(2009)

Critic Reviews

81

Metascore

Based on 31 critic reviews provided by Metacritic.com
100
Arnold deserves comparison with a British master director like Ken Loach.
91
The amazingly natural first-timer was discovered, in a gift of publicity-ready truth, while having an argument with her boyfriend at a train station.
90
The 17-year-old so completely captures the innocence, cynicism and rage of a child of poverty and divorce on the edge of adulthood that it feels as if you are spying on Mia, so achingly real, so tangible does her world seem here.
90
Wall Street Journal
It's been a good while since I've seen a movie whose most powerful sequence was both unforeseen and entirely unpredictable as it played out.
90
Andrea Arnold has crafted a scene that approaches a literal embodiment of the term "kitchen-sink drama" here is most likely coincidence; nevertheless, her film is a bold new entry in that long-standing British tradition of disquieting social realism.
88
While you're remembering new high-impact names, add Arnold. In only her second film, after 2006's "Red Road," she keeps the screen filled to bursting with the beauty and raw terror of life.
88
A brilliantly acted and achingly bleak coming-of-age story.
88
It's oppressive and claustrophobic, confused and scary in there. But it's also compellingly real.
88
A remarkable downer-upper paradox: a bruising tale of teenage resilience, honest and emotionally complicated and alive.
80
Arnold generally steers clear of cinematic melodrama, and Jarvis infuses the entire film with the sort of kinetic spirit that heralds a new talent.
80
The Hollywood Reporter
The film belongs to Jarvis, however, and she makes the most of it with expressive features that convey Mia's mixed-up emotions from raging temper to sweet vulnerability. She will go far.
50
Even as it stands, Fish Tank is a valuable movie, though it aspires to a social insight it doesn't attain and a psychological penetration it won't maintain.

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