Mysteries of Lisbon - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

Mysteries of Lisbon Reviews

Top Critic
David Jenkins
Time Out
December 6, 2011
The production design and costumes are immaculate, while Ruiz's camera glides around soirées, ducks under tables and peers from behind curtains.
Full Review | Original Score: 5/5
Top Critic
Jennie Punter
Globe and Mail
November 11, 2011
A sumptuous unravelling of secrets wrapped in tantalizing stories that gradually interconnect the lives of an ensemble of characters who seduce, betray and defend each other in the years surrounding the Peninsular War.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
Top Critic
Bruce Demara
Toronto Star
November 10, 2011
Based on the sprawling 19th-century novel by Camilo Castelo Branco, Chilean director Raul Ruiz renders an equally sprawling tale filled with love and war, violence and vengeance and the search for identity.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
Top Critic
Mark Jenkins
Washington Post
September 30, 2011
This isn't one of those epics that uses length as a bludgeon. Rather than sweep, the movie spirals, twisting its viewpoint to reveal tales within tales.
Full Review | Original Score: 3.5/4
Top Critic
Walter V. Addiego
San Francisco Chronicle
September 29, 2011
A sprawling 19th century novel filtered through the mind of a trickster filmmaker, the late Raúl Ruiz, who both delights in and subverts his wildly complex and melodramatic source material.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
Top Critic
Michael Phillips
Chicago Tribune
September 15, 2011
It's a lot. But if you're at all inclined, it's just right.
Full Review | Original Score: 3.5/4
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Ignatiy Vishnevetsky
Chicago Reader
September 15, 2011
Despite the running time (an even longer version was broadcast on Portuguese TV), the movie is never sluggish; on the contrary, it's smart, energetic filmmaking that also makes for engrossing entertainment.
Top Critic
Roger Ebert
Chicago Sun-Times
September 15, 2011
I got a little lost while watching "Mysteries of Lisbon" and enjoyed the experience.
Full Review | Original Score: 3.5/4
Top Critic
Wesley Morris
Boston Globe
August 25, 2011
The casual way [Ruiz] practices difficult cinema is breathtaking.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
Top Critic
Sheri Linden
Los Angeles Times
August 11, 2011
The storytelling is straightforward, with a classical sheen, even as mischief and hallucination puncture the serene surface.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/5
Top Critic
David Edelstein
New York Magazine/Vulture
August 8, 2011
You can study it, like a painting, and then realize, with a gasp, that it has got hold of you like a fever.
Top Critic
Richard Brody
New Yorker
August 8, 2011
[Ruiz] stages the events with an air of intrigue that's amplified by his sly, insistently roving camera and his sinuous, theatrical long takes.
Top Critic
V.A. Musetto
New York Post
August 7, 2011
The story is nothing if not convoluted. Characters, subplots and overlapping narratives come and go.
Top Critic
August 5, 2011
It's telling that the movie, after reaching a tidy payoff, takes one last spin into an epilogue that questions the actuality of almost everything that's come before.
Top Critic
Joe Neumaier
New York Daily News
August 5, 2011
A dull, high-minded soap opera.
Full Review | Original Score: 1/5
Top Critic
Andrew O'Hehir
Salon.com
August 4, 2011
Once you start to ride with the rapturous, gorgeous, digressive symphony of images and words and music in this film it's completely absorbing and unlike anything you've ever seen.
Top Critic
Manohla Dargis
New York Times
August 4, 2011
Made for European television and originally divided into six one-hour episodes, the movie now runs an absorbing, astonishingly fast four and a quarter hours.
| Original Score: 4/5
Top Critic
Noel Murray
AV Club
August 4, 2011
For all its visual invention and full-blooded melodrama, Mysteries Of Lisbon never tilts to full-on crazy.
Full Review | Original Score: B+
Top Critic
Lisa Schwarzbaum
Entertainment Weekly
August 3, 2011
A boy in a Lisbon orphanage wonders about his origins, and in response a river of stories flows from the mouths of noblemen, ladies, low-born scoundrels, priests, and sinners.
Full Review | Original Score: A
Top Critic
Eric Kohn
indieWIRE
August 3, 2011
...moves forward with fits of intrigue, interspersed with casual developments that deaden its momentum and call into question its monumental running time.
Top Critic
Joshua Rothkopf
Time Out
August 3, 2011
An impossible-to-summarize narrative that has, among other things, a love triangle, several flashbacks and a rude gypsy called the Knife-Eater.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/5
Top Critic
J. Hoberman
Village Voice
August 2, 2011
Say what you will about 19th-century literature -- they had stories in those days (and stories within stories).
Top Critic
Rob Nelson
Variety
August 2, 2011
Raul Ruiz's head-spinning Mysteries of Lisbon is a period drama of contemporary import -- and of the highest order.
Top Critic
Deborah Young
Hollywood Reporter
October 1, 2010
A superbly guilty pleasure for a rainy day.