Sometimes implausible and always engrossing, "Phoenix" takes us to postwar Berlin, a shell of a city where concentration camp survivor Nelly is a shell of herself.
David Lewis, San Francisco Chronicle, 2015-08-20
You may not buy all the story twists, but perhaps the script is not meant to be taken literally.
John Hartl, Seattle Times, 2015-08-13
There is intrigue. There is suspense. Guilt -- a man's guilt, a nation's -- hangs heavy in the air.
Steven Rea, Philadelphia Inquirer, 2015-08-12
Provocative, profoundly moving and the acting is virtuosic.
John Anderson, Newsday, 2015-08-07
Like its heroine, "Phoenix" speaks low but with bitter clarity.
Ty Burr, Boston Globe, 2015-08-06
Hoss is perfect in a challenging role, a woman trying to recover bits of the person she once was, but having to do so in service to a greedy scheme that robs her of the very identity she is trying to recover.
Bill Goodykoontz, Arizona Republic, 2015-08-06
"Phoenix" takes its time and leaves us guessing until the final electrifying scene.
Stephanie Merry, Washington Post, 2015-08-06
The movie isn't a thriller, but it still generates a strange sort of emotional suspense - an incredibly intense drama that makes you hold your breath.
Rene Rodriguez, Miami Herald, 2015-08-06
"Phoenix" is an intoxicating witches' brew, equal parts melodrama and moral parable, that audaciously mixes diverse elements to compelling, disturbing effect.
Kenneth Turan, Los Angeles Times, 2015-07-30
Beautiful and mysteriously powerful from beginning to end.
Joe Morgenstern, Wall Street Journal, 2015-07-30
The cinematic equivalent of a page-turner, no more and no less.
Richard Brody, New Yorker, 2015-07-27
A haunting, morbidly romantic melodrama with obvious links to Vertigo, but from a reverse angle.
David Edelstein, New York Magazine/Vulture, 2015-07-24
There's no point in explaining where all of this goes. But Petzold is in command of it.
Wesley Morris, Grantland, 2015-07-24
True to genre and to the history it peels back, Phoenix boldly offers us a war without heroes, only ghosts of broken people moving through a broken world, searching in vain for their former selves.
Ella Taylor, NPR, 2015-07-23
Mr. Petzold has made a suave and suspenseful entertainment that doesn't seem entirely sure that it wants to be - or is able to be - more.
A.O. Scott, New York Times, 2015-07-23
The plot is just implausible enough to keep the film from greatness, but director Christian Petzold (Barbara) stirs up a powder-keg metaphor about rebuilding after war.
Joe McGovern, Entertainment Weekly, 2015-07-23
German director Christian Petzold has come up with a splendid work of mourning and melodrama in "Phoenix."
Farran Smith Nehme, New York Post, 2015-07-23
So beautifully made that it comes close to perfect.
Stephanie Zacharek, Village Voice, 2015-07-21
Borrows tension, look and conventions from postwar film noir, and the Hitchcockian doubles, reversals and atmosphere of suspicion unbalance expectations of which character (if either) is cat or mouse.
Nathalie Atkinson, Globe and Mail, 2015-05-08
A noir-ish and complex emotional thriller.
Cath Clarke, Time Out, 2015-05-05