User Reviews (229)

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  • vladimir-janic27 February 2017
    Exquisite. 'Big Little Lies' takes us to an incredible journey with its emotional and intriguing storyline. The characters are so thoroughly and thoughtfully developed. Nicole Kidman, Reese Witherspoon, Shailene Woodley, Laura Dern gave breathtaking performances. Directing, screenplay, photography, everything is brilliantly done. I would deeply recommend it.
  • This really is the golden age of TV as proved by the fact that this mini-series stars three incredible actresses (two of them Oscar winners) giving some of their career best performances). Big Little Lies takes a hard look at the lives of women in the wealthy mostly white suburb of Monterey, where you're no one if you don't have a beach front property and where everyone hides their secrets so that they don't risk anyone seeing that their lives are a facade.

    The three women at the centre of the story are Madeleine Mackenzie an A-type mostly stay at home mom on her second husband (Reese Witherspoon), her beautiful best friend Celeste (Nicole Kidman) and the town newcomer that Mackenzie adopts into their life, Jane Chapman (Shailene Woodley), a 20-something young mom who moved to the town for the schools and doesn't really fit in. Each woman is hiding a huge secret, but eventually the secrets come out and the women find solace and comfort leaning on each other for support.

    There is a lot more than that (the show opens with the bold claim that there was a murder, and most of the show is a flash backward showing how that murder came to be), but a lot of the central mysteries aren't mysteries at all. The editing, costuming and acting choices deeply hint at the answers to every mystery, so by the time the finale rolls around and everything is revealed it's not so much an "Ah ha!" moment as an "Ahhhhh" moment as you realize with satisfaction that the build up was good and everything makes sense.

    The best part of this is seeing all the actors doing amazing work. Nicole Kidman walks away with the show giving a devastating performance. Laura Dern provides levity and Robin Weigert, as Celeste's therapist, may not be a "name" actress, but she brings so much to her scenes.

    A wonderful show.
  • HBO's new limited series, Big Little Lies, is simply outstanding in every way. The casting is perfect - Reese Witherspoon as Madeline, Shailene Woodley as Jane and the always fabulous Nicole Kidman as Celeste - three very different mothers residing in the ultra wealthy enclave of Monterey, California. The show also focuses on Renata (a tense, edgy performance by Laura Dern and the families of the four main characters. James Tupper, Adam Scott, James Nordling turn in great performances, but Alexander Skaarsgard really shines as Perry, Celeste's troubled, volatile husband.

    Without giving away the plot, the show is part is Desperate Housewives part Knots Landing and part Secrets and Lies in that it's a drama, a soap and a mystery, all rolled into one delicious package.

    Beautiful cinematography and an amazing soundtrack add to the enjoyment. I just binge-watched the first three episodes and they left me wanting more. Just watch it - it's the show you've been waiting for...
  • I almost gave up on it after the lacklustre and uncreative beginning, but then the clever structure and intricate story-line kicked-in, followed by the interesting characters who are slowly taking form. Their purpose and meaning to the unfolding mystery is becoming evident and damn fascinating. All thanks to the performers who have already got this perfectly down-pat in the first episode, and that allows the story to take shape and meaning for the remainder of the series.

    So far this series is more than about fighting mums and a "who-done-it". What is so prevalent in the first episode is the underlying themes of parenthood, marital relationships and school-mom politics. I'm sure the writers will have more juice to add as the series progresses.

    For now, it's the mystery that has got me hooked. And to heighten my viewing pleasure, it is the development of the characters and the conflicts surrounding them, and also within, that makes me want to watch it that little bit longer, hopefully right to the very end of the series that is slowly peeling away the hypocrisy and the nastiness of an affluent suburb/town!
  • I am a big fan of Liane Moriarty and when I read this book I couldn't put it down. Reese Witherspoon has done the book justice as I understand she has produced the series.

    It's not often you read a book and the pictures that you form in your mind suddenly become real through a great translation to the screen. Although the book was originally set on the Northern beaches of Sydney the translation to Monterey California is perfect. David E Kelly has written the screenplay and has done an excellent job and dare I say taken a great story and enhanced it beautifully.

    The casting is absolutely perfect with Reese as Maddy, Nicole Kidman as Celeste, Laura Dern as Renata and Shailene as Jane. Great choice with Zoe Kravitz as well.

