Critic Reviews



Based on 35 critic reviews provided by
The film is so singular, it's hard to place. At times, its elegiac visual quality evokes Terrence Malick, but Lowery's scripting is tighter and more accessible. His is truly a fresh voice, exhilarating to hear.
Lowery is the real deal and understands filmmaking, and this is abundantly clear in this searing, romantic crime drama and love story.
Lowery isn't a Malick and he's certainly no Kazan, but he's his own man, and a filmmaker to watch.
Slow as molasses but every bit as rich.
The point of this film is the spell it weaves and, by and large, it is successful. It’s the music, it’s the cinematography, it’s the score, it’s Casey Affleck’s hollow speaking voice — they all add up to something that resembles a fever dream facsimile of an eventful movie.
It’s an unfailingly beautiful movie that finally stakes out a territory of its own, with quietly intense performances and a sure hand on the tiller (although the trio of bounty hunters who set out after Affleck feel like invaders from another movie, one more defined by genre than mood).
David Lowery’s quietly beautiful new film, his most ambitious to date, is at first glance a standard love story, set in the American West of what appears to be the early 1970s. Over time, however, Ain’t Them Bodies Saints transcends its plot, revealing itself as a cinematic meditation on the daunting power of loneliness.
For all its derivative poetics -- as many exteriors as possible were shot during or just after magic hour, a la Malick -- the film is a lovely thing to experience and possesses a measure of real power.
Ain’t Them Bodies Saints feels like a fresh and poetic treatment of a prosaic story that should be utterly worn out by now.
Slant Magazine
The film's highly calculated beauty suffocates rather than elevates the story's emotional underpinnings.

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