• Clean
    2 minutes 14 seconds
    Added: May 9, 2008


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Clean Reviews

Jonathan Rosenbaum
Chicago Reader
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A disappointment.

Full Review Source: Chicago Reader

March 2, 2008
Marta Barber
Miami Herald
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Cheung makes her character work, despite a weak plot and script, both by director Assayas.

Full Review Source: Miami Herald | Original Score: 2.5/4

October 13, 2006
Stephanie Zacharek
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Maggie Cheung gives an astonishingly complex performance as a junkie rock star trying to clean up her act.

Full Review Source:

October 7, 2006
Jeff Shannon
Seattle Times
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There are so many quiet, understated miracles unfolding in Clean that all you can do is watch in awe and amazement.

Full Review Source: Seattle Times | Original Score: 3.5/4

June 30, 2006
Steven Rea
Philadelphia Inquirer
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It helps -- immensely -- that Cheung is pitch-perfect. Her performance is heartbreaking.

| Original Score: 3.5/4

June 30, 2006
Jessica Reaves
Chicago Tribune
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It's a joy to watch the characters in this grown-up drama interact, their exchanges laced with anger and doubt, sadness and regret.

Full Review Source: Chicago Tribune | Original Score: 3/4

June 29, 2006

Time Out
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The film locates its heart muscle, however, in its performances.

Full Review Source: Time Out

June 24, 2006
Roger Ebert
Chicago Sun-Times
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Emily is played by Maggie Cheung with such intense desperation that she won the best actress award at Cannes 2004. Only a few actresses in the world could have handled this role from a technical point of view.

Full Review Source: Chicago Sun-Times | Original Score: 3.5/4

June 23, 2006
Richard Roeper
Ebert & Roeper
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It's a complex, very successful portrayal of an addictive, selfish, volatile soul who knows she might be running out of chances at a decent life.

Full Review Source: Ebert & Roeper

June 12, 2006
Bruce Westbrook
Houston Chronicle
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Assayas tells her tale sympathetically, but this sad saga lacks substance. He sells the wretch but not the redemption.

Full Review Source: Houston Chronicle | Original Score: 1.5/4

June 9, 2006
Ty Burr
Boston Globe
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It's a globe-trotting drama with more than a touch of Wim Wenders whim to it.

Full Review Source: Boston Globe | Original Score: 3/4

June 9, 2006
Ann Hornaday
Washington Post
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It's the moral journey of Nolte's character that is the real story in Clean, but Assayas instead focuses on the manipulative habits of an addict, resulting in a mannered study of narcissism and self-pity.

Full Review Source: Washington Post

June 8, 2006
John DeFore
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In Clean, Assayas returns to his comfort zone -- the world of appealing young people with interestingly chaotic lives -- and views it through the eyes of a woman who doesn't belong there anymore.

Full Review Source: Slate

June 5, 2006
John McMurtrie
San Francisco Chronicle
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Despite Cheung's efforts (she won the best actress award at Cannes in 2004) and a strong and subtle supporting performance by Nick Nolte, the story could have used a good dose of adrenaline to keep it from often seeming lifeless.

Full Review Source: San Francisco Chronicle | Original Score: 2/4

May 26, 2006
Christy Lemire
Associated Press
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The film that showed the world Maggie Cheung is more than just a strikingly beautiful face.

Full Review Source: Associated Press | Original Score: B-

May 25, 2006
Steve Murray
Atlanta Journal-Constitution
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Assayas' tale of the difficult search for redemption is less a standard road-to-sobriety story than a chance to marvel, close-up, at Cheung.

Full Review Source: Atlanta Journal-Constitution | Original Score: B-

May 25, 2006

St. Louis Post-Dispatch
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May 20, 2006
Carina Chocano
Los Angeles Times
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One of those movies that's slightly off the mark in ways that are hard to put a finger on, but it is shot so soulfully and features such beautiful performances that it's easy to forgive the occasional false note.

Full Review Source: Los Angeles Times | Original Score: 3.5/5

May 19, 2006
Scott Foundas
L.A. Weekly
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The emotional truthfulness of Clean enters into our bloodstreams with its muted vigor, and we find ourselves getting hooked by this tale of getting unhooked.

Full Review Source: L.A. Weekly

May 18, 2006
Stanley Kauffmann
The New Republic
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The chief pleasure in the picture is Nick Nolte's performance.

May 12, 2006
Andrew Sarris
New York Observer
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Mr. Assayas has given us an international soap opera with little or no dramatic substance.

Full Review Source: New York Observer

May 10, 2006
V.A. Musetto
New York Post
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Maggie Cheung and Nick Nolte seem unlikely co-stars, but co-star they do in Clean, giving gritty performances under the direction of Frenchman Olivier Assayas, Cheung's ex-husband.

| Original Score: 3/4

April 28, 2006
Elizabeth Weitzman
New York Daily News
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As evidenced by the best actress award she earned at Cannes, Cheung rises to the occasion ...

Full Review Source: New York Daily News | Original Score: 3/4

April 28, 2006
Stephen Holden
New York Times
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Clean is one of the few fiction films to evoke realistically the grubby texture of existence for second- and third-tier rock celebrities crumbling under a combination of fading renown and drug addiction.

| Original Score: 3/5

April 28, 2006
John Anderson
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As Emily's tale rolls out, it does so in fashion devoid of cliche and convention, toying with time and portraying a heroine who provokes contempt as easily as empathy.

Full Review Source: Newsday | Original Score: 3/4

April 27, 2006
Scott Tobias
AV Club
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The film gets its distinction from the performances by Cheung and Nolte, whose scenes together are suffused with loss and unexpected mutual compassion.

Full Review Source: AV Club | Original Score: B

April 27, 2006
Michael Atkinson
Village Voice
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All the same and despite Cheung's deserved Best Actress win at Cannes, the feigned intimacy with inexpressible bio-emotional conditions like addiction and detox leaves us, as it almost always does, on the outside.

Full Review Source: Village Voice

April 25, 2006
Rex Reed
New York Observer
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[Cheung] catalogs every up and down on the carousel of a recovering drug addict with a mix of despair, pain, strength, realism and poignancy that is mesmerizing.

Full Review Source: New York Observer

April 19, 2006
Lisa Schwarzbaum
Entertainment Weekly
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Not your average divorce gift.

Full Review Source: Entertainment Weekly | Original Score: B

April 19, 2006
Colin Covert
Minneapolis Star Tribune
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Feels true to the life of third-string musicians on the road.

April 14, 2005
David Rooney
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Dramatically pallid and unconvincing.

Full Review Source: Variety

March 4, 2005
Geoff Pevere
Toronto Star
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What Clean needed was a little more dirt, or at least some of the grit that the addict fears will never entirely wash off.

Full Review Source: Toronto Star | Original Score: 2.5/4

March 4, 2005
Rick Groen
Globe and Mail
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It's not so much a movie in three acts as three movies stuffed into a single casing, and often showing the strain.

Full Review Source: Globe and Mail | Original Score: 2.5/4

March 4, 2005
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