Critic Reviews



Based on 33 critic reviews provided by
The film is visually masterful. It's in black and white, of course.
What makes The White Ribbon a big movie, an important movie, is that Haneke's point extends beyond pre-Nazi Germany.
The ends remain loose in The White Ribbon.' But that lack of closure is thrilling. Haneke lays his movie and its mysteries at our feet, leaving us to ask, “What in tarnation?''
The Hollywood Reporter
It's a superb cinematic work and an appropriately serious one, given its subject matter and its intentions.
St. Louis Post-Dispatch
A stark, contemplative and hauntingly brilliant film.
We don't go to Michael Haneke films for comfort, but to gaze through a glass darkly. That vision -- tense, provocative and unnerving -- is on full display in The White Ribbon, which could be considered a culmination of this difficult director's brilliant career.
This haunting film never pushes itself on you. It trusts you to suss out the horror that lies beneath the veneer of innocence. You'll be knocked for a loop.
Wall Street Journal
A severe and eerily beautiful German-language drama.
Shot in vivid black and white, the movie is like "Village of the Damned" directed by Ingmar Bergman, only without Bergman's intensity.
An artful examination of a small town and small-mindedness and the potential for full-blown, large-scale evil. But it's strangely bloodless.
Unlike "Caché" and "Code: Unknown," where Haneke's investigations into societal and spiritual despair resonated with poetic force, The White Ribbon doesn't resonate at all.
Haneke's superb cast provide beautifully measured hints at the disconnect between the ribbon's symbolism and the entire town's unspoken atrocities.

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