How I Live Now - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

How I Live Now Reviews

Top Critic
Geoff Pevere
Globe and Mail
November 15, 2013
Refreshingly free of digital apocalyptics and unnervingly prone to random violence.
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/4
Top Critic
Bruce Demara
Toronto Star
November 14, 2013
How I Live Now centres on what happens to a group of young people when civilization begins to crumble. But it's also a poignant love story, a compelling, against-all-odds one at that.
Full Review | Original Score: 3.5/4
Top Critic
Mick LaSalle
San Francisco Chronicle
November 14, 2013
"How I Live Now" makes World War III seem boring, which would hardly seem possible.
Full Review | Original Score: 1/4
Top Critic
Jocelyn Noveck
Associated Press
November 14, 2013
There's a clear message here: Sometimes it takes extraordinary circumstances to realize it, but we all have the capacity to shed our petty concerns and focus on the greater good.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
Top Critic
Bill Stamets
Chicago Sun-Times
November 8, 2013
How I Live Now offers adolescents a lovely vision of holistic healing in the same countryside.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
Top Critic
Bilge Ebiri
New York Magazine/Vulture
November 8, 2013
There's a lot left unsaid in How I Live Now - but it's unsaid with unusual force.
Top Critic
Tom Long
Detroit News
November 8, 2013
"How I Live Now" is uncomfortably easy to believe.
Full Review | Original Score: B
Top Critic
Steven Rea
Philadelphia Inquirer
November 8, 2013
How I Live Now manages to fuse a teen love story, steeped in alienation and hurt, with a near-future nightmare thriller.
Full Review | Original Score: 3.5/4
Top Critic
Kyle Smith
New York Post
November 8, 2013
Just because virtually any story can be told through the eyes of a solipsistic teen girl doesn't mean that it should be.
Top Critic
Glenn Kenny
RogerEbert.com
November 8, 2013
For much of its running time the movie is grab-you-by-the-back-of-the-neck immediate; in its last third particularly, the bite-your-lip moments of suspense and tension mount to the extent that you may well draw blood.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
Top Critic
Stephen Whitty
Newark Star-Ledger
November 8, 2013
There's nothing in the character, or Ronan's performance, to draw you in. She enters the film like a junior-grade Lindsay Lohan - all hard eyes and dyed hair and proactive disapproval - and bores almost immediately.
Full Review | Original Score: 2/4
Top Critic
Jeannette Catsoulis
New York Times
November 7, 2013
Mr. Macdonald struggles to balance a nebulous narrative on tentpole moments of rich emotional resonance.
Top Critic
Ann Hornaday
Washington Post
November 7, 2013
"How I Live Now" is a showcase for Ronan to prove that she's capable of more than pristine, angelic roles.
Full Review | Original Score: 2/4
Top Critic
Joe Morgenstern
Wall Street Journal
November 7, 2013
The production feels tentative and underpopulated: I thought not only of Katniss Everdeen but of the marvelous pandemonium in Danny Boyle's zombie epic "28 Days Later."
Top Critic
John Hartl
Seattle Times
November 7, 2013
The title, "How I Live Now," suggests a certain distance, and that's rigorously maintained in the movie.
| Original Score: 2.5/4
Top Critic
Michael Sragow
Orange County Register
November 7, 2013
This near-end-of-the-world movie for teenagers, set mostly in the English countryside, is too vague and shaky for its own good, but it generates a haunting ambiance and develops a cumulative power.
Full Review | Original Score: B+
Top Critic
November 7, 2013
As Macdonald deftly presents a subjective viewpoint, Ronan endows her overly schematic character with authentic desire, resentment and willfulness.
Top Critic
Colin Covert
Minneapolis Star Tribune
November 7, 2013
It's breathtaking how many tones and themes are skillfully juggled in "How I Live Now."
Top Critic
Michael Phillips
Chicago Tribune
November 7, 2013
I'm not sure whom this movie's for, really.
| Original Score: 2/4
Top Critic
Joe Neumaier
New York Daily News
November 7, 2013
A frosty-eyed, imperturbable actress in "Atonement," "Hanna" and "The Host," Ronan is at least able to sell Daisy's new focus while the movie loses its own.
Full Review | Original Score: 2/5
Top Critic
A.A. Dowd
AV Club
November 7, 2013
Death creeps into the movie, like an invisible wave of radiation from a detonated nuke, and some of the imagery owes more to Cormac McCarthy than to Stephenie Meyer.
Full Review | Original Score: B-
Top Critic
J. R. Jones
Chicago Reader
November 7, 2013
The key objective here is not political coherence but a heavy sense of adult oppression and doom to make the heroes' innocent cuddling more poignant.
Top Critic
Rex Reed
New York Observer
November 6, 2013
In a movie without adults, the children are spontaneous and natural. And Ms. Ronan is captivating throughout.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
Top Critic
Eric Kohn
indieWIRE
November 6, 2013
No matter how cheesy the romance (and, yes, it does get distractingly cheesy in parts), Daisy's vision as Edmond as the key to her salvation makes "How I Live Now" not so much a form of escapism as an ode to its powers.
Full Review | Original Score: B+
Top Critic
Joshua Rothkopf
Time Out
November 5, 2013
Wearing its YA credentials with a darkly romantic flourish, this uneven adaptation of Meg Rosoff's apocalyptic 2004 novel gets serious in a hurry, much like its characters.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/5
Top Critic
Alan Scherstuhl
Village Voice
November 5, 2013
The film is a fine one, moving and surprising and scraped of most of the love-me! fantasy that typifies formulaic YA.
Top Critic
Cath Clarke
Time Out
October 1, 2013
There's not really enough here to get teenage girls totes emosh. Not enough to sigh and swoon over.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/5
Top Critic
Ty Burr
Boston Globe
September 14, 2013
Weird, weird, weird.
Top Critic
Justin Chang
Variety
September 14, 2013
Held together by a forceful performance from Saoirse Ronan, director Kevin Macdonald's adaptation of Meg Rosoff's novel makes up in emotional immediacy what it lacks in broad dramatic sweep.
Top Critic
Jordan Hoffman
Film.com
September 11, 2013
Proof there can still be boring stories during extraordinary times.
Full Review | Original Score: 5.0
Top Critic
Todd McCarthy
Hollywood Reporter
September 11, 2013
Ronan is almost always worth watching, but not especially in this drippy outing, in which she morphs from sullen teen brat to can-do wilderness heroine under the influence of an attractive red-headed hawk trainer.