Balzac and the Little Chinese Seamstress - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

Balzac and the Little Chinese Seamstress Reviews

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Top Critic
Roger Ebert
Chicago Sun-Times
September 29, 2005
The elements in the story push all the right buttons, but the buttons don't seem to be wired to anything.
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/4
Top Critic
James Berardinelli
ReelViews
October 17, 2005
Offers its share of little pleasures, but falls short of the greatness to which it aspires.
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/4
Nick Schager
Slant Magazine
July 22, 2005
There's something mildly seductive about its linking of passion with the wild, untamable jungle that envelops its characters.
Full Review | Original Score: 2/4
Brian Gibson
Vue Weekly (Edmonton, Canada)
December 1, 2003
Balzac and the Little Chinese Seamstress skirts around insightful human drama and political criticism, weaving a pretty but threadbare tapestry.
Dennis Schwartz
Ozus' World Movie Reviews
March 24, 2008
A dullish though quite watchable lyrical coming-of-age love triangle drama set in the 1970s during the Chinese Cultural Revolution.
Full Review | Original Score: C+
Piet Levy
Milwaukee Journal Sentinel
October 6, 2005
Balzac acts as a fond love letter to literature, but it detracts from those intentions by also being a narcissistic love letter to itself.
| Original Score: 2.5/4
Jay Antani
Filmcritic.com
August 25, 2005
pleasing to the eye but not to the heart or the soul
| Original Score: 2.5/5
Eric Monder
Film Journal International
March 1, 2007
Anyone expecting something either insightful or unusual will be disappointed.
Richard C. Walls
Orlando Weekly
November 11, 2005
[A] big, beautifully photographed and somewhat mushy film.
Top Critic
Patrick Z. McGavin
Chicago Reader
March 18, 2010
The ethereal private moments and inspired passages are beautifully shot by Jean-Marie Dreujou, but Dai never quite organizes the material dramatically, and the tone is too often jagged and disruptive.
David Sterritt
Christian Science Monitor
July 28, 2005
The story is winning but the telling, with Dai adapting and directing from his own novel, is too sentimental in the long run.
Full Review | Original Score: 2/4
Ken Fox
TV Guide
July 29, 2005
Choppy and episodic, Sijie's film is further dragged down by a disconcerting, third-act flashfoward that saps the film of whatever momentum it managed to build.
| Original Score: 2/5
Sean P. Means
Salt Lake Tribune
October 14, 2005
Sometimes the movie is a bit too gentle, moving at an energy-sapping pace, but one must respect Dai's ability to put criticism of Maoist doctrine onscreen at all.
| Original Score: 2.5/4
Frank Swietek
One Guy's Opinion
November 26, 2005
Skillfully done...but the broader historical context may make one just a tad queasy reveling in its visual and emotional excesses.
Full Review | Original Score: C+
Top Critic
Roger Moore
Orlando Sentinel
November 11, 2005
[A] charmer.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/5
Top Critic
Ella Taylor
L.A. Weekly
August 25, 2005
Balzac and the Little Chinese Seamstress is by turns merry, tough-minded and sweetly nostalgic.
Top Critic
Kirk Honeycutt
Hollywood Reporter
October 31, 2002
A poignant lyricism runs through Balzac and the Little Chinese Seamstress that transforms this story about love and culture into a cinematic poem.
Chris Hewitt (St. Paul)
St. Paul Pioneer Press
October 7, 2005
Balzac and the Little Chinese Seamstress won't blow you away with its originality, but I doubt if this sort of movie has ever been as pretty and delicate.
| Original Score: 3/4
Jim Lane
Sacramento News & Review
May 12, 2006
| Original Score: 3/5
Frederic and Mary Ann Brussat
Spirituality and Practice
July 21, 2005
A light-hearted, playful love story set in China with a tribute to the soul-stirring powers of French literature.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/5
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