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Parents' Guide to


By Jeffrey Anderson, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 18+

Bizarre fantasy mixes graphic horror and romantic longing.

Movie NR 2010 114 minutes
Heartless Poster Image

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Is It Any Good?

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Kids say (3 ):

Directed by Philip Ridley, HEARTLESS is nothing if not imaginative. It's a visually bizarre update of the deal-with-the-devil "Faust" legend, with a range of amazing, hilarious, terrifying, and romantic images bashing up against one another in an eerily natural way. It could almost be likened to Twilight, but for a more adventurous set.

Jim Sturgess gives an appealing performance as the withdrawn Jamie, who's almost constantly overwhelmed by the sheer quantity of love and horror in the world. Ridley fills out the rest of the movie with great character actors, including Ruth Sheen, Timothy Spall, and a terrific Eddie Marsan as the "weapons man." But despite all of this wonder and sensation, there's something slightly off-putting and distant about the movie; Ridley can't quite connect with his audience the way more passionate "dark fantasy" filmmakers like Terry Gilliam and Guillermo Del Toro can. Even so, Heartless is remarkable in many ways and is worth the effort for older teens and adults.

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