MOVIEmeter
SEE RANK
Up 797 this week

The Magdalene Sisters (2002)

7.8
Your rating:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Ratings: 7.8/10 from 19,328 users   Metascore: 83/100
Reviews: 185 user | 128 critic | 38 from Metacritic.com

Three young Irish women struggle to maintain their spirits while they endure dehumanizing abuse as inmates of a Magdalene Sisters Asylum.

Director:

Writer:

Watch Trailer
0Check in
0Share...

User Lists

Related lists from IMDb users

a list of 35 titles
created 06 May 2012
 
a list of 31 titles
created 13 Apr 2013
 
a list of 25 titles
created 05 Jun 2013
 
a list of 37 titles
created 11 months ago
 
a list of 30 titles
created 4 months ago
 

Related Items


Connect with IMDb


Share this Rating

Title: The Magdalene Sisters (2002)

The Magdalene Sisters (2002) on IMDb 7.8/10

Want to share IMDb's rating on your own site? Use the HTML below.

Take The Quiz!

Test your knowledge of The Magdalene Sisters.

User Polls

Nominated for 1 BAFTA Film Award. Another 16 wins & 13 nominations. See more awards »

Videos

Photos

Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Philomena (2013)
Biography | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  

A world-weary political journalist picks up the story of a woman's search for her son, who was taken away from her decades ago after she became pregnant and was forced to live in a convent.

Director: Stephen Frears
Stars: Judi Dench, Steve Coogan, Sophie Kennedy Clark
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

An abandoned wife is evicted from her house and starts a tragic conflict with her home's new owners.

Director: Vadim Perelman
Stars: Jennifer Connelly, Ben Kingsley, Ron Eldard
The Hours (2002)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

The story of how the novel "Mrs. Dalloway" affects three generations of women, all of whom, in one way or another, have had to deal with suicide in their lives.

Director: Stephen Daldry
Stars: Meryl Streep, Nicole Kidman, Julianne Moore
Talk to Her (2002)
Comedy | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8/10 X  

Two men share an odd friendship while they care for two women who are both in deep comas.

Director: Pedro Almodóvar
Stars: Rosario Flores, Javier Cámara, Darío Grandinetti
Babel (2006)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

Tragedy strikes a married couple on vacation in the Moroccan desert, touching off an interlocking story involving four different families.

Director: Alejandro González Iñárritu
Stars: Brad Pitt, Cate Blanchett, Gael García Bernal
Biography | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8/10 X  

In 1985 Dallas, electrician and hustler Ron Woodroof works around the system to help AIDS patients get the medication they need after he is himself diagnosed with the disease.

Director: Jean-Marc Vallée
Stars: Matthew McConaughey, Jennifer Garner, Jared Leto
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  

Young Esteban want to become a writer and also to discover the identity of his father, carefully concealed by the mother Manuela.

Director: Pedro Almodóvar
Stars: Cecilia Roth, Marisa Paredes, Candela Peña
The Help (2011)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.1/10 X  

An aspiring author during the civil rights movement of the 1960s decides to write a book detailing the African-American maids' point of view on the white families for which they work, and the hardships they go through on a daily basis.

Director: Tate Taylor
Stars: Emma Stone, Viola Davis, Octavia Spencer
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.5/10 X  

Lester Burnham, a depressed suburban father in a mid-life crisis, decides to turn his hectic life around after becoming infatuated with his daughter's attractive friend.

Director: Sam Mendes
Stars: Kevin Spacey, Annette Bening, Thora Birch
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.8/10 X  

Upon admittance to a mental institution, a brash rebel rallies the patients to take on the oppressive head nurse.

Director: Milos Forman
Stars: Jack Nicholson, Louise Fletcher, Michael Berryman
Fish Tank (2009)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

Everything changes for 15-year-old Mia when her mum brings home a new boyfriend.

Director: Andrea Arnold
Stars: Katie Jarvis, Michael Fassbender, Kierston Wareing
The Hunt (2012)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.3/10 X  

A teacher lives a lonely life, all the while struggling over his son's custody. His life slowly gets better as he finds love and receives good news from his son, but his new luck is about to be brutally shattered by an innocent little lie.

