A Separation - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

A Separation Reviews

June 19, 2013
You cannot watch the film without feeling kinship with the characters and admitting their decency as well as their mistakes.
March 7, 2012
Dynamically shot and paced like a thriller, the film has the density and moral prickliness of a good novel.
February 23, 2012
These people seem so real they might live next door. And they probably do.
Full Review | Original Score: A+
February 17, 2012
"A Separation" is a plaintive fable of the human condition that unites us.
Full Review | Original Score: 3.5/4
February 10, 2012
Very few movies capture as convincingly as A Separation does the ways in which seemingly honorable decisions can lead to interpersonal conflict -- even disaster.
Read More | Original Score: 3.5/4
February 9, 2012
To say the piercing Iranian film A Separation is about divorce is a bit like saying The Wizard of Oz is about a pair of slippers.
Full Review | Original Score: A
February 2, 2012
"A Separation" moves beyond one couple's sundering marriage to reveal growing rifts between generations, ideologies, religious mind-sets, genders and classes in contemporary Iran.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/4
February 2, 2012
Partly a courtroom drama, partly a political satire and partly a twisty thriller that gradually draws you in and becomes more engrossing with each new revelation.
Read More | Original Score: 4/4
February 2, 2012
"A Separation" is a great movie, a look inside a world so foreign that it might as well be another planet, yet so universal that its observations are painfully familiar to anyone, anywhere.
Full Review | Original Score: 5/5
January 27, 2012
Sometimes, in an attempt to do the best we can for the people we love, we end up wreaking irreparable damage.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/4
January 27, 2012
Asghar Farhadi's emotionally epic movie is not just a masterpiece dramatically, it is a movie dramatically of its moment.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/4
January 26, 2012
It's small. It's real. And it's deeply moving.
Full Review | Original Score: 3.5/4
January 26, 2012
This is a trenchant emotional thriller that you watch in dread, awe, and amazing aggravation.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/4
January 26, 2012
Some films wear their artistry so lightly they appear simply to be happening, the inner workings of the story guided by an unseen hand.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/4
January 26, 2012
The film involves its audience in an unusually direct way, because although we can see the logic of everyone's position, our emotions often disagree.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/4
January 26, 2012
This is primarily a human story about a marriage unraveling, the husband torn between love for his daughter and devotion to his father, the daughter torn between one parent and the other.
January 24, 2012
It's an indictment of a culture in which religion and tradition poison a legal system. It is an exploration of the power of a lie. It is a mystery and a courtroom drama. Above all, however, it is a tale of love and sacrifice.
Full Review | Original Score: 3.5/4
January 20, 2012
Farhadi is less concerned with the bugs and variations in human perception than cracks in the average moral compass, little fault lines that prompt good people to make bad decisions.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/4
January 20, 2012
In the guise of a whodunit, Farhadi paints a nuanced portrait of Iranian society that, seen through our Western eyes, looks at once utterly alien and strikingly familiar.
Full Review | Original Score: 3.5/4
January 19, 2012
Rashomon-like in its perceptual complexities, truth vs. belief, Asghar Farhadi's drama forces us to constantly shift our assessments and allegiances.
Read More | Original Score: 4/4
January 13, 2012
Crafts a minefield out of the mundane and may very well be a masterpiece for it.
January 9, 2012
What makes it so good is that no one is bad. These humans, desperate to do right, are caught up in a perfect storm of inhumanity. The evil is in the ecosystem.
January 4, 2012
The film wraps us, with stunning directness, in the complex folds of its characters' passions.
Full Review | Original Score: A
January 4, 2012
A Separation is not the work of a constrained artist. It's a great movie in which the full range of human interaction seems to play itself out before our eyes.
Full Review | Original Score: A
January 4, 2012
Farhadi's true focus is the flawed capacity for any law -- any form of cold rationality, period -- to address the slippery nature of human affairs. It's a frantic microcosm of life itself.
Full Review | Original Score: A
January 4, 2012
The miracle of A Separation is that it doesn't spare any of its characters, nor does it seek to indict them. It is a democratic portrait of a theocratic world.
January 4, 2012
Tensely involving Iranian drama with niche potential.
January 4, 2012
Tense and narratively complex, formally dense and morally challenging.
Top Critic
January 4, 2012
A constant surprise, a film that captures the drama and suspense of real life as urgently as any picture released this year.
January 4, 2012
Simin's and Nader's divorce debate is the first of many complex issues raised and passionately argued in A Separation.
January 3, 2012
Movies with this kind of moral complexity are rare, so not only is it worth seeking out, it's one you need to see with friends because it invites -- or rather demands -- debate afterward.
Read More | Original Score: 3.5/4
December 31, 2011
Asghar Farhadi's A Separation serves as a quiet reminder of how good it's possible for movies to be.
December 30, 2011
A downbeat family drama of no particular distinction gradually turns into a mystery that raises painful moral questions.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
December 30, 2011
We can't believe our own eyes. How can we begin to pick one of the many competing narratives before us?
Full Review | Original Score: 4/4
December 30, 2011
It's a deceptive, Hitchcockian mystery whose clues are laid out so carefully you'll probably miss them, and a complex philosophical fable in which every character is morally compromised.
December 29, 2011
It's a thrilling domestic drama that offers acute insights into human motivations and behavior as well as a compelling look at what goes on behind a particular curtain that almost never gets raised.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/5
December 29, 2011
Sophisticated and universal yet deeply intimate, A Separation is an exquisitely conceived family drama that has the coiled power of a top-notch thriller.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/4
December 29, 2011
It is a rigorously honest movie about the difficulties of being honest, a film that tries to be truthful about the slipperiness of truth.
Read More | Original Score: 4/5
December 29, 2011
The Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film belongs right here... 'A Separation' is a landmark film. No way will you be able to get it out of your head.
Full Review | Original Score: 3.5/4
December 29, 2011
Beyond the impeccable performances and direction, it's foremost an exceptional piece of screenwriting, so finely wrought that the drama seems guided by an invisible hand.
Full Review | Original Score: A
December 28, 2011
Together and apart, Hatami and Maadi are magnetic.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/5
December 27, 2011
What's fascinating is how the various issues -- religious or practical -- are played out in these two quite different families, yet always come down to irreconcilable differences between rebellious women and their stiff-necked, controlling men.
December 26, 2011
...interesting, and engaging, in both a storytelling and sociological/cultural study fashion.
Full Review | Original Score: 4.5/5
December 20, 2011
Getting absorbed in the film's complex layers of procedural negotiation and domestic argument, you'll realize that we often settle for too little from our screenplays.
Full Review | Original Score: 5/5
September 9, 2011
"A Separation" could hardly be more concrete, or contemporary, or dramatic.
June 28, 2011
'A Separation' is lively and suspenseful as both drama and debate.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/5