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The story follows Laura (Penélope Cruz), a Spanish woman living in Buenos Aires, who returns with her teenage daughter Irene and young son to her hometown outside Madrid for a family wedding. However, the trip is upset by unexpected criminal events that bring past secrets out into the open.
When Irene is kidnapped and Laura is forced to come up with ransom money without involving the authorities, the whole family becomes part of the investigation.It is later revealed that Laura's former lover is her daughter's real father and the kidnapper was her own family member.
Penélope Cruz as Laura, Mariana and Ana's sister, Alejandro's wife, Irene's mother and Antonio's daughter
On review aggregator website Rotten Tomatoes, the film holds an approval rating of 77% based on 113 reviews, and an average rating of 6.2/10. The Critics Consensus says: "Everybody Knows is somewhat less than the sum of its parts despite the efforts of an outstanding cast - and a disappointing step back for writer-director Asghar Farhadi". On the aggregator Metacritic, the film has a weighted average score of 68 out of 100, based on 16 critics, indicating "generally favorable reviews".
Writing for The A.V. Club, A. A. Dowd gave the film a B rating, saying that "Javier Bardem and Penélope Cruz help break Cannes' opening-night curse". Australian film site This Is Film similarly awarded the film a positive review, with contributing critic Peter Gray stating it was "an absorbing, expertly-crafted thriller that continually holds your emotions at ransom".
The film was nominated in eight categories at the 33rd Goya Awards: Best Film, Best Director, Best Actor, Best Actress, Best Supporting Actor, Best Original Screenplay, Best Editing, and Best Original Song.