User Score
8.5

Universal acclaim- based on 73 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 67 out of 73
  2. Negative: 3 out of 73
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  1. FrankO.
    Jan 25, 2006
    10
    A great movie...seen it twice, once in theatre and once on television; enjoyed it just as much 2nd time, Ejiofor and Tautou were very good..kept my interest as to what was happening..good plot.
  2. ShivvahnaR.
    Apr 23, 2006
    9
    Great film that tackles the issues of illegal immagiants in a system that is used and abused by the corrupt. Beautiful performances which could have turned Sterotypical however became three dimensional characters through the wounderful direction of Frears. A classic in the making.
  3. AlanB.
    Mar 31, 2004
    9
    One of the ten best films of 2003. Chiwetel Ejiofor offers perhaps the best male performance of the year. A touching, sharply crafted story.
  4. Pat
    Sep 26, 2006
    6
    Great story, though the presentation is blunted. [***SPOILERS***]The cramming of most of Okwe's character development into the last 30 seconds of the film didn't work for me. There's an amazing tour de force in the middle of the film when an unexpected organ donor is found, but then the film proceeds to go back to sleep.
  5. ChadS.
    Jun 22, 2004
    7
    "Dirty Pretty Things" reminded me of John Sayles' "The Brother from Another Planet", from the standpoint of a black actor, who doesn't portray a criminal as the lead, is directed by a white male in an English-speaking film. The love between Okwe (Chiwetel Ejiofor) and Senay (Audrey Tautou) is Mulder and Scully-like; so understated, and so transparent. The black market organs was "Dirty Pretty Things" reminded me of John Sayles' "The Brother from Another Planet", from the standpoint of a black actor, who doesn't portray a criminal as the lead, is directed by a white male in an English-speaking film. The love between Okwe (Chiwetel Ejiofor) and Senay (Audrey Tautou) is Mulder and Scully-like; so understated, and so transparent. The black market organs was a necessary component to the screenplay, or else this film would've never been financed. We still get our social commentary and nimble character studies. Frears gets to say what he wants to say despite the somewhat hokey genre elements of the thriller. Expand
  6. GaborA.
    Jun 9, 2004
    7
    A well made movie about a fresh and newer issue. Not superb at any level but a nice breather in a stale period of hollywood film making.
  7. JaneH.
    Aug 2, 2003
    7
    If grading on a curve with the rest of the mostly lamentable films this summer, this would be an 11. However, viewed solely on its own merits, it's well-made and worthy of 107 minutes of your time. Many reviews have classified Things as a thriller, but I'd caution you that it's about as much a thriller as Grapes of Wrath. The 'twist' at the end feels formulaic and If grading on a curve with the rest of the mostly lamentable films this summer, this would be an 11. However, viewed solely on its own merits, it's well-made and worthy of 107 minutes of your time. Many reviews have classified Things as a thriller, but I'd caution you that it's about as much a thriller as Grapes of Wrath. The 'twist' at the end feels formulaic and somewhat a betrayal of the more realistic challenges and choices that have confronted the sympathetic, honorable, and well-played hero. Expand
  8. SteveM.
    Aug 2, 2003
    10
    Refreshingly original. How many films accurately portray the tribulations of illegal immigrants who live outside the laws of the middle class? "If you live outside the law, you must be honest..." - Bob Dylan
  9. BrianM.
    Jul 29, 2003
    10
    Although only released in the US in July '03, I had the advantage of seeing this fine movie in the UK last year and thought at the time that it was the best British movie I'd seen all year. Although it's set in the world that tourists inhabit, the film avoids all the standard tourist haunts. You don't see Westminster Abbey or Big Ben or Buckingham Palace; instead you Although only released in the US in July '03, I had the advantage of seeing this fine movie in the UK last year and thought at the time that it was the best British movie I'd seen all year. Although it's set in the world that tourists inhabit, the film avoids all the standard tourist haunts. You don't see Westminster Abbey or Big Ben or Buckingham Palace; instead you see the dirty back streets and the invisible people that keep the tourist industry running. These are the people who hold down three jobs - even though they don't have a work permit - and who are ripped off for accommodation and the normal aspects of life that the rest of us take for granted. They are our underclass. Just as we don't need to know that worms moving underground assist the turning of the earth and help our garden plants to flower, so this underclass of illegal immigrants maintain an economy that brings many millions of dollars and euros into the British economy. Ejiofor is magnificent. He has a powerful screen presence and acts authoritively throughout the movie. His character's determination to do what is morally right is beautifully twisted at the end to become what is morally justifiable. And as an audience, we go along with it because our sympathy stays throughout with the heroes of this fine thriller. And thriller it is, despite the possible romantic sub-plot. It has a range of "baddies" from an exploitative employer-come-rapist, through unpleasant thugs of immigration officials, to a splendidly nasty hotel manager who has his finger in every possible scam. Go to this movie with an open mind. Don't expect to see the images you expect of England. Be prepared to learn to like and be carried along by people that we normally wouldn't want to know, because normally they're invisible. We get them to drive us around, carry our luggage, make up our beds. And sometimes, we may even expect them to give up more than we could ever know, just to have the freedom to live in a way that we take for granted. Expand
