100

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.
Full Review
91

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.
Full Review
88

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.
Full Review
80

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.
Full Review
75

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.
Full Review
75

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.
Full Review
70

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.
Full Review
63

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.
Full Review
60

NPR

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.
Full Review
60

New York Daily News

By Joe Neumaier
Keshavarz's vision is clear and heartfelt, and everyone has an urgency in their eyes.
Full Review
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.