A Tale of Love and Darkness Reviews

March 30, 2019
Natalie Portman's love letter to Israel may be more dark than it is loving, but it's a visceral experience and an amiable directorial debut for Portman.
October 17, 2018
The birth of Israel is so much more than a setting here -- it is the existential reality that shapes the characters.
August 28, 2018
A Tale of Love and Darkness isn't a great film, but a respectable and commendable one that shows a lot of promise for the continued evolution of Portman's career.
August 6, 2018
It is an interesting choice for a filmmaker's debut... However, after watching, it seems like no one else could have pulled off this striking balance between romance and melancholy as well as Portman.
February 14, 2018
It's difficult to criticize this film without calling for an entirely different one... but I'll give Portman's film the credit for letting one imagine how differently it could have turned out.
November 13, 2017
A dreary downer.
February 13, 2017
A Tale of Love and Darkness is a sincere, heartfelt, and enormously emotionally impactful viewing experience, and is one of my favorite films released in 2016.
January 24, 2017
A solid historical drama that shows Portman's talent to get behind the camera after years of dazzling us in front of it. [Full review in Spanish]
December 14, 2016
While the film doesn't soar, it's an honorable labor of love that's surely one of the most unusual features ever made by an Oscar-winning Hollywood actress.
December 4, 2016
Portman's conviction in the material oozes from this deeply poetic debut.
October 5, 2016
Natalie Portman's first directed film turned into a beautiful piece of art, honoring a brilliant memoir and important time in history.
September 27, 2016
A Tale of Love and Darkness maps the chaos of the founding of the modern Jewish state onto the dissolution of this family.
September 15, 2016
Though the tone is sometimes gloomy and nostalgic, Portman pours her heart into every moment, showing her devotion to Oz and to Israel, the country of her birth.
September 9, 2016
Portman's biopic of Israeli writer is earnest, ethereal.
September 2, 2016
Portman's ability to convey this rich borscht of people, place, and inescapable history is flavourful indeed. So it's unfortunate that, while getting so many difficult things right, she makes an almost equal number of missteps on the easy stuff.
September 1, 2016
Whereas Oz's material, at its best, considers the nuances and subtleties of language, Portman's script reduces his writing to platitudes and cliches.
August 31, 2016
Portman takes the film's title literally, offering some dreamlike imagery in the stories Fania tells Amos. But it also is filled with many dim and dreary sequences, as Portman uses a dark palette that seems to suck the life out of Fania.
August 27, 2016
Portman and Tessler distractingly take turns playing the lead, causing the film to lose continuity. A flaw worsened by a tale that frustratingly rambles in spots, particularly when Portman indulges her inner Ingmar Bergman.
August 26, 2016
Because the film tells her complicated story through the eyes of her son, he has to have a staggering amount of intuition. Fortunately, his childhood innocence doesn't deter the audience from understanding the nuance of his mother's struggle.
August 26, 2016
...an abject failure that just doesn't work on any level...