    Any parent and especially any mother will really relate to the story which keeps you guessing until the very end. AAA+++
  • What attracted me to this TV series was the cast, however even after watching the first episode i was fascinated by its soundtrack. I feel lucky to discover some great piece of music. The acting was also impressive as one can guess. I would highly recommend it, you won't regret it :)
  • Look at the cast and people involved. HBO has Game of thrones, The Wire, Sopranos, etc. They set an extremely high expectation and this delivers. The night of was the last short series I loved like this. Its a short Mystery, that has a twist or two built in. Dark, well written and well acted. Very very good
  • mrocco-12 April 2017
    I have HBO and NEVER watch it. I'm not a big fan of what apparently many other people like to watch. But when I saw the commercial for this I was intrigued. I never heard of the book, but highly respect many of the lead actors so I figured if they were involved it couldn't totally suck. Speaking of suck, I was completely sucked in on the first episode. I don't know why but I found this show completely and utterly mesmerizing, all the way down to the music and cinematography. Everyone involved in this from top to bottom hit it out of the park. I've never experienced this kind of life-style (ie mommy, daddy and school politics) but one of my clients who watches the show and lives in the general area said they nailed her experience when her kids were in school.

    To put in perspective, I usually work when I watch TV, don't really even 'watch' it, just background noise. Not only did I stop working to watch this, I ran the last few minutes in slow motion to fully absorb what happened. I can't give a show much more praise than that! You'll understand the scene I'm talking about when you see it.
  • The view was the first thing that captured me. Reece Witherspoon's acting was the next to wow me. The characters are not one dimensional but complicated and unfolding as each episode progresses. I have watched three now so think I have a good handle on why this show is attracting such good scores. Issues such as marriage and relationships are depicted and they are not always innocent or good. Who has been murdered? It is fun guessing! Families are also complicated and parents struggle with children whether they are small or teenagers. The topics and themes are ones that everyone can relate to. There is not one example of poor acting! If you like mysteries this one is for you but also for people who like romances or breathtaking scenery and well acted stories. Everything is not spelled out for you which is refreshing from an American production. Later....after watching the whole series....loved this show! Female power wins the day! That is what I took away from this show. It contained surprises and twists to satisfy the viewer. It built the tension gradually each episode and I was waiting each week to see where it was taking me. The characters were amazing and the storyline was gripping! When women support and care for each other life is good.
  • Like a lot of viewers, there were moments when I thought I'd had enough of this show: bitchy rich women who never seem to notice how privileged they all are - for the first few episodes, you just want them all to die. But there is always something to keep you just intrigued enough to watch another episode. And then you start to see what's really going on behind the scenes of their perfect lives, and it all starts to make sense. You realize that that feeling of annoyance at all the characters was actually a clever ploy: you're meant to hate them all at the start. But by the end, you actually really like them all, and that's some clever writing, I must say. Trust me, the last few episodes fly by, and the ending is everything you'd want it to be. Clever, genuinely touching, and very satisfying without ever feeling predictable. This is a well-crafted and very well told story. Plus the cinematography and music are hypnotically beautiful. Definitely worth your time.
  • It was a pretty much good first episode for a series giving all information and context. The cast is awesome. - good mystery -nice title - many questions - good direction .Take on ex-husbands and second wives, schoolyard scandal, and the dangerous little lies we tell ourselves just to survive People who liked the movie gone girl will surely like it . So give it a go....
  • The first episode established the potential here right from the start. Writing, casting and acting is on point. Great to see the cast of actors that were pulled together for the project. I hope to see more of this type of 7 episode story telling where you can get such a deep cast of actors to commit to a project that they might not otherwise be able to do if it were a typical ongoing series. In my opinion some great flawed and complex characters that aren't always what they seem on the surface (who is). In particular Reese, Nicole and Dern. In addition, the child actors, who's characters really need to support the story line, really bring it as well. Check it out.
  • What a cast! Incredible acting! The shots were breathing taking and courageous. The plot line unfolds slowly but worth every second as you learn these dynamic characters and are on the edge of your Seat. I was completely sucked in on the first episode. I don't know why but I found this show completely and utterly mesmerizing, all the way down to the music and cinematography. Everyone involved in this from top to bottom hit it out of the park. We watch an episode a night just to elongate the short series. Although there are only 7 episodes each on is packed full with tiny glimpse into each of their lives and the suspenseful ending! Excellent! I hope there is a second season!
  • This was an an excellent show, I don't normally watch this type of show (except Desperate Housewives back in the day) but with this type of wit I can't put it down. I kept watching the whole series within one weekend, it was very addictive. If you like to watch a well written satirical view on the lies underneath the seemingly picture perfect lives in Suburbia, like in American Beauty and Desperate Housewives, you just may like this.

