Birth - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

Birth Reviews

Page 2 of 71
October 12, 2014
Review In A Nutshell:

After seeing Birth, I was torn as my feelings towards the film jumps back and forth from decent to good. As I am writing this, the score I would be giving is the score on how I feel at this moment. Jonathan Glazer has previously swept me off my feet with his crime character study, Sexy Beast, which demonstrated hard hitting and vulnerable performances from Ben Kingsley and Ray Winstone respectively. I came into Birth hoping to see a dominating performance from Nicole Kidman and at the same time be drawn into the intriguing mystery of the film's premise; the former succeeded more effectively than the latter. Glazer has only directed three films and as of now I have seen two; it is hard for me to say if this is Glazer's weakest film as I have yet to see his recent release, Under the Skin, which divided audiences, but I would not be surprised if this film would be ultimately regarded as his weakest film.

Birth features a captivating premise of a woman, Anna, gets taken aback when a young boy confesses to her that he is the reincarnation of her dead husband. When I read that, I truly thought this film was going to deliver a deeply impacting mystery that would have me guessing until the final act. Sadly the film slightly lets its curtains swing early on, which allowed me to anticipate the film's final reveal. It is hard to say if Glazer wanted his audience to be in a guessing state, and decided to provide some sort of incentive at the start to hook us, but accidentally showed too much in his attempt to edit the film, or does he intentionally gives us that nugget and solve it early on and instead have our attentions be focused on exploring the internal drives of the film's character and its deeper themes. I think this is an issue that would only occur for those who are watching this for the first time, I want to believe that Glazer is urging its audience to search for something more than its bizarre premise that it was meant to symbolise meaningful for both the protagonist and the audience. Though in saying all this, I was never at all felt bored with what was presented to me. I was, throughout, engaged with the protagonist Anna, wanting to understand on how and what she is feeling with this sudden revelation. Glazer does not let Anna's entire psychological and emotional aspect be completely explained on the surface, it needs a bit off effort from the viewers in order for the internal layers of the character to be revealed; this statement does not only concern for Anna as the supporting characters in this film also were given the same treatment by Glazer.

Glazer handles the film's tone effectively by allowing the film's ridiculous idea to be taken seriously, but not to the point where audiences are beaten over the head with it. He provides the film some breathing space, allowing the audience to see the film on how they want to see it; there were a couple of moments in this film where I laughed because I found the situation to be awkward, but I never at any of those points felt that I was being punished for not taking the situation seriously. I think the film's premise is one of the central reasons on why some people could not find themselves be completely engaged with this film; in order to find the gem in this film, one must not be too sceptical and instead be drawn into its emotions. The film seems to have many themes filling the air, but the one that truly stood out to me is the idea of closure. Anna is this broken hearted individual that, after ten years, simply wants to find a sense of closure to her past. Glazer ends the film with an idea that closure is the most difficult thing to do, especially when it concerns with love; years can go by and we do what we can in trying to move on, but memories and feelings of grief will forever stick until the very end.

I was thoroughly impressed with Alexander Desplat score, it was actually the first thing that caught my attention when the film started. There was this layer of hope and sadness in his composition, which reflects well with the emotions that the characters are going through in this film.

Birth features a good performance from Nicole Kidman as the emotionally fragile Anna. Though I was pleased, I cannot help but feel that it was too easy for the audience to be hit with a role like this, and I was hoping both would go the extra mile in providing something more substantial. Cameron Bright as the re-incarnated Sean was also great, given his limited experience in the profession and the role he is trying to achieve. There were a couple of moments where I was almost completely drawn in to his character, shifting my focus away from Kidman's Anna. Glazer handles the film's supporting cast wonderfully, not allowing the audience to forget their role in moving the film's story and the performances that the cast has brought were uniformly effective.

