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94

Universal acclaim - based on 43 Critics What's this?

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6.9

Generally favorable reviews- based on 67 Ratings

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  • Starring: , , , , , , , ,
  • Summary: Mr. Turner explores the last quarter century of the life of the great if eccentric British painter J.M.W. Turner (Timothy Spall). Profoundly affected by the death of his father, loved by a housekeeper he takes for granted and occasionally exploits sexually, he forms a close relationship withMr. Turner explores the last quarter century of the life of the great if eccentric British painter J.M.W. Turner (Timothy Spall). Profoundly affected by the death of his father, loved by a housekeeper he takes for granted and occasionally exploits sexually, he forms a close relationship with a seaside landlady with whom he eventually lives incognito in Chelsea, where he dies. Throughout this, he travels, paints, stays with the country aristocracy, visits brothels, is a popular if anarchic member of the Royal Academy of Arts, has himself strapped to the mast of a ship so that he can paint a snowstorm, and is both celebrated and reviled by the public and by royalty. Expand
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 42 out of 43
  2. Negative: 0 out of 43
  1. Reviewed by: Dana Stevens
    Dec 18, 2014
    100
    Mr. Turner does resemble "Topsy-Turvy" in its meticulous yet vibrant recreation of the past and its ever-expanding thematic amplitude. This is a movie not only about one particular artist, but about art as both a field of human endeavor and an object of shifting cultural and economic value.
  2. Reviewed by: Liam Lacey
    Dec 23, 2014
    100
    Performances are still the heart of Leigh’s work, and at the heart of this film is an extraordinary performance by Leigh’s frequent collaborator, the British actor Timothy Spall.
  3. Reviewed by: Steven Rea
    Feb 2, 2015
    100
    Mr. Turner is no barrel of laughs. It's a barrel of life - an extraordinary one.
  4. Reviewed by: Lawrence Toppman
    Mar 1, 2015
    91
    Relaxed editing and well-researched set and costumes give us a firm feeling of the period, and Dick Pope (who has worked with Leigh 10 times) excels. It’s a cliche to say a cinematographer does painterly work, but Pope suffuses the screen with light in the way Turner did his canvases.
  5. Reviewed by: Keith Phipps
    Dec 17, 2014
    90
    Leigh’s generous approach to capturing the fullness of Turner’s life, through unhurried rhythms and scenes, makes Mr. Turner memorable.
  6. Reviewed by: Peter Travers
    Dec 17, 2014
    88
    Leigh embraces the contradictions in Turner. And in tandem with cinematographer Dick Pope, a master of light, he shows us the world as Turner sees it. The effect is harsh and ravishing. Leigh's beauty of a movie touches the heart not by sentimental gush but by the amplitude of its art.​
  7. Reviewed by: Rex Reed
    Dec 17, 2014
    50
    Mr. Spall, winner of the Cannes and New York Film Critics Circle best-actor awards, does his best to bring an unpleasant character to life — grunting and snorting like a boar ready to charge, spitting on his canvases and dragging around with a constant wince like a fat baby with colic. With all due respect, he’s too repulsive to watch for 150 minutes.

