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Ethel & Ernest

This hand drawn animated film, based on the award winning graphic novel by Raymond Briggs, is an intimate and affectionate depiction of the life and times of his parents, two ordinary Londoners living through extraordinary events.
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WHAT ARE CRITICS SAYING?

60

Variety by Dennis Harvey

Mainwood’s fidelity to Briggs’ illustrative aesthetic is welcome, as it maintains a homey, appropriately somewhat retro air redolent of pencil sketches and pastels. Hewing to the book’s sparse text is a little less ideal.
75

The Seattle Times by John Hartl

Suggesting a matchup between Archie Bunker and Gracie Allen, Ethel & Ernest is a sweet British memoir/cartoon about an ordinary couple who survive the Blitz along with their growing son.
60

Total Film by Kate Stables

The storytelling can feel a bit plodding, but Jim Broadbent’s exuberant Ernest and Brenda Blethyn’s timid, upwardly mobile Ethel give the marriage a touching intimacy and warmth.
80

The Hollywood Reporter by Leslie Felperin

It’s commonly thought that artists seldom make stories about happy, stable marriages because where’s the drama in that? Ethel & Ernest, a deeply affecting feature-length animated film, disproves that assumption by unfurling an emotionally rich story about the lifelong marital love affair between two kindly, modest people living in an inconspicuous corner of suburban England.
90

Los Angeles Times by Michael Rechtshaffen

While time inevitably marches on, director Roger Mainwood has a splendid constant at his disposal in the pitch-perfect voice performances of Blethyn and Broadbent, who inhabit their hand-drawn characters with a vivid, fully-dimensional authenticity.
60

The Guardian by Peter Bradshaw

It’s an engaging film, but it leaves you with a feeling that there might be a deeper, darker, more specific story yet to be told.
80

The Telegraph by Tim Robey

The backdrop to this very English marriage – soot and grit and survival, and that basenote of touching bafflement – means all the tears are earned.

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