Mixed or average reviews - based on 12 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 4 out of 12
  2. Negative: 1 out of 12
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  1. Reviewed by: Bill Goodykoontz
    Mar 7, 2013
    Dominik Moll downplays the overtly scandalous nature of the story, at least for a while, with a leisurely pace heavy on imagery. He’s made a beautiful-looking film that portends disaster. And disaster arrives, eventually. It just takes its time getting there.
  2. Reviewed by: Ignatiy Vishnevetsky
    Mar 6, 2013
    An eccentric period melodrama with horror-flick overtones. Occasionally incoherent but never dull, the movie brims with weird imagery.
  3. Reviewed by: Kim Newman
    Mar 5, 2013
    An austere, cerebral reading of a book which is unfettered, blood-bolstered and wildly sensationalist — Lewis is the father of torture porn, not a master of subtle chills. It’s interesting and unsettling, with a charismatic lead performance, but nowhere near as shocking as it should be.
  4. Reviewed by: Sheri Linden
    Mar 7, 2013
    Moll's restraint gives way to a tastefully overwrought checklist of Gothic imagery. In the cloistered shadows and the harsh Castilian sun, the visuals are handsome, even as the movie threatens to tip into parody.
  5. Reviewed by: Marc Mohan
    Mar 7, 2013
    Not to be mistaken for a serious treatment of religious fervor or clerical corruption, The Monk is instead a knowingly over-the-top bit of gothic nuttiness.
  6. Reviewed by: Tina Hassannia
    Mar 8, 2013
    Dominik Moll never addresses Matthew Gregory Lewis's original groundbreaking ideas in the film, nor does he rework the material for a contemporary audience.
  7. Reviewed by: Peter Bradshaw
    Mar 5, 2013
    It is not a story of great depth or passion, but there are intriguing and unsettling moments on its well-crafted surface.
  8. Reviewed by: Bernard Besserglik
    Mar 5, 2013
    Ultimately the movie disappoints, falling between two stools and failing to convince either as spectacle or as a fable about religious obsession.
  9. Reviewed by: Manohla Dargis
    Mar 7, 2013
    Mr. Moll, whose films include “With a Friend Like Harry...,” somewhat heroically manages to keep the story’s manifold twists from becoming knotted, but he’s less adept at setting up the characters and their relationships and especially the depth and significance of their faith.
  10. Reviewed by: Michael Atkinson
    Mar 5, 2013
    The sense of old-school piety as lust under inhuman pressure is juicy and polished, if a little earnest about spiritual conflict and too entranced with its LOTR-ish medieval trappings. In fact, as monksploitation goes, Dominik Moll’s film is sober and straight when it should be crazy and hot-blooded.
  11. Reviewed by: Matt Glasby
    Mar 5, 2013
    Director Dominik Moll makes some odd style choices – like Looney Tunes-style ‘iris wipes’ – and it’s a while before Cassel fully embraces his dark side, yet his customary charisma is what seals The Monk’s redemption.
  12. Mar 5, 2013
    The finale, in which godly rites are juxtaposed against the vilest of sins, builds to an unholy power.
User Score

No user score yet- Awaiting 2 more ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 1 out of 1
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 1
  3. Negative: 0 out of 1
  1. Mar 10, 2013
    In the 17th century Spain, a baby is abandoned on the steps of a monastery and grows up a devoted priest and inspirational speaker (!)…until aIn the 17th century Spain, a baby is abandoned on the steps of a monastery and grows up a devoted priest and inspirational speaker (!)…until a mysterious visitor changes everything. With menacing music, portentous direction and slow pacing, this dark French tale (yes, subtitles) ominously promises dread and shock. Promises. Promises. While we kept getting led on, expecting the worst, the path is bewildering and dumbly dense. A threatening promise with a disappointing payoff. Full Review »