    It's not a pure comedy but there's plenty of hilarious dialog and situations. Some may feel women are being ridiculed and parodied too much, not portrayed realistically and yes the show exaggerates, but it wouldn't be so painfully funny if there wasn't at least some truth to the daily war zone these mothers create for each other (and then there's of course the marital problems as well).

    The show is not too predictable and keeps you guessing who got killed in the end. It features accomplished Hollywood actresses that have all earned their stripes: Witherspoon, Kidman, Woodley. They don't let down here. The male actors are less known but equally excellent.

    The way of filming and structuring is also fresh. HBO drama at it's finest.
  • Warning: Spoilers
    Well, first I was rather unsure about the show because of its weird rich-people-problems-vibe and all these women who made their lives so insignificant by just marrying some guy and suffocating and helicoptering their kids - and with nothing to do at all. Their lives seem just like an endless occupational therapy.

    But then - although these women keep being annoyingly redundant (except for Woodley's character, though) - the show became incredibly insightful and sensitive and I have never seen a show that painted such a precise picture about abusive relationships - they did it brilliantly and partly even in an eye-opening way.

    And all three main actresses do an amazing job. I was never that fond of either Witherspoon or Kidman - but in this show I like watching them. They have so much respect for their characters. And they even manage to make these unnerving people somehow likable. Particularly Witherspoon. But that is just because it's painful to watch how Kidman ruined her face surgically. As an actress, Kidman does an amazing job too. And respect to both for producing the show. Also, Woodley is such a natural and perfectly cast.

    And yes - I'm not even sure why - the show captured me each episode more - and I could absolutely watch way more of it than just 7 episodes.

    So - well done, guys & thank you****
  • rosannag1 January 2018
    Just binged watched Big Little Lies. Great show and a great cast. Although the plot twist at the end was obvious and expected it is still worth the watch.
  • This miniseries was gorgeous in every way, beautifully crafted and simply incredible. Loved the music, Reese Witherspoon's daughter (in the series) had such great taste! The scenery added so much emotion and intensity giving you the sense that every detail was intentional, every moment precious. The makers of this series had seemingly high aspirations and delivered with PERFECTION.

    I have such a newfound appreciation for Nicole Kidman and assure you that in watching this your opinion of her will change! Her subtlety and restrain were masterful. She is truly an INCREDIBLE actress and it's not because she has a pretty face, it's because she is a master communicator of the human condition. One of the best performances of the year and of her career. Witherspoon was a bit annoying but good. Shailene Woodley is very convincing and arguably the heart of this series, although I've never been particularly fond of her. The rest of the cast, even down to the children, are just as great, especially Laura Dern (one of my favorites). I do wish Dern and Zoe Kravitz (a true wildcard and perhaps the most beautiful young actress of her time) got more screen time.

    I left this series wanting desperately for more and would love for the folks at HBO to build on this story. I recommend everyone to go see it. It was an OUTSTANDING commentary touching on feminism, sisterhood, parenthood, love and compassion. As a son, it helped me to understand what it's like to be a mother, what SACRIFICE is! It told me that everyone makes mistakes, has fears, has their SHIELD, but with friendship comes NEW LIFE, hopes for the future, and the courage to be ourselves..

    A Must-See! 9.5/10
  • After watching the first episode, which intentionally makes the viewer uncomfortable through the superficial nature of its characters, you really begin to see immense character development through the use of a beautifully written script and the performances of a very talented ensemble of actors. I have insane respect for Nicole Kidman, Shailene Woodley, and Alexander Skarsgård for what they were able to bring to the screen, and they make the show a definite pleasure to watch.

    I'm almost sad there is going to be another season because I am satisfied with how the first season ended, but I'm curious to see where it goes. That said, the first season is filled with the right mixture of drama, suspense, and dark humor, and is worth the watch in my opinion.
  • Impeccably caste. The performances alone should unanimously have esteemed appreciation, almost if the players are showing their personal hidden selves for all to view, feel on top of great acting... thus, exposing truth and lies that exist within humanity as well as individually.

    One finds it to be most disappointing of those whom view this a series geared towards middle aged women or housewives, not only is this opinion narrow minded but not backed up with well definitive examples from the show for the labeling.

