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Half of a Yellow Sun (2014)

tomatometer

52

Average Rating: 5.6/10
Reviews Counted: 46
Fresh: 24 | Rotten: 22

While it doesn't quite do justice to the source material, Half of a Yellow Sun adapts Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie's novel with committed performances and narrative nuance.

42

Average Rating: 5.7/10
Critic Reviews: 12
Fresh: 5 | Rotten: 7

While it doesn't quite do justice to the source material, Half of a Yellow Sun adapts Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie's novel with committed performances and narrative nuance.

audience

37

liked it
Average Rating: 3.2/5
User Ratings: 1,271

My Rating

Movie Info

Olanna (Thandie Newton) and Kainene (Anika Noni Rose) are glamorous twins from a wealthy Nigerian family. Upon returning to a privileged city life in newly independent 1960s Nigeria after their expensive English education, the two women make very different choices. Olanna shocks her family by going to live with her lover, the "revolutionary professor" Odenigbo (Chiwetel Ejiofor) and his devoted houseboy Ugwu (John Boyega) in the dusty university town of Nsukka; Kainene turns out to be a fiercely

R,

Drama

Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie

Jul 29, 2014

$53.6k

Monterey Media - Official Site External Icon

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All Critics (46) | Top Critics (12) | Fresh (24) | Rotten (22) | DVD (1)

Biyi Bandele has excerpted their story from a much wider-ranging narrative, but the action here is still so tightly compressed that this feels like a precis for a movie twice its length.

August 7, 2014 Full Review Source: Chicago Reader
Chicago Reader
Top Critic IconTop Critic

The best of the movie finds a way to abridge the novel and still allow the scenes to breathe.

July 31, 2014 Full Review Source: Chicago Tribune
Chicago Tribune
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Like many a lengthy novel, it might have worked better as a television series.

July 10, 2014 Full Review Source: Seattle Times
Seattle Times
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"Half of a Yellow Sun" winds up being one of those movies in which a pesky event of great historical import keeps getting in the way of a soap-opera romance.

July 10, 2014 Full Review Source: Arizona Republic
Arizona Republic
Top Critic IconTop Critic

The result is that melodramatic soap opera elements win out over Bandele's attempts at stirring historical drama. That said, it's still a story worth telling.

June 19, 2014 Full Review Source: Chicago Sun-Times
Chicago Sun-Times
Top Critic IconTop Critic

"Half of a Yellow Sun" deals with human tragedy, but it never really makes a human connection.

May 30, 2014 Full Review Source: Detroit News
Detroit News
Top Critic IconTop Critic

The actors shine: Thandie Newton, Chiwetel Ejiofor and Anika Noni Rose are all splendidly in their moment.

July 30, 2014 Full Review Source: Newcity
Newcity

Despite fine performances by Thandie Newton and Chiwetel Ejiofor, the cliché-riddled "Yellow Sun" burns cold.

July 18, 2014 Full Review Source: Oregonian
Oregonian

A well-intentioned historical drama that gets caught up in the undertow of mawkish melodrama early on, never to fully recover.

June 2, 2014 Full Review Source: Shockya.com
Shockya.com

The audience's attachment to and investment in these people lend powerful intimacy to the large scale epic trappings.

May 23, 2014 Full Review Source: TheMovieReport.com
TheMovieReport.com

Half of a truth. A generic take on the plight of the wealthy in war just about anywhere. And as a contrived cover for the real issues - how colonialist instigated chaos is always about oil and religion, and how Neo-Crusades in league with NGOs, kick in.

May 15, 2014 Full Review Source: WBAI Radio
WBAI Radio

A film compromised to some extent by its emphasizing of human melodrama rather than social and political issues that figure in the novel it is based on. But it still a gripping story about people caught up in a civil war sadly typical of Africa today.

May 14, 2014 Full Review Source: rec.arts.movies.reviews
rec.arts.movies.reviews

Timely and epic, if a bit scattershot in its approach to recent Nigerian history

May 12, 2014 Full Review Source: McClatchy-Tribune News Service
McClatchy-Tribune News Service

It falls into the trappings of middlebrow literary adaptation by finding only sporadic means to convincingly adjudicate the trauma and anguish of its transitory epoch.

May 12, 2014 Full Review Source: Slant Magazine
Slant Magazine

A steamy soap opera unfolding against the backdrop of a cautionary history lesson reminding us that in Nigeria, the more things change, the more they stay insane.

May 11, 2014 Full Review Source: Baret News
Baret News

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