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The Dead Girl Reviews

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February 23, 2012
Eleanor Ringel Gillespie
Atlanta Journal-Constitution
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Karen Moncrieff's previous film, the shallow and pretentious Blue Car, in no way prepares you for this superbly acted, emotionally acute picture.

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

March 22, 2007
Moira MacDonald
Seattle Times
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Those who pass on The Dead Girl are missing something. Moncrieff has assembled a remarkable (and mostly female) cast, and there are moments in this film that are as powerful as anything currently in theaters.

Full Review Source: Seattle Times | Original Score: 3/4

March 16, 2007
Christy Lemire
Associated Press
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Moncrieff never gets melodramatic with subject matter that easily could have been; she won't make you feel good, but she will make you feel.

Full Review Source: Associated Press

March 2, 2007
Amy Biancolli
Houston Chronicle
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All Screams aside, movies about serial killing are rarely chipper affairs. But few are as glum as The Dead Girl.

Full Review Source: Houston Chronicle | Original Score: 2.5/4

February 23, 2007
Roger Moore
Orlando Sentinel
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Murphy, devouring a bad girl role to go with her image, makes her the most alive person in what is most certainly not your typical Hollywood serial killer movie.

Full Review Source: Orlando Sentinel | Original Score: 3/5

February 16, 2007
Mick LaSalle
San Francisco Chronicle
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It must be said that The Dead Girl is a film of considerable integrity. But before that, something else must be said: That's about as unappetizing an opening to a film as can be imagined.

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

February 9, 2007
Teresa Budasi
Chicago Sun-Times
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The use of multiple plots can be a dangerous exercise if not skillfully executed, making viewers feel cheated and wanting more, but Moncrieff works it out, ably shifting from one story to the next and keeping us satisfied with the open-ended outcomes.

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

February 9, 2007
Michael Phillips
Chicago Tribune
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A stern account of how the brutal murder of a young woman affects an array of far-flung characters.

Full Review Source: Chicago Tribune | Original Score: 2.5/4

February 8, 2007
Jonathan Rosenbaum
Chicago Reader
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Seeing multiple responses to a sexually motivated murder allows us to reconsider our understanding of sex crimes.

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

January 27, 2007
Joe Morgenstern
Wall Street Journal
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The Dead Girl has such a glacial pace, and with such tonal monotony -- most of the first 20 minutes are either grim, in the dark or both -- that audiences will follow at their peril.

Full Review Source: Wall Street Journal

January 19, 2007
Andrew Sarris
New York Observer
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Ms. Moncrieff's ambitious second film is a bit of a disappointment after the promise shown in her more tightly structured debut effort, Blue Car.

Full Review Source: New York Observer

January 17, 2007
Owen Gleiberman
Entertainment Weekly
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Moncrieff (Blue Car) pushes a view of women as victims that might create its own pornography of masochism if it didn't touch so many authentic shattered nerve endings.

Full Review Source: Entertainment Weekly | Original Score: A-

January 10, 2007
Jim Ridley
L.A. Weekly
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The truncated stories force the actors to start at a high pitch and keep going, but they -- and the director -- work wonders at low volume.

Full Review Source: L.A. Weekly

January 4, 2007
Jack Mathews
New York Daily News
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Works like a package of crisp, individual psychological profiles of the women whose already troubled lives are disrupted by the murder.

Full Review Source: New York Daily News | Original Score: 2.5/4

December 29, 2006
Kevin Crust
Los Angeles Times
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If the segments are uneven, Moncrieff -- with the help of her excellent cast -- nevertheless crafts a gripping overall narrative that exposes a shared dissonance among the protagonists.

Full Review Source: Los Angeles Times

December 29, 2006
Kyle Smith
New York Post
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Occasionally the movie manages to achieve a real sadness, but some story lines are forced.

| Original Score: 1.5/4

December 29, 2006
Stephen Whitty
Newark Star-Ledger
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Messy and melodramatic, then quiet and contained -- The Dead Girl is definitely unpredictable. But then so is life. And [director Karen] Moncrieff gives us five fat slices of it here, all full of painful color and inconvenient drama.

Full Review Source: Newark Star-Ledger | Original Score: 3/4

December 29, 2006
Stephen Holden
New York Times
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The relentless emotional violence in this film, a compendium of five vignettes related to a young woman whose corpse is discovered on a hillside, is of a level rarely found in movies.

| Original Score: 3/5

December 29, 2006
Jim Ridley
Village Voice
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The chief problem with The Dead Girl, as with most current multipart films, is that the truncated stories don't give actors much room to develop a part. They're on-screen for such a short time that they act furiously from the get-go.

Full Review Source: Village Voice

December 28, 2006
Andrew O'Hehir
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There's no mistaking the integrity and craft on display here, and the writing and direction are too smart to dismiss The Dead Girl as victimology or man-hating.

Full Review Source:

December 27, 2006
Richard Roeper
Ebert & Roeper
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Yes, it's dark, depressing material, but watching the film isn't. Because you're seeing such talent at work there.

December 26, 2006
Robert Koehler
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Pic's weak ending demonstrates that its multi-narrative strategy, though full of cinematic potential, also holds traps for a film's overall impact.

Full Review Source: Variety

November 20, 2006
Kirk Honeycutt
Hollywood Reporter
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Moncrieff chooses to scrutinize highly unpleasant material but, fortunately, she never takes an exploitative or sensationalistic approach. The movie has its integrity.

November 7, 2006
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