Mondays in the Sun


Generally favorable reviews - based on 28 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 20 out of 28
  2. Negative: 1 out of 28

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Critic Reviews

  1. A triumph of quiet realism, a piece of sophisticated, subtle filmmaking that is both thoughtful and thought-provoking.
  2. Reviewed by: Peter Debruge
    Bardem plays the part with all the pent-up animal rage of a young Robert De Niro.
  3. There's a dignity to Mondays in the Sun that manages to keep the film buoyant, helping to keep all the despair at bay.
  4. The performances are relaxed. The open-ended, vignette-like structure of the filmmaking sometimes imitates the movement of weary, life-worn men nursing liquor.
  5. 80
    A tough-but-tender movie driven by perfectly modulated performances, an accomplished script and naturalistic dialogue, all at the service of an oft-told message about overcoming circumstances.
  6. To the patient viewer, the rewards are many, especially Bardem's performance.
  7. Bardem injects a shaggy, compassionate humor throughout, aided by a wry and moving ensemble cast and co-writer/director Fernando León de Aranda's eye for the offbeat.
  8. The story's rambling, meandering style is just right for the melancholy subject being explored, and all the acting is excellent.
  9. The tired and washed-out Spanish town is a fitting backdrop for these men - a place where life moves on around them at an uninspiring pace.
  10. 75
    There's also enough laconic humor, warming camaraderie and hopeful stabs at dignity to keep the story from assuming the glum gunmetal gray of its setting on the coast of northwestern Spain.
  11. Reviewed by: Claudia Puig
    A quintessentially European, methodically paced and intelligent slice of life.
  12. 75
    Loach makes a working metaphor of the old ant-and-grasshopper story, but the film's images are what echo the loudest.
  13. By turns wry, rueful and explosively funny.
  14. This slow, episodic film is held together by the galvanic presence of Javier Bardem.
  15. 70
    Imagine "The Full Monty" without any of the feel-good uplift, and you'd be pretty close to capturing what this bitter -- and often bitterly funny -- film from Spain is all about.
  16. It's a long and relatively underdramatized film, but it's powerfully true.
  17. 67
    The lack of sentimentality and rhetoric is refreshing. It's a grown-up movie about some harsh facts of life.
  18. Tinged with sadness, and despite overstaying its welcome a wee bit, remains an anthem of insurrection, melding its political and humanistic truths into an almost dreamily subversive film tinged with humor and some small hope.
  19. Though buoyed by excellent, unflinching performances, this melancholy drama reflects the dismally monotonous lives of its subjects just a little too well.
  20. 63
    It is intensely involving at the outset, but it faces an insoluble problem: The story, like the characters, has no place to go.
  21. Neorealism it ain't, but if you have a sufficiently long attention span, there are moments of laugh-out-loud absurdity that are worth the price of admission.
  22. Like Fellini's "I vitelloni," this Spanish-French-Italian coproduction is a bittersweet epic about frustration and relative inertia, though with a somewhat older and wiser group of layabouts.
  23. 60
    Not an incredible disappointment, but it could have used some more work in making us remain curious about these characters and what their next course of action would be.
  24. 50
    Fortunately, no one seems to have clued Bardem in on the game plan, and the fierceness and complexity he brings to his role nearly saves Mondays In The Sun.
  25. 50
    Repetitious, uneventful and, in the end, dull.
  26. 40
    Bardem, given the only fully fleshed-out character to play, is a marvel to behold...If only he had found a more soulful, less didactic movie to be plunked down into.
  27. 40
    It's forgivable, and even appropriate, that Mondays itself suffers from a certain lack of definition -- a drifting, repetitive dead-endedness that, at the inconclusive finale, shows no signs of abating.
  28. Midway, Mondays in the Sun becomes as dull as a day with nothing to do.
User Score

Universal acclaim- based on 6 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 5 out of 5
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 5
  3. Negative: 0 out of 5
  1. AaronS.
    Jul 19, 2006
    wow. some moments of powerful dialogue, impeccably acted. yes, it's restrained.