Critic Reviews



Based on 19 critic reviews provided by Metacritic.com
Cloaked in a mystifying atmosphere and possessed by a transfixing, amorphous mood, Lucile Hadzihalilovic's Evolution is a beautifully strange hybrid of innocence and disturbance.
The only thing that's clear from start to finish is that Hadžihalilovic is in absolute command of her unsettling cinematic realm.
With its linear narrative and clear sense of a protagonist, Evolution is both more beautiful (thanks to gorgeous widescreen cinematography, including stunning underwater and nighttime footage, from “The Strange Color of Your Body's Tears” d.p. Manu Dacosse) and accessible than “Innocence,” though the two films clearly function best as the twisted diptych that they are.
It's a quiet, deliberately paced film, but exquisitely shot, with nuanced performances and visual invention.
As we're steered from nightmares to raptures, the mix of horror, sci-fi, puberty fable and gender-twisting perhaps strains the narrative. But two certainties hold: it'll stick with you, and Hadžihalilovic is in total command of her evolution.
Evolution more often chimes aesthetically with a European arthouse drama, but that is only until it voyages into more fantastical territory. Then this haunting and esoteric work manages to seduce and repulse in uncanny harmony.
With her sophomore effort, Evolution, the writer-director delivers another disturbing mélange of experimental genre filmmaking and adorable, tortured French kids, offering up a trippy visual feast that satisfies on an aesthetic level, if not always on a narrative one.
Clinical in the extreme, Evolution aims for open-endedness, but the film, unlike its pint-size protagonists, remains impenetrable.
Slant Magazine
The film interprets itself, offering an essay on rape and gender fluidity that locks us out of the cognitive process of digesting it.
A silly horror movie at heart, Lucile Hadžihalilovic's Innocence follow-up seems to confuse “ideas” with “prolonged silences.”

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