Critics Consensus

Newcomer Saskia Rosendahl gives an astonishingly assured performance in the title role, and director Cate Shortland establishes a delicate, disturbingly ominous tone in the powerful World War II drama Lore.



Total Count: 114


Audience Score

User Ratings: 9,945
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Movie Info

Left to fend for themselves after their SS officer father and mother, a staunch Nazi believer, are interred by the victorious Allies at the end of World War II, five German children undertake a harrowing journey that exposes them to the reality and consequences of their parents' actions. Led by the eldest sibling, 14-year old Lore (striking newcomer Saskia Rosendahl), they set out on a harrowing journey across a devastated country to reach their grandmother in the north. After meeting the charismatic Thomas, a mysterious young refugee, Lore soon finds her world shattered by feelings of both hatred and desire as she must learn to trust the one person she has always been taught to hate in order to survive. Lush cinematography and an evocative, haunting mood infuse this unconventional take on the Holocaust legacy with unforgettable impact. (c) Music Box


Kai Malina
as Thomas
Nele Trebs
as Liesel
Mika Siedel
as Jürgen
André Frid
as Günter
Mike Weidner
as Young German Soldier
Katrin Pollitt
as Farmer's Wife
Hendrik Arnst
as Ox Cart Man
Claudia Geisler
as Ox Cart Woman
Ulrike Medgyesy
as Young Woman with Baby
Katharina Spiering
as School House Woman 1
Franziska Traub
as School House Woman 2
Hanne Wolharn
as School House Woman 3
Fabian Stumm
as U.S. Soldier Truck
Tim Karasch
as U.S. Soldier
Daniel Kohl
as U.S. Soldier
Jochen Doring
as U.S. Soldier Checkpoint
Birte Schnoing
as Young Brunette
Lucas Reiber
as German Soldier 1
Wanda Colombina
as Young Blonde
Pit Bukowski
as German Soldier 2
Glenn Arrowsmith
as British Train Soldier
Paul Welsh (II)
as British Train Soldier
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News & Interviews for Lore

Critic Reviews for Lore

All Critics (114) | Top Critics (30) | Fresh (107) | Rotten (7)

  • Lore, from Australian director Cate Shortland, proceeds like a long-ago fairy tale, dark-hued, grounded in real-life 20th-century horrors.

    Jan 1, 2014 | Rating: 3/4 | Full Review…
  • The young principals here, Malina and especially Rosendahl, are superb at conveying that premature hardening, their elastic minds pummelled by inelastic forces.

    May 31, 2013 | Rating: 3.5/4 | Full Review…
  • The sins of the Fatherland send a German teenage girl and her Nazi-connected family on the run in Australian director Cate Shortland's vividly rendered and sensual drama Lore.

    May 30, 2013 | Rating: 3/4 | Full Review…
  • With a child's perspective on war, "Lore" deserves comparisons with "Empire of the Sun" and "Hope and Glory," and with a feisty female protagonist it stands virtually alone.

    Mar 14, 2013 | Full Review…
  • Saskia Rosendahl gives an impressively poised performance as the beautiful teenager, whose determination to protect her remaining family coincides with her growing revulsion toward her parents.

    Mar 8, 2013 | Full Review…
  • "Lore" is not a pretty story, but it is a good and sadly believable one.

    Mar 8, 2013 | Rating: B | Full Review…

    Tom Long

    Detroit News
    Top Critic

Audience Reviews for Lore

  • Aug 02, 2013
    I am torn as to how to rate this. Beautifully shot, with some really stunning images, and a horrific film at the same time, with some really disgusting images. The story will haunt for a while, I am sure. I need to digest what I have seen. An effective, well-done production, but a story that leaves one somewhat depressed. There were elements that exhibited a pro-Nazi sentiment in the people, but I definitely did not come away thinking that this was any sort of attempt to whitewash the effects of the atrocities that were committed. What I saw was a child coming to grips with the idea that her parents and the people they associated with may have behaved monstrously. A child entrusted with the safety and welfare of her younger siblings in a time when there was little sympathy to spare for anyone in her situation. A child beginning to realize the power of her femininity, but not yet capable of utilizing that power. And finally, a child who received little emotional healing from her grandmother when the ordeal was finally over. My initial thinking is four stars, because of the powerful portrayal by this young, first time actress, Saskia Rosendahl.
    Mark A Super Reviewer
  • Jul 09, 2013
    The first half is a little repetitive (how many times do we need to see these children find dead bodies and be traumatized?), but once it gets rolling in the second half and the central character begins to question her deeply held fascist beliefs, the film becomes something infinitely more sad than the shock value that preceded it.
    Alec B Super Reviewer
  • May 30, 2013
    A fascinating look at the family of a Nazi officer after suffering defeat in 1945, and difficulty they and their countrymen have in grappling with a shattered world view. Beautifully filmed with a haunting performance by Rosendahl as she is forced from her cocoon of Nazi idealism and privilege into a world of privation, death and chaos. Excellently directed, "Lore" is a stunning and thought-provoking experience in a way different from any other World War II films I have seen. Highly recommended.
    Christian C Super Reviewer
  • Mar 22, 2013
    A disastrous drama that feels repetitious and pointless, never making clear what Shortland wants to say with this - and her heavy-handed direction makes even more blatant the way she embraces the most obvious soap-opera clichés and cheap narrative artifices.
    Carlos M Super Reviewer

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