See all 43 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 11 out of 21
  2. Negative: 8 out of 21
  1. Jan 8, 2015
    10
    Mr. Turner could be Mike Leigh's (71) most accomplished work in a remarkable career where every film from Secrets & Lies, Vera Drake toMr. Turner could be Mike Leigh's (71) most accomplished work in a remarkable career where every film from Secrets & Lies, Vera Drake to Another Year have been staggering humanist masterpieces.
    Visually Mr Turner is Leigh's most gorgeous film, filling the screen with scenic beauty and human warmth.
    Mr. Turner also contains some of Leigh's best tightly controlled and masterfully executed drama.
    Timothy Spall too as Turner is simply a magnificent dominating screen presence, bringing years and years of acting experience to a role that lends such philosophical and emotional weight.
    Awards season beckons!
    Expand
  2. Feb 7, 2015
    10
    This is one of the best films I have ever seen. Timothy Spall is outstanding in the role of Turner. The film reeks of authenticity and isThis is one of the best films I have ever seen. Timothy Spall is outstanding in the role of Turner. The film reeks of authenticity and is beautifully paced reflecting the time in which it is set. It paints a picture of a real person, not some artificially spruced up polished character. Turner was by all accounts as Spall plays him, taciturn, gruff and direct. It is a reflection on the state of the Oscars that this performance has not been recognized as worthy of contention. A great film, a great director in Mike Leigh and a great actor in Spall my opinion. Expand
  3. Dec 19, 2014
    8
    Opening inauspiciously, Mr. Turner threatens to give credence to the phrase ‘worthy but dull’. As the film goes on, though, it slowly drawsOpening inauspiciously, Mr. Turner threatens to give credence to the phrase ‘worthy but dull’. As the film goes on, though, it slowly draws you in to the richness of its characters and period. Leisurely paced, beautifully designed and, as with all Mike Leigh’s best films, elevated by some wonderful performances from many of his regular collaborators. Timothy Spall plays the famed painter in the last years of his life as an unsympathetic crude man and is totally believable grunting and scowling his way through the film. Nevertheless, he is all but eclipsed by two women in the cast. Dorothy Atkinson is outstanding as his doting housekeeper, and Marion Bailey is equally fine as the woman who became his last mistress. He meets her during one of his stays at her lodgings in Margate, the town of inspiration for much of his greatest work.
    Throughout its 150 minutes, director Mike Leigh pays exquisite attention to detail and the look of the film is so precise that you can almost smell and feel the period. The costumes are beautiful renditions of the time but have an authentic lived in look, and the hair and make- up is also of a high standard. Only the music disappoints as it is far to glum and depressing. Admittedly the film is not a barrel of laughs, but there is enough occasional humour peppered within the screenplay to have afforded a less melancholic score from composer Gary Yershon.
    Expand
  4. Mar 10, 2015
    7
    Timothy Spall crying in this movie is the funniest thing I've ever seen.
    The story to Mr. Turner is about a British painter J.M.W. Turner
    Timothy Spall crying in this movie is the funniest thing I've ever seen.
    The story to Mr. Turner is about a British painter J.M.W. Turner (1775-1851). Profoundly affected by the death of his father, loved by a housekeeper he takes for granted and occasionally exploits sexually, he forms a close relationship with a seaside landlady with whom he eventually lives incognito in Chelsea, where he dies. Throughout this, he travels, paints, stays with the country aristocracy, visits brothels, is a popular if anarchic member of the Royal Academy of Arts, has himself strapped to the mast of a ship so that he can paint a snowstorm, and is both celebrated and reviled by the public and by royalty.
    Let me just start off by saying that this movie isn't for everyone, I mean some people are going to love the clear and breathtaking style of the movie and the story, but some people may think that this movie is boring or just flat out dull, which I fine with that because every has a opinion. When I finished watched this movie I didn't know what to think of it, until I though it through over night and all my thoughts for the movie came together, and my overall thought is... it's a okay movie.
    I have seen Timothy Spall in many roles in the best, but not like this one, because he doesn't just play a character, he played this role like if it was really him. I heard some Oscar buzz about his performance in this movie if he dose get nominated in this movie I will be very happy, but if he doesn't well the Oscars can go f**k itself.
    The directing in this movie is just the best example for young film markers out there to make a beautiful peace of art that glues you in to it's movie, and that's Mike Leigh for you.
    The Cinematography and the Art direction in this movie is so top notch and so beautiful to look at, that the movie takes a risk and allows the cinematography to stink it's teeth into the atmosphere and let the beautiful ways of life to over the screen and to me that's art.
    The movie at times can be boring and pretty slow. If I was the editor for this movie I would have edited some parts out, where nothing really happens or character's doing and being really uninteresting things, and that's my other problem with the film it's character's. I never found them interesting at all they kind of dragged the movie down for me.
    Mr. Turner isn't a movie that you put on to have a good time with your drunk friends on a Saturday night, no this is a movie for people who only look for story, acting and peaceful shots of the world, and this movie is like a love letter to those kind of people.
    Expand
  5. Dec 31, 2014
    4
    After spending much of the film wandering aimlessly, Timothy Spall's performance as Mr. Turner is comprised largely of mumbling and phlegmyAfter spending much of the film wandering aimlessly, Timothy Spall's performance as Mr. Turner is comprised largely of mumbling and phlegmy grunts. To me, the appeal is very non-existent. "Do as you wish, view as you wish." Expand
  6. Dec 28, 2014
    1
    A beautifully crafted,dismal, degrading and hugely disappointing descent into a narrow depiction of a small slice of Turner's life. The filmA beautifully crafted,dismal, degrading and hugely disappointing descent into a narrow depiction of a small slice of Turner's life. The film hardly relates to his painting process or what it meant and felt to him at all, in fact it gives the impression that his art was just something he did as an occupation and something wholly inconsequential. Instead it focused entirely on every bit of negativity of his life and character, spiced with a couple of well known incidents handled in a halfhearted manner in an effort at convincing us that this is still the man we came to see. The non-existing story line rambles on at the later part of his life and is more a socio-cultural portrait of the environment he lived in, filled with sickly, ugly pathological men and women, living in stuffy repressed times, stumbling on to their shabby graves. The film does not touch upon his childhood or background, his growth and passion for art, the technicalities and extraordinary development of his work, and the undoubtedly ecstatic states he must have derived from the fulfilling moments of his efforts. Absolutely nothing to show us and touch us about what drove and inspired the man. Nothing about the flight, the journey, the adventure. Given that he was such a profound artist and his visual understanding was a century before his time, it is mind boggling that everything that truly matters about him has been sidelined and that instead we are served a mean and mediocre extract of the least interesting little parts of this genius's life and personality. What a let down, no wonder the 'top critics' love it. The filming, lighting, ambiance and visuals are flawless and duly equaled by a wonderful cast of great actors... What a wasted opportunity! What a perverse disappointment. Expand
  7. Feb 6, 2015
    0
    My friend and I both thought it terrible terrible: from inaudible parts and not understanding some British terminology, to an overly longMy friend and I both thought it terrible terrible: from inaudible parts and not understanding some British terminology, to an overly long movie with no story. It was unbelievably the worst movie we have ever seen and we view two movies a week. We could not wait for it to end. Expand

See all 21 User Reviews

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