The Kindergarten Teacher
Provided by Metacritic.com
The Kindergarten Teacher is probably the only movie about poetry with an ending as tense as any thriller.
Gyllenhaal has been too good too often to label any one of her performances as her best, but she’s certainly never been better than she is here.
The Hollywood Reporter
Rippling with psychological complexity and sneaky humor, this is a rich character study that takes constantly surprising turns.
New York Magazine (Vulture)
Lisa’s drive is more than biological; it’s intellectual and emotional, and that’s what keeps what often risks becoming camp madness in an identifiably human place — almost all the way to the end.
Writer-director Sara Colangelo’s intimate, slender drama withholds much about its main character, which allows Gyllenhaal to sketch the outline of a fractured soul.
Colangelo’s adaptation continually feels like it’s missing something.... Luckily though, Collangelo has Gyllenhaal, who is exceptional at times here, to carry it through.
Gyllenhaal, bright-eyed and brittle, brings her signature intensity to the role, though Lisa’s true inner world remains murky; it’s never quite clear if she’s just deeply unhappy or certifiably ill. Instead, the movie remains an intriguing but ambiguous portrait of a flawed, fascinating woman who knows herself either too well or not at all
Colangelo (whose underrated 2014 first feature “Little Accidents” was about the aftermath of a fatal mining accident) has created a consistently interesting if slow-moving drama that works very well as a showcase for its lead performer.
The A.V. Club
It’s just a shame that the edge-of-your-seat suspense negates The Kindergarten Teacher’s preceding psychological power.
The Film Stage
While The Kindergarten Teacher ends at the perfect moment following an extremely strong final ten minutes, it’s ultimately a muddled experience. But then maybe that’s part of the point.
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