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Benjamin Millepied's CARMEN is a gritty modern day tale, with a majestic score by Nicholas Britell, and dream-like dance sequences that evoke magic realism. The story follows a young and fiercely independent woman who is forced to flee her home in the Mexican desert following the brutal murder of her mother, another strong and mysterious woman. Carmen survives a terrifying and dangerous illegal border crossing into the US, only to be confronted by a lawless volunteer border guard who cold-bloodedly murders two other immigrants in her group. When the border guard and his patrol partner, Aidan - a Marine with PTSD - become embroiled in a deadly standoff, Carmen and Aidan are forced to escape together. They make their way north toward Los Angeles in search of Carmen's mother's best friend, the mercurial Masilda and owner of La Sombra nightclub - a sanctuary of music and dance. Carmen and Aidan find both solace and their unwavering love for each other in the safety of Masilda's magical refuge, but time is running out as the police hunt closes in.


  • Paul Mescal
  • Elsa Pataky
  • Melissa Barrera
  • Rossy de Palma
  • Nicole da Silva
  • Tara Morice
  • Benedict Hardie
  • Richard Brancatisano
  • Kaan Guldur
  • Pip Edwards

Atom User Reviews

4.0 out of 5


May 2, 2023

Carmen is a wild and unrestrained attempt to empty its director’s entire brain onto the screen, and for that it deserves recognition. But the ultimate result slips too easily between heroic effort and hot mess.

Metacritic review by Barry Hertz
Barry Hertz
The Globe and Mail (Toronto)
Apr 24, 2023

You’ll see lots of movies in 2023, and you’ll forget most of them. But Carmen is so sincerely passionate and peculiar that you’re bound to remember it.

Metacritic review by Mick LaSalle
Mick LaSalle
San Francisco Chronicle
Apr 21, 2023

As in Almodóvar’s films, the heightened use of color and settings is stunning, and the filmmakers are not afraid to express passionate emotion. That creates movie magic.

Metacritic review by Nell Minow
Nell Minow