There Be Dragons (2011)



Critic Consensus: No consensus yet.

Movie Info

Tells the story of London-based investigative journalist Robert Torres (Dougray Scott), who visits Spain to research a book about Josemaría Escrivá (Cox), the controversial founder of Opus Dei. But Robert hits a wall, both professionally and personally, when his most promising source-his own father, Manolo Torres (Bentley), turns out to be his least cooperative one. Robert begins to unearth his father's toxic secrets when he learns that Manolo was not only born in the same Spanish town as … More

Rating: PG-13 (for violence and combat sequences, some language and thematic elements)
Genre: Drama
Directed By:
Written By: Roland Joffé
In Theaters:
On DVD: Jan 10, 2012
Box Office: $1.1M
Samuel Goldwyn Films - Official Site


as Josemaría

as Manolo

as Don José

as Honorio Soto

as Pedro Casciano

as Doña Dolores

as Monsignor Solano

as Aline

as Jaime Torres

as Pilar Torres

as Archbishop Valencia

as Captain Jorge

as Young Josemaria

as Young Manolo

as Isidoro

as Juan Jiménez Vargas

as Ortiz

as Santiago Escrivá

as Santiago Escrivá (Ch...

as Vicar General

as Father Pedro

as Carmen Child

as Father Guzmán

as Julián Ayala

as Colonel Lizárraga

as Colonel Reyes

as González

as Francisco Botella

as Man Underground

as Old Woman

as Militia Man

as Driver 1

as Militia Man at Contr...

as Psychiatric Doctor

as Josemaria in Rome

as Taxi Driver

as Torres Maid

as Old Man 1

as Old Man 2

as Old Man 3

as Battle Medic

as Scared Priest

as Russian 1

as Russian 2 [Archival ...

as Father Lázaro

as Doña Preciado

as María A.

as María D.

as Boy Playing 3

as Boy Playing 4

as Boy Playing 5
Show More Cast

News & Interviews for There Be Dragons

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Critic Reviews for There Be Dragons

All Critics (39) | Top Critics (18)

Joffe, working from his own script, presents the men's lives as evidence of difficult choices, but this pedantic movie is never fully invested in any of them.

Full Review… | May 7, 2011
New York Daily News
Top Critic

Few films about the Spanish Civil War have been any good -- Pan's Labyrinth being the big exception.

Full Review… | May 6, 2011
Christian Science Monitor
Top Critic

Joffé is out of depth when it comes to Escrivá's religious experiences. It's clear he wants the film to show how faith works within us, but he does it by resorting to the most hackneyed imagery.

Full Review… | May 6, 2011
Philadelphia Inquirer
Top Critic

Clunk, clunk, squish. That is the sound of the dead language in Roland Joffé's screenplay for "There Be Dragons" as it tramples his would-be epic of the Spanish Civil War into an indigestible pulp.

Full Review… | May 6, 2011
New York Times
Top Critic

I like grandeur and richly nuanced storytelling. I also like lobster bisque. But I don't want to drink a gallon of it in a single sitting.

Full Review… | May 6, 2011
Washington Post
Top Critic

Even actor's actor Derek Jacobi, as a Jewish factory owner, is wasted in this international muddle of a movie.

Full Review… | May 6, 2011
New York Post
Top Critic

Audience Reviews for There Be Dragons


This movie had great potential, but I think that it must have suffered from poor editing. Visually speaking, it was very good...but, that wasn't enough to help the storyline endearing.

Cynthia S.

Super Reviewer


In 1982, Roberto Torres(Dougray Scott) returns to his native Madrid to research a book about Josemaria Escriva(Charlie Cox). Luckily for Roberto, his father Manolo(Wes Bentley) still lives in the city. Unluckily for Roberto, they have not spoken in eight years. Regardless, Manolo sends him whatever relevant material he has, as he and Roberto were friends when they were growing up, even studying in the same seminary at one point.

Once upon a time, writer-director Roland Joffe had a flair for historical epics when he made sweeping and excellent timeless films such as "The Mission" and "The Killing Fields." Sadly, that was a long time ago and with the exception of neat cinematography(credit to Gabriel Beristain), especially with Manolo coming into focus in a mirror, there is not much to like in "There Be Dragons," as it serves mostly as just a banal distortion of history. For example, in reality, the Catholic Church was on the side of the Nationalists in the Spanish Civil War, so at least they were not totally persecuted as shown here.(For the record, if somebody is too good to be true, they most likely are.) That's not to mention a dueling lumbering narrative that does little to advance the movie's central themes of forgiveness. Remember, some times you do have to take a side.

Walter M.

Super Reviewer

A great visual style, as you would expect from Roland Joffeâ(TM), but it ultimately lacks the narrative power of his better works, notably The Killing Fields. The production values and overall world building of civil war torn Spain was excellent, but the more modern storyline, to which the film often flashbacks to, was less convincing (especially the â~agedâ(TM) Wes Bentley), and often undermined the more compelling earlier story. I also felt the themes were a bit heavy handed, a symptom of an unpolished script, one that also features some stilted dialogue. Olga Kurlenko, for her part, was amazing, and was certainly the most compelling character of this historical epic. At the end, you have a lot of great set pieces and some good story elements, making it watchable, but certainly not without some problems.

3/5 Stars

Jeffrey Meyers
Jeffrey Meyers

Super Reviewer

There Be Dragons Quotes

– Submitted by Sara J (3 years ago)

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