The East (2013) - Rotten Tomatoes

The East (2013)



Critic Consensus: Tense, thoughtful, and deftly paced, The East is a political thriller that never loses sight of the human element.

Movie Info

THE EAST, a suspenseful and provocative espionage thriller from acclaimed writer-director Zal Batmanglij and writer-actress Brit Marling, stars Marling as former FBI agent Sarah Moss. Moss is starting a new career at Hiller Brood, an elite private intelligence firm that ruthlessly protects the interests of its A-list corporate clientele. Handpicked for a plum assignment by the company's head honcho, Sharon (Patricia Clarkson), Sarah goes deep undercover to infiltrate The East, an elusive anarchist collective seeking revenge against major corporations guilty of covering up criminal activity. Determined, highly-trained and resourceful, Sarah soon ingratiates herself with the group, overcoming their initial suspicions and joining them on their next action or "jam." But living closely with the intensely committed members of The East, Sarah finds herself torn between her two worlds as she starts to connect with anarchist Benji (Alexander Skarsgård) and the rest of the collective, and awakens to the moral contradictions of her personal life. (c) Fox Searchlightmore
Rating: PG-13 (for thematic elements, violence, some disturbing images, sexual content and partial nudity)
Genre: Drama, Action & Adventure, Mystery & Suspense
Directed By:
Written By: Brit Marling, Zal Batmanglij
In Theaters:
On DVD: Sep 17, 2013
Box Office: $2.3M
Fox Searchlight Pictures - Official Site


Julia Ormond
as Paige Williams
Billy Magnussen
as Porty McCabe
Wilbur Fitzgerald
as Robert McCabe
John Neisler
as Rory Houston
Jamey Sheridan
as Richard Cannon
Pamela Roylance
as Diane Wisecarver
Ryan Grego
as Johnny Perkins
Ava Bogle
as Johnny's Mom
Nick Fuhrmann
as Johnny's Brother
Ron Flagge
as Hiller Brood Securit...
Han Soto
as Sharon's Assistant
Billy Slaughter
as Trevor "The Fed"
Benjamin Passmore
as Backroom Speaker
Sedef Seren
as Boxcar Singer
Richard Zeringue
as Railroad Bull #1
Brian Oerly
as Railroad Bull #2
Randy Fife
as Railroad Bull #3
Orpha Cabigting
as Filipino Maid
Show More Cast

News & Interviews for The East

Critic Reviews for The East

All Critics (140) | Top Critics (40)

Marling and Batmanglij don't fear or resent entertainment: They make effective thrillers... If they reach a major studio and bigger budget, they could be the right kind of dangerous.

Full Review… | January 6, 2014
Top Critic

The whole thing feels strident and naive, a well-meaning drama composed by a couple of college kids for their Environmental Science final.

Full Review… | January 1, 2014
Arkansas Democrat-Gazette

The total effect is affected, annoying and off-putting.

Full Review… | January 1, 2014
Sacramento News & Review

Provocative and exciting, with bigger set pieces and a fierce devotion to character development, this is the sort of smart genre thriller that Hollywood needs more of.

Full Review… | October 5, 2013

Marling's committed performance is offset slightly by Skarsgård's glumness and the 'surprise' casting of Page, who plays the part like Juno grown up (sort of) and turned vengeful communist psychopath.

Full Review… | September 29, 2013

Immaculately made with a thought-provoking emphasis on corporate espionage, it's just missing intensity and grit

Full Review… | September 26, 2013
The Popcorn Junkie

Audience Reviews for The East


It's uneven, especially in its lack of real suspense and character motivations. But The East's moral ambiguity and complexity of ideas makes for an engaging thriller that the studio system should be making more often. Writer/actor Brit Marling is quickly developing into a force to be reckoned with, standing alongside a great supporting cast with wit and ferocity.

Edward Boxler

Super Reviewer

Good movie. The writing is clever and topical, and obviously hits quite a few nerves for those viewers who object to its criticism of corporate America. I applaud the film makers for daring to challenge a system that all too often succumbs to greed and corruption, and leaves behind death and grief. Not at all a dull movie, full of some really great acting...

Cynthia S.

Super Reviewer

I was pleasantly surprised by this movie and I am starting to admire Brit Marling as writer and actress. While some may love or hate the ending, I was thoroughly engaged in the story-line and I appreciate movies that leave me thinking afterwards.

Wildaly M

Super Reviewer

The East Quotes

– Submitted by Frances H (17 months ago)
– Submitted by ScubaSteve Walter M (18 months ago)

Discussion Forum

Discuss The East on our Movie forum!