San Francisco Chronicle

This movie doesn't work unless the central relationship between Atafeh and Shireen works. It does, beautifully; whether together in a nightclub or alone in a bedroom, Boosheri and Kazemy find a delicacy and sensitivity that reinforces, not diminishes, their strength.
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Entertainment Weekly

By Lisa Schwarzbaum
Here, love and attraction between two teenage girls put them on a collision course with Tehran society in general and one girl's troubled, increasingly religious brother in particular.
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New York Post

By V.A. Musetto
There are superb performances by Iranian-Canadian Nikohl Boosheri as Atafeh, the more rebellious of the two women, and French-born Sarah Kazemy as the less-privileged Shireen.
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The Hollywood Reporter

By James Greenberg
Overall this is an impressive debut from a filmmaker with something to say and the talent to say it.
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Miami Herald

By Rene Rodriguez
Circumstance, the story of the budding romance between two high school girls, is unlike any adolescent love story you've ever seen: This one takes place in Tehran.
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Boston Globe

By Ty Burr
A rhapsodic erotic romance that takes place in a cultural prison, and it pulses with a defiance that would be mischievous if it weren't so rip-roaringly angry.
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Wall Street Journal

By John Anderson
This is a movie about longing, desire, desperation and the abandonment of principle - quite a collection of themes, all universal.
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Philadelphia Inquirer

By Steven Rea
Circumstance is more interesting for its cultural views than for its insights into love, sex, family angst, and rebellious youth.
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By Mark Jenkins
Circumstance is best during its simpler, more naturalistic moments. In one, Mehran rebuffs a junkie who stumbles into the mosque, only to see that an Islamic hardliner is more compassionate.
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New York Daily News

By Joe Neumaier
Keshavarz's vision is clear and heartfelt, and everyone has an urgency in their eyes.
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65 out of 100
Generally favorable reviews
Metascore® based on all critic reviews. Scores range from 0 to 100, with higher scores indicating more favorable reviews.