Lorna's Silence (2008)

TOMATOMETER

AUDIENCE SCORE

Critic Consensus: Subtle and emotionally bleak, this gripping thriller features the Dardenne brothers' recognizable penchant for realism and very strong performances.


Movie Info

An Albanian woman living in Belgium finds her dreams of opening a snack bar with her boyfriend leading to tragedy after she agrees to marry a Russian Mafioso in order to gain citizenship. All Lorna wanted was to start a small business with her loving boyfriend, but in order to make that happen she would first have to gain citizenship. Local mobster Fabio claims that he can make that happen if Lorna agrees to a sham marriage with a man named Claudy. After gaining Belgian citizenship, Lorna … More

Rating: R (for brief sexuality/nudity, and language)
Genre: Art House & International, Drama
Directed By: ,
Written By: Jean-Pierre Dardenne, Luc Dardenne
In Theaters:
On DVD: May 20, 2008
Runtime:
Sony Pictures Classics

Cast


as Claudy Moreau

as inspector

as Monique Sobel

as mental health nurse

as detective

as morgue employee

as Male Bank Clerk

as Female Doctor

as Pharmacist

as Claudy's Mother

as Claudy's Brother

as Drug Dealer

as Female Bank Clerk

as Woman at the Burial

as Obstetrician Nurse

as Dry Cleaner Owner

as Policewoman

as Plainclothes Policem...

as ER Receptionist

as Phone House Cashier

as Dry Cleaner Employee
Show More Cast

Friend Ratings

No Friends? Inconceivable! Log in to see what your friends have to say.

Login

Critic Reviews for Lorna's Silence

All Critics (94) | Top Critics (29)

Lorna's Silence doesn't work, but it's a beautiful misfire.

Full Review… | September 3, 2009
Miami Herald
Top Critic

As filmmakers, the Dardennes are more concerned with probing the causes of crime than in glamorizing it.

Full Review… | September 3, 2009
St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Top Critic

Heaven on earth for the Dardenne Bros., the poets of European mercantile desolation.

Full Review… | August 29, 2011
East Bay Express

Redemption drama loses the plot.

Full Review… | December 29, 2010
sbs.com.au

It's a classic Dardennes morality tale set in the grim, hard-scrabble world between working class hardship and black market hustle...

Full Review… | January 9, 2010
Seanax.com

a moving portrait of emotional and social awakening

Full Review… | January 7, 2010
Q Network Film Desk

Audience Reviews for Lorna's Silence

A cold, bleak Belgian film that gives equal importance both to what is not seen and heard and what is. "Lorna's Silence" is a rigid character study by the Dardenne brothers that will be challenging to many. The goal here was seemingly to reflect on the power of absence and silence, and while this focus makes it feel weightless and even pointless at times, these are intentional design choices that offer up food for thought with varying degrees of success.

Sam Barnett
Sam Barnett

Super Reviewer

I haven't seen a movie quite like Lorna's Silence for a long time. I really do love these films that are just so pretentious, exadurated, and melodramatic, yet strangly plausible. For the most part the audience has to figure out what is going on for themselves. This really works well, especially since the plot is relatively simple. At the same time it is thoroughly engrossing to watch. I have no idea if the whole citizenship underground/espionage actually exists, but it is fasinating on-screen. Lorna's Silence does absolutely everything you would expect from a film of its prestige and style; and to top it off, its really rather good.

neverteaseaweasel
Jake ....

Super Reviewer

½

"Lorna's Silence," the new film from Belgium's Dardenne brothers, effectively creates a frightening vision of a world filled with people almost completely lacking empathy. But the story drags in the second half, and the film has an almost polemical edge that weakens its power. The characters start to seem like artificial fabrications meant to drive home the Dardennes' socio-political critiques.

The protagonists are Albanians who have built an elaborate scam to benefit Russians and other Easterners trying to get citizenship in the European Union. Deeply disturbing is the cold, matter-of-fact way they put value on the lives of others. Lorna, the main character, is the only woman in the group. I don't want to reveal all the details, so let's just say that Lorna sees this lack of empathy for others most vividly. Her central dilemma is whether to continue in this life or make some changes. Her struggle is profound, and the lives of several others hang in the balance.

My problem is that the Albanians' complete amorality starts to seem phony. European filmmakers frequently try to fit life into their theories, rather than trying to build theories that match life. Here I felt the Dardennes were driven to convey a message about contemporary society, and they developed arch caricatures of people to drive that message home. But I wouldn't push this criticism too far. "Lorna's Silence" is still an important and very good film and should be seen by anyone who appreciates serious cinema. Just don't watch it when you're feeling fragile. The film does have the power to be deeply disturbing despite the fact that there's not one iota of on-screen violence. Its power to disturb is far more subtle.

Bill D 2007
William Dunmyer

Super Reviewer

Lorna's Silence Quotes

There are no approved quotes yet for this movie.

Discussion Forum

Discuss Lorna's Silence on our Movie forum!