It's worth seeking out... as both a portrait of a prison program few are aware of and a powerful character study.
The story is grounded in a documentary-like realism that doesn't sugar-coat the dangers of the inmates, or the desperation of their lives.
Within no more than a minute of screen time, we know that director Laure de Clermont-Tonnerre has authority and vision, and that we are watching a good movie.
San Francisco Chronicle
This debut feature by Laure de Clermont-Tonnerre opens strong, grows even stronger and, avoiding almost every trap, fulfills its abundant promise.
Wall Street Journal
This film was developed at Robert Redford's Sundance Institute lab for emerging talent; he certainly found one in French actress Laure de Clermont-Tonnerre, here making an impressive feature directorial debut.
A striking debut. Each time you think you have this movie pegged, it'll knock you for a loop.
The Mustang wears its heart on its sleeve: it's a film about the impossibility of rehabilitation without empathy or compassion, and how the American prison system has become a source of cheap labour...
It's one of the best films you've never heard of ... and one of the best films of the year