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The Wall (2013)


Average Rating: 6.5/10
Reviews Counted: 39
Fresh: 29
Rotten: 10

Critics Consensus: No consensus yet.

Average Rating: 7.2/10
Reviews Counted: 13
Fresh: 11
Rotten: 2

Critics Consensus: No consensus yet.


Average Rating: 3.6/5
User Ratings: 1,185



Movie Info

Based on Marlen Haushofer's eponymous feminist classic novel, THE WALL is a highly original exploration of the experience of solitude and survival set in a spectacularly beautiful Austrian mountain landscape. Martina Gedeck, the brilliant interpreter of the Oscar-winning The Lives Of Others, brings a rare and vivid intensity to her role as the unnamed lead character in this contemporary female Robinson Crusoe tale. --(c) Music Box Films

Directed By:
Written By:
Marlen Haushofer , Julian Pölsler
In Theaters:
Oct 21, 2013
Box Office:
Music Box Films - Official Site


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Critic Reviews for The Wall

All Critics (39) | Top Critics (13) | Fresh (29) | Rotten (10)

Bleak and beautiful, harrowing yet inspiring, "The Wall" ("Die Wand") is a stunning tale of isolation and survival in a wild and silent world.

Full Review… | September 18, 2013
Boston Globe
Top Critic

An elegant, slow-burning exercise in narrative minimalism.

Full Review… | September 12, 2013
Chicago Reader
Top Critic

Pölsler's film is quietly deliberate without ever feeling slow, thanks to a few handy assets at his disposal.

Full Review… | August 23, 2013
Washington Post
Top Critic

It's a shudder-inducing original.

Full Review… | August 15, 2013
Seattle Times
Top Critic

This mesmerising, austere and contemplative film provides a rarefied yet utterly immersive viewing experience.

Full Review… | July 3, 2013
Time Out
Top Critic

A remarkably involving film, especially given its brave, self-imposed limitations.

Full Review… | June 12, 2013
Los Angeles Times
Top Critic

The widescreen images of the Austrian landscape and the lovingly lit cabin interiors are unfailingly gorgeous, but Gedeck's the key asset: her fine, expressive features do almost as daunting a job as the words, words, words we hear.

Full Review… | April 9, 2014

A heart-affecting tale of survival with a fierce and tender performance by Martina Gedeck.

Full Review… | December 18, 2013
Spirituality and Practice

The Wall is nothing if not a mystery. Surely the premise would propel such a story into the realm of sci-fi and fantasy, but Pölsler and Gedeck never approach the story in this way, nor do they give us any easy answers to what has really happened and why.

Full Review… | November 5, 2013

Has any movie ever had so much gab on the soundtrack? Every confession, every philosophical tidbit of the movie's tormented female protagonist.

Full Review… | September 21, 2013
Arts Fuse

If you surrender to the style and premise, it's a rich and immensely rewarding film that begs repeat viewing.

Full Review… | July 8, 2013
Electric Sheep

The sheer quantity of voiceover - or, more likely, subtitles - acts as a barrier to deep psychological immersion.

Full Review… | July 7, 2013
Observer [UK]

Starts with an interesting concept but goes nowhere with it, giving the viewer too little with which to relate or comprehend and asking them to mistake the clunky narrative as "deep."

Full Review… | July 5, 2013

The Wall is a riveting piece of cinema, and given it bears such a simplistic, obscure narrative, Pölsler does a fine job holding down your attention throughout.

Full Review… | July 5, 2013

A beautifully photographed and elegantly handled existential drama.

Full Review… | July 4, 2013
Daily Express

A lover and a fighter. This will remind you to hold everything dear.

Full Review… | July 4, 2013
Little White Lies

An elegant, stunningly photographed reflection on the human condition that is as odd as it is entrancing.

Full Review… | July 4, 2013
The List

Julian Roman Pölsler's bewitching debut manages to be at once a creepy sci-fi parable, a feminist Robinson Crusoe and a clear-eyed ode to the wonders of nature experienced in solitude. Walden pond with added wall.

Full Review… | July 4, 2013

Call it a landlocked variant on Robinson Crusoe, but it's a hypnotic one, with a sense of mystery and interior life that are all its own.

Full Review… | July 4, 2013
Daily Telegraph

The story is slow-paced and eventless but the cinematography makes the most of the landscape, while voiceover diary readings give us access to her thoughts.

Full Review… | July 3, 2013
Total Film

Bold and beautiful, this is a mystery worth puzzling over.

Full Review… | July 1, 2013
Empire Magazine

Audience Reviews for The Wall


Despite Gedeck's strong performance and a splendid cinematography that makes the most of its gorgeous locations, it raises several questions and ideas that are never fully explored, while the unnecessary and annoyingly intrusive narration makes it seem like a filmed novel.

Carlos Magalhães

Super Reviewer

Too absurd to be watched without feeling the need to fast-forward every now and again. Genuine as the subject may be, it simply failed to indulge me. In fact, IMO, this great original idea should have been left on paper in the first place.

For the want of rating, 0.5/5. Actual rating: 0/5.

familiar stranger

Super Reviewer


The interesting premise attracted me to this film. But we never really get an explanation of what blocking her from the outside world or why is it happening. Instead, the film delves into a study of nature, isolation, and survival, which I appreciate but definitely wasn't what I was interested in or expecting. It's a fine film and with a great cinematography at that (the shots of the Austrian landscape are amazing). But again, it wasn't what I was looking for when I came in to watch this film.

Wildaly M

Super Reviewer

While this represents a somewhat deep philosophical reflection on humanity (one person's view), it is also ... quite simply... depressing. I can't say I enjoyed it, as much as I appreciated the message. We all have a choice in each action we take. That choice has an impact... sometimes good. sometimes bad. I found the first half rather interesting, but it soon became tiresome to me. I might have rated it higher had they shortened it a little.

Cynthia S.

Super Reviewer

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