Of Gods and Men Reviews

Top Critic
J. R. Jones
Chicago Reader
August 10, 2011
Alternately harrowing and humbling, this is a story of ordinary men whose compassion is tested in the cruelest, most profound fashion.
Top Critic
Ann Hornaday
Washington Post
July 28, 2011
Beauvois takes his time limning the daily rhythms of the monastery, lingering on its most lyrical and sensuous moments, so that when violence finally reaches its gates the effect is all the more chilling.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/4
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Tom Long
Detroit News
April 8, 2011
The film, directed by Xavier Beauvois, moves back and forth between the monks doing their daily chores and the decisions they must face as a group.
Full Review | Original Score: B
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Joe Williams
St. Louis Post-Dispatch
March 25, 2011
Forgive me, Father, for I was bored.
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/4
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Steven Rea
Philadelphia Inquirer
March 17, 2011
Beauvois' camera is watchful and unobtrusive, panning the monastery and its spartan rooms, documenting the brothers' quotidian tasks, but also the modest ritual, the beauty, the illumination.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/4
Top Critic
Ty Burr
Boston Globe
March 17, 2011
The air that "Of Gods and Men'' breathes is so clean and so cold that it feels like a fresh beginning.
Full Review | Original Score: 3.5/4
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Colin Covert
Minneapolis Star Tribune
March 17, 2011
"Of Gods and Men" is a quiet, austere film that is more electrifying than a dozen action movies.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/4
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Roger Ebert
Chicago Sun-Times
March 11, 2011
I found myself resisting the film's pull of easy emotion. There are fundamental questions here, and the film doesn't engage them.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
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David Germain
Associated Press
March 10, 2011
The monks don't speak their minds often, but when they do, the actors infuse their utterances with bottomless grace and humility yet very human dread and doubt.
Top Critic
Mick LaSalle
San Francisco Chronicle
March 3, 2011
This is a beautiful film, full of gray- and white-haired men who grow in stature before our eyes.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
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Anthony Lane
New Yorker
February 28, 2011
The climax is both misty and unforgettable: a sacrifice that looks like a ghost story.
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Peter Rainer
Christian Science Monitor
February 26, 2011
One of the most austerely beautiful movies about the monastic life that I've ever seen.
Full Review | Original Score: A
Top Critic
Jordan Mintzer
Variety
February 25, 2011
A transfixing meditation on religious conviction, post-colonial strife and the force of actors who elevate every gesture to a loftier domain.
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Kirk Honeycutt
Hollywood Reporter
February 25, 2011
The problem is that a whiff of saintliness envelops the Cistercian monks right from the start.
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Stephen Whitty
Newark Star-Ledger
February 25, 2011
Beauvois channels the pace of the monks' life, which is both his film's strength and its weakness.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
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Rick Groen
Globe and Mail
February 25, 2011
Begins and ends as a testament not to God but to brotherhood, and as a portrait not of war's violence but of love's endurance.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
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V.A. Musetto
New York Post
February 25, 2011
Just as the monks live an austere, thoughtful life, Beauvois' direction is low-key and reflective.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
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Peter Howell
Toronto Star
February 25, 2011
Of Gods and Men, a transcendent drama of uplift and inspiration, reveals the cavernous divide between heaven and Earth.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/4
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Andrew O'Hehir
Salon.com
February 24, 2011
Both a moving, almost abstract parable of faith and an all too real episode drawn from recent history.
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Kenneth Turan
Los Angeles Times
February 24, 2011
Austere yet provocative, this is not only a film about faith, it also has faith that the power generated by complex moral decisions can be as unstoppable as any runaway locomotive.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/5
Top Critic
A.O. Scott
New York Times
February 24, 2011
Beautiful, somber and rigorously intelligent.
Full Review | Original Score: 5/5
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Glenn Kenny
MSN Movies
February 24, 2011
Be prepared to be shaken.
Full Review | Original Score: 3.5/5
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Sam Adams
AV Club
February 24, 2011
In spite of its subject matter, the film has a scant feeling for spirituality, which mainly surfaces in the monks' fatalist hymns. Beauvois admires the monks' steadfastness, but doesn't seem to understand it.
Full Review | Original Score: C+
Top Critic
Lisa Schwarzbaum
Entertainment Weekly
February 23, 2011
Gravely serene and suffused with tenderness, Of Gods and Men takes the simple, profound stand that how a person of faith lives matters more than the circumstances of his death.
Full Review | Original Score: A-
Top Critic
Keith Uhlich
Time Out
February 23, 2011
Beauvois never loses sight of the monks' interconnectedness-what affects one inevitably affects the others.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/5
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J. Hoberman
Village Voice
February 22, 2011
Contemplative as it means to be, Of Gods and Men is not without generic excitement.
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Dave Calhoun
Time Out
December 1, 2010
The way it dramatises anxieties, expressed and unexpressed, is enthralling and quietly provocative...
Full Review | Original Score: 4/5
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Liam Lacey
Globe and Mail
September 14, 2010
[A] moving, elegantly made spiritual docudrama.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/4
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Joe Morgenstern
Wall Street Journal
September 11, 2010
A superb and austere drama in French and Arabic...