Bai ri yan huo (Black Coal, Thin Ice) - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

Bai ri yan huo (Black Coal, Thin Ice) Reviews

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December 13, 2017
The light bathes faces and streets, gives visibility to the drives of the characters and in more than a moment offers glimpses about their fears and their secrets. [Full review in Spanish]
November 20, 2017
Its noir detective style pays homage to classic Hollywood tropes, but this is an unapologetically arthouse piece that impresses most for its gloriously dark visuals.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/5
October 2, 2017
It's the darkest shade of noir, replete with dismemberment and sexual violence, though Diao juices it up with a subtly insinuating neon glow, a remarkably daring sense of absurdist humour, and some very witty and stylish flourishes.
February 29, 2016
Black Coal, Thin Ice is a powerful film that grows on the viewer steadily and surely.
June 13, 2015
Black Coal, Thin Ice twists and turns as it goes: even the jolting electronic music over the end credits springs another surprise.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/5
June 5, 2015
Maybe the angriest movie from mainland China since Li Yang's Blind Mountain.
Read More | Original Score: 5/5
June 4, 2015
Delights in flouting generic convention at every twisting turn.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/5
June 4, 2015
What's fascinating is not merely the plot, but the wonderfully shot background, red and green neon on a grey townscape.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/5
June 4, 2015
It never quite catches fire, but it has a curious atmosphere of its own: menacing, pregnant with unease.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/5
June 4, 2015
Puzzling out the whos, the whys and the WTFs of this marvellously oddball case takes a back seat to drinking in the film's dark, shining evocation of night and the city.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/5
June 2, 2015
It's easy to see why it won the prize at Berlin. As well as being moodier than a Nine Inch Nails soundscape and crackling with barely concealed sexual tension and brimming with angst, Jingsong Dong's cinematography is sublime.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/5
June 1, 2015
Plays like a straightforward police procedural, buoyed by the intense dynamic between Fan and Gwei and a visual inventiveness that makes far more of an impact than its story.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/5
June 1, 2015
Moments of thrilling visual beauty are studded through this dour Chinese thriller like diamonds through a seam of coal.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/5
April 9, 2015
Writer/director Diao Yinan's brilliant and beautifully stylized Chinese noir transfixes the viewer with its cynical cops, hazardous settings and a mysterious aura of days gone by before delivering a devious denouement.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/4
February 23, 2015
Black Coal, Thin Ice is a painstakingly deliberate neo-noir, heavy on atmosphere and taking its time to build.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/5
February 18, 2015
A stark, harsh murder mystery interspersed with Wong Kar-wai-esque moments of odd urban beauty.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/5
February 3, 2015
Moments of shocking violence, a passive/aggressive femme fatale and hints of psychological depth don't do much to goose the TV cop show plot.
October 29, 2014
Everybody seems to be lonely and lost and hurting, and this atmosphere, and the film's off-kilter focus, make it linger in the memory.
June 20, 2014
A masterpiece of framing and composition, Diao Yinan's Black Coal, Thin Ice is a rare kind of film in which no shot feels unconsidered or out of place
Full Review | Original Score: A
June 12, 2014
The final reel is visually interesting in ways nobody could anticipate; it is also smugly perplexing, as if the filmmaker took joy from the knowledge virtually nobody would understand it.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/5
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