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ME WITHOUT YOU


"Sandra Goldbacher's small, psychologically savvy film is the story of a toxic friendship, established in early childhood, whose poisons continue to circulate and infect both partners well into their adult lives...If I didn't detest the term codependent because it shrink-wraps human feeling into a vague, pseudoclinical symptom, I would use it to describe this destructive bond...Under its drab contemporary trappings, the movie is really a Jane Austen-like moral parable in which goodness is rewarded and selfishness punished." --Stephen Holden, The New York Times

"...a soporific Brit coming-of-age picture that runs 107 minutes--but easily feels twice as long. Though it boasts excellent performances by Anna Friel and Michelle Williams as bosom buddies whose lives meander over three decades, it plods on with a wearying predictability and some truly terrible dialogue." --Lou Lumenick, The New York Post

"There's a beautifully rounded maturity at work in 'Me Without You,' from the writing to the acting to the direction...This film's intelligence and forthrightness about the things women sometimes do to one another--and its resoluteness about where the line should be drawn in terms of selflessness between friends--set it head and shoulders above most contemporary movies that deal with friendships between women." --Stephanie Zacharek, Salon.com

"Bleaker than its nostalgic premise (and soundtrack) would suggest, 'Me Without You' observes a close friendship over the course of nearly three decades; by 'friendship,' director Sandra Goldbacher means a state of ruinous symbiosis, sustained by lies, denial, and emotional blackmail...Essentially humorless, 'Me Without You' manages some pleasing textures all the same: The period design is attentive, the soundtrack eclectic enough if not particularly well integrated (in a grossly idiotic faux pas, news of an OD prompts a few bars of Nick Drake)..." --Dennis Lim, The Village Voice

"This tough, unsentimental British film tells the story of two childhood girlfriends and next-door neighbors who grow into co-dependent, largely dysfunctional adults...The actors are first-rate across the board. [Anna] Friel, changing with each leap in time, plays Marina like an aging flamenco dancer. The English actress' sultriness and flamboyance are at first exhilarating, but with repetition and time--plus her character's growing resemblance to her floozy mom--she fades into annoying self-parody. [Michelle] Williams, who was born and brought up in Montana, has the more nuanced role, and handles it and the British accent with surprising adeptness." --Jack Mathews, The New York Daily News

"The movie's milieu wanders from 'The Ice Storm' with a sense of humor, to 'Heavenly Creatures' sans homicide, but has a standout performance by Michelle Williams, whose history in 'Dawson's Creek' and 'Halloween: H2O' has hardly prepared us for her portrait of Holly, a kind of Everywoman trapped in her own prison of self-doubt and dubious ideals." --John Anderson, Newsday