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The High Cost of Living (2011)

tomatometer

33

Average Rating: 5.8/10
Critic Reviews: 6
Fresh: 2 | Rotten: 4

No consensus yet.

audience

58

liked it
Average Rating: 3.4/5
User Ratings: 747

My Rating

Movie Info

THE HIGH COST OF LIVING is the story of a young pregnant woman whose world falls apart when she loses her baby in a hit and run accident. It starts with an accident. Henry (Zach Braff) makes a wrong turn and crashes into Nathalie (Isabelle Blais). In a fit of panic, and over the legal limit, he cuts and runs, leaving Nathalie lying in the street, unconscious, bleeding and eight months pregnant. She wakes up in the hospital only to find her bright future destroyed and the baby she is still

PG-13,

Drama

Aug 22, 2011

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All Critics (15) | Top Critics (6) | Fresh (8) | Rotten (7) | DVD (2)

So artistically well-intentioned and earnest in its ambitions that you can almost forgive the banality of its every scene.

September 9, 2011 Full Review Source: New York Times
New York Times
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Movies often make too much of that truism, but surprisingly committed performances from actors like these can still make it feel like something meaningful.

September 7, 2011 Full Review Source: Time Out New York
Time Out New York
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Ridiculously implausible yet still predictable.

September 6, 2011 Full Review Source: Village Voice | Comment (1)
Village Voice
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Chow and her actors are so gifted that this fragile situation escapes contrivance to become a poignant, romantic and deftly nuanced revelation of character and emotions.

May 12, 2011 Full Review Source: Los Angeles Times
Los Angeles Times
Top Critic IconTop Critic

An already iffy premise is badly served by a film that is tonally jarring.

April 22, 2011 Full Review Source: Globe and Mail
Globe and Mail
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Although there are moments when lead thesps Zach Braff and Isabelle Blais just about pull off the implausible conceit, the pic still suffers from major problems of tone as well as stilted camerawork and editing.

September 21, 2010 Full Review Source: Variety
Variety
Top Critic IconTop Critic

An engaging movie about commingled grief and regret, well staged and captured by cinematographer Claudine Sauve in a manner that works with the material to effect a depressive, melancholic tone.

May 16, 2011 Full Review Source: Shockya.com
Shockya.com

The High Cost of Living is yet another example of the high cost (for moviegoers) of lowered production barriers for aspiring filmmakers.

May 8, 2011 Full Review Source: Slant Magazine
Slant Magazine

Now this is drama!... just throws the most awful situation at her characters and watches them deal with it.

April 25, 2011 Full Review Source: Screen Junkies

Off-beat delivery and acting redeem this modestly budgeted "redemption" story.

April 22, 2011 Full Review Source: Jam! Movies
Jam! Movies

Chow's direction shows a good eye for locations, but her gritty nighttime aesthetic can't cloak the predictable nature of the material, which only really has one way to go and staggers there down the home stretch.

April 22, 2011 Full Review Source: eye WEEKLY
eye WEEKLY

I'm still not sure how The High Cost Of Living made it onto Canada's Top Ten, let alone how it took the best Canadian first feature award at TIFF last year. It's just not very good.

April 22, 2011 Full Review Source: NOW Toronto | Comment (1)
NOW Toronto

...a decidedly off-kilter premise that's utilized to pervasively agreeable effect by filmmaker Deborah Chow...

October 6, 2010 Full Review Source: Reel Film Reviews
Reel Film Reviews

Audience Reviews for The High Cost of Living

A film that more the likely you will not see in the theater unless you go to a film festival. This is one outstanding movie. Henry is a drug dealer in Canada, Nathalie is a women in a relationship that comes to an end when she is about to have a baby and Henry hits her with his car by accident. So stars a great love story with sad outcome. 5 stars for this one. 12-1-12
December 6, 2012
bbcfloridabound
Bruce Bruce

Super Reviewer

Good movie about humanity, suffering, and the need for redemption. This movie points out that life isn't all black and white, there is an area of gray that covers most human interaction. Zach Braff, and Isabelle Blais, do a fantastic job here. Very moving film. A perfect, and fitting ending, too....
September 15, 2012
itsjustme2004

Super Reviewer

A drug dealer hits a pregnant woman and later befriends her.
As much as I like Zach Braff, I found it difficult to believe his performance as a drug dealer. The film doesn't follow his business workings too closely, and it's a good thing because the genial, charismatic Braff looks out of place with a five o'clock shadow and a cigarette. Most of the drama takes place between Braff's character and an inscrutable performance by Isabelle Blais. The result is a film that is remarkably improbable but also quite predictable.
Overall, I'm all for actors who expand their boundaries, but this is what it looks like what an experiment goes wrong.
August 5, 2012
hunterjt13
Jim Hunter

Super Reviewer

"High Cost of Living" is a tale not many people will enjoy. It's a story about Henry(Zach Braff) who goes out one night and not paying attention while he drives he hits Nathalie(Isabelle Blais). Henry in a panic, leaves the scene of the accident. Nathalie happens to be pregnant and loses her baby. The rest of the movie is about how they deal with the accident, and how they begin a relationship with each other, even though Nathalie doesn't know what Henry did. Its an intriguing premise, but it's a pretty dull movie. Braff is great with these dramatic roles, which is funny considering he is known for "Scrubs" and it's great comedy. A bit of a warning, the movie is set in Montreal and there are a lot of subtitlles. I don't mind subtitles, but I had no idea this movie would be so French heavy. Although the subject is very dramatic, the movie never goes into medlodramtic territory. Instead it keeps a good realtistic balance. If you want to watch a low budget, hard drama, then you may like this. Otherwise, just skip, you can find a lot better.
January 22, 2012
Everett Johnson

Super Reviewer

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