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Gothika (2003)



Average Rating: 4.1/10
Reviews Counted: 165
Fresh: 24 | Rotten: 141

Berry's acting talents can't save Gothika from its preposterous plot and bad dialogue.


Average Rating: 3.8/10
Critic Reviews: 37
Fresh: 2 | Rotten: 35

Berry's acting talents can't save Gothika from its preposterous plot and bad dialogue.



liked it
Average Rating: 3/5
User Ratings: 396,611

My Rating

Movie Info

A woman is taken on a voyage to the other side of sanity in this moody thriller. Dr. Miranda Grey (Halle Berry) is a clinical psychologist who works alongside her husband, Dr. Doug Grey (Charles S. Dutton), in the mental ward of a top security prison, where Miranda has been devoting much of her attention to a clever but deeply disturbed murderer named Chloe (Penélope Cruz), who shares gruesome tales of torture and violence that may or may not be based in fact. One night, Miranda has a hideous


Mystery & Suspense, Horror


Sebastian Gutierrez

Mar 23, 2004


Warner Bros. Pictures - Official Site External Icon

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All Critics (172) | Top Critics (40) | Fresh (24) | Rotten (141) | DVD (38)

A mystery wrapped in an enigma -- an enigma that isn't nearly as clever as the screenwriter seems to think it is.

November 26, 2003 Full Review Source: Orlando Sentinel
Orlando Sentinel
Top Critic IconTop Critic

More of a women's-prison movie than a supernatural thriller, and not a very good one at that.

November 22, 2003 Full Review Source:
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Scriptwriter Sebastian Gutierrez and French director Mathieu (Hate) Kassovitz ... treat this movie with all the subtlety of a Judas Priest music video.

November 21, 2003
Washington Post
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Propelled by too many whoppers to create a believable, and therefore legitimately terrifying, universe.

November 21, 2003 Full Review Source: Washington Post
Washington Post
Top Critic IconTop Critic

It's a film about the mind that is totally bone-headed, frequently making serious lapses of logic.

November 21, 2003 Full Review Source: Toronto Star
Toronto Star
Top Critic IconTop Critic

A movie that invariably chooses style over substance and logic.

November 21, 2003 Full Review Source: Seattle Times
Seattle Times
Top Critic IconTop Critic

The same story was told much more skillfully-and with a lot more scares-three years back, when it was called What Lies Beneath.

February 9, 2014 Full Review Source: Georgia Straight

Grisly, disturbing, extremely violent horror film.

December 24, 2010 Full Review Source: Common Sense Media
Common Sense Media

This shoddy B horror movie doesn't deserve a national theatrical run, much less the capable talent assigned to it.

May 14, 2009 Full Review Source:

The burning question I'm still asking myself: What does Gothika mean? Now that I think of it: I could care less.

April 29, 2009 Full Review Source: Cinema Crazed
Cinema Crazed

Succeeds in making every plot twist more unbelievable and irrational than the last.

May 3, 2005 Full Review Source: Lessons of Darkness
Lessons of Darkness

An ceaseless stream of Fake Scares, Dream Sequences, and Shrieking Halles.

November 28, 2004 Full Review Source: Monsters At Play
Monsters At Play

Berry's grating screams might send you to looney land too.

October 23, 2004

Gothika est donc un autre film d'horreur qui semble sortir tout droit d'un programme créant des scénarios. Heureusement que l'on peut en rire.

October 12, 2004

... the 80-minute setup for the shock has nothing to do with engaging the deep-seated fears and emotions that really plague us all, at some level, every day.

September 20, 2004
Tyler Morning Telegraph (Texas)

A tense storyline and a well-realised performance from Berry make Gothika a nice addition, but there's nothing that stands-out to make it anything more.

July 20, 2004 Full Review Source: FilmFocus

Halle is always great to watch and this is a well-written horror story.

May 26, 2004 Full Review Source: Entertainment Spectrum
Entertainment Spectrum

Lights flashing on and off are not scary. Overweight cops with sexual problems are not scary. Both together? Not scary. Or even mildly entertaining.

May 26, 2004 Full Review Source:

The only mystery worth trying to figure out here is how so much talent signed up for so ridiculous a movie.

April 23, 2004 Full Review Source: RTE Interactive (Dublin, Ireland)

The jumpy twists are terrifying enough; the loony asylum is a Gothic masterpiece; but the continuity is sloppy

April 15, 2004 Full Review Source: Times [UK]
Times [UK]

Gothika first seems like a sharp psychological thriller, but it quickly turns into a campy, supernatural ghost story,

April 9, 2004

I would like to call out a moratorium on the use of young, wet girls looking through the tops of their eyes with hair in their face, as ghouls. What is up with this trend?

