The Painted Veil - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

The Painted Veil Reviews

May 13, 2009
Read More | Original Score: 5/5
Top Critic
April 20, 2007
The production values are characteristically sumptuous, William Daniels' photography is lustrous, and Boleslawski directs with suitable flair.
February 9, 2007
Full Review | Original Score: B
February 3, 2007
Full Review | Original Score: 3/6
January 10, 2007
The always surprising Watts creates a woman at once contemporary and retro. And Norton, as a producer as well as star, concedes enough space for Schreiber and the effortlessly fascinating Jones to earn their own spotlights.
Full Review | Original Score: B+
January 8, 2007
Sweeping vistas, period-piece sets, impeccable literary source, a little stolid at times, but ultimately quite impressive.
January 6, 2007
The movie makes for a good old-fashioned wide-screen wallow.
January 5, 2007
Exquisitely filmed and finely acted.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
December 30, 2006
The acting is quite splendid, especially in the vicinity of the quite splendid Watts.
Read More | Original Score: 3/4
December 29, 2006
The Painted Veil recalls an earlier era of film direction, when movies moved rather than manipulated and craft superseded special effects.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
December 29, 2006
A thoughtful and beautifully mounted story for grown-ups, The Painted Veil brings the quiet pleasures of a fine novel, showing us that the world's complicated geography is no match for the terrain of the human heart.
Full Review | Original Score: 3.5/4
December 29, 2006
The Painted Veil does what a romantic drama needs to do. It testifies to love as the great educator.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/4
December 29, 2006
The Painted Veil is rich with history and heartbreak. It's stirring stuff.
Read More | Original Score: 3.5/4
December 29, 2006
Its strength lies in its patience -- and its slow, melting sorrow that hints at atonement.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
December 29, 2006
The Painted Veil never really transcends a predictable, historical model of sacrifice and personal growth, and there's not enough of the latter.
Read More | Original Score: 2.5/4
December 29, 2006
The film manages to be a lush period piece, a love story, an examination of culture clash and a slow revelation of character emerging from stunted emotion.
Full Review | Original Score: A
December 29, 2006
This version has that element the previous films lacked: a true understanding of Maugham's belief that true love and purpose are inseparable.
Read More | Original Score: 4/4
December 29, 2006
The filmmakers are mindful of the challenges inherent in filming Maugham's novel. But The Painted Veil never fully finesses the novel's 1920s attitudes toward its ethnic others.
Read More | Original Score: 2.5/4
December 29, 2006
[Director] Curran has crafted a film that accomplishes so much. It not only draws us into this personal drama between his two principal actors, but also sets it all against a vibrant background of an ancient civilization struggling to become modern.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/4
December 29, 2006
Norton and Schreiber seem too American to be English colonials, but Watts navigates a challenging transformation (in a role first played by Greta Garbo in 1934), and there are sturdy performances by Anthony Wong, Toby Jones, and Diana Rigg.
December 29, 2006
Even amid an atmosphere of human rot, it's too elegant for its own good, a pleasing but pale Merchant-Ivory exercise that reverently strives for a kind of simple redemptive decency that Maugham found less triumphant than this movie does.
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/4
December 28, 2006
All this comes from a novel by Somerset Maugham, although the movie leaves out most of the complexities of the book to focus on the single-minded venom of the marriage.
Read More | Original Score: 2.5/5
December 28, 2006
It's a grim, demanding movie, but the acting is marvelous and the scenery breathtaking. If you're looking for a film to match the post-holiday blues, here it is. And it's very good.
Read More | Original Score: B+
December 28, 2006
Stunning locations, a story with strong emotional, physical and spiritual conflicts, and a first-rate cast.
Read More | Original Score: 2.5/4
December 22, 2006
The Painted Veil may begin too slowly, but it also ends too soon.
Read More | Original Score: 3/4
December 22, 2006
The Painted Veil lifts Maugham's story clear of its prissy, attenuated spirituality, and into genuine passion.
December 21, 2006
Feels like it's going through the motions, applying period gloss to a story that needs to be more tactile.
Read More | Original Score: B-
December 21, 2006
The Painted Veil lifts Maugham's story clear of its prissy, attenuated spirituality, and into genuine passion.
December 20, 2006
Naomi Watts is far too good for most of her roles, sitting in an ape's paw or watching spectral videotapes. The Painted Veil is a welcome exception.
Read More | Original Score: 3.5/4
December 20, 2006
Despite a fierce lead performance by Naomi Watts, The Painted Veil is a quaintly bloodless, picture-postcard adaptation of W. Somerset Maugham's 1925 China-set novel -- more Merchant Ivory than David Lean.
Read More | Original Score: 2.5/4
December 20, 2006
In The Painted Veil, terrific actors give glum performances.
December 19, 2006
Curran, his actors and screenwriter Ron Nyswaner have made an old-fashioned melodramatic epic that, as steeped as it is in the language and tradition of old movies, is never less than thrummingly alive.
December 19, 2006
Norton and Watts are top-notch, as are Schreiber and Toby Jones.
Read More | Original Score: 3.5/4
December 19, 2006
A pet project of Watts and Norton for years, the two actors clearly have great affinity for the story and capture authentic chemistry of young marrieds at odds, who develop respect -- if not necessarily love -- for each other.
December 19, 2006
It's impeccable, but leaves you cold.
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/5
December 19, 2006
It's really the Norton-Watts show, and they make The Painted Veil resonate with love and regret.
Read More | Original Score: 3.5/4
December 19, 2006
The third film iteration of The Painted Veil turns W. Somerset Maugham's distaff bildungsroman into a fine romance.
Read More | Original Score: 3.5/5
December 18, 2006
The movie achieves a rare balance for an historical fiction: making use of the backdrop without allowing it to overwhelm the characters and their story.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
December 15, 2006
The Painted Veil sets a few fine actors to work with one of W. Somerset Maugham's 1920s tales of Occidentals confronting the Far East and their own tangled emotional lives.
December 15, 2006
The Painted Veil has the power and intimacy of a timeless love story. By all means, let it sweep you away.
Read More | Original Score: 3/4
December 14, 2006
Intelligent scripting, solid thesping and eye-catching location shooting aren't enough to make a compelling modern film of The Painted Veil
December 13, 2006
The Painted Veil tells a mesmerizing story while honoring all of the classic traditions of superior filmmaking -- a magnificent accomplishment that will haunt you long after it ends.