Simon and the Oaks - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

Simon and the Oaks Reviews

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Top Critic
Michael Nordine
Village Voice
October 9, 2012
Simon and the Oaks has all the superficial elements of compelling drama but none of the interiority; it looks like a good movie without ever actually feeling like one.
Top Critic
October 11, 2012
It is what it is, which is emphatically not enough to bear the weight of genocide.
Top Critic
Alison Willmore
AV Club
October 18, 2012
With beautiful period trappings and picturesque backdrops, the film doesn't skimp on visual details, though the resulting product is inert.
Full Review | Original Score: C
Avi Offer
NYC Movie Guru
October 13, 2012
A mildly engaging multi-layered story with very fine, heartfelt performances undermined by a banal screenplay and clunky directing.
Full Review | Original Score: 5.895/10
Chris Hewitt (St. Paul)
St. Paul Pioneer Press
October 25, 2012
Think about climbing a tree instead.
Read More | Original Score: 1.5/4
Austin Kennedy
Sin Magazine
October 26, 2012
What starts off as an intriguing coming-of-age story, ends up being a convoluted movie with too many characters having problems.
Full Review | Original Score: 1.5/4
Brent Simon
October 14, 2012
Arthouse appreciation will depend on a given viewer's tolerance for broad-strokes melodrama of intertwined fates that lacks the ambition and emotional complications of many similar screen works.
Full Review | Original Score: C
Top Critic
Ronnie Scheib
October 11, 2012
Though it retains the narrative complexity of the Swedish bestseller on which it's based, WWII saga Simon and the Oaks never creates an emotional or intellectual throughline of its own.
Top Critic
Joe Williams
St. Louis Post-Dispatch
October 25, 2012
With its fool's-gold cinematography, over-emphatic musical score and self-important protagonist, "Simon and the Oaks" is a puny acorn that dreams it's a towering achievement.
Full Review | Original Score: 2/4
Jeremy Mathews
Paste Magazine
November 1, 2012
Simon and the Oaks is a lot of things, but above all, it is too much.
Full Review | Original Score: 6.8/10
Top Critic
V.A. Musetto
New York Post
October 12, 2012
The classical music is soothing, the cinematography handsome and the acting strong, but the Swedish coming-of-age saga "Simon and the Oaks'' is burdened with a sappy, soap-opera-ish script.
Full Review | Original Score: 2/4
Kimberley Jones
Austin Chronicle
November 9, 2012
Significant enough to be name-checked in the title, the trees hang over the film, threatening to impose heavy metaphor on what is otherwise a straightforward family saga.
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/5
Top Critic
David Fear
Time Out
October 9, 2012
Ohlin enhances the historical melodramatics with immaculate period details, but the film never finds the right mix of the epic and the intimate-the personal as seen through the 20th century's Euro-geopolitical turmoil-that it aims for.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/5
Peter Keough
Boston Phoenix
November 8, 2012
The German occupation barely makes an impression in Lisa Ohlin's sluggish adaptation of Marianne Fredriksson's novel.
Read More | Original Score: 2.5/4

Austin Chronicle
January 22, 2013
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/5
Top Critic
David DeWitt
New York Times
October 11, 2012
With its exhilarating World War II narrative and performances that touch notes intimate and grand, "Simon and the Oaks" has an exquisite, and epic, ache.
Full Review | Original Score: 5/5
Top Critic
Roger Ebert
Chicago Sun-Times
October 18, 2012
Poetic, romantic and idealistic, it begins in 1939 and concludes after the end of World War II.
Full Review | Original Score: 3.5/4
Kelly Vance
East Bay Express
November 13, 2012
Contains more than one emotionally potent scene and never takes the easy shortcuts.
Diego Semerene
Slant Magazine
October 10, 2012
The film is at its best when it lingers on intimacy and the characters' incompetency to manage it.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
Kam Williams
October 22, 2012
A sensitive character study chronicling the considerable challenge of coming-of-age Jewish with the specter of the Third Reich lurking just over the horizon.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
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