I can still only picture him as the Green Goblin). He plays Bobby, who is the one likeable character within the film. Naturally, he is the one character who is almost entirely pointless.

I understand he’s a sort of morale compass, and he seems to legitimately care for these demon-spawn children, but ultimately none of his scenes equate to anything of importance. That’s a theme that runs through the film: pointlessness. Early in the film, you can tell where the plot will go. Still, it takes it’s time, meandering through scene after scene, rarely impacting the next. When the emotional climax finally came, I was so detached from the characters, I felt nothing but lacklustre contentedness that the characters would be better off than when they started.

Straight after watching the film, I think I would have given it a 6/10. It was visually stunning despite showing very little of interest. Having had time to reflect, however, I feel I am generous in giving it a 5/10. All I took from it was the visuals, and a single serviceable character with a great performance behind it. I completely understand why many people enjoy this film, and I’m glad that it’s found it’s audience. Unfortunately, I am not a part of it.
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1 of 3 users found this helpful12
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4
NicholasandrewFeb 16, 2018
I really don't understand this 92 rating. There was not a moment in this movie that I felt really moved with about it, except when that kid cries at the end. It just tells a story day after about a girl that was not ready to take care a childI really don't understand this 92 rating. There was not a moment in this movie that I felt really moved with about it, except when that kid cries at the end. It just tells a story day after about a girl that was not ready to take care a child and struggles to keep them a home. The photography, color and acting are awesome, but I felt that the story overall was too flat. And that ending seems like they lost their super professional camera, bought the cheapest DSLR they found to record to complete the movie and download any soundtrack in a free stock website. That was really disappointing! Expand
1 of 4 users found this helpful13
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6
markopolousDec 21, 2017
A little disappointing considering the innovation that was Tangerine. Someone told me he thought this would have been a really, really good short film and I think that hits the nail on the head. Sean Baker is clearly a talented director,A little disappointing considering the innovation that was Tangerine. Someone told me he thought this would have been a really, really good short film and I think that hits the nail on the head. Sean Baker is clearly a talented director, getting terrific performances out of non-actors and planting seeds along the way that flower nicely later on in the script, but the story lacks. There’s no real arch, it kind of feels like it arrived at the wrong time after the release of recent films like American Honey, Moonlight, Room, and others that have covered similar territory better. The ending also feels tacked on. Willem Dafoe’s character doesn’t really go anywhere either, he seems like an unnecessary addition. Still, there are some wonderful moments in the film that capture childhood very well and the setting is unique but I can’t say I strongly recommend it. Expand
0 of 3 users found this helpful03
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