On review aggregator website Rotten Tomatoes, the film holds an approval rating of 100% based on 14 reviews, with a weighted average of 8.5/10. On Metacritic, the film has a weighted average score of 87 out of 100, based on 4 critics, indicating "universal acclaim".
The four lead actresses shared the best actress award and the film earned a special mention for its script at the 2015 Locarno Film Festival. The film was voted the third best Japanese film of 2015 in the Kinema Junpo poll of critics. Upon its release in the United States, Richard Brody of The New Yorker wrote that "Hamaguchi is a genius of scene construction, turning the fierce poetry of painfully revealing and pugnaciously wounding dialogue into powerful drama that’s sustained by a seemingly spontaneous yet analytically precise visual architecture". He selected the film as one of the 10 best of 2016, and later as the best Japanese film of the 21st century. Vadim Rizov also held the latter opinion, saying, "The logline is that it’s a drama about five Japanese women charting their friendship, using duration to build character depth, and t