Elena - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

Elena Reviews

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October 25, 2012
The mundanity of the everyday is examined, but do you really want to watch someone slowly making a bed?
Full Review | Original Score: 2/5
May 21, 2012
[A] sluggish, portentous melodrama...
August 10, 2012
In different hands, "Elena" might have been a noir thriller, but this serving of cinematic borscht is as cold as a Russian winter.
Full Review | Original Score: 2/4
May 18, 2012
A story about someone creating her own personal hell and being forced to live in it. But hell doesn't seem particularly unnerving at the end.
July 19, 2017
Many people can't abide slow-building subtitled films about relentlessly unhappy people. But closet pessimists like myself and the Cannes judges will find Elena's sense of impending doom oddly satisfying.
May 22, 2012
Could have used a bit more life injected into its sterile, though beautifully shot, confines.
Full Review | Original Score: 6.3/10
November 2, 2012
It's very gloomy. It's very Russian. It's as powerful as any picture released this season.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/5
January 23, 2012
The frequent tracking shots mirror the ways in which one thing leads to another seemingly without thought or cause, though a certain dark strain of causality is exactly what's on display here.
Read More | Original Score: 3/5
April 9, 2012
The road to hell may indeed be paved with good intentions. Elena presents us with characters who are, oblivious or not, hard at work on setting the asphalt.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/5
October 25, 2012
[An] understated but gripping drama about family ties, about the way that sometimes tensions vie with tenderness in even the closest relationships.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/5
June 17, 2012
A thoroughly modern twist on the classic noir, framed for our modern times in contemporary Moscow, where the gap between the haves and the have nots is stark.
Full Review | Original Score: 4.5/5
November 14, 2012
Though very Russian, there is an extremely universal story at the heart of this film ...
Full Review | Original Score: 4/5
November 13, 2012
A perfectly formed drama that gradually takes hold and doesn't let go.
Full Review | Original Score: 5/5
July 12, 2012
Andrei Zvyagintsev's film isn't stupid or crude, and we can pretty well imagine how all the characters feel, even though it doesn't make them sympathetic.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
Top Critic
May 17, 2012
Deeper down, the movie seethes quietly with the moody influence of other East European masters of the timeless ineffable.
July 12, 2012
The script, by Oleg Negin and Zvyagintsev, uses spare dialogue to quietly devastating effect. Performances are superb across the board, framed in elegant widescreen compositions that simmer with violence.
Read More | Original Score: 3.5/4
May 15, 2012
Elena is a film deeply concerned with class resentment, but the filmmakers' attitude toward their titular character is disconcerting and even shocking.
Full Review | Original Score: 3.5/4
October 25, 2012
Zvyagintsev, who made The Return and The Banishment, does a good impression of constructing a world while secretly spinning a web.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/5
June 6, 2012
Acid portrait of an unhappy marriage in contemporary Moscow.
May 16, 2012
A somber, heart-wrenching drama as well as a very timely critique of modern society.
Full Review | Original Score: 9.5/10
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