• PG-13, 2 hr. 17 min.
  • Drama
  • Directed By:
    Tate Taylor
    In Theaters:
    Aug 10, 2011 Wide
    On DVD:
    Dec 6, 2011
  • DreamWorks Studios


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The Help Reviews

Page 1 of 11
Francesca Steele
Sky Movies

A guaranteed tear-jerker that serves as a decent reminder of America's very own Apartheid, it's fine as a slice of history. As a story though, it's sadly underwhelming.

Full Review Source: Sky Movies | Original Score: 2/5

October 26, 2011
Belinda Hazleton
FILMINK (Australia)

It's a heartfelt effort and soundly performed, but it doesn't have the depth or nuance to sustain its long running time.

Full Review Source: FILMINK (Australia)

September 2, 2011
Ben Sachs
Chicago Reader
Top Critic IconTop Critic

As in many reductive period pieces, there are no real characters here, just archetypes, namely reactionary cretins and sensitive souls who anticipate modern attitudes.

Full Review Source: Chicago Reader

August 11, 2011
Anne Thompson
Thompson on Hollywood

Mainstream crowd pleaser The Help is a well-cast tearjerker set in a fake 60s Mississippi. Viola Davis, Jessica Chastain and Octavia Spencer give Oscar-worthy performances.

Full Review Source: Thompson on Hollywood | Original Score: B-

August 12, 2011
Margot Harrison
Seven Days

It's camp for people who want to feel like they're seeing something educational and uplifting between the guffaws.

Full Review Source: Seven Days | Original Score: 5/10

August 19, 2011
Ella Taylor
Top Critic IconTop Critic

While my neighbor had used up her hankie supply by the end of the movie, I left dry-eyed and disappointed.

Full Review Source: NPR

August 9, 2011
Joe Morgenstern
Wall Street Journal
Top Critic IconTop Critic

"The Help" takes us on a pop-cultural tour that savors the picturesque, and strengthens stereotypes it purports to shatter.

Full Review Source: Wall Street Journal

August 11, 2011
Andrew Schenker
Slant Magazine

High school creative-writing-class ironies of all kinds abound in The Help.

Full Review Source: Slant Magazine | Original Score: 1/4

August 9, 2011
Clay Cane

Davis is the Aretha Franklin of acting, but this is another clichéd civil rights film. There is a dash of 'The Long Walk Home' and a strong helping of 'Driving Miss Daisy.' 'The Help' wasn't impactful enough to be offensive.

Full Review Source: BET.com | Original Score: C+

August 10, 2011
Kirk Honeycutt
Hollywood Reporter
Top Critic IconTop Critic

There are small moments in the film though that make you long for a movie that is not so deep-dish serious and self-conscious.

Full Review Source: Hollywood Reporter

August 8, 2011
Chris Hewitt (St. Paul)
St. Paul Pioneer Press

Some adaptations find a fresh, cinematic way to convey a book's spirit but "The Help" doesn't.

Full Review Source: St. Paul Pioneer Press | Original Score: 2/4

August 10, 2011
Karina Longworth
Village Voice
Top Critic IconTop Critic

We get a fairly typical Hollywood flattening of history, with powerful villains and disenfranchised heroes.

Full Review Source: Village Voice

August 9, 2011
John Hazelton
Screen International

The Help is a nicely cast but otherwise pedestrian adaptation of Kathryn Stockett's best-selling 2009 novel.

Full Review Source: Screen International

August 11, 2011
Margaret Pomeranz
At the Movies (Australia)

It irks me when a film deals with issues that are actually important in an unsubtle and sentimenalised way.

Full Review Source: At the Movies (Australia) | Original Score: 3/5

August 31, 2011
Manohla Dargis
New York Times
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Save for Ms. Davis's, the performances are almost all overly broad, sometimes excruciatingly so, characterized by loud laughs, bugging eyes and pumping limbs.

Full Review Source: New York Times | Original Score: 2.5/5

August 9, 2011
Brian Orndorf

It's not a particularly original story and not sold with much integrity. A few wonderful performances aside, The Help is a maddeningly distracted film, occasionally flirting with utter irresponsibility.

Full Review Source: BrianOrndorf.com | Original Score: D+

August 12, 2011
Prairie Miller

A 'she said, she said' array of gossipy catfights targeting snobby southern belles. But that lets the men off the hook, while locating the scourge of Jim Crow segregation almost entirely among these demonized upper crust desperate housewives womenfolk.

Full Review Source: NewsBlaze

August 10, 2011
Tim Brayton
Antagony & Ecstasy

A chore to sit through. At 146 minutes long, there is absolutely no excusing the running time... a panoply of lazy bromides.

Full Review Source: Antagony & Ecstasy | Original Score: 5/10

September 2, 2011
Sara Stewart
New York Post
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Aims for "To Kill a Mockingbird" significance, but lands in "Steel Magnolias" territory.

Full Review Source: New York Post | Original Score: 2.5/4

August 10, 2011
Rob Humanick
Projection Booth

As regressive as it is well meaning.

Full Review Source: Projection Booth | Original Score: C

August 28, 2011
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