Never Let Me Go

Carey Mulligan, Keira Knightley, Andrew Garfield

Directed by Mark Romanek
Rolling Stone: star rating
5 3.5
Community: star rating
5 3.5 0
September 15, 2010

Here's a movie you can't get out of your head, a sci-fi horror story with the seductive allure of a classic romance. In filming Kazuo Ishiguro's 2005 novel Never Let Me Go, director Mark Romanek (One Hour Photo) maintains the fragile mystery with a cinematic pull all his own. The children at Hailsham, a British boarding school, are being raised in what appears to be a parallel universe for a special mission they barely understand. One of them, Kathy, played with implosive grit and grace by the astonishing Carey Mulligan, narrates the tale, telling us what happens when she and her friends — Tommy (Andrew Garfield), whom Kathy loves, and Ruth (a quicksilver Keira Knightley), who steals him from her — join the others in the Cottages. I'll say no more, except to praise the visual skill with which Romanek creates this world, the delicate power of Alex Garland's screenplay, and the stellar performances. Garfield (the new Spider-Man) is mesmerizing. His scenes with Mulligan are heartbreakingly poignant. Ignore complaints that these lost children don't earn our sympathy because they don't rage against the machine that created them as expendables. Think instead of how many times you've resigned yourself to a skewed sense of duty promoted by others. The melancholy attached to the impermanence of life and love suffuses this film, making it memorably haunting and hypnotic.

Movie Review Main Next


Community Guidelines »
loading comments

loading comments...


Sort by:
    Read More

    Movie Reviews

    More Reviews »
    Around the Web
    Powered By ZergNet
    Daily Newsletter

    Get the latest RS news in your inbox.

    Sign up to receive the Rolling Stone newsletter and special offers from RS and its
    marketing partners.


    We may use your e-mail address to send you the newsletter and offers that may interest you, on behalf of Rolling Stone and its partners. For more information please read our Privacy Policy.

    Song Stories

    “You Oughta Know”

    Alanis Morissette | 1995

    This blunt, bitter breakup song -- famous for its line "Would she go down on you in a theater?" -- was long rumored to be about Alanis Morissette getting dumped by Full House actor Dave Coulier. But while she never confirmed it was about him (Coulier himself says it is, however), she insisted the song wasn't all about scorn. "By no means is this record just a sexual, angry record," she told Rolling Stone. "The song wasn't written for the sake of revenge. It was written for the sake of release. I'm actually a pretty rational, calm person."

    More Song Stories entries »