• R, 1 hr. 59 min.
  • Drama
  • Directed By:
    Peter Mullan
    In Theaters:
    Aug 22, 2003 Limited
    On DVD:
    Mar 23, 2004
  • Miramax Films

Opening

67% The Maze Runner Sep 19
71% A Walk Among the Tombstones Sep 19
56% This Is Where I Leave You Sep 19
82% Tracks Sep 19
91% The Guest Sep 17

Top Box Office

13% No Good Deed $24.3M
73% Dolphin Tale 2 $15.9M
92% Guardians of the Galaxy $8.1M
19% Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles $4.9M
20% Let's Be Cops $4.4M
88% The Drop $4.1M
37% If I Stay $3.9M
36% The November Man $2.8M
33% The Giver $2.6M
67% The Hundred-Foot Journey $2.4M

Coming Soon

68% The Equalizer Sep 26
69% The Boxtrolls Sep 26
86% The Two Faces of January Sep 26
—— Two Night Stand Sep 26
91% Jimi: All Is by My Side Sep 26

Premieres Tonight

33% The Mysteries of Laura: Season 1
61% Red Band Society: Season 1

New Episodes Tonight

86% The Bridge (FX): Season 2
83% Extant: Season 1
—— Franklin & Bash: Season 4
—— The League: Season 6
56% Legends: Season 1

Discuss Last Night's Shows

—— Brickleberry: Season 3
88% Finding Carter: Season 1
67% Matador: Season 1
—— The Mindy Project: Season 3
—— New Girl: Season 4
83% Sons of Anarchy: Season 7

The Magdalene Sisters Reviews

David Rooney
Variety
Top Critic IconTop Critic

This drama about a shocking reality from recent history balances a light touch with searing intensity and a sense of moral outrage.

Full Review Source: Variety

March 11, 2008
Jonathan Rosenbaum
Chicago Reader
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Grimly believable.

Full Review Source: Chicago Reader

March 11, 2008

Time Out
Top Critic IconTop Critic

You may never look at a nun the same way again.

Full Review Source: Time Out

February 9, 2006
Jay Boyar
Orlando Sentinel
Top Critic IconTop Critic

The Magdalene Sisters has the force of an alarm being sounded.

| Original Score: 4/5

September 5, 2003
Stanley Kauffmann
The New Republic
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Why was this film made after the homes had already been abolished? One reason, hardly trifling, is that it was made excellently. Thematically, however, it stings.

September 3, 2003
Kathy Cano Murillo
Arizona Republic
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Will make you furious and dejected, but in the end it offers an optimistic if unsettling twist.

| Original Score: 4/5

August 28, 2003
Rene Rodriguez
Miami Herald
Top Critic IconTop Critic

If The Magdalene Sisters occasionally flirts with cartoonishness, the movie is tempered by Mullan's considerable filmmaking skills.

Full Review Source: Miami Herald | Original Score: 3/4

August 22, 2003
Tom Long
Detroit News
Top Critic IconTop Critic

It is a strong, affecting movie about man's ability to twist holiness into horror.

| Original Score: B+

August 22, 2003
Terry Lawson
Detroit Free Press
Top Critic IconTop Critic

A story like this one could easily succumb to outraged melodrama, but not only does Mullan keep the drama human-sized, he even leavens it with the humor that one can easily believe had to be summoned to endure such misguided and malicious treatment.

Full Review Source: Detroit Free Press | Original Score: 3/4

August 22, 2003
Lisa Kennedy
Denver Post
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Full of forceful, aching performances.

Full Review Source: Denver Post | Original Score: 3.5/4

August 22, 2003

St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Top Critic IconTop Critic
August 22, 2003
Jeff Strickler
Minneapolis Star Tribune
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Although it's heavy-handed in its emotional button-pushing, The Magdalene Sisters still manages to produce all the reactions the filmmakers want: repulsion, indignation, anger and outrage.

Full Review Source: Minneapolis Star Tribune | Original Score: 3/4

August 21, 2003
Andrew Sarris
New York Observer
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Mr. Mullan's fictional treatment of this subject in The Magdalene Sisters has much to commend.

Full Review Source: New York Observer

August 21, 2003
Eleanor Ringel Gillespie
Atlanta Journal-Constitution
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Definitely one-sided, but still very powerful.

Full Review Source: Atlanta Journal-Constitution | Original Score: B+

August 17, 2003
Desson Thomson
Washington Post
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Watching the film, you can feel years of real pain. It feels more like gothic documentary than darkly limned fancy.

August 15, 2003
Ann Hornaday
Washington Post
Top Critic IconTop Critic

A stirring, emotionally galvanizing film, not only due to its shattering subject matter but thanks to Mullan's spot-on eye for casting and fluid, uncoercive style.

August 15, 2003
Moira MacDonald
Seattle Times
Top Critic IconTop Critic

The cast is uniformly fine, particularly smiley-eyed Geraldine McEwan as the avaricious Sister Bridget, and the filmmaking haunting.

| Original Score: 3/4

August 15, 2003
Carrie Rickey
Philadelphia Inquirer
Top Critic IconTop Critic

A film of haunting eloquence and justifiable fury.

| Original Score: 3/4

August 15, 2003
Ty Burr
Boston Globe
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Blistering and brilliant work of true-life moral agitprop.

