Critic Reviews



Based on 15 critic reviews provided by Metacritic.com
In his debut feature, the director is wise enough to move his hand-held camera wherever Steen wants to go.
Applause may present as gritty European realism, but the struggle inside Thea is almost theological in scale, and worthy of Milton or Kierkegaard.
Which ultimately is what Applause is really about: applying the greasepaint of the daily mundane over the scar tissue of a damaged life, striving for a reality outside of a bottle (and off the stage) while still maintaining some semblance of what made this particular lion roar in the first place.
Director and co-writer Martin Pieter Zandvliet draws inspired work from Steen.
Applause is a very minor film with a massive performance at its center.
A small movie with modest ambitions, and accordingly, it packs only a modest emotional punch.
The simple but affecting film begins a weeklong award-qualifying run Friday before opening in stateside art houses Jan. 21, and is worth a look for its gutsy and commanding central performance.
Her (Steen) emotional acrobatics are reason enough to sit through Applause's parade of pain, though it's a movie to admire rather than enjoy.
The feature directorial debut of Martin Zandvliet, Applause has moments of flourish and moments that reach towards something as pared down as Thea's play.
Steen, her face full of remorse, does a great job of portraying someone unclear of where to go or what to say without a script.

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