    Nor do I see that it has anything to do with the undesirable "Housewives" television reality shows (only my opinion due to it not being believable or true "reality" when that is what it is portrayed; but please enlighten me if I am as well, being too quick to judge and I will always take another look, although I also do not care for trivial containing themed scripted acting claiming realism) It is saddening that formulaic viewpoints are even put down in this discussion because obviously is not the real incentive otherwise these "commenters" would have not cared enough to post, UNLESS their real reason must be some sort of anger or grudge towards women or housewives but hopefully not the case.

    Let's say for arguments sake these select watcher's labels are true, and that may-hap it is for a targeted audience. For one, why would it make a television show bad or deserve to be rated poorly. Look around you, or at least at what is being produced on TV; most everything is created with an audience base in mind, or may seem to be so. Why can one not appreciate that which is not specifically made for you and only you? Ratings should not be based on theories or stereotypes or targeted audiences in mind, it should be valued for the acting, cinematography, is well written, and importantly does it have a message to give us the viewers to make us think about that which we do not or would not ever have prior appreciate and further our empathy and compassion towards others (seriously everyone these values are so lacking and very needed), try to understand the lives of people even if consequently lies or other qualities exist because there may be something we missed or the reasoning behind a lie even validated.

    WHAT makes this series so worth watching is obviously entertainment, and entertainment that is not total garbage like so much that is spewed out of the TV world. Please be open minded when watching this program with no predetermined ideas, and allow yourself to appreciate the emotional depth being depicted even though it is not reality and scripted, allowing oneself to truly be someone else and understanding this character type; or also as a performer being already blessed with the art of acting.
  • In recent times, the mystery series and movies have become little predictable. In big little lies, sure I failed to predict. Very good suspense maintained in series along with the best use of view of ocean's waves and vibes and its mysterious presence. Throughout entire series all characters get fully developed with every detail that you actually start understanding their thought process. Never a moment of dullness occurs in the series. It's a must watch series. I wish secret stays a secret..never ever it should be revealed!!
  • What an amazing surprise! Really. I must confess that I wasn't too confident in the beginning but I gave it a shot! Glad I did it. It captured me slowly, more and more each second past. The plot is great, the characters are really interesting and well supported by great text (smart lines and intelligent humor here and there) and cast actors who do a super job, from the top knock ones to the children. And the soundtrack… what a selection! That said, is a show that can keep you attach all the way. No way you can regret seeing from episode 1 to episode 7.
  • Seriously, Nicole Kidman and Reese Witherspoon deserve all the awards for their roles in this production. Every once in a while, a scene comes on and you're like "Damn, that's good!" That happens every. single. episode.

    If anything, watch it for the fantastic women acting in this wonderful show. They deserve all the praise for their work, and it was thrilling to watch them in this show.

    I cannot wait to see this powerhouse of a group in Season 2!
  • pfeiferlj5 April 2017
    I hope "Big Little Lies" (BLL) pursues a season 2 with the same writer, director, and actors, because it's rare to see this kind of chemistry come together on the big screen, let alone television. When you have a winning combination, keep going. The way the director blends action, music, the angles, symbolism, the sense of place, it's beautiful, haunting, at times hilarious, and it carries a powerful social message.

    The series is full of memorable lines, and I think my favorite is Laura Dern's "Don't F*** with my daughter's birthday party". Reese Witherspoon is unforgettable as the perfectionist Mom who turns out to be all too human, Nicole Kidman takes us on a roller coaster ride of emotion as we discover her secrets and the truth she refuses to confront. Shailene Woodley is a natural for her role as a young single Mother trying to survive in a new community and fighting for her young son. Zoe Kravitz is equally well cast as the bohemian peace-loving Bonnie. The children in BLL are so believable in their roles, we're rooting for them from the start as the series unfolds. The men in these women's lives have issues - some issues very serious indeed - and all of these character stories are woven into the flow of each scene in an effortless way that keeps us hooked and counting the days for the next episode. Bring on Season 2!
  • Warning: Spoilers
    Without too many spoilers, this is absolutely one of the best series this year 16/17.

    Next to This is Us, extremely high quality acting, an intriguing story that captivates. I love how they mix it all up, and how they keep on twisting left and right, confusing you ever so gently and politely.

    It seems very well thought through and well written. Each character has a distinct personality, or more. Dept is acted out very well. Personalities diverse and just the right mix.

    Its great to see that it is still possible to produce a great show. 8 All the way. Equal quality as The Night Of and This Is Us.

    Highly recommended!
  • A journey showed up with emotional stuff! Very good scripts Climax And Main the Location is best..! Shailene Woodley is always best in any role and the other actors all well being doing till the end. i started to watch this series because of shailene .. So pretty good series Waiting for season 2
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