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Parents' Guide to

At Eternity's Gate

By Jeffrey Anderson, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 13+

Fine performance in challenging, arty Van Gogh biopic.

Movie PG-13 2018 110 minutes
At Eternity's Gate Poster Image

A Lot or a Little?

What you will—and won't—find in this movie.

Community Reviews

age 15+

Based on 3 parent reviews

age 18+


I think it’s a great movie about one of the best painters in history. His life was very sad and In my opinion this movie shows that sadness in a way that also let you notice some of that kindness. Everyone thought the movie does not have too much dialogue, It expresses a lot.

This title has:

Educational value
Great messages
Great role models
age 14+

Is It Any Good?

Our review:
Parents say (3 ):
Kids say (1 ):

Artist and filmmaker Julian Schnabel's fragmented, interior look at Vincent Van Gogh's life, captured with roving, POV camerawork and experimental sound, is challenging but sometimes quite powerful. But Dafoe's deeply committed performance unquestionably drives the movie. At Eternity's Gate carefully avoids showing very many of Van Gogh's rages, instead focusing on the aftermath and his feelings and fears around his acts. The result is an appealingly sad, lost character without any of the showiness that might come in a typical biopic.

With its singular focus, however, the movie misses a chance to deepen relationships between Van Gogh and either Theo or Gauguin. But the film's deeply thoughtful dialogue, co-written by the legendary Jean-Claude Carrière, provides plenty of fascinating talk about the nature of art, painting, and existence. Schnabel also offers a meticulous, convincing re-creation of what Van Gogh's style might have been like, with many close-ups of hands applying thick daubs of paint in little spots and dashes. It adds great dimension to the paintings and makes them seem more alive, more vivid. But the often wobbly camerawork could make some viewers seasick. At Eternity's Gate joins a long list of already existing movies about Van Gogh, and it's welcome among them.

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