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Circle of Friends (1994)

tomatometer

69

Average Rating: 6.1/10
Critic Reviews: 13
Fresh: 9 | Rotten: 4

No consensus yet.

audience

73

liked it
Average Rating: 3.3/5
User Ratings: 16,668

My Rating

Movie Info

Set in 1957, this romantic coming-of-age story follows three childhood friends from a small town in Ireland as they head to Dublin to attend Trinity College. Nan (Saffron Burrows), a year older than her friends and already in her second year at Trinity, is ambitious, romantic, and just a bit reckless. She hopes to win the hand of Simon (Colin Firth), an older Protestant land-owner who would help her rise up the social and economic ladder. Eve (Geraldine O'Rawe), a bit more pragmatic and

Jan 9, 2001

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All Critics (36) | Top Critics (13) | Fresh (28) | Rotten (8) | DVD (1)

Three female friends grow up in a small town in Ireland in the mid-50s and attend college in Dublin in this nostalgic soap opera that's vaguely evocative of Peyton Place, though generally less memorable.

March 11, 2008 Full Review Source: Chicago Reader
Chicago Reader
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Old-fashioned and nostalgic, Pat O'Connor's nicely directed tale of friendship between three Irish girls features a strong central performance from Minnie Driver that promises a bright future in Hollywood pictures.

April 27, 2007 Full Review Source: Variety
Variety
Top Critic IconTop Critic

The fizzing dialogue gets all the little details right, but the plot's nothing new, and the lingering shots of hibernian greenery aim straight for mid-Atlantic bland-out.

February 9, 2006 Full Review Source: Time Out
Time Out
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Beyond eliciting warm, animated performances from his actors (with a cast that also includes Alan Cumming as a hair-raising suitor of Benny's), Mr. O'Connor gives Circle of Friends an enveloping look and sound.

May 20, 2003 Full Review Source: New York Times
New York Times
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Driver's tough core of honesty and wit is bewitching. So's the movie.

May 12, 2001
Rolling Stone
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Young Benny has a nice smile, and she and Jack seem like pleasant people, but in the end (and in the beginning and in the middle) it's hard to get worked up about them.

January 1, 2000 Full Review Source: San Francisco Chronicle
San Francisco Chronicle
Top Critic IconTop Critic

An enchanting, if denture-rottingly sweet, yarn.

March 11, 2008 Full Review Source: Empire Magazine
Empire Magazine

A familiar tale of busty lasses and lusty lads, it's lent extra weight by fine writing and accomplished performances.

March 11, 2008 Full Review Source: Film4
Film4

Driver, who delivers a piercingly subjective performance, is the linchpin of the film's quiet appeal.

March 11, 2008 Full Review Source: TV Guide's Movie Guide
TV Guide's Movie Guide

Sweet Irish melodrama, with a hilariously oily performance by Alan Cumming.

March 10, 2006
Capital Times (Madison, WI)

It's intelligent and moving and it never resorts to cheap melodrama.

March 23, 2003 Full Review Source: Laramie Movie Scope
Laramie Movie Scope

Wry, wise, and wonderful valentine to intimate matters of the heart.

August 22, 2002 Full Review Source: Spirituality and Practice
Spirituality and Practice

Sweet, funny, and full of the charming Minnie Driver.

July 26, 2002
eFilmCritic.com

Definitely in the Masterpiece Theatre tradition; it's soft and safe, but extraordinarily easy to take.

January 9, 2002 Full Review Source: Movieline
Movieline

The movie, a self-consciously simple exercise in familiarity, sometimes lapses into complacency.

January 1, 2000
Jam! Movies

The big question, will they get together, is resolved too soon in this film, leaving the final half meandering through the Irish countryside.

January 1, 2000 Full Review Source: Cinematter
Cinematter

The writer (Andrew Davies) took no risks, and the result is a completely predictable plot.

January 1, 2000 Full Review Source: Internet Reviews
Internet Reviews

Audience Reviews for Circle of Friends

Excellent adaptation of Maeve Binchy's novel. Minnie is brilliant.
July 14, 2007
thmtsang
Candy Rose

Super Reviewer

Minnie Driver fans will want to see this for a look at her pre-Hollywood work. She gained 30 pounds for this role and still looks great. Colin Firth fans may want to skip this one, but Alan Cumming fans might want to see what a truly creepy character he can play. Chris O'Donnell . . . well, as usual, nothing much to write home to mother about.
December 30, 2006
binky013

Super Reviewer

for sexual content

Circle of Friend is more a girl movie with teenage sexual problems, friendships,first love, betrayal and the Catholic traditions. All the characters were so likable, and the Irish locations were wonderful. Great performances by Minnie Driver and Chris O'Donnell, and Alan Cumming was great in this role, he played the bad role so well.( do you remember him as the NIGHTCRAWLER in Xmen?) Overall, a very beautiful movie with a lovely story. Simply beautiful, great directing and cast.
August 23, 2009
mvieaddict
Daisy Maduro

Super Reviewer

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