Poetry (2011)

A sixty-something woman, faced with a crippling medical diagnosis and the discovery of a heinous family crime, finds strength and purpose when she enrolls in a poetry class. Lee Chang-dong's follow-up to his acclaimed Secret Sunshine is… More

Directed By:
Rated: Unrated
Running Time:
Release Date: February 11, 2011
DVD Release Date: August 23, 2011
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Critic Score: 100% Rotten Tomatoes™ Critic Reviews

Consensus: Poetry is an absorbing, poignant drama because it offers no easy answers to its complex central conflict.

J. R. Jones
Chicago Reader

True to the title, writer-director Lee Chang-dong is principally concerned with rendering emotions that seem inexpressible.

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David Jenkins
Time Out

Anyone who starts a film going to poetry classes is eventually going to come up with a poem. The one Mija finally delivers will rip your heart to shreds.

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Derek Smith
Tiny Mix Tapes

With Poetry, Lee Chang-dong once again gets a brilliant performance out of his female lead, this time from Jeong-hee Yoon.

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Maggie Lee
Hollywood Reporter

Those with an eye for reading between the lines can find layers of meaning.

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Bill Goodykoontz
Arizona Republic

Writer and director Chang-dong Lee's film is moving without ever stooping to melodrama; Yun is the main reason why.

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Robert Koehler
Cinema Scope

[Writer/Director Lee Chang-dong] has consistently drawn great performances from his actors, and only partly because he writes huge roles for them.

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Justin Chang

A deceptively gentle tale with a tender ache at its center, as well as a performance from Yun Jung-hee that lingers long in the memory.

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Kenneth Turan
Los Angeles Times

"Poetry" is daring in the ways only quiet, unhurried but finally haunting films have the courage to be.

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Landon Palmer
Film School Rejects

But what's so surprising about Poetry is Lee's unassuming mastery over the elements therein.

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More reviews for Poetry

Flixster Audience Score: 85% Flixster User Reviews
Carlos Magalh„es
An uneven, overlong drama that wants to discuss many subjects but gets lost among ideas that are not fully developed or well explored, and so it is clear that… More
Jan Marc Macababayao
Poetry courageously confronts sensitive themes with inspiration confused by an intrapersonal conflict that expounds on death, pain, and justice. Elegant and… More
Luke Baldock
I hate it when I hear a movie is inspirational and then you realise it is really just an ass-kissing fest towards somebody who has done something that society… More
Greg S
A Korean grandmother in the beginning stages of Alzheimer's takes a poetry class to fulfill a lifelong ambition. Dry, subtle character study that gains… More
Reid Volk
It is hard to put in to words, but originally when I read the synopsis of this film I was very apprehensive. An ailing woman begins to take poetry classes while… More
William Dunmyer
"Poetry," the new film from South Korea's Lee Chang-dong, should have been wonderful, but it is destroyed by a terrible editing job. Almost every… More