Under the Tuscan Sun - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

Under the Tuscan Sun Reviews

Top Critic
Rex Reed
New York Observer
October 16, 2003
The epitome of what a feel-good movie is supposed to be but rarely is, this one is beautiful to look at and life-affirming to think about, and it doesn't have a pretentious bone in its head.
Top Critic
September 29, 2003
The movie is sweet but deeply suspect: It's like Lost Horizon re-imagined by a realtor.
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Richard Roeper
Ebert & Roeper
September 29, 2003
... some of the most beautiful photography in any film I've seen this year.
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Stephanie Zacharek
Salon.com
September 28, 2003
Under the Tuscan Sun pretends to be juicy, but it doesn't allow any dribbles. It purports to make love all over us, but not without laying down lots of paper towels first.
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Eleanor Ringel Gillespie
Atlanta Journal-Constitution
September 27, 2003
Has about as much in common with Frances Mayes as it does with Willie Mays, but it does have the marvelous Diane Lane.
| Original Score: C+
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Desson Thomson
Washington Post
September 26, 2003
It is a glorious refreshment to spend time with characters who aren't twenty-something eye bait, someone's virtuous, whiny wife or other reductive archetypes.
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Stephen Hunter
Washington Post
September 26, 2003
It's like a music video of Helen Reddy's 'I Am Woman' filmed in the Chevy Chase Pottery Barn.
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Susan Walker
Toronto Star
September 26, 2003
Lane makes a good impression of a woman taking a big risk and winning a second chance at life.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/5
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Moira MacDonald
Seattle Times
September 26, 2003
Despite the formulaic plot, which seems to belong on the Lifetime channel, Wells has a knack for witty dialogue that keeps things moving along.
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/4
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Mick LaSalle
San Francisco Chronicle
September 26, 2003
The only real downside to the film is what it's likely to do for Italian tourism. After this, the deluge.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
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Jay Boyar
Orlando Sentinel
September 26, 2003
[Wells] rushes the film ... from episode to episode -- some of which work and some of which don't.
| Original Score: 3/5
Top Critic
Bob Campbell
Newark Star-Ledger
September 26, 2003
Alternately helped, hindered and (best) left alone by first-time director Wells, Lane fills the screen with her perceptive presence and lifts the undramatic story as high as gravity allows.
| Original Score: 2.5/4
Top Critic
Elvis Mitchell
New York Times
September 26, 2003
Eminently superficial, although Ms. Wells keeps the movie going with a steady, commanding hand and casts it with an actress who can deftly downshift from serene to sodden.
| Original Score: 3/5
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Lou Lumenick
New York Post
September 26, 2003
Wells ... serves up a comfort-food buffet of fantasies.
| Original Score: 2/4
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Jami Bernard
New York Daily News
September 26, 2003
It's because of Lane's performance that we don't discount Frances as a silly thing with a weakness for rustic charm, big-eyed kittens and poetic tableaux.
| Original Score: 2.5/4
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Manohla Dargis
Los Angeles Times
September 26, 2003
The movie pretends it's peddling a vision of 'you-go-girl' independence in which it doesn't remotely believe.
Full Review | Original Score: 2/5
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Eric Harrison
Houston Chronicle
September 26, 2003
A touching story that includes large helpings of humor and charm.
| Original Score: A-
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Liam Lacey
Globe and Mail
September 26, 2003
While both the scenery and star Diane Lane are highly watchable, the movie is pure froth, a plate-sized helping of zabaglione.
| Original Score: 2.5/4
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Terry Lawson
Detroit Free Press
September 26, 2003
It may be a fairy tale, but it's one worth believing in.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
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Robert Denerstein
Denver Rocky Mountain News
September 26, 2003
The adaptation of Mayes' book proves to be stronger on scenery than on convincing drama.
| Original Score: C+
Top Critic
Lisa Kennedy
Denver Post
September 26, 2003
Likable and flawed in its own right.
Top Critic
Roger Ebert
Chicago Sun-Times
September 26, 2003
What redeems the film is its successful escapism, and Lane's performance.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
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Ty Burr
Boston Globe
September 26, 2003
Plays as a warmly soothing yuppie-makeover daydream, and it goes down like limoncello -- sweet, not very good for you, but irresistible just the same.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
Top Critic
Bill Muller
Arizona Republic
September 25, 2003
Despite its overly pat plot and a glaring lack of conflict, Lane pretty much saves the movie.
| Original Score: 3/5
Top Critic

USA Today
September 25, 2003
A fun movie to sit through even when you don't always buy it.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
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Jeff Strickler
Minneapolis Star Tribune
September 25, 2003
Forget about getting a refill on popcorn. Your first instinct while watching Under the Tuscan Sun is to call a travel agent.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
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Jane Sumner
Dallas Morning News
September 25, 2003
A predictable lightweight comedy-drama that believes in second chances, risk-taking and loving a house.
Full Review | Original Score: C+
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Glenn Lovell
San Jose Mercury News
September 25, 2003
The lovely vistas can't make up for the hackneyed story line.
| Original Score: 2/4
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Peter Travers
Rolling Stone
September 25, 2003
Wells loads a cliched plot on Mayes' lighter-than-air memoir.
| Original Score: 2/4
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Rene Rodriguez
Miami Herald
September 25, 2003
It may have taken two decades for Hollywood to finally fall in love with Lane, but Under the Tuscan Sun proves it was better late than never.
| Original Score: 3/4
Top Critic
Carrie Rickey
Philadelphia Inquirer
September 25, 2003
Movie and book both are delightful, but very, very different.
| Original Score: 3/4
Top Critic
John Anderson
Newsday
September 25, 2003
What Lane makes you do is wonder why she hasn't been making more movies over the years.
| Original Score: 3/4
Top Critic
September 25, 2003
This beautifully crafted film is about saying yes -- and continuing to say yes -- to new experiences, despite the chances for failure.
Top Critic
Mark Caro
Chicago Tribune
September 25, 2003
If the screen version of Under the Tuscan Sun doesn't make your mouth water or inspire you to price out flights to Italy, what's the point?
| Original Score: 2/4
Top Critic
Hazel-Dawn Dumpert
L.A. Weekly
September 25, 2003
Real issues come up along the way ... but in these Wells proves a mere dabbler, speeding away weightier ideas, and the dimension they promise, in a wash of lemony vistas, easy episodes and exclusively lovable characters.
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Lisa Schwarzbaum
Entertainment Weekly
September 24, 2003
Every other character, including the house and the country it's built on, is a sidekick to Frances and her triumphant heroism on the road back to self-fulfillment.
Full Review | Original Score: C+
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James Berardinelli
ReelViews
September 24, 2003
If you're looking for pretty, postcard-like settings, this movie offers plenty of them. If the narrative is more of a concern, you may find this film lacking.
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/4
Top Critic
Sheri Linden
Hollywood Reporter
September 16, 2003
A shimmering, deeply felt film.