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Don't Look Now (1973)

Don't Look Now


Average Rating: 8.8/10
Reviews Counted: 45
Fresh: 43
Rotten: 2

Critics Consensus: Don't Look Now patiently builds suspense with haunting imagery and a chilling score -- causing viewers to feel Donald Sutherland and Julie Christie's grief deep within.

Average Rating: 8.4/10
Reviews Counted: 10
Fresh: 9
Rotten: 1

Critics Consensus: Don't Look Now patiently builds suspense with haunting imagery and a chilling score -- causing viewers to feel Donald Sutherland and Julie Christie's grief deep within.


Average Rating: 3.7/5
User Ratings: 17,247


Movie Info

A married couple is haunted by a series of mysterious occurrences after the death of their young daughter in this enigmatic chiller. Based on a story by Daphne du Maurier, whose works inspired Alfred Hitchcock's Rebecca and The Birds, the film centers on Laura and John Baxter (Donald Sutherland and Julie Christie), who have recently relocated to Venice so that John can oversee the architectural restoration of an old church. Both hope that the change of environment will allow them to forget the … More

Horror , Mystery & Suspense , Classics
Directed By:
Written By:
Chris Bryant , Allan Scott
In Theaters:
Sep 3, 2002
Paramount Pictures


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Critic Reviews for Don't Look Now

All Critics (45) | Top Critics (10) | Fresh (43) | Rotten (2) | DVD (18)

[Don't Look Now] takes the viewer on a winding, unpredictable trip that starts as a meditation on grief and ends as a supernatural thriller.

Full Review… | February 17, 2012
Top Critic

Don't Look Now uses the occult and the inexplicable as Henry James did: to penetrate the subconscious, to materialize phantoms from the psyche.

Full Review… | October 15, 2008
TIME Magazine
Top Critic

A frightening and consistently inventive horror story.

Full Review… | September 19, 2007
Chicago Reader
Top Critic

This British-Italian suspenser, in which the horror gets to one almost subliminally, as in Rosemary's Baby, is superior stuff.

Full Review… | September 19, 2007
Top Critic

That dwarf in a red raincoat will fry your nerves.

August 14, 2007
Rolling Stone
Top Critic

A superbly chilling essay in the supernatural.

Full Review… | June 24, 2006
Time Out
Top Critic

Superbly acted, stunningly photographed, and edited with a rhythmic pungency that makes it irresistibly watchable even when the plot turns dark and scary.

Full Review… | November 25, 2013
Christian Science Monitor

It is a messy examination of entropy: things fall and fall apart and we try to restore what can't be repaired and recover what has already been irretrievably lost.

Full Review… | August 21, 2013
Electric Sheep

It's a ghost story; it's a meditation on time, memory and the poignancy of married love. And it's a masterpiece.

Full Review… | August 21, 2013

This is director Nicolas Roeg's masterpiece -- the fear-drenched mood of alienation is sustained right up until the unforgettable climax.

Full Review… | August 21, 2013
Radio Times

it was maverick British filmmaker Nicolas Roeg's destiny to transform du Maurier's strange psychological thriller into an emphatically mysterious tale of second sight and looming death in 1973.

Full Review… | August 18, 2013

One of the most dynamic and radical British films ever made.

Full Review… | October 9, 2012
Total Film

Roeg's purposely disjointed vision keeps you in near-constant dread.

Full Review… | September 4, 2012
Combustible Celluloid

Like some manic slasher on the loose, Nic Roeg cuts compulsively, severing the natural arteries between cause and effect to expose a more irrational kind of narrative continuum...a true classic, worth looking at not just now but long into the future.

Full Review… | June 20, 2011
Little White Lies

Arguably the subtlest giallo ever made, it's a film to heighten the senses

Full Review… | July 23, 2010

The most adult horror picture I've ever encountered, or indeed can even imagine.

