Metascore
49

Mixed or average reviews - based on 15 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 3 out of 15
  2. Negative: 0 out of 15
  1. Reviewed by: Jordan Hoffman
    Aug 22, 2013
    80
    Audrey Tautou trades in Amelie’s wide-eyed sprite look for le sourpuss in this sober yet fascinating take on aristocratic social mores between the wars.
  2. Reviewed by: Marc Mohan
    Sep 19, 2013
    75
    The movie looks great, with soft-focus shots of perfectly tailored outfits masking the ugliness within.
  3. Reviewed by: Walter Addiego
    Aug 29, 2013
    75
    While there's a certain staid feeling to the production, it does deliver a solid working-over to the era's gentry.
  4. Reviewed by: Michael Atkinson
    Aug 20, 2013
    60
    Though bourgie audiences looking for a sun-warmed romance will be slapped; the movie may look pretty and may plod, but it also leaves a bruise.
  5. Reviewed by: Dennis Harvey
    Sep 9, 2013
    50
    Serviceable but uninspired.
  6. Reviewed by: Stephanie Merry
    Aug 31, 2013
    50
    With the exception of one heartbreaking and well-acted scene towards the end of the movie, the atmosphere is oppressive and the characters act as if their personalities have been shot with novocaine.
  7. Reviewed by: Peter Keough
    Aug 29, 2013
    50
    The film looks great, boasting all the elegant period details that are expected in tasteful French adaptations of treasured national literature, with beautifully photographed Bordeaux landscapes and luxurious interiors. As for the human element, however, the mood is more apathetic than tragic.
  8. Reviewed by: Simon Abrams
    Aug 23, 2013
    50
    Thérèse never goes beyond that level of psychological complexity because after a point, Miller and Carter aren't interested in exploring the murky depths of Thérèse 's feelings.
  9. Reviewed by: Sheri Linden
    Aug 22, 2013
    50
    Even given the character's extreme introspection and withdrawal, Tautou's performance is too often opaque.
  10. Reviewed by: Mike D'Angelo
    Aug 22, 2013
    50
    Mauriac’s portrait of a society obsessed with family honor and the appearance of propriety at all costs comes through strongly, but that can’t entirely compensate for a character study with a hard-working vacuum at its center. Like Keanu Reeves, Tautou requires a perfect fit; when she tries to stretch, she gets stranded.
  11. Reviewed by: Nick Schager
    Aug 21, 2013
    50
    A second-act forest fire proves a handy metaphor for Tautou’s slowly burning rage at confinement. Yet while it seems thematically apt, it’s also wholly out of place in this static, emotionless saga, which is defined less by zealous feeling than by a dull, decorous air of respectability.
  12. Reviewed by: Aaron Hillis
    Aug 20, 2013
    50
    If the banality of life within the Bordeaux gentry is the point, then the ensuing oppressiveness is immaculately depicted through precise performances and camerawork—just don't call it emotionally engaging drama.
  13. Reviewed by: Simon Abrams
    Aug 20, 2013
    50
    [Thérèse] is not the nuanced period drama it should be but is rather more like a banal, pseudo-thoughtful and monotonous episode of Masterpiece Theater.
  14. Reviewed by: Tomas Hachard
    Aug 14, 2013
    50
    Claude Miller's swan song not only shares its main character's name but also her tempered disposition.
  15. Reviewed by: Manohla Dargis
    Aug 22, 2013
    40
    Mr. Miller’s stolid approach — with its waxwork figures, postcard beauty, insistent tastefulness and glaze of politesse — feels far too comfortably of this world to mount a critique of it.
User Score
6.4

Generally favorable reviews- based on 5 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 1 out of 1
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 1
  3. Negative: 0 out of 1
  1. Aug 24, 2013
    10
    Gorgeous direction, every shot beautiful. Perfect, subtle acting. The New York Times reviewer said Tautou "one note" but whit her veryGorgeous direction, every shot beautiful. Perfect, subtle acting. The New York Times reviewer said Tautou "one note" but whit her very handsome and expressive costar, it was ensemble cast. Even the servants seemed perfect recreations of the historical period. The plot was interesting and clever. I can't believe I never heard of it as much as Madame Bovary. Full Review »