Barbara - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

Barbara Reviews

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Stanley Kauffmann
The New Republic
June 17, 2013
It persuades us early on that its aura of political tension and suspicion, its taciturnity, its very strictness of silent observation as it begins, are fostering an intelligent thriller.
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Colin Covert
Minneapolis Star Tribune
March 21, 2013
Though the film runs a mere 105 minutes, it weighs on viewers like an eternity.
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/4
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Walter V. Addiego
San Francisco Chronicle
March 8, 2013
The movie examines the possibility of maintaining one's humanity in a truly oppressive society.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
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Steven Rea
Philadelphia Inquirer
March 8, 2013
Hoss, wearing her blond hair pulled back tight, and wearing an expression of inscrutable melancholy, gives a performance that doesn't feel like a performance at all.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/4
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J. R. Jones
Chicago Reader
March 7, 2013
The occasional ravings of the patients, ringing off the walls in Petzold's measured quiet, provide an appropriate backdrop to the heroine's need for freedom, yet the movie's politics never trump its humanity.
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Sheila O'Malley
Chicago Sun-Times
March 7, 2013
This is well-trod ground for Petzold, but never has it been so fully realized, so palpable, as in "Barbara."
Full Review | Original Score: 3.5/4
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Bill Goodykoontz
Arizona Republic
February 7, 2013
Hoss is fantastic. Barbara is ice cold at the start, understandably so. Yet Hoss makes her sympathetic.
Full Review | Original Score: 4.5/5
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Anthony Lane
New Yorker
January 7, 2013
[Leaves] you drained and horrified.
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Rick Groen
Globe and Mail
December 28, 2012
Sometimes, the sun shines and the wind blows fresh and the very elements that make for intense hardship also open a window on intense joy.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
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Linda Barnard
Toronto Star
December 27, 2012
Hoss is mesmerizing as a woman who holds it all together to the point of losing herself.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
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Kenneth Turan
Los Angeles Times
December 21, 2012
It's one terrific film, as smart, thoughtful and emotionally involving as just about anything that's out there.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/5
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Farran Smith Nehme
New York Post
December 21, 2012
It's a quiet film built of careful details.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/4
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Ann Hornaday
Washington Post
December 21, 2012
"Barbara" re-visits the quiet, everyday tragedies of the Iron Curtain era, when paranoia ran deep and for very good reasons.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
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Cary Darling
Fort Worth Star-Telegram/DFW.com
December 21, 2012
The plotting, the planning and the deepening relationships don't make for kinetic action, but they are the foundation for a smart, engrossing film.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/5
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December 20, 2012
Lit from within, like a lantern; Petzold has made a nighttime movie that ends right on the edge of dawn.
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Manohla Dargis
New York Times
December 20, 2012
"Barbara" is a film about the old Germany from one of the best directors working in the new: Christian Petzold.
| Original Score: 4/5
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Soren Anderson
Seattle Times
December 20, 2012
Hoss' acting is a marvel of subtlety; her body language is precisely calibrated to reveal a great deal about the character's inner feelings by the slightest changes of posture and facial expression.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
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Wesley Morris
Boston Globe
December 20, 2012
The movie's quiet power comes from its air of meticulously maintained suspicion.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
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John Anderson
Newsday
December 20, 2012
A sturdy suspense story, set in Stasi-infected East Germany, rich in moral compromise, individual integrity and general desperation, it's elevated by Hoss to something sublime and unforgettable ...
Full Review | Original Score: 4/4
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Sam Adams
AV Club
December 20, 2012
Barbara is Hoss' fifth film with Petzold, and the movie rests on the depth and subtlety of their working relationship.
Full Review | Original Score: A
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Eric Hynes
Time Out
December 18, 2012
No special effect this year comes close to what Hoss can accomplish with simple but unbearably explosive eye contact.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/5
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Melissa Anderson
Village Voice
December 18, 2012
A transfixing Cold War thriller set in the East Germany of 1980 ...
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Justin Chang
Variety
November 30, 2012
This wise and incisively crafted drama brings simmering intelligence and a dry, sardonic compassion to bear on its tale of two doctors slowly worming their way into each other's hearts and minds.
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Jordan Mintzer
Hollywood Reporter
November 30, 2012
Tightly crafted East German drama delivers strong performances and late rewards.
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Dave Calhoun
Time Out
September 25, 2012
Hoss gives a discreet, thought-provoking performance.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/5