(2015)

Critic Reviews

89

Metascore

Based on 39 critic reviews provided by Metacritic.com
100
Son of Saul is not simply a good film, it feels like an urgent and important one, a warning from history.
100
The Guardian
By any standards, this would be an outstanding film, but for a debut it is remarkable.
100
In terms of filmmaking prowess, "remarkable" may not do Laszlo Nemes' holocaust drama "Son of Saul" justice.
100
Unusual for a Holocaust drama, the film offers no false hope of rescue or resurrection, but does insist that our bearing witness matters.
91
A remarkable refashioning of the Holocaust drama that reignites the setting with extraordinary immediacy, Son of Saul is both terrifying to watch and too gripping in its moment-to-moment to look away.
90
Screen International
Using techniques of distanciation that sometimes make it an alienating, even confusing experience, László Nemes’s cogent, strikingly confident debut is harrowing, but cinematically rewarding.
90
The result is as grim and unyielding a depiction of the Holocaust as has yet been made on that cinematically overworked subject — a masterful exercise in narrative deprivation and sensory overload that recasts familiar horrors in daringly existential terms.
83
Though it has a few elements of its construction that might be questionable, it's mostly a powerful, thoughtful, and visually striking picture.
80
Utterly uneasy to watch but strikingly and confidently assembled, the film is a powerful aural and visual experience that doesn’t quite manage to sustain itself over the course of its running time, but is a remarkable — and remarkably intense — experience nonetheless.
80
It’s almost too ruthless an achievement for its own good, in a way. It pushes its vision to the bitter end, eschewing emotion, reflection, or intellectual framing as if banned at gunpoint from any such lapses. But these are the very dehumanising conditions Saul is dealing with, and the film’s brave choice is to follow them to the letter.

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