Critics Consensus

Silk contains a simple love triangle story but director Francois Gerard goes to painstaking lengths to turn it into a protracted and wearisome art film.



Total Count: 55


Audience Score

User Ratings: 10,256
User image

Silk Photos

Movie Info

Francois Girard's adaptation of Alessandro Baricco's novel Silk stars Michael Pitt as a young Frenchman who travels to Japan at the request of a wealthy silkworm magnate who asks him to smuggle back some new worms. The mission succeeds, and this allows the man to live in great comfort with his wife (Keira Knightley). After a few years, they are unable to conceive a child, a situation that leads to the man taking on a lover during his subsequent visits to Japan.

Watch it now


Michael Pitt
as Herve Joncour
Keira Knightley
as Helene Joncour
Alfred Molina
as Baldabiou
Koji Yakusho
as Hara Jubei
Miki Nakatani
as Madame Blanche
Mark Rendall
as Ludovic
Marc Fiorini
as Chabert
Sei Ashina
as The Girl
Tony Vogel
as Café Verdun Man #1
Kenneth Welsh
as Mayor Joncour
Martha Burns
as Mme. Joncour
Chiara Stampone
as Béatrice Berbek
Leslie Csuth
as M. Loiseau
Toru Tezuka
as Japanese Guide
Hiroya Morita
as Japanese Elder #1
View All

Critic Reviews for Silk

All Critics (55) | Top Critics (23) | Fresh (4) | Rotten (51)

  • Dralon is more like it.

    Nov 9, 2007 | Rating: 1/5 | Full Review…
  • Crashing bore of a movie.

    Nov 9, 2007 | Rating: 1/5 | Full Review…

    Wendy Ide

    Times (UK)
    Top Critic
  • Francois Girard's film proves a cross-cultural yawn, as if taking its cue from Pitt's blank-faced blandness and Keira Knightley's anaemic support.

    Nov 9, 2007 | Rating: 2/5 | Full Review…

    Neil Smith
    Top Critic
  • François Girard's Silk is not merely painterly. It might as well be a painting, for all that it eschews storytelling, forcing the viewer to scan the lush imagery in search of clues to what, if anything, might be going on.

    Sep 28, 2007 | Rating: 2/4 | Full Review…
  • Though elegantly staged, Silk is badly written and indifferently cast.

    Sep 28, 2007 | Rating: 2/4
  • Sensual but profoundly silly, Silk is ultimately little more than softcore porn with arthouse trappings, a moony, dopily romantic Red Shoe Diaries variation for the NPR set.

    Sep 22, 2007 | Rating: C+ | Full Review…

    Nathan Rabin

    AV Club
    Top Critic

Audience Reviews for Silk

  • Sep 13, 2017
    Absolutely gorgeous film to look at, which is about all you get as the story and most performances are dramatically flat. The worst offender is the completely miscast Michael Pitt as the main character, appearing both out of time and place as an Englishman, and showing absolutely none of the passion required to drive the story passion required to spark this story of conflicting desires.
    Doctor S Super Reviewer
  • Jun 17, 2012
    Silk is a melodramatic period film that lacks passion and intrigue. The story follows a French silk merchant who travels to Japan and becomes enchanting by a mysterious woman, then proceeds to return year after year in the hopes of seeing her again. The film stars Michael Pitt, Keira Knightley, and Alfred Molina, none of whom give particularly good performances. In fact, Pitt's performance is especial dull and bereft of emotion; which is a significant problem given that his character is the central focus of the film. And the pacing of the film is terrible, killing off any interest the story has. Silk is a bland, lifeless film that goes on forever and gets nowhere.
    Dann M Super Reviewer
  • Feb 20, 2010
    Wonderful period drama-romance story (there goes Kiera Knightley's other period movies since <i>Atonement</i> and <i>Pride & Prejudice</i>). The journeys are probably the best bits in the movie, with lush landscapes filling the screen in all serenity of the turmoils that are yet to come. I thought director Francois Girard tried to ape Terence Mallick's direction, with lush natural beauty punctuated with voice over narration of the character's inner-most thoughts. We learn a lot of what's going on in Herve's (played by Michael Pitt) mind, as he tells us the story of his being, and the conflict he faces when he gets tempted to committing adultery, never forgetting about his tryst overseas when back home he has a lovely wife (played by Knightley) to go home to.
    Dean M Super Reviewer
  • Aug 21, 2009
    I loved Keira Knightley...Michael Pitt on the other hand wasn't the right person for this role...This was just an average love story...I mean c'mon!! They were supposed to be french people but they were talking on English...but when Pitt's character went to Japan...there people were talking Japanese! Why they weren't all talking English or why weren't all just talking their suppossed-to-be language!!! I have one even better idea! Why this movie wasn't set in England?! Then it wouldn't be weird when Knightley and Pitt talked on English with british accent although they supposed to be FRENCH!
    Anna G Super Reviewer

Silk Quotes

There are no approved quotes yet for this movie.

News & Features