Critics Consensus

Heavy on cliches and light on charm, this kid-lit fantasy-adventure doesn't quite get off the ground.



Total Count: 142


Audience Score

User Ratings: 166,676
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Inkheart Photos

Movie Info

Mortimer "Mo" Folchart and his 12-year-old daughter, Meggie, share an extraordinary gift for bringing characters from books to life when they read aloud. But there is a danger: when a character is brought to life from a book, a real person disappears into its pages. On one of their trips to a secondhand book shop, Mo locates a book he's been searching for since Meggie was three years old, when her mother, Resa, vanished into its mystical world. But Mo's plan to use the book to find and rescue Resa is thwarted when Capricorn, the evil villain of "Inkheart," kidnaps Meggie and, discovering she has inherited her father's gift, demands that she bring to life his most powerful ally, the Shadow. Determined to rescue his daughter and send the fictional characters back where they belong, Mo assembles a small group of friends and family--some from the real world, some from the pages of books--and embarks on a daring and perilous journey to set things right.

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Brendan Fraser
as Mo 'Silvertongue' Folchart
Paul Bettany
as Dustfinger
Helen Mirren
as Elinor Loredan
Jim Broadbent
as Fenoglio
Andy Serkis
as Capricorn
Eliza Bennett
as Meggie Folchart
Matt King
as Cockerell
Steven Speirs
as Flatnose
Steve Speirs
as Flatnose
Tereza Srbova
as Rapunzel
Lesley Sharp
as Mortola
Paul Kasey
as Minotaur
Richard Strange
as Bookshop Proprietor
Mirabel O'Keefe
as Young Meggie
Roger Allam
as Narrator
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News & Interviews for Inkheart

Critic Reviews for Inkheart

All Critics (142) | Top Critics (39) | Fresh (54) | Rotten (88)

  • The message is so muddied by the film's dizzying changes in pitch and tone that a lot of young readers aren't going to know what to think.

    Apr 10, 2009 | Rating: 3/5 | Full Review…
  • The aesthetics of Inkheart are part of what make it such a surprisingly enjoyable experience to watch.

    Jan 23, 2009
  • [Has] plenty of thrills, a smart although oft-confusing script, delightful scenery-chewing scenes from stalwarts like Helen Mirren, Jim Broadbent and Andy Serkis, and a gorgeous high-concept visual style.

    Jan 23, 2009 | Rating: 3/4 | Full Review…
  • Seemingly intended as a celebration of the power of books, it's an occasionally incoherent, sleep-inducing picture that reduces narrative to mere mechanics.

    Jan 23, 2009 | Rating: 1/4 | Full Review…
  • Over and over again, characters in Inkheart wax eloquent on the power of books. But there's nothing in the movie as haunting or as compelling as the sound they make when they speak for themselves.

    Jan 23, 2009
  • A flea market of fairy tales and hocus-pocus, Inkheart makes as much sense as an inkblot.

    Jan 23, 2009 | Rating: 1.5/4 | Full Review…

Audience Reviews for Inkheart

  • Mar 13, 2012
    It's a family friendly tale about the joys of reading (and because of that many characters from the classic children's library show up and put in an appearance) but the subjective feeling of joy is somehow missing, much like one of those TimeLife commercials selling classic rock packages to baby boomers (" ... and who can ever forget when we used to sing this one by Kenny Loggins!"), selling your youth back to you. Better to read the actual stories to your children yourself. But the intention here is spot on.
    Kevin M. W Super Reviewer
  • Dec 15, 2010
    A good fun fantasy family adventure. Reminicsent of what Princess Bride or Never Ending Story "achieved" in their era, but updated using a new creative license with twists and great cast and animation.
    Alexander W Super Reviewer
  • Aug 13, 2010
    I like the story and as far as "family movies" goes.... it is good!
    Thomas J Super Reviewer
  • Aug 07, 2010
    I've never read the book in which this movie was based on, but as far as fantasy adaptations go, I've read the book and I think this movie followed it quite well. Fact: In the Harry Potter films, they've spent ten years filming all eight of them. Unlike Harry Potter, this movie started filming in 2006, but was later released in Germany and the UK in 2008 and the USA release in 2009. Wow. New Line Cinema spent three years making this film? Boy, that was lucky. Anyway, on to my opinion. The only problems that I had with this movie was the lack of dialogue, the overused cliches, and the flaws. I do, however, liked the adventure and action in this movie. They seem to be pretty important it keeps you interested in what's going on like most fantasy adaptations. The casting was superb. Brandon Fraser was talented as Mo, Helen Mirren and Jim Broadbent were very entertaining, Paul Bettany did extremely well at his performance, Eliza Bennett's acting was very solid as Meggie, and Andy Serkis was a lot of fun as Capricorn. The storyline was well-paced, the direction did very well to remain true to the novel, the visuals were very creative, and the film score was very emotive. Inkheart suffers from its flaws and dialogue, but has a superb cast, neat visuals, and great fantasy action. 7/10
    Gavin C Super Reviewer

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