Ain't Them Bodies Saints Reviews

Top Critic
Cath Clarke
Time Out
September 4, 2013
A slow, banjo-string-tight thriller ... Bodies gets under your skin and stays there.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/5
Top Critic
Joe Williams
St. Louis Post-Dispatch
August 29, 2013
This Sundance-sanctioned, love-on-the-run melodrama is indie filmmaking of a deliberately timeless sort.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
Top Critic
Michael Sragow
Orange County Register
August 29, 2013
A lyrical modern Western that casts a contemporary but un-jaded eye on the romantic mythology of outlaw couples.
Full Review | Original Score: A-
Top Critic
Ben Sachs
Chicago Reader
August 29, 2013
Writer-director David Lowery strains for poetry at every turn, and only the strain registers.
Top Critic
Rene Rodriguez
Miami Herald
August 29, 2013
Lowery has a lyrical style of storytelling that is delicate and subtle yet suffused with emotion and atmosphere. It's gentle and pointed at the same time.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
Top Critic
Michael Phillips
Chicago Tribune
August 29, 2013
It is not a large film. But Lowery may well be a large talent, and he sure knows how to cast the right actors.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
Top Critic
Peter Rainer
Christian Science Monitor
August 23, 2013
Lowery has a way with actors, though. As a local sheriff with an eye for Ruth, Ben Foster is excellent and, in a too-small role as a grizzled shopkeeper, Keith Carradine proves himself yet again to be one of our finest performers.
Full Review | Original Score: B-
Top Critic
Steven Rea
Philadelphia Inquirer
August 23, 2013
A loping and lovely romance, steeped in tragedy, with a Texas twang.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
Top Critic
Mick LaSalle
San Francisco Chronicle
August 22, 2013
The tone never changes. Scenes aren't inflected, and when the end comes, it registers, but without much impact.
Full Review | Original Score: 2/4
Top Critic
Chris Vognar
Dallas Morning News
August 22, 2013
On its own terms, Saints conjures a mood of stoic obsession at the service of a tale older than the Hill Country dirt it calls home.
Full Review | Original Score: B
Top Critic
John Anderson
Newsday
August 22, 2013
A repository of fugitive Americana that's substantial and satisfying.
Top Critic
Kristin Tillotson
Minneapolis Star Tribune
August 22, 2013
It feels raw, and real, and sets a tone that is sustained throughout.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
Top Critic
Ty Burr
Boston Globe
August 22, 2013
The characters are too ordinary to care deeply for and the story doesn't add up to much, but Lowery has made a shrine to his actors, to the land through which they move, and to the kind of cinema that once sustained us.
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/4
Top Critic
Bill Goodykoontz
Arizona Republic
August 22, 2013
A slow-moving story of devotion, obsession and Texas justice.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/5
Top Critic
Richard Brody
New Yorker
August 19, 2013
The feel of the movie is intimate and handmade, as if Lowery were renewing, lovingly and poignantly, the landscape's ruined landmarks and infusing them with his own memories and dreams.
Top Critic
Bilge Ebiri
New York Magazine/Vulture
August 16, 2013
As Ain't Them Bodies Saints moves along, its elliptical approach to drama goes from keeping us on our toes to dulling everything down.
Top Critic
Alonso Duralde
TheWrap
August 16, 2013
It's a gorgeous film to behold, but writer-director David Lowery gets so wrapped up in the visuals that the storytelling lags at critical moments.
Top Critic
David Thomson
The New Republic
August 16, 2013
This is a hell of a film, a marvelous experience, far more beautiful than sentimental, so long as you don't have to have a mind made up for you.
Top Critic
Christy Lemire
RogerEbert.com
August 16, 2013
A muted but always engrossing tale of young, doomed love.
Full Review | Original Score: 3.5/4
Top Critic
Kyle Smith
New York Post
August 16, 2013
Lowery put 90 percent of his energy into the atmosphere and 10 percent into the script.
Full Review | Original Score: 2/4
Top Critic
Stephen Whitty
Newark Star-Ledger
August 16, 2013
The places feel lived in. The story feels like life.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
Top Critic
Andrew O'Hehir
Salon.com
August 15, 2013
It marks the arrival of an immense talent who will be new to most moviegoers - although Lowery is a well-known figure in the indie-film world - and it's surely one of the best American films of the year.
Top Critic
A.O. Scott
New York Times
August 15, 2013
This film's longing for ... for a simple, elemental truth that will be both specific to its time and place and ripe with deeper meanings - is precisely what makes it unconvincing.
Full Review | Original Score: 2/5
Top Critic
August 15, 2013
Ain't Them Bodies Saints has big thematic ambitions matched by a grandiloquent style ...
Top Critic
Betsy Sharkey
Los Angeles Times
August 15, 2013
A wistful and wayward drama about an outlaw couple who will get under your skin and work on your heart if you're not careful.
Full Review | Original Score: 3.5/5
Top Critic
Joe Morgenstern
Wall Street Journal
August 15, 2013
This is Terrence Malick territory; you might guess that with the sound turned off, thanks to the bronze sunlight low on broad horizons. Still, Mr. Lowery stakes out his own distinctive boundaries ...
Top Critic
Joe Neumaier
New York Daily News
August 15, 2013
The shadow of Terrence Malick falls hard across this Texas crime drama, a beautiful-looking prose poem that starts strong but winds up with nowhere to go.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/5
Top Critic
Peter Travers
Rolling Stone
August 15, 2013
Ain't Them Bodies Saints offers no glib answers or smooth resolution, but there's no question that Lowery is a filmmaker with a striking future.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
Top Critic
A.A. Dowd
AV Club
August 15, 2013
Lowery, it can't be denied, has Malick's moves down pat. It's the Malick touch that eludes him.
Full Review | Original Score: C+
Top Critic
Matthew Kassel
New York Observer
August 14, 2013
If Ain't Them Bodies Saints seems insubstantial in structure, it may be because Mr. Lowery has chosen to focus on appearance over plot, which doesn't mean the movie is less effective as a result.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
Top Critic
Jake Coyle
Associated Press
August 14, 2013
Awash in 1970s filmmaking and the kind of stylized folksiness that pickling Brooklyn hipsters with handlebar mustaches will positively drool over.
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/4
Top Critic
Sam Adams
Time Out
August 13, 2013
If it's not thrillingly new, it's old in the best way-worn, comfortable and embodying virtues too often lost.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/5
Top Critic
Chuck Wilson
Village Voice
August 13, 2013
Lowery isn't a Malick and he's certainly no Kazan, but he's his own man, and a filmmaker to watch.
Top Critic
Jordan Hoffman
Film.com
January 30, 2013
a fever dream facsimile of an eventful movie
Full Review | Original Score: B+
Top Critic
Peter Debruge
Variety
January 22, 2013
David Lowery's Ain't Them Bodies Saints landed with the excitement of a bold new voice, and yet, there's also something undeniably old-fashioned in his approach, suggesting a lost artifact freshly unearthed from the 1970s.
Top Critic
Todd McCarthy
Hollywood Reporter
January 22, 2013
An exceptionally beautiful, if a bit fuzzy-headed, romantic Texas outlaw saga that announces a considerable talent in writer-director David Lowery.