Un Conte de NoŽl (A Christmas Tale) - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

Un Conte de NoŽl (A Christmas Tale) Reviews

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The Sneak
The Sun (UK)
January 16, 2009
Typically Gallic, it contains lots of smoking, drinking and thinking. With the thoughts often turning towards death.
Full Review | Original Score: 2/5
Kelly Vance
East Bay Express
August 16, 2011
Even Amalric's ray of light can't penetrate the gloom enough to make this much more than a rather strained actors' exercise.
Anton Bitel
Little White Lies
January 16, 2009
The cast expertly incarnates this family haunted by loss, lovelessness and (literal) bad blood, but the film's unduly protracted duration makes the Vuillards feel like Christmas guests who just will not leave.
Elliott Noble
Sky Movies
January 16, 2009
At a bum-numbing two-and-a-half hours, the film does at least have one thing in common with other Christmas visitors - it long outstays its welcome.
Full Review | Original Score: 2/5
Top Critic
Dave Calhoun
Time Out
January 16, 2009
You could, of course, forgive the whole enterprise as the extravagances of an intellectual fairytale, but the film's wayward eccentricities outweigh its good performances and breezy telling of a jumble of a plot.
Full Review | Original Score: 2/5
Christopher Smith
Bangor Daily News (Maine)
December 14, 2008
As charming as the film's title sounds, here is a movie, distinctly French in its clipped rhythms and melodramatic arc, that's anything but charming. It is, in fact, a jumbled, caustic tour-de-force.
Full Review | Original Score: C+
Susan Granger
SSG Syndicate
November 27, 2008
Yet another dysfunctional-family, holiday-reunion film that's no better, no worse than its bourgeois predecessors - unless you happen to be a Francophile.
Full Review| Original Score: 6/10
July 22, 2009
Till life do us part
Full Review | Original Score: 3/5
Top Critic
Andrea Gronvall
Chicago Reader
November 21, 2008
Characters occasionally address the camera, which helps disentangle the competing story lines of madness, adultery, and betrayal.
David Nusair
Reel Film Reviews
November 28, 2008
...ultimately suffers from a middling midsection that's been suffused with pointless digressions and melodramatic crises...
Full Review | Original Score: 2/4
Top Critic
Bernard Besserglik
Hollywood Reporter
November 4, 2008
What's troubling is its lack of perspective on anything beyond the narrow, navel-gazing concerns of its characters.
David Kaplan
Kaplan vs. Kaplan
November 25, 2008
It leaves no lasting impression, except for one excruciating scene involving a bone marrow transplant.
Full Review
Jay Antani
Cinema Writer
January 26, 2009
an endlessly busy and stylish film with a hollow emotional and spiritual core.
Full Review | Original Score: 2/4
Philip French
Observer (UK)
December 6, 2013
Its numerous narrative strands are neither revealingly pursued nor properly intertwined.
Armond White
New York Press
November 12, 2008
A Christmas Tale isn't repugnant, just regressive. The modern family film has moved beyond this Gallic update of I Remember Mama.
Top Critic
Peter Rainer
Christian Science Monitor
November 17, 2008
I'd be more inclined to call this French dysfunctional family epic gabby and preeningly self-indulgent -- in a word, annoying.
Full Review | Original Score: C+
Peter Keough
Boston Phoenix
April 23, 2009
Un conte de NoŽl could use more of the surreal hilarity of Wes Anderson'sThe Royal Tenenbaums.
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/4
Mark Asch
Stop Smiling
July 8, 2014
Given his cornucopia of characters fighting wars on three fronts, his whiplash tonal switchbacks, his jazzlike aesthetic of chance, how is it that Arnaud Desplechin is only now coming home for the holidays?
Top Critic
Roger Ebert
Chicago Sun-Times
November 21, 2008
A strangely encompassing collection of private moments among the members of a large family with a fraught history.
Full Review | Original Score: 3.5/4
Top Critic
James Berardinelli
ReelViews
November 19, 2008
A Christmas Tale is long but it exerts enough of a pull that the 150 minutes pass rapidly, if not necessarily painlessly.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
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