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Maybe Joaquin Phoenix is “making absolutely the right choice” by supposedly abandoning his acting career, said Alonso Duralde in MSNBC.com. In Two Lovers (click here for the trailer), Phoenix is completely unconvincing as a depressed 30-something trying to get over a tough breakup while living with his parents in Brighton Beach, Brooklyn.

Actually, “has bad-rapper Joaquin Phoenix always been something of a sweet nebbish and we just didn’t know it?” said Joshua Rothkopf in Time Out New York. Two Lovers is “the year’s first serious American movie,” and Phoenix “excels like never before.”

That’s a bit of a stretch, said J. Hoberman in The Village Voice. “The performers are attractive if unconvincing. The auteur's worldview is unappealing yet authentically his.” But Two Lovers is “touching in its absurdity.”