Heim wrote a killer tale with Skin, but in giving it to Araki, the power of the words has been dissolved into mush, or, in many instances, simple shock cinema.
| Original Score: D+
The perennial golden touch in Hollywood is to make old stories seem new. In Mysterious Skin [writer-director Gregg] Araki "achieves" the opposite.
...the whole thing just feels flat somehow.
| Original Score: 2/4
A very well acted film with a tremendous ensemble cast. My problem stems from how Araki chose to tell the story.
By the time the climactic revelation finally comes, it's such old news that all the scenery chewing that accompanies it seems alien.
Just another trashy look at America as the land of imbecilic perverts.
| Original Score: D
Araki seems to have finally taken in a few Todd Solondz movies, then realized that abusing actor James Duval delivers nowhere near the shock value of abusing children.
Gregg Araki? More like Gregg Hack-raki.
Undermined by a startling change in tone a quarter of the way through the narrative.
| Original Score: 2.5/5
The only thing Mysterious Skin will do is make yours crawl.
Parts are beautiful, other parts are brutal (like a rape scene that oddly evokes the Psycho shower scene), but it doesn't jell into a satisfying whole.
| Original Score: 2.5/4
Starts to play like dada.
| Original Score: 1.5/4
Doesn't manage to get much beneath the surface of its provocative topic, but Gordon-Levitt compensates considerably by digging deep into the soul of his character.
| Original Score: C+
The audience has gotten the point roughly 90 minutes before the characters do.
| Original Score: 2/5
From a moralistic point of view, is it good that Araki is exposing the awful horrors of sex abuse? OK, I'll buy that. As a pedophilic expose, is it too much? For me, yes it was.
| Original Score: 2/4
Even with the numb dialogue and trite characterizations we've come to expect from Araki, Mysterious Skin might have worked with the right actor in the charismatic role of Neil.
Sweet and disturbing at the same time.
| Original Score: 3.5/5
Director Araki is able to fashion an intimate tale that generates genuine engaging credibility.
| Original Score: 3/4
| Original Score: 4.5/5
A complex and challenging emotional experience.
| Original Score: 3.5/4