Birth may not be as impressive as Sexy Beast or as ambitious as Under the Skin but Glazer provides enough guidance to keep its audience engaged.
October 2, 2014
La trama parece desarrollarse en niebla, en algo fogoso que la vuelva más lenta, tal vez era la idea de alargar la trama hasta que durara 100 minutos dejando
muchos huecos en medio, seria mejor película durando 5, 10 minutos menos.
Sean no posee carisma, el no es capaz de cargar la película
(mucha responsabilidad para un niño actor de 10 años) y es que todo cae en las actuaciones de los demas frente a Sean y lo que la actuación de Sean se
supone los hace sentir pero Sean no actua bien, por ellos sufre bastante la película, es puesto más en evidencia frente a las buenas actuaciones de los demas.
jonathan glazer Y allison Elliot en dirección son excelente, hermosas tomas y cortes de edición.
½ September 28, 2014
very good and very disturbing, I highly recommand this one ! Glazer is definitely one of the best and most interesting director
September 27, 2014
The premise of the story was a very intriguing one and complex, therefore I had very high expectations from it because it's subject was very provocative and also it had a very good director and actors. Thus, I wasn't disappointed, I suppose, because I was expecting it to be mysterious and go to places no other movie has, and it felt short in that department. But still, it had some "shocking" moments and excellent performances from Nicole Kidman and Cameron Bright, which had some intense scenes and really made a plot that could've been unbelievable and that is, and made it credible and as real as possible. Overall, this was a very good movie that surely stands on its own for its controversial and unusual story, that makes you think and amazed of how vulnerable people can get to be and how the mind is very powerful.
~September 27, 2014~
September 3, 2014
Doesn't start get good until half way through and apart from a few stand-out scenes is less rewarding than it should be, given the premise. Watch Glazer's "Under The Skin" instead, which is perfect.
July 17, 2014
It may have an interesting story, that if given to the right hands, would have been a fantastic film, but it also has one of the most dissatisfying endings in motion picture history.
July 6, 2014
To all the people who hated this movie, have you ever lost someone you loved? I think it is a clear and startling portrait of the madness and longing caused by grief. I wish more popular culture addressed that issue with such fearlessness.
July 5, 2014
The ending is a little muddled, but Jonathan Glazer's Birth is an exceptional film that will have you questioning your views on the idea of life after death.
June 14, 2014
Un inteso drama de Jonathan Glazer. Nicole Kidman es una viuda, que tras 10 años de la muerte de su marido, decide reconstruir su vida y casarse. Tras ello, aparece un niño de 10 años que dice ser la reencarnación de su marido. Recomendable por la actuación de Kidman y su abierto final, pero es muy lenta. Buena música de Alexandre Desplat.
½ May 24, 2014
Despite an intriguing setup, Birth ultimately fails to tell a competent, satisfying story
May 24, 2014
One of my favorite films of the last 10 years. Nicole Kidman knocks it our of the park, frankly.
½ May 16, 2014
Very ambitious and practical look at reincarnation, lost love. Twisty and superbly crafted, although the character of young Sean seems to be farfetched once we realize what's really going on
½ April 10, 2014
It has a nice production to it and the performances are very good, and it starts out really strong, but it kind of loses its way as it goes into the third act. I actually saw this movie about two weeks ago but upon thinking about it, I've liked it a bit more.
½ March 29, 2014
Some of you just won't get this film. For those of you that do you're in for a treat.
Super Reviewer
½ March 21, 2014
Right from the start, you are required to swallow a gigantic shovel of bullshit in order for the movie to work, and then things only get harder to believe from there. Nicole Kidman's dead husband of 10 years seems to reappear into her life in the body of child actor Cameron Bright, who was a hot property in the mid-Naughties, also appearing in big ticket movies Ultraviolet and Godsend with DeNiro. And he's the same in all of them, exhibiting a passive cherubic face and monotonic emotional state. He seems to have infected the entire cast too and everyone is so reserved you couldn't get a table at their restaurant for 5 years. There are an abundance of empty spaces in the screenplay too, in one shot at the theater Kidman stares straight into the camera for an entire two minute stretch! If only the story took similar risks, but it seems the director was aiming for a contemplative approach. Given the narrow scope, tiptoe pace, and lousy ending, I wonder what he expected we were to contemplate, our navels or wristwatch inner mechanisms?

Birth is professionally shot and with some work the music score by Alexandre Desplat could've been worthy of an Oscar nomination, but like every other facet it lacks ambition. While many of the technical aspects merit commendation, the rating accurately reflects the pointlessness of having watched their syntheses.
½ March 20, 2014
Right before Stanley Kubrick died, he must have passed his filmmaking skills along to Jonathan Glazer. Because as I watched this film, I felt like I was watching Stanley Kubrick using his gift to give us something beautiful on the big screen again. Birth is one of the best films I have ever seen, the direction is flawless, Nicole Kidman acts in one of her best performances of her life, the music is a sweet melody to listen to, and the story itself is intriguing. Jonathan Glazer has Stanley Kubrick's spirit inside of him and he is now one of my favorite directors, I hope to see more of his work.
March 11, 2014
The only reason to dislike or downrate this movie is plainly being disgusted by it. It's a thought-provoking, good drama (take this from someone who does not put those two words together often) with an exceptional wrench of an ending. It just happens to have a totally socially unacceptable theme. I'm not endorsing paedophilia (FAR from it!) but movies aren't real, nothing nasty even happens, and all this one does is ask the viewer where love ends. The difference between a story and propaganda is that a true story allows the viewer to decide what the answer to the central question is.
½ February 3, 2014
Dark theme but emotionally engaging. Welcome reprieve from all the other movies out there.
½ December 31, 2013
Excellent film. what a great story & they way it's done is just brilliant. The performances of both Cameron Bright & Nicole Kidman are hypnotising.
December 27, 2013
Odd, disturbing and uncomfortable. This film did not deserve the beating it took from both the critics are the box office. This film is of note and worth a viewing.
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