K. Axel’s review published on Letterboxd:
I don't even know what to say. This movie hit me like a brick in the face and it affects even as I write this review. I don't even want to write about the story, the performances or the music. Irreversible is a movie I have been dreading watching for years... years. Now I know why, but I also know why I had to watch it eventually.
This movie doesn't condone violence any more than Saving Private Ryan and Reservoir Dogs do. Violence is a part of the world and these people live among us. I could probably pick up a newspaper right now and find an article matching this movie. Far too often a movie will annoy me to no end because it doesn't feel real because the characters aren't relatable. These characters feel real... this story feels too real. In fact, it feels so real that I won't blame anyone for not watching it. That being said, I also think it's important that we aren't afraid to watch movies like this.
So yeah. Final thoughts? The movie would have been totally different if it had been told in reverse, worse I might add. The happiness of Alex would have been forgotten. By doing it this way, the ending (which is actually the beginning of the movie) is so much clearer and we can't help but think what will happen next. I think it is safe to say that this is a masterpiece and that we won't see anything like it for years. Is it scary and incredibly violent? Yes, but there is no one forcing us to watch those scenes. I barely watched the man who had his head crushed, but I still felt it and even worse... understood the consequences this act would have for poor Pierre.
Don't be afraid to watch this. You won't lose your humanity, in fact... it might reaffirm it.