Full Review… | November 9, 2008
Antagony & Ecstasy

Don't Look Now brilliantly portrays the loves and losses we all experience, our here and now dictated by the fallibility of human nature and the cruelties of time.

Full Review… | October 15, 2008

A natureza onírica e labiríntica do filme é bem representada por Veneza, criando um clima de constante inquietação, mas a direção soa datada e o roteiro não consegue fugir das convenções do gênero, desperdiçando a ótima dinâmica do casal principal.

July 22, 2008
Cinema em Cena

Many of the subtle, jarring thrills come in the editing, which renders the notion of foresight explicit but still mysterious.

Full Review… | September 19, 2007

Audience Reviews for Don't Look Now

A markedly ominous and labyrinthine story about grief and acceptance, building up around symbols, presages and a constant sense of danger with a fabulous editing and a melancholic score, and making us share the intense confusion and disorientation experienced by the characters.

Carlos Magalhães

Super Reviewer


A chilling thriller that parallels climactic highs with psychedelic horror, this film uses its understated source material to drive the tension forward superbly, and remains artfully directed and shot the entire way through. Using an original short story from the queen of literary gothic horror, Daphne du Maurier, we meet a family in a British country home, the father working on church restorations. Tragically their daughter drowns while trying to retrieve a ball in the creek behind their home, their son unharmed. The couple are obviously devastated, but the husband, John (Sutherland) feels the burden even more because he had a psychic vision of the incident before it happened. John keeps having these unfortunate visions even as he and his wife, Laura (Christie) escape to Venice while he reconstructs yet another church. While in the city the couple experience the strange and abundantly weird aura of the city, clandestine circumstances seemingly surround them starting with their introduction to a couple of sisters, one being blind and psychic. The psychic tries to reconnect their daughter to them via trances and seances, and Laura believes every word, whether it's true or not. John is hesitant to believe, and in that disbelief he becomes disenchanted, following around a small red caped figure who looks, from behind, like his deceased daughter. John goes on to see other strange things, almost dies during a work accident, and chases down the caped figure and his wife, possibly brainwashed, around Venice. The circumstances of the thriller are very chilly, because not only does John constantly experience chances at seeing who he believes to be his daughter, but he and his wife are also trying to reconnect to each other after her death. Neither believes the other is completely sane, and that lends to a distrust between the couple, us the audience, and everyone else within the film. The mood is set as being distrustful and surreptitiously haunted, using distinct cinematography and a disconnect in language that occurs with the setting. The couple's own connection to one another is well established thanks to a very explicit and very passionate love scene, and the twist ending ties together so many miscellaneous odds and ends that it is not only strange but also brilliant. Moody and dark, this film embodies so many genre characteristics and yet remains intact as its own entity, making it one of the best horror films, and beyond genre films, perhaps ever made.

Spencer S.

Super Reviewer


A married couple mourning their child go to Venice where they meet a pair of creepy old ladies who claim to speak for their dead daughter.
A thoroughly uninspired thriller, this film fails to chill or excite. The quick cuts - I call them "flash edits" - do nothing to enhance the film's suspense; rather, they just distract attention from the film's action and induce an epileptic fit. The dramatic question is supposed to be how the prognosticators' predictions will come true, but it didn't work for me. And the ending comes out of nowhere; whereas a film like Momento made me marvel at the clever way the film's inevitable outcome came to pass, Don't Look Now just pulled some crazy shit out of its ass.
The performances by Julie Christie, who is especially beautiful, and Donald Sutherland, who isn't but show it all anyway, are unremarkable, neither good nor bad.
Overall, the writer of this film did Rebecca, one of Hitchcock's finest, but there's nothing touching the genius in her other work in this film.

Jim Hunter

Super Reviewer

Roeg makes Venice's waterways and scenery truly freaky in this classic.

Graham Jones
Graham Jones

Super Reviewer

Don't Look Now Quotes

Fetch him back, let him not go.
– Submitted by Pete H (2 years ago)

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