Generally favorable reviews - based on 33 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 27 out of 33
  2. Negative: 0 out of 33
  1. The year's best romantic drama.
  2. 90
    Curran, his actors and screenwriter Ron Nyswaner have made an old-fashioned melodramatic epic that, as steeped as it is in the language and tradition of old movies, is never less than thrummingly alive.
  3. Acted with such venomous restraint that it hurts to watch.
  4. The Painted Veil is rich with history and heartbreak. It's stirring stuff.
  5. Reviewed by: Claudia Puig
    The Painted Veil is a welcome addition to the slate of holiday movies, particularly for those drawn to intriguing tales of multi-dimensional characters in exotic settings.
  6. Reviewed by: Ethan Alter
    If The Painted Veil ultimately lacks some of the novelty and ambition of the year's best pictures, it still ranks as one of 2006's quiet gems.
  7. The always surprising Watts creates a woman at once contemporary and retro. And Norton, as a producer as well as star, concedes enough space for Schreiber and the effortlessly fascinating Jones to earn their own spotlights.
  8. 83
    No one has caught the pride, remorse and pain of an unloved and possibly unlovable husband better than Edward Norton in The Painted Veil.
User Score

Universal acclaim- based on 110 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 44 out of 49
  2. Negative: 3 out of 49
  1. Jun 18, 2014
    This film certainly has a lot going for it. First off, the cinematography is gorgeous. Every shot is more beautiful than the next, thanks in large to the beautiful and picturesque scenery. The acting from leads Edward Norton and Naomi Watts is top-notch and their chemistry is very good with one another. Toby Jones also has a good supporting role here. For all of them, they got to play very well developed and multi-faceted characters, a bonus for them and a key element to what makes this one a success, as the script is very well done. In addition, the love story is well done. I am not typically overly into romantic films, but this one is definitely different as the romance feels real and not cheesy at all. All of these elements also feel realistic for the time period depicted and really makes it feel like an authentic portrayal of a man and a wife who are going through troubled times with one another. Finally, the film is very interesting, it never really failed to have my interest. Yes, it is slow and methodic, but it is a gorgeous film to watch and take in and never really heads towards "boring" for me. Overall, "The Painted Veil" is a very well done period piece that is almost melodic in its portrayal of this love story. Full Review »
  2. Mar 6, 2014
    Beautiful and tragic love story. Plot is quite simple but emotionally really complex. I also love the gloomy atmosphere and music through the film. Definitely one of my favorites. Full Review »
  3. May 28, 2013
    The Painted Veil is an excruciating lengthy bore that doesn't have a minute that is worth acknowledging. The romance between the leads is so unconvincing it becomes worthless, similar to the rest of the film. Full Review »