• Unrated, 1 hr. 46 min.
  • Drama
  • Directed By:    Cate Shortland
  • In Theaters:    Apr 21, 2004 Wide
  • On DVD:    Jul 25, 2006
  • Magnolia Pictures

Somersault Reviews


Time Out
Top Critic
November 16, 2011

Lisa Kennedy
Denver Post
Top Critic
July 14, 2006

Generous and authentic.

Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/4
Chris Vognar
Dallas Morning News
Top Critic
May 25, 2006

[Cornish] creates a character who pulls us in and makes us recoil all at once.

Full Review | Original Score: B+
G. Allen Johnson
San Francisco Chronicle
Top Critic
May 19, 2006

Heartfelt, painful, exhilarating and, above all, truthful.

Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
Andrew Sarris
New York Observer
Top Critic
May 18, 2006

My impression remained this time around of an unfinished screenplay in which too many intervals of small talk masqueraded as the forerunners of emotional events that never materialized.

Steve Murray
Atlanta Journal-Constitution
Top Critic
May 18, 2006

Heavy on atmosphere but very light on plot.

Full Review | Original Score: C
Tom Keogh
Seattle Times
Top Critic
May 12, 2006

Shortland's payoff is good and redolent of wisdom. But getting there is like sitting in a waiting room with stale magazines.

Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/4
Ty Burr
Boston Globe
Top Critic
May 12, 2006

Shortland balances showing Heidi as a heartbreaking mess -- doing a jailbait dance here, impulsively swallowing a mouthful of chili peppers there -- and judging her for it.

Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
Ann Hornaday
Washington Post
Top Critic
May 11, 2006

Reflects surprisingly assured filmmaking sensibilities, especially when it comes to portraying the foibles and preoccupations of young women at loose ends.

Michael Wilmington
Chicago Tribune
Top Critic
May 11, 2006

A small film, done with limited resources, but it's impressive -- and so is Cornish.

Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
Lisa Schwarzbaum
Entertainment Weekly
Top Critic
May 3, 2006

Cornish is a marvel...

Full Review | Original Score: B
Stephen Holden
New York Times
Top Critic
April 21, 2006

Somersault is a movie about the looks on people's faces and the disparity between the surface and the roiling chaos beneath.

| Original Score: 3.5/5
Gene Seymour
Newsday
Top Critic
April 21, 2006

Director Cate Shortland's first film is as remote, sullen and mercurial as her protagonist.

Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
Lisa Rose
Newark Star-Ledger
Top Critic
April 21, 2006

The movie's centerpiece is a candid, fearless performance by newcomer Abbie Cornish.

Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
V.A. Musetto
New York Post
Top Critic
April 21, 2006

Somersault, the feature debut of Aussie writer-director Cate Shortland, showcases a brilliantly realistic performance by Abbie Cornish as Heidi.

| Original Score: 3.5/4
Jack Mathews
New York Daily News
Top Critic
April 21, 2006

Shortland's script takes some unnecessary turns, mostly with Joe's drinking and sexual insecurities. But as long as it's focused on Heidi's predicament, it is riveting drama.

Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
Carina Chocano
Los Angeles Times
Top Critic
April 21, 2006

A frank and visceral film that at the same time exudes an unexpected innocence.

Full Review | Original Score: 4/5
Scott Tobias
AV Club
Top Critic
April 20, 2006

The film occasionally succumbs to preciousness, but Cornish makes for an unusually complicated Lolita, as if her hormones were waging war with her heart.

Full Review | Original Score: B
Russell Edwards
Variety
Top Critic
April 20, 2006

Shortland appears to have a great fascination with objects like pine needles and gas jets, but the pic's visual flourishes tend to be distracting in their restless artiness.

Scott Foundas
L.A. Weekly
Top Critic
April 20, 2006

This remarkable film from Australia, the debut feature of writer-director Cate Shortland, moves to the lyrical rhythms and unhurried pace of a 1970s road movie, or one of those Joni Mitchell ballads.

Melissa Levine
Village Voice
Top Critic
April 18, 2006

Somersault's dreamy, sexy, rather chilly style captures Heidi's attempt to escape her past, to build something new atop the rubble of what came before, and ultimately to hide it.

Dave Calhoun
Time Out
Top Critic
February 9, 2006

Shortland well deserves the awards already lavished on her back home in Australia.

Duane Byrge
Hollywood Reporter
Top Critic
September 11, 2004

A superb coming-of-age film with international appeal.