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Critic Reviews for Adrift
The film's biggest problem is its repetitive, meandering script, a catalogue of coming-of-age clichés -- the first date, the first kiss, the first sip of booze -- that can't find anywhere new to go.
Elegantly scripted, elegantly acted and elegant looking, by avoiding obvious dramatic fireworks, Adrift turns out to be a slow-burning, coming of age sparkler.
The shores of Buzios in Brazil beckon in a drama about infidelity and sexual awakening which mainly settles for being easy on the eye.
Audience Reviews for Adrift
After his masterpiece O Cheiro do Ralo, Brazilian director Heitor Dhalia went on to make this third feature film, a work that strays from his usual narrative style and ventures into something more sober - only this time he seems to have plagiarized New Zealander film Rain.
To its credit, "Adrift" succeeds more by what it does not do than what it seeks to do, taking its time during an endless summer at a beach community in Brazil. Of special interest are the beautiful scenery and Vincent Cassel, cast against type and speaking Portugese. Unlike most of the other characters he has played, Mathias is quite domestic as a writer on vacation with his family. That's not to say that Mathias is without his share of danger signs, most of which emanate from his never having fully grown up. That sense of irresponsibility has led his wife Clarice(Debora Bloch) to drink as they argue about a possible adaptation of one of his works and eventually the logistics of a possible separation. While their son gets into a fight, it is their oldest, 14-year old Filipa(Laura Neiva), who is most conscious of what is going on around them. This is especially important because she has reached an age where she is taking an interest in boys for the first time, namely Artur(Daniel Passi) who faces an impossible question during a round of truth and dare. Not having the experience to know what the signals mean, she does not have the answers. But even worse, she has no questions.
A fourteen-year-old discovers her father's infidelity and her own sexuality. Adrift is a slow but striking film. We watch Filipa's every step with a feeling of impending doom, and Laura Neiva gives an inscrutable performance. Vincent Cassel, whose work is always compelling (even as he upstages big Hollywood stars in Oceans 13), turns in another phenomenal performance, a tour de force, nuanced character, in yet another language. The weakness of the film is its story, which, in the final analysis, doesn't amount to anything new. Yes, Mathias's reaction to the final scene is different than the cliches we're used to (and oh so European), but that's about all that sets this coming-of-age story apart from all the others. Overall, I enjoyed Adrift, as I sat tensely throughout the film, but after I thought about it, I realized I didn't see anything original, so Adriftbecomes an old film done very well.
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