Forty Shades of Blue Reviews

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Wally Hammond
Time Out
August 16, 2007
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Andrew O'Hehir
Salon.com
October 7, 2006
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Time Out
June 24, 2006
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Richard Nilsen
Arizona Republic
February 2, 2006
It contains some very good performances and some finely observed writing.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/5
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Geoff Pevere
Toronto Star
January 27, 2006
... both emotionally captivating and elusive ...
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
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Roger Moore
Orlando Sentinel
December 16, 2005
Subtle and morose to a fault, in the end it's just Junebug, another Sundance downer, without the heart.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/5
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Chris Vognar
Dallas Morning News
December 8, 2005
Ira Sachs' story of hereditary malaise, passed from father to son, will disappoint anyone looking for a propulsive narrative or slam-bang excitement. But it will amply reward patient viewers who prefer a slow burn.
Full Review | Original Score: B+
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St. Louis Post-Dispatch
December 6, 2005
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Roger Ebert
Chicago Sun-Times
November 3, 2005
[Torn's] acting so well he not only creates this character, but makes him into an object lesson.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
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Eleanor Ringel Gillespie
Atlanta Journal-Constitution
November 3, 2005
Forty Shades of Blue hits you like a shot of moonshine whiskey. Right in the gut, with a buzz that just keeps going.
Full Review | Original Score: B+
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Tom Long
Detroit News
October 28, 2005
A nuanced meditation on the context of happiness and the problem with great expectations.
| Original Score: B+
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Terry Lawson
Detroit Free Press
October 28, 2005
[Sachs] fails to make us care enough about the characters to share their pain.
| Original Score: 2/4
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Ruthe Stein
San Francisco Chronicle
October 14, 2005
The payoff comes at the end with a glimpse smack into the souls of characters more complex than those usually seen onscreen.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
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Lisa Schwarzbaum
Entertainment Weekly
October 12, 2005
Director Ira Sachs moves to the rhythms of his native Memphis, teasing emotional resonance out of geography.
Full Review | Original Score: B+
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AV Club
October 8, 2005
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Kevin Thomas
Los Angeles Times
October 6, 2005
Forty Shades of Blue is a daring film, full of muffled yet suggestive moments.
Full Review | Original Score: 4.5/5
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Scott Foundas
L.A. Weekly
October 6, 2005
A jolt of backwoods moonshine whiskey injected into the veins of the atrophied American relationship drama.
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Stephen Whitty
Newark Star-Ledger
September 29, 2005
Forty Shades of Blue may be praised for bringing an often ignored character into the spotlight. But once she's there, we can guess why she's so often kept in the wings.
Full Review | Original Score: 2/4
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A.O. Scott
New York Times
September 28, 2005
Ira Sachs's beautiful, melancholy film, winner of the top prize at Sundance this year, features a passionate performance by Rip Torn as a legendary record producer.
| Original Score: 4/5
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Lou Lumenick
New York Post
September 28, 2005
It's worth sticking with 40 Shades of Blue to catch two of the year's most richly detailed pieces of acting.
| Original Score: 3/4
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Michael Atkinson
Village Voice
September 27, 2005
A rare serving of adept regional indie cinema.
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Todd McCarthy
Variety
April 2, 2005
A muted but nicely observed study of a Russian woman's gradual estrangement from her domineering Memphis music-legend husband.
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Duane Byrge
Hollywood Reporter
February 5, 2005
Plodding and predictable.