Critic Reviews



Based on 18 critic reviews provided by
An artlessly powerful performance by newcomer Nicole Behaire anchors American Violet.
American Violet, it's true, is not blazingly original cinema. Tim Disney's direction and the screenplay by Bill Haney are meat and potatoes, making this story clear, direct and righteous.
Dee is an engaging, admirable lead character, and the striking, petite Beharie, in only her second screen role, is a real winner, bringing energy and fortitude to a woman who easily could have joined the ranks of society's victims and losers.
What sticks in my craw -- just a bit -- is the way the film doesn't fully trust the true story's inherent power.
The narrative is infused with chilling facts, and the filmmakers know how to build their case, but a drama demands more. We should have been immersed in Dee's wrenching journey, not just sitting it out on the sidelines.
It’s hard not to get swept up by the film's progressive zeal, but Disney doesn’t allow for much grey area.
If you're in the mood for a liberal message movie in which the only surprise is no surprise, American Violet is the ticket.
Village Voice
A docudrama with a good heart but a heavy hand.
Earnest, mostly predictable and candidly didactic. That said, I'm glad it got made -- what's wrong with films that teach? -- and especially glad that a remarkably gifted newcomer named Nicole Beharie got to play the central role.
The Hollywood Reporter
Wears its righteous indignation and good intentions on its sleeve but its simplistic, heavy handed treatment of a complex issue gives it the weight of a contrived movie of the week melodrama.

More Critic Reviews

See all external reviews for American Violet (2008) »

See also

Awards | FAQ | User Reviews | User Ratings | External Reviews