Mixed or average reviews - based on 22 Critics What's this?

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Generally favorable reviews- based on 18 Ratings

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Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 11 out of 22
  2. Negative: 1 out of 22
  1. Reviewed by: Eric Harrison
    While it's possible to view this movie like a short-story collection, putting check marks beside the selections one likes best, to do so would deny the pleasure of experiencing this beautifully crafted, intricately designed story the way it was intended, as an organic whole. [11 June 1999, Calendar, p.F-8]
  2. Some will say this film is overly ambitious, but what the hell. The man put five years of his life into making this epic mystery. We can surely give it two hours of ours.
  3. 75
    Although not all of the movements are fleshed out to their full potential, The Red Violin still attains a certain symphonic grandeur that -- at a time when so many filmmakers are churning out cinematic ditties -- deserves to be applauded. [18 June 1999, Friday, p.A]
  4. Reviewed by: Richard Schickel
    These stories, alas, are utterly predictable. Still, Samuel L. Jackson breaks through the crust of cliches as an expert called in to verify the instrument's provenance, and violinist Joshua Bell plays and Esa-Pekka Salonen conducts John Corigliano's score ravishingly.
  5. 60
    Audaciously conceived, yet at times curiously flat, at others incongruously prosaic in its emotional tone.
  6. Reviewed by: Sandra Contreras
    Girard and his collaborators are so focused on the stunning tableaux that all other considerations fall by the wayside, leaving their visual achievements -- miraculous on such a small budget -- mired in the elaborate but maladroit storytelling.
  7. 30
    The style of the movie veers unsuccessfully between humorless piety and opéra-bouffe clownishness.

See all 22 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 5 out of 6
  2. Negative: 0 out of 6
  1. AaronP.
    Jun 10, 2007
    I'm not sure why the critics of this movie don't like a story about a violin, and want it to be rewritten as a story about love and romance. This is a perfect instrument, born from the passion of a master craftsman and the blood of his sacrifice. People possess and lose it in the course of their lives, marking them and marking the violin. If you want action, adventure, and witty dialogue, go watch SpiderMan...if you want a Buddhist-like story of transcendence and meaning, this movie might be for you. Collapse
  2. Jun 8, 2014
    This movie may no doubt be spectacular to violin fanatics or those who can appreciate extensive periods of violin solos, but for the average viewer these moments are too numerous and repetitive and frankly boring. The ending is also poor, but overall (despite overdoing the musical scenes) it is a watchable movie. Could have been shorter though. 4/10 Expand

See all 6 User Reviews