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33 Postcards (2013)

tomatometer

17

Average Rating: 4.4/10
Critic Reviews: 6
Fresh: 1 | Rotten: 5

No consensus yet.

audience

43

liked it
Average Rating: 3.1/5
User Ratings: 381

My Rating

Movie Info

For ten years, Chinese orphan Mei Mei (Zhu Lin) dreams of meeting her Australian sponsor - Dean Randall (Guy Pearce) - and his 'perfect family'. When her orphanage travels to Australia to attend the Australian Choir Festival, Mei Mei takes the opportunity to look him up. What she finds, however, is far from the idyllic life he depicted in his postcards. Initially mismatched and disconnected, the two begin a journey in search of belonging, family, redemption, love and acceptance. (c) Gravitas

Aug 26, 2013

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All Critics (16) | Top Critics (7) | Fresh (4) | Rotten (11)

Innocence meets experience, unconvincingly, in the strained redemption drama "33 Postcards."

May 17, 2013 Full Review Source: Los Angeles Times
Los Angeles Times
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Were it not for the staccato bursts of violence, this Chinese-Australian co-production about how an adorable orphan brings love into the life of a hardened convict would feel like a film from Hayley Mills' heyday.

May 17, 2013 Full Review Source: New York Post
New York Post
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It's all in the name of heartstring tugging, and the film, directed by Pauline Chan ("Little White Lies"), does that pretty well.

May 16, 2013 Full Review Source: New York Times
New York Times
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There's no explaining the presence of Guy Pearce in Pauline Chan's sappy, atonal family drama. But it's easy enough to understand why he looks so uncomfortable throughout.

May 16, 2013 Full Review Source: New York Daily News
New York Daily News
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Just when you think it can't get any more sentimental or tack on any more plot detours, the film attempts a clumsy cultural détente as the Chinese children's choir sings "Waltzing Matilda."

May 15, 2013 Full Review Source: New York Observer
New York Observer
Top Critic IconTop Critic

The script's programmatic feel-goodery smooths out everything strange and noteworthy about Dean and Mei Mei's relationship into an unmemorable and unconvincing blandness.

May 14, 2013 Full Review Source: Village Voice
Village Voice
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Great Aussie crime thriller droops at the end but pulls through thanks to Guy Pearce.

May 27, 2013 Full Review Source: Monsters and Critics
Monsters and Critics

The "oh-so-innocent waif and big old baddie" odd-couple formula dates back to D.W. Griffith, but this muddled effort does nothing to merit its questionable revival.

May 17, 2013 Full Review Source: Film Journal International
Film Journal International

The film has a few good story turns up its sleeve, but prepare yourself for heavy melodrama in the third act.

May 16, 2013 Full Review Source: Oregonian
Oregonian

Sweet to the point of getting a sugar rush. Underwritten and under-directed in style and realization, it has all the substance of a confection.

May 16, 2013 Full Review Source: Cinema Signals
Cinema Signals

A clunky hybrid-half feel-good weepie, half preposterous thriller-that functions primarily as an elaborate travel brochure ...

May 16, 2013 Full Review Source: AV Club
AV Club

Touching story about how the spiritual practice of enthusiasm works wonders in the life of a man in prison.

May 15, 2013 Full Review Source: Spirituality and Practice
Spirituality and Practice

33 Postcards is merely the latest in a long line of films to throw in needless crime subplots as a way of shortcutting things emotionally.

May 14, 2013 Full Review Source: Aisle Seat
Aisle Seat

Orphan Mei Mei discovers dubious desired dad Guy Pearce is not exactly what he seems. Nor is this movie, taking a surprising turn away from the conventional, as it embraces collective values over the usual quest and flight into Western individualism.

May 14, 2013 Full Review Source: WBAI Radio
WBAI Radio

Pauline Chan's film is a jumbled mixture of redemptive uplift and genre hijinks.

May 13, 2013 Full Review Source: Slant Magazine
Slant Magazine

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