Mixed or average reviews - based on 24 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 11 out of 24
  2. Negative: 2 out of 24
  1. Old-fashioned moviemaking at its best.
  2. 90
    Its intelligent characterizations make it one of the best movies I've seen this year.
  3. 75
    The film is a soapy melodrama set from about 1936 to 1946 and done with style.
  4. The film's power grows from its dark-toned portrayal of the World War II era and from its evocative use of flashbacks, which show more interest in the characters' emotional lives than in story devices like surprise and suspense.
  5. 75
    Surely it’s a credit to this luminous cast that the characters can behave in such despicable ways yet still command one’s sympathy.
  6. Perhaps The Heart of Me's greatest success is the way it avoids turning any of its characters into villains. They all act badly at times, but we feel for them just the same; they never lose our sympathy. Weepy or not, that's an accomplishment any kind of film can feel proud of.
  7. Reviewed by: Derek Elley
    Solidly entertaining for those who like their dialogue crisp and with a main verb in every sentence.
  8. In their own precisely posed ways, the drenched players in The Heart of Me are as compelling as those in any less decorum-bound love triangle.
  9. 63
    A handsome but lightweight period piece about passions indulged and repressed, and the calamitous outcomes that result from both courses.
  10. It has the feel of those romantic movies of the '40s that no one thinks are made anymore.
  11. 63
    The first half of The Heart of Me is just that sort of hoot. You know where it's all headed, and you can't wait for it to get there, as the cheap, cruel ironies pile up almost farcically.
  12. 60
    Their dilemmas are the stuff of dozens of Masterpiece Theater productions, but they're brought to life with a vividness that defies changing mores and cuts to the heart of the ways people justify hurting each other in the name of love.
  13. If you want to drift through emotional turmoil and a harrowing loss of security both personal and national, this project may provide some soggy satisfaction.
  14. 50
    There's heart but not much heat in this film version of "The Echoing Grove."
  15. Reviewed by: Carla Meyer
    Rote drama better suited for British television than theaters.
  16. 50
    It’s all veddy stiff-upper-lip -– this is romance from a masochist’s point of view -– and the intimacy of the emotions often feels cramped.
  17. 50
    A clean, tasteful drama (sex scenes aside) that's designed to attract Anglophiles who can't resist green lawns, falling leaves, precise diction, and a clean sound mix.
  18. 50
    Madeleine's such a cold bitch that the adulterous lovers' anguished scruples scan like inert masochism.
  19. 42
    By a certain point The Heart of Me becomes pointlessly depressing and unlikable without offering insight.
  20. O'Sullivan's movie could easily have been made 60 years ago. This is not intended as a compliment.
  21. Reviewed by: Scott Foundas
    While director Thaddeus O'Sullivan has some interesting visual ideas -- his period London is a heavily aestheticized, matte-painted dreamscape -- he never makes an emotional connection to the material the way he did in his fine Irish gangland drama, “Nothing Personal.”
  22. The end product suggests tepid, bottom-drawer Merchant-Ivory in which the emotions rarely catch fire.
  23. 25
    Dull and creaky soap opera.
  24. 10
    Terribly tragic, terribly romantic and, ultimately, terribly, terribly dull.

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