An engaging and absorbing drama that rings true thanks to the cast and crew who excel at their respective crafts.
Smolders but never explodes.
These are, for the most part, believable and honest characters, though I'm not sure they always behave the way they would in real life.
| Original Score: B
The emotional experience of "Lantana" is heightened by its marvelous ensemble cast, all of whom etch a character in relatively brief screen time.
One of the best.
Lantana has more than the usual dramatic quota of unhappiness, but it's alive in each scene, beautifully shot, and directed by Lawrence with fierce care for subtleties.
Lawrence arrays their outstanding work in sensual, fluent fashion, making a bright, shiny and attractive movie out of the dim, dark hearts of his characters.
Solving the mystery of the dead body would be enough for most Hollywood movies. In Lantana, it's merely a device to launch us into more rewarding explorations.
Lantana is so rich in secondary characters and performances it's hard to mention them all. But you will certainly appreciate them.
The thorns in this film prick real blood, the color of which too few films can or care to examine. It is fine stuff indeed.
| Original Score: 4/4
The film is as dense as its namesake, and it reminds us how few contemporary thrillers are adult.
| Original Score: 3.5/4
Lantana, as coiled and thorny as its title suggests, gets its chilling energy from LaPaglia's quiet intensity.
Lawrence's storytelling skills don't seem to have eroded -- if anything, they may have gotten even stronger.
Has a refreshingly keen ability to see everything from multiple angles.
| Original Score: 4.5/5
Characters and situations that are compelling on their own get shoved together in ways that feel forced and fake, as if there are only a dozen people in Sydney and they all know each other.
Lawrence tweaks the stereotypes and creates rich character studies that speak volumes about how we live now as well as what constitutes the basis of happiness.
| Original Score: B+
A psychological thriller that emphasizes the psychology over the thrills. It's a smart, heart-twisting picture.
| Original Score: 3/4
I grew to resent the way the storylines began to collide and converge -- it isn't a small world, it's microscopic.
If some of the connections stretch credulity, an exquisite ensemble cast ... inhabit their characters with a subtle authenticity.
Even in its quiet moments, the movie is possessed by a moody, tenebrous aura that reflects the characters' state of mind.