They Came Back - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

They Came Back Reviews

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September 28, 2011
The description on Netflix identifies the main characters as "zombies" so going into the movie, I was in a totally different mindset. This story is wrought with political and sociological points but where it is going is not quite clear. The movie is just strange. It did not seem creepy or scary at all. In fact, it was a bit annoying because I wanted to know what the point was. Slow movie but there is some great acting. This is a French film with subtitles. If you want something different, try this. If you want something Zombie, don't even bother with this one. You will be disappointed.
Super Reviewer
½ September 25, 2011
I really liked this movie and how it tries to do something that turns the "zombie" genre completely on its ears. I've never seen a movie that the second it begins, you already have a ton of questions about what could've caused this, what happened to them, do they remember their deaths, do they age and it makes you completely and utterly interested in where the movie's going to go and what themes they explore. Unfortunately they don't answer many of my questions, which is my own fault since they were never ACTUALLY addressed in the movie. If the movie addressed it and then never answered it, that'd be one thing, but some of the questions were never addressed so it was unrealistic to expect answers, despite the logical nature of some of these questions. You get to see how the government reacts and how they try to let them lead their lives about as normally as they could and how the people react to the return of their loved ones and their motivations, even of characters you don't even see, are made clear in the movie. For example, there are some unclaimed "zombies" that are overcrowding the centers they're being kept at. And if this thing were real, there would be some people who couldn't deal with the fact that their dead loved ones came back and they wouldn't claim them. It's not selfish behavior, it's a very logical way to react. And this is what the movie does best, it makes this genre into a serious one and one that a lot more, dramatically, could be done with. While I'm a fan of zombie movies, I must admit that almost all of them are never written as serious stories. They may be dark and violent, but you don't really care about what happens to any of the characters because that's not what is selling the movie. This movie is sold on the story of these characters and how people react to their loved ones coming back and how the dead have an incredibly hard time adapting to their life because they can't form new memories and can hardly do their jobs, and everything they do and say has a basis on what happened BEFORE they died. So at the end you really do end up caring about these characters and their actions and I can't recall any zombie movie ever having that effect on me. It's just an incredibly well written and intelligent movie. Now granted, being that there is little to no action the movie does feel slow, but that doesn't mean the movie is bad. Some people will have a problem with the slowness of the movie. So of course I realize that this movie is really an acquired taste. But the complexities of the ideas here, the believable writing and acting make this movie a incredible experience and I wish more people had the balls to take a genre and do something completely unexpected with it. Unlike Twilight's detrimental effects to the vampire lore, this movie only strengthens and adds a dimension never before seen to a genre that's been done to death...
September 15, 2011
For putting soem much attention on the dead actually being back, and then putting them in comas, the last scene where they all fade away was a cop out. Should have been explained better at the end. Not a very enjoyable watch, and with an ending like that... Not satisfying. Not at all.
September 5, 2011
This was an amazing movie... Quiet and subtle and thoughtful. It's a sinister premise and I think it did well at acknowledging the side of "zombie movies" that so frequently gets overshadowed by all the horror and the gore which is how incredibly emotional it would be if your dead loved ones came back - and how much grief and confusion and guilt there would be over nothing feeling the same. It deserves a better title and it deserves more people watching it...
September 4, 2011
Despite most of the reviews giving merit to this "zombie movie", I have to say it was boring.
August 25, 2011
French movies. Well. This one at least had a novel idea. It was still just as morose and downkey as so many French films. However, it kept me interested, and didn't spoil the plot too early. Acting was questionable.
½ August 24, 2011 i was SO bored.. i waited for something to happen the entire time and felt really dumb after watching it. really cool idea, but so boring
½ July 28, 2011
What a snooze-fest! No excitement whatsoever. What a fantastic idea and it had so much potential to be great, but just offered nothing to keep me entertained.
½ July 20, 2011
A creepy movie about what would happen if the dead walked the Earth...and did nothing else. Director/ forgot to end your sentence.
July 17, 2011
Ambiguous as hell and almost PLODDING in it's pace, "They Came Back" nevertheless reels you in. There is great dread and unease in the idea of having to suddenly deal with a loved one whom you buried and mourned, only to mysteriously re-appear at your doorstep. Zombie-wise, there is no decomposition or gore here... just dead stares and varying states of catatonia. The score to this film is unbelievable. "They Came Back" is moody, sad, creepy, strange, only a little scary, beautiful, and very French. I couldn't look away.
½ July 13, 2011
In looking at the reviews I was interested to see that nearly no one talked about how the context for "zombies" in this film could be better likened to immigrants. It is widely known that France has been adjusting to a large influx of immigrants since the 80's, and i believe this actually is a better context for viewing the "sudden influx" of "zombies" rather than taking zombies at face value. That is just a thought though, but there are some interesting parallels to say the least. Overall I would say it was a very interesting take on an otherwise ubiquitous genre.
July 2, 2011
Awesome movie. I wish I understood their purpose for coming back.
May 1, 2011
This was a totally different approach to your standard zombie movie. Even though it moves at a snail's pace and is rather lacking in the action department, I was still interested because it had a certain aura of mystery behind it all. I wanted to know why these people came back and what would become of them and their still living loved ones. The "zombies" here look like regular people. They don't try to eat anyone. They just act weird, never sleep, and wander around town. By the end nothing is explained, but I sort of liked it that way.
April 8, 2011
A humanistic take on the 'zombie' story, Les Revenants is a beautifully done, much needed fresh outlook on a cliché genre.
½ March 7, 2011
Thought-provoking. You'll have fun talking about this one..
½ January 24, 2011
Very frustrating. They Came Back is an exploration of those left behind after a loved one passes, but then comes back. Not a zombie movie per se, but an interesting exercise in human emotions and coping mechanisms of those who have lost.

Some characters are happy their loved ones are back...others are frightened, repulsed, elated, angry, confused...a great range of emotions.

And that is where the greatness of this movie lies, is in the characters, seeing how they deal with this situation. Making me think how I would react if I went through the suffering of having a loved one die, then grieving, and moving on, just to have them come back. And come back different.

The zombies themselves were very well done. They were slow, speech not quite right, energetic but at the same time melancholy. They seemed to be able to think, so you begin to wonder, what do they think? How will they react to being alive again?

All though the zombies are sneaking around, pretending to sleep, etc, all leading to a master plan, some secret they have. But it seems all it was was to get underground? What is the point of that?

Because of this, the ending was very unsatisfying. Was it so that the zombies could get a chance to say goodbye to their loved ones? Was it for the living?
½ September 19, 2010
I really liked this, though it didn't deliver any real conclusion. The atmosphere was great though.
September 14, 2010
Really cool concept. Other than that...nothing happens. And the ending..........
½ August 31, 2010
Flips the genre on its head: the pressing issue in "Les Revenants" isn't sudden population decrease but increase - thus making the film instantly more relevant to a society growing older and more crowded by the day... It could have seemed drippy or bloodless - flirting with romantic drama in places, which is bound to send some seasoned gorehounds hurtling to the exits - were it not astonishingly acted (or non-acted) by its revenant ensemble, who locate previously unexplored tensions in the notion of zombies who want to return to normality. Stripping back the excess allows the film to be eerie and haunting in whole new ways, and allows Campillo to redefine what, in fact, the zombie movie might be: a conduit for asking questions of society, and how, at times of heightened stress, we come to relate to one another.
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