• ArizonaJim

    ★★★½ Added by ArizonaJim

    Scene by scene I thought this was an impressive film, but, while watching it, I wasn’t sure what it was all adding up to, and thinking about it afterwards I am still not sure. It is filmed in the close up realist mode that thrives in independent American cinema, focusing on characters and performances – and the acting is impressive, with lots of mumbling performances that constantly force me to strain to hear. Martha (Elizabeth Olsen) flees a commune and…


  • niri

    ★★★★½ Watched by niri 02 May, 2016 4

    film #4 of the may '16 scavenger hunt
    task #1: a film featuring a character named may

    i've been meaning to watch this for some years now and strangely finally did in the same month i've read/seen a lot of similarly themed stories. it's chilling, intense, and full of quiet paranoia. i like how it switches from the present to the past w/ quite obvious triggers/callbacks. elizabeth olsen and sarah paulson are delights to watch, they are both so talented;…


  • Jade Bate

    ★★★★ Watched by Jade Bate 01 May, 2016

    Film #1 of the May 2016 Scavenger Hunt
    Task: Any film featuring a character named 'May'


    Martha Marcy May Marlene is a film that crept under my skin in unexpected ways. The debut feature from writer/director Sean Durkin features a woman in crisis with an ambiguous and troubled past. Martha (an extraordinary Elizabeth Olsen) is seen in the film's opening moments running away from a destructive cult/hippie commune. She seeks help from her estranged sister Lucy (Sarah Paulson) but…


  • micah1984

    ★★★★ Watched by micah1984 30 Apr, 2016

    Very involving and a little draining at times. The cutting back and forth between time and place works really well to put us in the same state that Martha is in the whole time, lost somewhere between past and present. It's pretty great.


  • DocJon

    ★½ Watched by DocJon 23 Apr, 2016

    I'm surprised this movie is so well received on this site. I'm a big fan of cult movies and cults in general and I still couldn't find much to like about this movie. The best thing about it was Elizabeth Olsen's performance. The women in this story felt too easily manipulated, no justification was given for their naivety and they were never really talked into anything but went along with everything anyway. Things just happened, for what seems like no reason throughout this entire movie. And don't even get me started on that lazy excuse for an ending.


  • ellietoss

    ★★★★★ Added by ellietoss

    Amazing exploration of the personal impacts of joining a cult. Watch it


  • Matty Stanfield

    ★★★★ Rewatched by Matty Stanfield 19 Apr, 2016

    Elizabeth Olsen delivered one of the most interesting performances by an actress in 2011. The Durkin Brothers have created a truly chilling depiction of cult manipulation, brainwashing and the horrors of the PTSD these things can lead toward. While this is a masterful character study, it is also a profoundly creepy experience. The validity of the title character's paranoia and fears are disarmingly ambiguous. In the end this film is unforgettable, disturbing and haunting. A must see.


  • jxwy8888

    ½ Added by jxwy8888

    There was nothing, rather empty from this film. No specific messages nor story to tell. Never felt my time so wasted for a movie before; this certainly made a record.


  • Laurel Deppen

    ★★ Watched by Laurel Deppen 15 Apr, 2016

    Although beautifully acted and shot, Martha Marcy May Marlene had no real substance. In previous reviews, I have said that I love ambiguity in films- when it’s well done. Now, there are very few films that can pull off little dialogue and unanswered questions. An example of a film that does that successfully is Steve McQueen’s Shame. This one did not. Though the constant shift between the past and present was masterfully done and intricately written, beneath it, there was still little to no depth. I wanted an intense, insightful thriller, but this, unfortunately, did not deliver.


  • Virgínia

    ★★★ Watched by Virgínia 12 Apr, 2016

    Good photography and acting.
    The story is great too, but could be a little more evolved. The silence in this is the best part of it. Unlike other movies, that soundtrack is needed to create tension, the silent scenes here make the best mood for you to feel insecure and tense.
    The major problem in the movie is it script. It wasn't written for telling a great story, in my opinion. But its a great movie. It would have been a 4/5 or 5/5 if the story would have catch me.


  • Max Restaino

    ★★★★★ Rewatched by Max Restaino 08 Apr, 2016

    Masterful psychological thriller that doubles as a tense and dream-like character piece. Elizabeth Olsen is incredible here. 

    I love this movie so much.


  • Joyce Heinen

    ★★★★½ Watched by Joyce Heinen 03 Apr, 2016

    Film # 3 of the "Scavenger Hunt # 13" Challenge
    Task # 9: A film featuring religious/ spiritual views you disagree with
    letterboxd.com/joyceheinen/list/scavenger-hunt-april-2016/ ___________________________________________________________________
    Martha is her real name. The members of the commune she joined call her Marcy May. When women answer the phone they always introduce themselves as Marlene. Martha flees the commune at the start of the film. Completely confused she calls her older sister Lucy. Together with her new husband she has temporarely moved into a…