Full Review Source: Boston Globe | Original Score: 4/4

August 15, 2003
Roger Ebert
Chicago Sun-Times
Top Critic IconTop Critic

A harrowing look at institutional cruelty.

Full Review Source: Chicago Sun-Times | Original Score: 3.5/4

August 15, 2003
Jane Sumner
Dallas Morning News
Top Critic IconTop Critic

An intense expose with bits of acrid humor.

Full Review Source: Dallas Morning News | Original Score: B

August 15, 2003
Michael Wilmington
Chicago Tribune
Top Critic IconTop Critic

A fierce, brilliant film that breaks (and then mends) your heart.

Full Review Source: Chicago Tribune | Original Score: 4/4

August 15, 2003
Rex Reed
New York Observer
Top Critic IconTop Critic

A great film that deserves genuflection.

Full Review Source: New York Observer

August 6, 2003
Richard Roeper
Ebert & Roeper
Top Critic IconTop Critic

I want people to give this movie a chance, it's one of the best movies of the year I think.

Full Review Source: Ebert & Roeper

August 4, 2003
Andrew O'Hehir
Salon.com
Top Critic IconTop Critic

A classic crowd-pleaser, a neo-Gothic tale whose appealing heroines are unfairly oppressed but finally find the strength to set themselves free.

Full Review Source: Salon.com

August 2, 2003
David Edelstein
Slate
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Both a masterpiece and a holy hell.

Full Review Source: Slate

August 2, 2003
Peter Howell
Toronto Star
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Like Phillip Noyce's recent Rabbit-Proof Fence, which exposed similar crimes of mass containment and correction against Australia's Aboriginal people, The Magdalene Sisters is social history told with anger and an agenda.

Full Review Source: Toronto Star | Original Score: 4/5

August 1, 2003
Mick LaSalle
San Francisco Chronicle
Top Critic IconTop Critic

A powerful document of cruelty and sadism.

Full Review Source: San Francisco Chronicle | Original Score: 3/4

August 1, 2003
Stephen Whitty
Newark Star-Ledger
Top Critic IconTop Critic

It may well be a stinging attack on the church. But it can also be read as a hymn of praise to the faith.

Full Review Source: Newark Star-Ledger

August 1, 2003
V.A. Musetto
New York Post
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Mullan triggers all your emotions -- anger, sorrow, pity, disgust, shame. And once he gets hold of you, he won't let go.

| Original Score: 3.5/4

August 1, 2003
Liam Lacey
Globe and Mail
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Angry and deliberately provocative, The Magdalene Sisters sets out to offend those who deserve it.

Full Review Source: Globe and Mail | Original Score: 3/4

August 1, 2003
Jack Mathews
New York Daily News
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Offers a kind of worst-case glimpse into the draconian Magdalene Asylums that were begun in the late 19th century and lasted well into the 1990s.

Full Review Source: New York Daily News | Original Score: 3.5/4

August 1, 2003
Claudia Puig
USA Today
Top Critic IconTop Critic

One of the most gut-wrenching and expertly told films of the year.

Full Review Source: USA Today | Original Score: 3.5/4

July 31, 2003
Kenneth Turan
Los Angeles Times
Top Critic IconTop Critic

There is a fundamental air of truth about it, a sense that, horrific though things seem, this is how it must have been.

Full Review Source: Los Angeles Times | Original Score: 4/5

July 31, 2003
Jan Stuart
Newsday
Top Critic IconTop Critic

McEwan nails the degenerate blend of humanity and hypocrisy that can coexist when people become slavemasters of moral rectitude.

Full Review Source: Newsday | Original Score: 4/4

July 31, 2003
Peter Travers
Rolling Stone
Top Critic IconTop Critic

The film gets to you; it's a powerhouse.

| Original Score: 3/4

July 31, 2003
Scott Foundas
L.A. Weekly
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Grim, grueling and triumphantly powerful.

Full Review Source: L.A. Weekly

July 30, 2003
Owen Gleiberman
Entertainment Weekly
Top Critic IconTop Critic

The Magdalene Asylums really existed, and Mullan has captured their pious horror with a humanity that burns away any hint of exploitation.

Full Review Source: Entertainment Weekly | Original Score: A

July 30, 2003
James Berardinelli
ReelViews
Top Critic IconTop Critic

This is a worthwhile movie because it is well-made and encourages viewers to think and feel.

Full Review Source: ReelViews | Original Score: 3/4

July 29, 2003
J. Hoberman
Village Voice
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Proposes itself as a corrective. Soon after, there's a scene powerful enough to induce a revolutionary conversion.

Full Review Source: Village Voice

July 29, 2003
Stephen Holden
New York Times
Top Critic IconTop Critic

The Magdalene Sisters more than fulfills the promise of Mr. Mullan's audacious feature film debut, Orphans.

Full Review Source: New York Times | Original Score: 4/5

October 24, 2002
Kirk Honeycutt
Hollywood Reporter
Top Critic IconTop Critic

An angry, bitter film certain to electrify audiences with its dramatic intensity.

September 20, 2002
Find us on:                     
Help | About | Jobs | Critics Submission | Press | API | Licensing | Mobile