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Personal Velocity: Three Portraits Review

Other Critics provided by

Critics scores range from 0 to 100, with higher scores indicating more favorable reviews.

  • 4.0

    out of 100

    Generally favorable reviews
    based on a weighted average of all
    critic review scores.

  • 100

    out of 100

    Entertainment Weekly Owen Gleiberman

    A no-frills docu-Dogma plainness, yet Miller lingers on invisible, nearly psychic nuances, leaping into digressions of memory and desire. She boxes these women's souls right open for us.

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  • 75

    out of 100

    ReelViews James Berardinelli

    The acting is uniformly excellent, with Kyra Sedgwick and Fairuza Balk in particular deserving to be singled out for praise.

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  • 88

    out of 100

    Chicago Sun-Times Roger Ebert

    The actors are gifted at establishing character with just a few well-chosen strokes (as a short story writer must also be able to do). We learn as much about each of these women in half an hour as we learn about most movie characters in two hours.

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  • 90

    out of 100

    Wall Street Journal Joe Morgenstern

    Everything and everyone is observed sharply, succinctly and indelibly.

  • See all Personal Velocity: Three Portraits reviews at

For Families provided by Common Sense Media

Iffy for 16+

Story about life's turning points is not for kids.

What Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that this film depicts very mature themes, including domestic violence, drug use, sexual politics, infidelity, underage sexuality, runaway teens, and child abuse.

  • Families can talk about how each character is influenced by her parents and by her past. If each character develops at her own "personal velocity" what does this mean for her relationships with those around her? This movie only touches on the male characters in each of the women's lives. Why might Miller chose to make these characters two-dimensional?

The good stuff
  • rolemodels true1

    Role models: Strong female characters.

What to watch for
  • violence false5

    Violence: Brief but graphic violence, tense family scenes, reference to child abuse

  • sex false3

    Sex: Sexual references and situations, including teen sex, masturbation and infidelity

  • language false5

    Language: Very strong language

  • consumerism false0

    Consumerism: Not an issue

  • drugsalcoholtobacco false3

    Drinking, drugs and smoking: Smoking and drinking