The Burning Plain
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Poignant story of infidelity, loss, remorse; not for kids.
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Tomatometer®reviews counted: 29see all The Burning Plain reviews
Top Critic Reviews
Rotten: In The Burning Plain we follow three-or maybe four-different stories that ultimately converge in ways that are both utterly predictable and completely preposterous.
- A.O. Scott, At the Movies, Tuesday, September 8, 2009
Rotten: The elliptical structure of the narrative can't cover up its overheated, half-baked banality.
- A.O. Scott, New York Times, Friday, September 18, 2009
Rotten: The Burning Plain marks Arriaga's behind-the-camera debut, and his obviousness is staggering.
- Aaron Hillis, Village Voice, Tuesday, September 15, 2009
The Burning Plain, a romantic mystery about a woman on the edge who takes an emotional journey back to the defining moment of her life. Written and directed by Guillermo Arriaga (Amores Perros, 21 Grams, Babel). It is a heart breaking, touching movie. It follows the formula of having a main story with various sub-stories that in the end their paths are crossed. The rhythm is a little slow, it continuously changes from story to story making it hard to follow and a little boring at some moments. The cast is good. Charliza Theron, Kim Basinger John Corbett, Robin Tunney, Jose Maria Yazpik, everyone delivering very convincing performances although some of them are a little overacted aswell. In conclusion, If you've seen Babel or 21 Grams or Amores Perros, all of them written by Ariaga, then you know what to expect with The Burning Plain
- barrys, Wednesday, January 5, 2011
The only reason to watch this film is the remarkable performance by Jennifer Lawrence, who recently garnered a Golden Globe nomination for another film. She captures a perfect balance between the impetuousness of youth and the world-weary bitterness of a daughter forced to grow up too soon, and late in the film she has an uninhibited crying scene that makes Viola Davis's part in Doubt look like it's as guarded as Russell Crowe. As far as the story is concerned, I think of Kurt Vonnegut's "rules" for writing. He effectively said, "Don't hide anything from the audience. Fuck suspense." He also said, "Flannery O'Connor violates all of these rules and still writes effective fiction." Hi ho. Writer/director Guillermo Arriaga would have done well to remember Vonnegut's "rules" because for much of the movie, we feel like the episodic scenes we're presented with are too disconnected in theme and substance to amount to anything interesting. It turns out that the stories are connected, but by the time we find this out, we've stopped caring. Overall, catch a rising star in Lawrence but to hell with the rest of the film.
- hunterjt13, Tuesday, December 14, 2010
This was really good. Charlize Theron is such a great actress. It took me a little while to figure out who was who in this movie, cuz they were jumping around quite a bit from present to past and back. It all came together quite nicely, though, and made for one heck of a story with a really nice ending.
- itsjustme2004, Thursday, October 14, 2010