Unless (2016) - Rotten Tomatoes

Unless (2016)




Critic Consensus: No consensus yet.

Movie Info

A translator and novelist (Catherine Keener) has her contented small-town life upended when she discovers that her eldest daughter (Hannah Gross) has dropped out of college and is inexplicably living on the streets and holding a cardboard sign that says only "GOODNESS." She attempts to help her daughter out of this mysterious crisis while maintaining her professional standing, with mixed results. Based on the award-winning, final novel by Carol Shields.


Catherine Keener
as Reta Winters
Matt Craven
as Tom Winters
Hannah Gross
as Norah Winters
Chloe Rose
as Christine Winters
Abigail Winter
as Natalie Winters
Hanna Schygulla
as Danielle Westerman
Martha Henry
as Lois Winters
Benjamin Ayres
as Arthur Springer
Linda Kash
as Tessa Sands
Brendan Coyle
as Caspar Brown
Kathryn Greenwood
as Willow Halliday
Yanna McIntosh
as Cery Arneaud
Dylan Harman
as Jim Halliday
Robert Nasmith
as Baby Moon McFadden
Kaelyn Wong
as Buddhist Nun
Christine Horne
as Dr. Devita
Adam Butcher
as Ring Leader
Alexander Conti
as Frat Boy #2
Matthew Peart
as Frat Boy #3
Judge William Webster
as Professor Hamilton
Olivia Scriven
as Tracy Halliday
Nora Sheehan
as Traffic Cop
Show More Cast

Critic Reviews for Unless

All Critics (6) | Top Critics (1)

What worked in Shields's quiet, contemplative novel about a family in crisis falls flat on screen.

October 14, 2016 | Rating: 2/4 | Full Review…

Failing to articulate the feminist argument that sets the novel apart, if anything does, Gilsenan is instead doggedly loyal to Shields' worst impulses.

November 13, 2017 | Full Review…

The best adaptations stand on their own. Unless, adapted by director Alan Gilsenan from Carol Shields' novel, doesn't stand so much as slowly slide to the ground.

October 14, 2016 | Rating: 1.5/4 | Full Review…

Everything then leads to a "gotcha" ending that feels exploitative rather than illuminating.

October 14, 2016 | Full Review…

"Unless" is one of the most tangled conjunctions in English, and how can a movie show that?

October 14, 2016 | Rating: 3/5 | Full Review…

Keener is great as usual, convincingly conveying confusion and grief, and the film is visually intense, its handheld cameras relying on close-ups.

October 12, 2016 | Rating: 3/5 | Full Review…

Audience Reviews for Unless

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