The Good Lie
Provided by Metacritic.com
The heart of the film derives from the fact that the more they all get to know each other, the more they all mature and their differences blend. The title comes from a lesson in Huckleberry Finn—that a lie is good if it helps others, the way Huck lied to save Jim from the slave traders.
The Hollywood Reporter
The Good Lie is a touching, generous-hearted movie, sensitively directed by Philippe Falardeau (Monsieur Lazhar) working with a smart, sly, long-gestated script by Margaret Nagle (Boardwalk Empire).
McClatchy-Tribune News Service
Rambles a bit and telegraphs its ending. But its earnestness in reminding us of this story and just what America represents to the world’s rising tide of refugees, and why, makes it a winner, a valuable history lesson wrapped in a feel-good bow.
It's a deeply touching story about survival, perseverance, and hope.
New York Post
The Good Lie may not be anything like Witherspoon’s version of “The Blind Side” (as the ads also imply), but it’s a heart-tugger that’s definitely worth seeing.
Falardeau actually spent time filming in Sudan for a completely different project back in 1994 before being forced to evacuate by the U.N., but he consciously decides not to rub our noses in tarted-up awfulness, opting for steady-footed lensing and subdued music, then trusting our imaginations to fill in the horrors.
Canadian director Philippe Falardeau (Oscar nominee for Monsieur Lazhar) films these early, subtitled scenes mostly with a documentarian’s observational remove and slightly shaky camera – an effective way to dramatize the horror of war without exploiting it, tarting it up with Hollywood techniques.
For a while it’s a low-key fish-out-of-water comedy (with McDonald’s as one of its many obvious punch lines), then it morphs into a cumbrously sentimental tale of redemption.
The A.V. Club
It’s a sappy, but occasionally sensitive, coming-to-America story that hits all of the familiar beats. It has one very big problem, though, and she’s played by Reese Witherspoon.
The Good Lie is so manufactured around a particular dramatic blueprint that any sense of spontaneity, surprise and engagement are sucked right out of the picture.
See all 30 reviews on Metacritic.com
See all external reviews