April 7, 2004 Full Review Source: IGN Movies
IGN Movies

Director Kassovitz piles on atmosphere and effects, borrows plot points from other, better films, and hopes for the best.

March 17, 2004 Full Review Source: F5 (Wichita, KS)

...prone to loud noises, loud music, and red herrings for its scare tactics. Before we know it, cheap thrills substitute for serious plot development.

March 9, 2004 Full Review Source: Movie Metropolis
Movie Metropolis

Se alguém chega por trás de você e o assusta com um grito, você parabeniza a pessoa por sua inteligência e senso artístico? Se 'sim', ótimo: considere este filme um clássico.

March 4, 2004 Full Review Source: Cinema em Cena
Cinema em Cena

...Berry runs around the prison hysterically in t-shirt and jeans, vainly searching for a way to bust out of this movie.

February 9, 2004 Full Review Source: Boulder Weekly

Audience Reviews for Gothika

Halle Berry and Robert Downing Jr. do well in this moody and atmospheric mystery drama with supernatural overtones as a psych doctor, steeped in logical thinking, questions her belief system (and her sanity!!) when she starts seeing ghosts.
April 2, 2012

Super Reviewer

"Gothika" is a well-made ghost story. It doesn't advance the horror art form in any way. But as a traditional ghost story, it's quite effective. I am completely mystified by the critical drubbing it received when it came out. My only explanation is that Halle Berry seems to have been the victim of a backlash from both critics and audiences after winning her well-deserved Oscar about a year before "Gothika" came out.

Berry here stars as a psychiatrist who becomes a patient in the hospital where she works after she starts seeing ghosts and then commits a gruesome crime.

The story is fairly simple, but it gains some complexity by way of a minor character played spectacularly well by Penelope Cruz. Gradually the disparate threads in the story get woven together nicely. Robert Downey, Jr. also has a nice small bit as one of the psychiatrists with whom Berry works. All in all, a good old-fashioned ghost story that makes for an entertaining DVD night.
September 5, 2011
Bill D 2007
William Dunmyer

Super Reviewer

A film that isn't highly rated by most, but remains to be one of my favourites and most re-watched films that I own, possibly because it ticks a lot of boxes for me, such as the question of sanity, the setting of a psychiatric hospital, a supernatural element, along with a murder mystery.

Gothika has the dark creepy atmosphere, which is maintained throughout the film and a storyline which urges you to feel the frustration of the main characters, played by Halle Berry and Penelope Cruz.

Admittedly it has it?s clichéd moments and it?s not without predictability, but it?s certainly worth watching (in my opinion) if you enjoy supernatural Thrillers.

'Behind Blue Eyes' became one of my favourite songs after watching this film.
February 25, 2011

Super Reviewer

Gothika, by Matthieu Kassovitz, is a psychological thriller that grips from time to time.At just over 90 minutes, this picture does take its time to reach the conclusion; however, it isn't entirely due to boredom. The plot does work much better as a thriller than a straight up horror, and in doing so it takes its time and gradually unveils the pieces of the puzzle. That isn't to say that this a masterpiece because there are moments where the line between reality and hallucination is cloudy. It is also quite predictable at certain moments.There is very little in the way of spooks, but this isn't a problem because the continuous suspense level and dark atmosphere make up for it, especially in the second half. Remember, thriller not horror.The acting for the main characters is an asset. Halle Berry is more than capable of putting a film on her shoulders and she has no problem in doing so here. Robert Downey Jr. and Penelope Cruz also put up good supporting performances.Overall, Gothika has enough to place itself in the middle of the pack of thrillers.
September 20, 2010
JY Skacto

Super Reviewer

    1. Dr. Miranda Grey: Logic is so overrated!
    – Submitted by Rowan A (18 months ago)
    1. Chloe Sava: You can't trust someone who thinks your crazy.
    – Submitted by Jane B (2 years ago)
    1. Chloe Sava: He said you're next.
    – Submitted by Lisa M (2 years ago)
    1. Chloe Sava: I cut his Adam's apple in half... like a piece of fruit on a summer day.
    – Submitted by Tianna G (2 years ago)
    1. Dr. Miranda Grey: Do you think I'm crazy?
    – Submitted by Nick P (2 years ago)
View all quotes (5)

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