Francine - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

Francine Reviews

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Top Critic
Moira MacDonald
Seattle Times
January 3, 2013
While it's audacious on the part of the filmmakers (and of Leo) to keep Francine at arm's length from us, it makes the film a frustrating experience.
Read More | Original Score: 2/4
Top Critic
Michael Phillips
Chicago Tribune
November 14, 2012
Francine portrays a woman on the socioeconomic margins and the sort of fiscal cliff that personalizes the phrase no politician can avoid these days.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
Top Critic
Ben Sachs
Chicago Reader
November 8, 2012
Brian M. Cassidy and Melanie Shatzky, documentary makers trying their hand at drama, inspire a certain voyeuristic fascination toward the character but rarely sympathy.
Top Critic
Roger Ebert
Chicago Sun-Times
November 8, 2012
Melissa Leo plays her without inflection, giving us no instructions about what our opinion should be. It is a brave performance, an act of empathy with a sad woman.
Full Review | Original Score: 3.5/4
Top Critic
Mark Olsen
Los Angeles Times
October 24, 2012
"Francine" is a small, detailed character study that never evolves into anything more.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/5
Brent Simon
October 8, 2012
Caught up in its own self-satisfied metaphor, its blank canvas and broadly sketched melancholic tones an empty vessel for those who would automatically turn the personal into the political.
Full Review | Original Score: C-
Donald J. Levit
ReelTalk Movie Reviews
September 20, 2012
Petered out the perhaps promise of a psychological study or horror flick, halfway through 'Francine' nothing is left.
Will McCord
Paste Magazine
September 14, 2012
Leo provides a seasoned, lived-in naturalism that is as rarely displayed on screen as it is potent.
Full Review | Original Score: 7.2/10
David Noh
Film Journal International
September 14, 2012
Numbing, uninvolving portrait of an ex-con as an animal-loving zombie.
Top Critic
Farran Smith Nehme
New York Post
September 14, 2012
What with the unexciting hand-held camerawork, and the off-putting script and lead performance, "Francine" remains as frustrating as its inscrutable title character.
Full Review | Original Score: 1.5/4
Top Critic
September 13, 2012
A little aimlessness never makes the film seem overlong ... not at a brief 74 minutes, and the immersive, quiet desperation of Leo's performance more than compensates, as does the directors' keen eye for detail.
Full Review | Original Score: 6/10
Top Critic
Tasha Robinson
AV Club
September 13, 2012
Francine is so minimalist that it has to rely almost entirely on Leo for solidity, and it would be a far stronger film if it supported and framed her more effectively.
Full Review | Original Score: C+
Top Critic
Stephen Holden
New York Times
September 11, 2012
With no back story, scant dialogue and few narrative and psychological clues, "Francine" is an unsparing study of profound isolation.
Read More | Original Score: 4/5
Top Critic
Keith Uhlich
Time Out
September 11, 2012
There are no concrete answers to be found at the end of this cryptic protagonist's journey, yet we can't help but follow every move she makes.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/5
Top Critic
Melissa Anderson
Village Voice
September 11, 2012
Francine eventually abandons its opacity for queasy-making cruelty.
Bill Weber
Slant Magazine
September 10, 2012
In a character study of an ex-con who gives her heart and mind to animals rather than people, Melissa Leo's risky performance is ultimately framed with a disappointing, distanced pity.
Full Review | Original Score: 2/4
Top Critic
Justin Chang
September 5, 2012
A glum but tenderly observed micro-portrait of a woman struggling to re-enter society after being released from prison.
Top Critic
Eric Kohn
September 5, 2012
Francine marks the start of a promising career for the filmmakers, more than anything else demonstrating their eye for small moments.
Full Review | Original Score: B-
Top Critic
David Rooney
Hollywood Reporter
September 5, 2012
In this spare, striking drama, Melissa Leo's unerringly contained performance provides shattering insight into a woman powerless to resist the destabilizing forces of her life.
David D'Arcy
Screen International
September 5, 2012
As a 74-minute snapshot of an American at the low end of the struggling 99%, it speaks far more eloquently than poverty statistics.
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