Two sets of parents meet to discuss a nasty fight between their children, but their civilized discussion soon descends into finger-pointing, tantrums and insults.
" The astonishing Waltz steals the picture, possibly because he's the one with a rational perspective (despite his telephonic obsessiveness): He sees the whole exercise as pointless. Ultimately, so do we. "
" A film that makes its audience feel as trapped as its characters. "
" A brilliantly discomfiting comedy of frustration. "
" "Carnage" becomes a lesson in how to handle a willfully claustrophobic assignment with panache. "
" What are supposed to be transgressive observations about the holy state of parenthood and matrimony instead come across as self-satisfied and shallow as the pieties Reza intends to puncture. "
" Despite the efforts of an impressive cast, the film starts out stale and then just gets tedious. "
" In real life, hyper-controlling metropolitan parents would not waste this much time on people they loathe. "
" If we grant that "Carnage" is a low-impact exercise in stripping away the social veneer, it's nonetheless brisk and enjoyable. "
" Brief, brutal and barmy. "
" The point isn't the plot, it's the performances. Here four familiar actors seem ideally cast for their roles. "
" The entire point of Carnage is to poke fun at the fragile civility of the upper-middle class - they're all animals inside! - but how much more fun would this material have been if the story hadn't been about polite white people? "
" You may recognize the arrogance and anxieties, the class resentments and domestic bile, from your PTA's most recent talent night. More likely, they're as close as the nearest mirror. "
" Skillfully acted by Jodie Foster, John C. Reilly, Christoph Waltz and Kate Winslet, [it's a] compact verbal slugfest. "
" The actors seem to have fun, particularly Foster, working against type as the thoroughly unlikable Penelope. But "Carnage" isn't nearly as bloody as it thinks it is. "
" Where previously we felt as trapped in Polanski's apartments as his characters, in Carnage we only ever peek in through the window. "
" Carnage is a comedy of claustrophobia and revealed truths, and Polanski knows both all too well. "
" An odd little chamber piece, "Carnage" plays out like a very tense meeting from which you can't wait to depart. "
" Think Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?, but then think fun. "
" Foster is particularly impressive in a stridently unattractive role, as the pinched, angry liberal who's orchestrated the meeting but doesn't get quite the apology she wants. "
" 'Carnage': A cozily evil little play, by way of Polanski "
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