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Twentynine Palms

Twentynine Palms (2004)



Average Rating: 4.5/10
Critic Reviews: 14
Fresh: 4 | Rotten: 10

A muddled and inconsequential drama.



liked it
Average Rating: 2.7/5
User Ratings: 1,513

My Rating

Movie Info

David, an independent photographer, and Katia, an unemployed woman, leave L.A. to explore the desert terrain in search of a natural set for a magazine photo-shoot. The attractive couple finds a motel at 29 Palms, and subsequently spends their days on their four-wheelers, discovering the Joshua Tree Desert. Driving around with utter freedom, they lose themselves on nameless roads and trails. Frantically making love all the time and most everywhere, they regularly fight. Inevitably, David and


Drama, Art House & International, Mystery & Suspense

Bruno Dumont

Sep 21, 2004

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All Critics (44) | Top Critics (16) | Fresh (16) | Rotten (22) | DVD (5)

A textbook example of how a director can strip away plot, motivation, character, and meaning and still leave arrant pretension standing tall.

July 16, 2004 Full Review Source: Boston Globe
Boston Globe
Top Critic IconTop Critic


June 18, 2004 Full Review Source: San Francisco Chronicle
San Francisco Chronicle
Top Critic IconTop Critic

In Twentynine Palms, writer and director Bruno Dumont takes his cultural revenge on the United States, attacking countless American stereotypes and in the process reinforcing an equal number of cliches about arrogant French auteurs.

June 11, 2004 Full Review Source: Denver Post
Denver Post
Top Critic IconTop Critic

It's alternately monotonous, hot and dramatic, which makes for a peculiar, not entirely unsatisfying atmosphere of neo -- or is that post? -- noir.

May 28, 2004 Full Review Source: Washington Post
Washington Post
Top Critic IconTop Critic

[Dumont] forces viewers to question not only what's on the screen, but ultimately, the very nature of reality.

May 20, 2004 Full Review Source: Atlanta Journal-Constitution
Atlanta Journal-Constitution
Top Critic IconTop Critic

[Brown Bunny] sports the narrative complexity of War and Peace compared with Twentynine Palms.

April 27, 2004 Full Review Source: Variety
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Mutterings and short clipped dialogues in ellipses may convey reality but are hard on a movie audience.

November 28, 2013 Full Review Source: ReelTalk Movie Reviews
ReelTalk Movie Reviews

The French picture aims to titillate and shock with its graphic sex and violence, but ultimately it's monotonous and pretentious.

June 15, 2011 Full Review Source: EmanuelLevy.Com

A movie full of surfaces but with exasperatingly little to say

September 6, 2010 Full Review Source: Cinema Writer
Cinema Writer

Twentynine Palms is another in a string of recent French movies in which the body is no longer sacred, a churning, jerking, oozing machine. But Dumont seems to be working toward human discovery.

June 3, 2008 Full Review Source: Paste Magazine
Paste Magazine

Fascinating in the abstract but wearisome in reality.

May 4, 2005 Full Review Source: Lessons of Darkness
Lessons of Darkness

The talented filmmaker laid an egg with this one.

November 16, 2004 Full Review Source: Ozus' World Movie Reviews
Ozus' World Movie Reviews

It's cheap thrills in an arty package.

August 8, 2004 Full Review Source: Film Journal International
Film Journal International

Both the characters and the setting are a bit of a blank here, so it's no surprise the movie is, too.

July 20, 2004 Full Review Source: Boston Herald
Boston Herald

French exercise in California crisis and empty existentialism manages to be pointless, dim and brutal all at once.

June 17, 2004 Full Review Source: Netflix

Let's just say that Palms could shock the pants right off of you.

June 4, 2004 Full Review Source: E! Online
E! Online

What Dumont expresses is too guttural and inchoate to even be called despair. It's not there yet, or else it's way past that.

April 20, 2004 Full Review Source: Nick's Flick Picks
Nick's Flick Picks

Much of "Twentynine Palms" is ludicrous, awful...

April 13, 2004 Full Review Source:

With repetitive scenes of their rambling road trip, Twentynine Palms is more like a Humvee commercial, with plenty of hummers along the way.

April 9, 2004 Full Review Source:

Audience Reviews for Twentynine Palms

[font=Century Gothic]In Bruno Dumont's "Twentynine Palms", Dave is a photographer scouting locations in the California desert along with his French girlfriend, Katia. They are your typical couple, alternating bouts of lovemaking and arguing. But the real star of this movie is the beautifully desolate landscape that occasionally looks like it could be the surface of another planet. [/font][font=Century Gothic]"Twentynine Palms" is definitely an unsettling provocation that stays with you.[/font]
July 4, 2005
Walter M.

Super Reviewer

Provocative but not relentless.I remote myself in a vast plain,mingled with the sky's peacefulness.I wouldn't wish though to have such temper aside of me.Palms as a fake plastic manuscript of thoughts and determinations.The couple is disjointed and yet so loving you feel their inner loss towards the end.Dumont shows how much a film can present without shaky camera movement and a classic film-making persona.The outcast figure.
February 12, 2010
Dimitris Springer

Super Reviewer

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