  10. MattP.
    Aug 18, 2003
    8
    Beautifully disturbing.
  11. JustSomeDood
    Aug 2, 2003
    9
    Never before have I wanted so much for two leads to hook up...an incredibly gifted ensemble (overall, quite the sexy cast, too) with Ejiofor as the break-out star. His acting is nothing short of magnificent. See this film if only to study his expressive face.
  12. RickJ.G.
    Aug 25, 2003
    10
    Hopefully, this will get a shot at some wider distribution in the coming weeks between the summer and holiday seasons. What the hell is anybody going to watch in theatres between now and the releases of the next Matrix and Lord of the Rings movies? That said, this was incredibly enjoyable film to watch, even though much of it is anything but pretty to see. It really hits you in the gut, Hopefully, this will get a shot at some wider distribution in the coming weeks between the summer and holiday seasons. What the hell is anybody going to watch in theatres between now and the releases of the next Matrix and Lord of the Rings movies? That said, this was incredibly enjoyable film to watch, even though much of it is anything but pretty to see. It really hits you in the gut, and you'll see what me if you see it. I was fascinated with all of the main characters, who happen to be a group of immigrants, both legal and illegal, who work in the underground and tourist economies in London. I really liked Ejiofor's performance, which is the best in the film, with Lopez running a close second. I was surprised to see Tautou pull off playing a Turkish immigrant, although I have no idea if her accent would be the least bit convincing to a Turk. This movie's portrayal of the underground economy of London should resonate with all Americans because, just like Britain, our country would cease to function without the labor of immigrants, both legal and illegal. I live in the tourist dependant city of Seattle. It would be almost impossible to get a cab in downtown, or the hotels wouldn't be staffed, or downtown office towers would never get cleaned, without immigrant laborers doing the work. This movie is definitely a must see, but it is not for the squeamish. Expand
  13. DomS.
    Aug 7, 2003
    8
    The pace, although very slow at times, allows the audience to really search for the pain in Okwe. This is a good thing, as the actor understands his character enough to create an illusion over an illusion over an illusion. This "thriller" is so subtle that hours after the credits roll, vital themes, ambience, and attitudes creep into your head. There's nothing more gratifying or The pace, although very slow at times, allows the audience to really search for the pain in Okwe. This is a good thing, as the actor understands his character enough to create an illusion over an illusion over an illusion. This "thriller" is so subtle that hours after the credits roll, vital themes, ambience, and attitudes creep into your head. There's nothing more gratifying or intriguing than that in a film. Expand
  14. JerryH.
    Jul 24, 2003
    8
    This is a very good film. Engaging characters you actually care about, a new interesting look at london and its people along with a story that moves. True the ending might be a "realistic", but any smart viewer would know the reality and take the ending as the ending to a smart, thrilling ride.
  15. DennisW.
    Sep 6, 2003
    10
    I have never voted for a movie before. However, this movie is not only moving by its storyline...the acting, the casting...the directing are absolutely worth seeing. Oh, another thing, you definately do not want it to end...you want to know more. An excellent director told me one time that all the great performances (movie, stage, musical) will leave the audience wanting a little more. I have never voted for a movie before. However, this movie is not only moving by its storyline...the acting, the casting...the directing are absolutely worth seeing. Oh, another thing, you definately do not want it to end...you want to know more. An excellent director told me one time that all the great performances (movie, stage, musical) will leave the audience wanting a little more. This movie does exactly that! Expand
  16. KevinJ.
    Jul 24, 2003
    0
    Sucked.
