Morlang (2003) - Rotten Tomatoes

Morlang (2003)



Critic Consensus: No consensus yet.

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Movie Info

Everything seems to be going right for Julius Morlang (Paul Freeman, best-known as the villainous Rene Belloq in Raiders of the Lost Ark). He lives with his beautiful young girlfriend, Ann (Susan Lynch of From Hell), in a lovely cliffside home on the Pacific coast of Ireland. His once-stagnant art career is undergoing a resurgence and his agent (Eric van der Donk) tells him, "You seem a little happier. It's in your work." But things begin to fall apart when someone breaks into his home and ransacks it, leaving a cryptic message. Through flashbacks the audience discovers the truth about the death of Ellen (Diana Kent), Julius' wife of 15 years. Julius soon finds his new life with Ann threatened by a malevolent figure from his past. The basic premise of Morlang, Tjebbo Penning's directorial debut feature, was inspired by a television news story. Penning's film won awards for Best Lead Actor (Freeman) and Best First Film at the 2001 Cairo International Film Festival. It was also shown in competition at the 2002 Tribeca Film Festival.

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Paul Freeman
as Julius Morlang
Diana Kent
as Ellen Morlang
Susan Lynch
as Ann Morlang
Marcel Faber
as Robert Jansen
Joe Gallagher
as Policeman
Freida Hand
as Custom officier
Maximo Mewe
as Spanish Gallery Owner
Nora Mullens
as Nurse 1
Elvira Out
as Nurse 2
Paddy O'Conell
as Custom officier
Derek Reid
as Custom officier
Edward Stelder
as Annoying artist
Robine van der Meer
as Spanish girlfriend
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Critic Reviews for Morlang

All Critics (9) | Top Critics (7)

An engrossing psychological thriller.

Full Review… | September 2, 2005
Miami Herald
Top Critic

Penning, who also co-wrote the script based on a real-life scandal from the Netherlands, tangles up his timeline so thoroughly that any suspense is strangled out of the story.

June 5, 2004
New York Post
Top Critic

Chilly, slow, absorbing.

Full Review… | May 21, 2004
Boston Globe
Top Critic

A murder mystery so artfully restrained you almost expect Diana Rigg to deliver a witty epilogue.

Full Review… | April 27, 2004
Village Voice
Top Critic

Straining for emotional intricacy, the film's structure simply isn't strong enough to support its aims.

Full Review… | April 22, 2004
Los Angeles Times
Top Critic

A portentous and goopy Dutch drama, in which the holy agony of creative expression is accompanied by plinky music, and the wild Irish countryside is always kissed in mist.

Full Review… | April 22, 2004
Entertainment Weekly
Top Critic

Audience Reviews for Morlang

A subtle film that explores the limits of jealousy. In flashback, a successful artist recounts two recent loves, the first his wife, the second a mistress. The film takes a while to get moving on the plot, but is artful in the mean time with some amazing transition shots. Our artist finds himself holding information that could save his wife's life, but she has also recently told him that she had an affair, and used the following words in her less than humble confession: every, position, many, times. What would you do?

Ryan Mahon
Ryan Mahon

Sad story about a man whose art was more important to him than relationships. Betrayal, revenge, and hidden emotional landmines combine to make this hard to take. The back and forth story telling made it dificult to follow and this viewer found it extremely difficult to piece together the whys. Why does he push his wife into the arms of another man and then punish her for the consequences? Why does she go along with it when she obviously does not want to. Why does he decieve her and make the ultimate betrayal? And why did the authorities never question the suspicious nature of her death? This was all based on true events, so I suppose the film-makers had to be faithful to what really happened, but as a film, it was less than satisfying. Pretty grim stuff.

Mark Abell
Mark Abell

Super Reviewer

Penning's feature directing debut, which he co-wrote, has visual flair but lacks the tightly plotted storytelling this type of film requires. Relying on mood isn't enough to make the outcome truly compelling.

Lee Mayo
Lee Mayo

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