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Safe

Carol White, a sweet and caring Los Angeles suburban housewife, has it all: a wealthy husband, a wonderful house, housekeepers, beauty and many friends. But when she becomes symptomatic of a mysterious environmental illness, it unexpectedly and irreversibly changes her life as she knew it.
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WHAT ARE CRITICS SAYING?

63

ReelViews by James Berardinelli

Safe does not succeed at everything it attempts. The film is overlong and there are times when more aggressive editing might have improved the pace. However, despite certain dramatic shortcomings, Safe is an insightful and darkly comical social commentary.
60

The New York Times by Janet Maslin

Brilliantly as it begins, Safe eventually succumbs to its own modern malady, as the film maker insists on a chilly ambiguity that breeds more detachment than interest.
100

Los Angeles Times by Kenneth Turan

Insidious and provocative, Safe refuses to lend a hand, avoids taking sides or pointing the way. Everything that happens in this beautifully controlled enigma is open to multiple interpretations, and that extends finally to the title's meaning as well.
75

Chicago Tribune by Michael Wilmington

Though Haynes' methods are austere and his style dry, the terror of his narrative becomes more palpable as the film unwinds. The picture's eerie delicacy, meticulous technique and rapt formality may distance us, but they also steadily strip bare the panic at its core.
100

Washington Post by Rita Kempley

This spooky film's ostensible subject—an environmental illness known as multiple chemical sensitivity—is merely a starting place for this mesmerizing horror movie, feminist tract and medical mystery.
75

Chicago Sun-Times by Roger Ebert

Maybe the environment is poisoned, and the group is phony, and Carol is gnawing away at her own psychic health. Now there's a fine mess.
100

Slant Magazine by Sal Cinquemani

We know nothing of this woman’s inner-traumas, the repressed memories or hidden pains of her youth, yet Moore, in an extraordinary milestone performance, gives us a glimpse inside Carol’s frail and lonely soul.
100

The Dissolve by Scott Tobias

As a piece of filmmaking, Safe is brilliant for the way Haynes, in concert with cinematographer Alex Nepomniaschy and composer Ed Tomney, blankets the mundane in the eerie tone of science fiction and horror, especially in the first half.

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