  17. MarcK.
    Sep 11, 2003
    9
    Wow! Quite a surprise. Ejiofor is magnificent, and I still have a crush on Audrey Tautou from Amelie. There might be better films in the US this year, but there won't be too many. Along with "Bend It Like Beckham", it seems all my favorite movies this year were released in Britain LAST year!
  18. DanB.
    Sep 25, 2003
    5
    Can someone explain to me why Turkish girl (Amelie dudette) is forced to be a refugee from Turkey when Turkey is almost a member of the EU and isn't really such a bad place to live, relatively speaking? This movie doesn't explain it. Also can someone tell me why the main character, a doctor who studied in NY and is a surpemely intelligent and stoic dude, doesn't find people Can someone explain to me why Turkish girl (Amelie dudette) is forced to be a refugee from Turkey when Turkey is almost a member of the EU and isn't really such a bad place to live, relatively speaking? This movie doesn't explain it. Also can someone tell me why the main character, a doctor who studied in NY and is a surpemely intelligent and stoic dude, doesn't find people in NY to help him? Being such a find lad and a good surgeon, he must have made some friends or connections in NY... but instead he ends up marooned in London? This film is heavy on cheese, which would be ok except it's kinda boring too. Expand
  19. SteveD.
    Sep 5, 2003
    9
    Fantastic movie & story. Great cast. Powerful acting. Worth seeing at least once...I'll watch it again on DVD. Very captivating experience. Steve
  20. BrianB.
    Sep 18, 2003
    9
    I loved this film! I have worked with refugees, and it captured the hope and frustation of their plight. The acting is supurb, and it has a great mixture of laughter and tears.
  21. DaveD.
    Aug 16, 2003
    1
    This movie was horrible. Slow, bad acting, ridiculous characters, overloaded with political statements about healthcare and immigration. Do not see it. Better bets are Swimming Pool and Spellbound.
  22. TimK.
    Nov 12, 2003
    8
    Gritty depiction of refugees. Having known people who have had to deal with arriving in the UK a lot rings true to me. (And to understand why people might become refugees from Turkey talk to any Kurd for a few minutes...)
  23. MichaelD.
    Nov 11, 2003
    8
    Interesting, well written, well produced, well acted....it was, well, really good!
  24. Triniman
    Oct 16, 2003
    8
    Interesting thriller-drama that keeps you watching. Free of Hollywood slickness and doesn't rely on known actors. Well-acted, with subtle love tension between the two main characters that we can all relate to. Good scuzzy supporting cast. Not a great film, but one of the best films showing right now.
  25. TimW.
    Mar 29, 2004
    9
    Excellent film!!! Great performances and direction.
  26. AlanB.
    Mar 31, 2004
    9
    One of the ten best films of 2003. Chiwetel Ejiofor offers perhaps the best male performance of the year. A touching, sharply crafted story.
  27. LarryS.
    Apr 4, 2004
    10
    An excellent movie. The casting and acting is outstanding. Nice to see Tatou pull off an excellent performance that is so different from her role as Amelie.
  28. GregT.
    Mar 30, 2004
    4
    I fell asleep while watching the DVD of this movie, because it was plodding and disjointed and unfocused, not because I was particularly sleepy. I don't understand what all the hype is about.
  29. Petrol
    Mar 3, 2004
    8
    Excellent!
  30. MarkD.
    May 16, 2004
    3
    Slow, illogical, and generally boring. A turkey.
  31. RobS.
    Feb 11, 2005
    10
    Amaziing cast that perfectly executed an Acadamy Award nominated screen play. This type of movie should be a blockbuster, period!
Metascore
78

Generally favorable reviews - based on 35 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 31 out of 35
  2. Negative: 0 out of 35
  1. 100
    The grandest and most vigorous movie he's (Frears) made in at least a decade. Like Okwe himself, it rises above its limitations, and it's just a little bit bigger than the landscape around it.
  2. 88
    It's a dark and revealing movie, and, while the ending may not be upbeat enough for those expecting mainstream fare, it offers a measure of hope and a catharsis.
  3. 100
    This is a film that insinuates itself deeply into our awareness. It's that rare pulp story with something on its mind, an unnerving, socially conscious thriller with a killer sense of narrative drive.