Sarah's Key (2011) - Rotten Tomatoes

Sarah's Key (2011)



Critic Consensus: Sarah's Key is an absorbing, impeccably-acted Holocaust drama with minor plot issues.

Movie Info

Julia Jarmond, an American journalist married to a Frenchman, is commissioned to write an article about the notorious Vel d'Hiv round up, which took place in Paris, in 1942. She stumbles upon a family secret which will link her forever to the destiny of a young Jewish girl, Sarah. Julia learns that the apartment she and her husband Bertrand plan to move into was acquired by Bertrand's family when its Jewish occupants were dispossessed and deported 60 years before. She resolves to find out what happened to the former occupants: Wladyslaw and Rywka Starzynski, parents of 10-year-old Sarah and four-year-old Michel. The more Julia discovers - especially about Sarah, the only member of the Starzynski family to survive - the more she uncovers about Bertrand's family, about France and, finally, herself. -- (C) Official Sitemore
Rating: PG-13 (for thematic material including disturbing situations involving the Holocaust)
Genre: Art House & International, Drama
Directed By:
Written By: Tatiana de Rosnay, Serge Joncour, Gilles Paquet-Brenner
In Theaters:
On DVD: Nov 22, 2011
Box Office: $7.7M
The Weinstein Company - Official Site


Kristin Scott Thomas
as Julia Jarmond
Niels Arestrup
as Jules Dufaure
Frederic Pierrot
as Bertrand Tezac
Michel Duchaussoy
as Edouard Tezac
Dominique Frot
as Genevieve Dufaure
Natasha Mashkevich
as Mme. Starzynski
Aidan Quinn
as William Rainsferd
Sarah Ber
as Rachel
Arben Bajraktaraj
as M. Starzynski
Kate Moran
as Alexandra
Simon Eine
as Franck Levy
Julie Fournier
as Vel d'Hiv Woman
Paige Barr
as Ornella Harris
Joanna Merlin
as Mms. Rainsferd
Georges Birt
as Richard Rainsferd
Vincianne Millereau
as Nathalie Dufaure
Sylviane Frava
as Bertrand's Mother
Dan Herzberg
as Red-Haired Policeman
Frédérick Guillaud
as Young Richard Rainsf...
Maurice Lustyk
as Man Playing Violin
Charlotte Poutrel
as Adult Sarah
Maxim Driesen
as Young Edouard Tezac
Xavier Beja
as André Tezac
Jonathan Kerr
as Camp Police Officer
Matthias Kress
as German Officer on Fa...
Franck Beckmann
as German Officer on Tr...
Nicolas Seconda
as Policeman 1 Vel d'Hi...
Francois D'Aubigny
as Policeman 2 Vel d'Hi...
Stéphane Charond
as Camp Officer 1
José Fumanal
as Camp Officer 2
Gilles Louzon
as Camp Officer 3
Pierre Nahori
as Policeman on Train
Rosa Herzberg
as Voice 3 Woman
Robert Rotsztein
as Voice 4 Man
Naeva Lissonnet
as Little Girl at Camp
Céline Caussimon
as Nurse Vel d'Hiv
Claudine Acs
as Hysterical Woman Vel...
Viktoria Li
as Clinic Nurse
Franck Chailly
as Stretcher-Bearer
Marco Florio
as Italian Waiter
Alice Erskine
as Café Mozart Waitress
Stéphanie Gesnel
as Young Woman at the W...
Gérard Couchet
as Old Man at the Windo...
Mark Fairchild
as Bob Rainsferd
Melinda Wade
as Young American Woman
Kiley Liddell
as Baby Sarah
Brooke Liddell
as Baby Sarah
Alice Erksine
as Café Mozart Waitress
Show More Cast

News & Interviews for Sarah's Key

Critic Reviews for Sarah's Key

All Critics (112) | Top Critics (34)

Thomas carries the weight of the movie, and her usual sangfroid works against her; when she finally makes contact with the deported couple's grandson, the story crumples into sentimentality

Full Review… | December 13, 2011
Chicago Reader
Top Critic

Scott Thomas's portrayal of her character's emotional transition ensures Sarah's Key will keep your heart open.

Full Review… | August 19, 2011
Globe and Mail
Top Critic

French director Paquet-Brenner occasionally yields to melodrama, particularly in the final act, but he is resolute about not depicting all of his countrymen as Nazi stooges, since many weren't.

Full Review… | August 19, 2011
Toronto Star
Top Critic

Isn't it a little early in the year for Harvey Weinstein to be grubbing for Oscars already?

Full Review… | May 3, 2015
Philadelphia Weekly

Well executed and avoids histrionic manipulation, allowing just enough breathing room without truncating the raw emotion of the book.

Full Review… | June 2, 2014
Spectrum (St. George, Utah)

Never quite finds the right balance between the grave consequences of its period scenes and the relative small beans of the present-day ones.

Full Review… | June 23, 2013

Audience Reviews for Sarah's Key

An American journalist in Paris embarks on a story about the Holocaust and discovers connections between the past, her present marriage and her unborn child. Beginning as an article on the 1942 roundup of Jews in France as they were sent off to Auschwitz, it soon becomes a journey of self-discovery as the protagonist stumbles upon a terrible secret of a family forced out of their home and a young girl called Sarah who makes an impulsive decision to leave her younger brother locked in a cupboard. A film about the Holocaust is certain to be moving, but the circumstances in this one are harrowing, the truth astonishing, and the coincidences as unbelievable as the tragedy itself. It is a journalist's quest to dig up the lives of others and unleash the truth, but this film show the price of these actions. Sarah's Key takes us from Paris to Brooklyn to Florence and ultimately to the centre of the heart - showing that even the truth has its cost. And the sadness, as much as we try to unlock it, can never be erased. 5 stars 10-17-13

Bruce Bruce

Super Reviewer


Great. Thought provoking. Well done. Perfect mix of the heart wrenching events of lives torn apart, the endless search of who we are, and the depths of depravity that mankind is capable of. Just when I think that I have seen every Holocaust movie around, another pops up. I can never learn enough about this era that tested our humanity...

Cynthia S.

Super Reviewer

Really good, sad movie. The little girl who plays Sarah is excellent.

Nicki Marie

Super Reviewer

Sarah's Key Quotes

– Submitted by Scott R (3 years ago)
– Submitted by Chris P (4 years ago)
– Submitted by Chris P (4 years ago)

Discussion Forum

Discuss Sarah's Key on our Movie forum!