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All My Puny Sorrows

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Canada · 2021
1h 43m
Director Michael McGowan
Starring Alison Pill, Sarah Gadon, Amybeth McNulty, Mare Winningham
Genre Drama

Two Mennonite sisters leave their strict religious upbringing behind in favor of careers in writing and music. While one struggles in love and life, the other is a world-famous concert pianist. But after one sister unsuccessfully attempts suicide, they must both face the tragedy haunting them from the past.

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What are critics saying?


The Hollywood Reporter by Angie Han

That McGowan admires the source material and wants to do it justice is clear, and that he’s resisted the temptation to sand down its sharpest edges speaks to a desire to meet his troubled characters where they are. But his movie ends up just another reminder that paying tribute to a novel isn’t the same as breathing it into life.


The Film Stage by Christopher Schobert

It is by no means a misfire and features a trio of tremendous performances from Pill, Gadon, and Mare Winningham. But given the source material and the ingredients, Sorrows certainly qualifies as a disappointment.


The Playlist by Jason Bailey

One can’t help coming away with the feeling that if the intelligence and originality of All My Puny Sorrows matched its earnestness, they could’ve really had something here.


The Globe and Mail (Toronto) by Kate Taylor

An icy Sarah Gadon can’t plumb it, offering a quietly mannered performance where a beautifully furrowed brow and occasional tear suggest the character cares more about looking elegant than dying. Thankfully, in the warmer roles of Yoli and her resilient Mennonite mother, Alison Pill and Mare Winningham do find the big broken heart at the core of this story.


Screen Rant by Mae Abdulbaki

While its performances are lovely and tender, with the execution somewhat messy in its handling of themes, All My Puny Sorrows doesn’t dig past the surface enough to make a strong enough case for itself.

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