Martha Marcy May Marlene - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

Martha Marcy May Marlene Reviews

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April 8, 2017
Boring AF. The acting is good (that's it). When I read the plot on Wikipedia, I had high expectations because I usually like psychological thrillers and the plot sounds interesting. But there is barely anything thrilling about this show. I waited and waited for my heart to race (which it usually does when watching psychological thrillers), but it just didn't.
½ February 19, 2017
Rewatching this about a year or so after I originally watched it. Its one of my favorite dramas of all time. Which sheerly comes off the amazing acting of (in my opinion) one of the most beautiful women in Hollywood, Elizabeth Olsen. I really wish this movie would get more recognition. Olsen seriously gives one of the all time best performances. A must watch
½ February 15, 2017
This psychological drama has a strong lead performance, a solid supporting cast, it looks great, I like how well the past and present are edited so seamlessly and it generally isn't boring but the plot, script and pacing was just not all that enjoyable plus character motivations are never built upon leaving me more in bemusement than anything else.
November 25, 2016
This movie is one of the worst movies I've seen. It doesn't know what the hell it wants to be. I wanted to like it, but wow it accomplishes nothing. If the Director wanted to make a movie that has not repeat value and leaves the viewer feeling empty...then mission accomplished. This movie is terrible!
November 25, 2016
Many layers to this horror-realism flick. I think people will still be talking about this film for years to come. For example, one of the things that got me recalling this film years after seeing it is how this film touches on the possible repercussions of the growing social and economic disparity in our society right now, not just between traditionally disparate groups, but now among generations. I mean, the kids in the cult seem to be middle class for the most part.
½ September 21, 2016
Martha Marcy May Marlene is an art movie undoubtedly full of great acting performances, such as Elizabeth Olsen's.
But at the end of it, I couldn't feel satisfied with the movie and what it was trying to say.
August 27, 2016
Tense, compelling, pretty (though the colour-timing is a bit Instagram-filter-esque), and well-acted. The ending is a little wanky, but I liked Meek's Cutoff, so I can't really say much about that.
½ August 13, 2016
Very well acted, but the story was like a flower that never fully bloomed. Horribly ambiguous ending that almost felt insulting after watching the whole movie hoping that something would come to a head.
August 5, 2016
The movie leans too much on unconventional living and refuses to bid adieu to the psychological past that is truly disturbing
July 17, 2016
Eerie and unsettling in all the right ways.
Super Reviewer
July 13, 2016
Something that is worth a watch. Elizabeth Olson give a great performance as an unstable cult escapee who still is uncomfortable in her return to the outside world.
June 1, 2016
Elizabeth Olsen is incredible
½ May 22, 2016
Mesmerizing, beautiful, thrilling and surprisingly elegant. Martha Marcy May Marlene is the smooth story of a young woman who fights to adjust to the normality of standard living life after fleeing from the clutches of a sexual cult.

The Director Sean Durkin did a fantastic job in working with Elizabeth Olsen in portraying the psychological damage and dysfunctional mindset that cults of this nature bring out in people. The catalogue of beautiful scenes that is on offer in this haunting and sophisticated movie is not short in supply. The most gripping, beautiful and seductive scene comes after Martha has been initiated into the cult in the most disturbing fashion. After the initiation of Martha or Marcy has accrued she struggles with her own self confidence and is torn between what is right, what is normal and what is happening. The leader of the cult begins to serenade her in a way that is seductive to her soul and really capture her into the warped sense of being that they believe to be the righteous way of life.

This move offers everything you need in a gripping thriller that really plays with your imagination. The continued struggle that Martha faces to bring herself back to reality and fight to control her inner demons offers the audience something to relate to and connect with.

The Movie does have a slight anticlimactic feel to it, this could be noted down to its brilliance. The feel of the why Martha decided to flee the cult would have been more dramatic if it was her that performed the act that swayed her outlook upon her new family.

I would recommend this movie to anyone who really enjoys the quirky brilliance of the indie movie culture. The weird feel to the film will have to thinking about the direction and script long after the credits roll and you will have been gifted in watching something ground breaking.
May 15, 2016
Really well- acted, gripping drama. Hawkes is amazing.
½ May 12, 2016
Martha Marcy May Marlene is undoubtedly full of great acting performances, such as Elizabeth Olsen's.
But at the end of it, I couldn't feel satisfied with the movie and what it was trying to say.
½ May 10, 2016
It's one of my favorite films in the last 10 years or so. What's extremely interesting is that the plot is already fascinating, yet Sean Durkin doesn't care about exploring that and more so wants to give you the feelings based off it. For as much information that isn't revealed here, there's just the right amount that progresses into a psychological paranoia reminiscent of "Rosemary's Baby" and it's all due to Elizabeth Olsen's flawless performance. An atmospheric thriller with an extremely subtle and smart script masterfully directed.
May 8, 2016
After watching Elizabeth Olsen in her mainstream movies, I decided to watch this movie 100% For Academic Purposes. I can neither confirm nor deny that she strips topless in this movie
May 2, 2016
Disturbing flick, great performances.
½ May 2, 2016
Haunting and well acted, though lacking in definition and triumph, deflating to an ambiguous end, that whilst works, is unsatisfying
April 24, 2016
The points that standout are the screenplay's before/after toggling of protagonist's life, Elizabeth Olsen's persona and fantastic voice diction during emotional scenes. Even the choice of the premise to capture the mind of a escapee from an abusive cult is interesting. With overall good performances and a well thought out screenplay does enough to hold the viewer's attention while making us feel the protagonist's confusion, ideology and depression.

Martha (Elizabeth Olsen) runs off from an abusive cult and calls her sister Lucy (Sarah Paulson) who she has not communicated with over the last 2 years. She is currently living with her husband Ted (Hugh Dancy) in a spacious lake side home. While they welcome and try to do right by Martha, her inability to fit into the society, the memories from the past haunts her into depression, outbursts of emotion and anger pushes the couple to the limits on how much they can take it anymore.

Elizabeth Olsen is not just a pretty face but also a charmer. She didn't look like an actor on the screen but a real person going through real turmoil and agony which was the only reason I could finish the movie. The gimmick of toggling screenplay always do not work right. I hated 21 grams for it. But the way the past and present are intertwined here is systematic, purposeful and well connected. What the protagonist feels for the cult is not hatred but just fear as she discusses some ideologies that has rubbed on her, some new things she learned thus establishing the fact that nothing in life is just black or white. The reason how she delves deeper into the cult from being skeptical to committed and to the point that makes her runaway shows tremendous writing prowess.
The screenplay is also thoughtful by carefully revealing the concepts of adjusting to society, her thoughts and perceptions as well as of others others towards her and placing hints of her past on what led to this. So huge credit to Olsen and the director Sean Durkin to bring life to an otherwise uninteresting plot. The cinematography felt intentionally dark while showing picturesque locations and the background score never came out of the background.

Olsen and screenplay brings life to an otherwise depressing story without a purpose.
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