The Grey Zone - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

The Grey Zone Reviews

November 15, 2002
Even in its darkest moments, a heartening defiance underlies gut-wrenching calamity.
Read More | Original Score: B+
November 8, 2002
The Grey Zone isn't for everyone, but its riveting power constitutes a stunning (as in it leaves you shattered and shaken) achievement.
Read More | Original Score: B+
November 7, 2002
[Nelson's] movie about morally compromised figures leaves viewers feeling compromised, unable to find their way out of the fog and the ashes.
Read More | Original Score: 2.5/4
November 7, 2002
Like the Ancient Mariner, Nelson grabs us by the collar and says, You must know about this. You must bear witness. And so you do.
Read More | Original Score: A-
October 25, 2002
Jagged, unrelenting, claustrophobically intimate.
October 25, 2002
Although the movie takes us further into the actual process of industrial death at Auschwitz than any American movie has yet dared, The Grey Zone never stoops to sensation or melodrama.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/5
October 25, 2002
Easier to respect than to love.
Read More | Original Score: 2.5/4
October 25, 2002
Nelson's work is relentless, grueling and courageous.
Full Review | Original Score: 2/4
October 25, 2002
The cumulative effect of the relentless horror on parade numbs the movie's power as a work of drama.
Read More | Original Score: 2/4
October 25, 2002
The Grey Zone gives life and meaning to an event that is little more than a footnote in history books.
Full Review | Original Score: 3.5/4
October 25, 2002
The film ... presents classic moral-condundrum drama: What would you have done to survive? The problem with the film is whether these ambitions, laudable in themselves, justify a theatrical simulation of the death camp of Auschwitz II-Birkenau.
Read More | Original Score: 2.5/4
October 25, 2002
No dramatic feature has ever come quite this close to the matter-of-fact ugliness of the Nazi crimes.
Full Review | Original Score: A
October 25, 2002
American and European cinema has amassed a vast Holocaust literature, but it is impossible to think of any film more challenging or depressing than The Grey Zone.
Read More | Original Score: 3/4
October 25, 2002
I have seen a lot of films about the Holocaust, but I have never seen one so immediate, unblinking and painful in its materials.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/4
October 25, 2002
The Grey Zone should be seen: It's a worthy ordeal, with flaws that, ironically, make grist for later arguments.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
October 24, 2002
There's a stagy poetry to everything -- sometimes it works and sometimes it screams of artifice.
October 24, 2002
The film's sense of imagery gives it a terrible strength, but it's propelled by the acting.
Full Review | Original Score: B
October 24, 2002
One can't deny its seriousness and quality.
Read More | Original Score: 2.5/4
Top Critic
October 23, 2002
From both a great and a terrible story, Mr. Nelson has made a film that is an undeniably worthy and devastating experience.
October 21, 2002
A bleak, difficult and stunning film.
October 18, 2002
Nelson ... invests this unusual Holocaust drama with dramatic intensity that in no way cheapens its subject matter.
October 18, 2002
Nelson's brutally unsentimental approach ... sucks the humanity from the film, leaving behind an horrific but weirdly unemotional spectacle.
Read More | Original Score: 2/4
October 17, 2002
Holocaust films are problematic, period. The Grey Zone is, sadly, more evidence of the qualities of silence.
Read More | Original Score: 2/4
October 17, 2002
The more realistic The Grey Zone pretends to be, the more its unrealistic elements stand out.
Read More | Original Score: 2/5
October 17, 2002
It isn't just that there's something unsettling about a film that aestheticizes a crematorium; it's that there's something trivializing about the very effort.
Full Review | Original Score: 2/5
October 17, 2002
Unlike the nauseating fictions peddled by such 'Have-yourself-a-happy-little-Holocaust' movies as Life Is Beautiful and Jakob the Liar, The Grey Zone is honest enough to deny the possibility of hope in Auschwitz.
October 15, 2002
Re-creating Auschwitz somehow domesticates it; the smokestacks look like pieces from an infernal Monopoly board, while the extras appear suspiciously well-fed.
September 14, 2001
The end result feels distinctly off-off-Broadway, a work of such rigid artistic principles that its theatrical life will likely be measured in days rather than weeks.