Director: Thomas Vinterberg
Stars: Mads Mikkelsen, Thomas Bo Larsen, Annika Wedderkopp
Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
...
...
Rose / Patricia
...
...
Una
Britta Smith ...
Katy
Frances Healy ...
Sister Jude
Eithne McGuinness ...
Sister Clementine
Phyllis MacMahon ...
Sister Augusta (as Phyllis McMahon)
Rebecca Walsh ...
Josephine
...
Eamonn
...
Brendan (as Chris Simpson)
Sean Colgan ...
Seamus
Daniel Costello ...
Father Fitzroy
Edit

Storyline

A thoroughly mind provoking film about 3 young women whom, under tragic circumstances see themselves cast away to a Magdalene Asylum for young women t in 1964. One of many like institutions, the asylums are run like prisons and young girls are forced to do workhouse laundry and hard labor. The asylum, one of many that existed in Theocratic Catholic Ireland, is for supposedly 'fallen' women. Here, young girls are imprisoned indefinitely and endure agonizing punishments and a long, harsh working system which leaves them physically drained and mentally damaged. As the girls bond together, it soon becomes clear that the only way out of the Magdalene convent is to escape, but with twisted Sister Bridget running the wing, any chances seem limited... Written by Anonymous

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

The triumphant story of three women who found the courage to defy a century of injustice. See more »

Genres:

Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for violence/cruelty, nudity, sexual content and language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
Edit

Details

Country:

|

Language:

|

Release Date:

25 October 2002 (Ireland)  »

Also Known As:

Die unbarmherzigen Schwestern  »

Box Office

Opening Weekend:

$19,025 (Hong Kong) (10 October 2003)

Gross:

$4,890,878 (USA) (21 November 2003)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

The film that the nuns and penitents watch is The Bells of St. Mary's (1945) See more »

Goofs

The guitar the man plays at the beginning of the film is a Taylor acoustic guitar. Taylor Guitars was not established until 1974. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Margaret: Well, what is it you're wanting to show me? Come on, Kevin, what's the secret?
See more »

Crazy Credits

Special thanks to ... all at the Glasgow Film Office. See more »

Connections

Version of Sex in a Cold Climate (1998) See more »

Soundtracks

The Well Below the Valley
(uncredited)
Traditional Irish folksong
Sung by the priest at the wedding
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

 
A Horrific and Gripping Recounting of True Evil

"The Magdalene Sisters" is not, as some have claimed, a one-dimensional anti-Catholic film exploiting what are arguably especially gruesome atrocities. It is a fact-based drama about three teenage girls who found themselves in 1964 sentenced to work in a laundry run by an Irish religious order for an indefinite term and under conditions that made most audience members shudder.

In three brief vignettes before the main title, the girls are introduced. One is brutally raped by a cousin at a wedding while priests perform traditional Irish songs. Immediately telling a woman, instead of support she becomes the subject of a hasty conspiracy to spirit the rapist from the wedding and to place her in the Magdalene asylum.

A second girl gives birth to a baby - in the not long ago past, illegitimacy was the label. She is pressured by a priest to surrender the baby boy and then she, too, is hustled off to the asylum.

The third victim is in an orphanage where she gets under the director's skin for no other offense than she is pretty and boys from the neighborhood crowd a fence to call down to her. Transfer to the asylum follows.

The Magdalene laundries made money for the order running them and the asylum to which the three girls were committed is, in this film, a moral charnel house. Sister Bridget, the head nun, interviews the girls while fingering, with almost erotic delight, rolls of money. Her desk sports a photo of President Kennedy but a picture of Ilse Koch would have been a more suitable iconographic representation of her character. She is a sadist, first class.

What follows is almost unrelieved tedium for the girls interspersed with brutal physical chastisement and agonizing sexual humiliation inflicted by perverted nuns. Sexual orientation isn't my issue, it's the awful victimization of helpless young girls.

Through the fine acting of the cast the complexity of relationships and the nature of choices become engrossing. To accommodate or to resist. To comply or to engage in sabotage, even in small ways as a declaration of non-surrender. Sabotage is possible but can an inexperienced and angry teen foresee the consequences of a minor act of resistance? An anticipated humorous defiance may well have tragic results.

The film centers on the three girls as well as several other asylum inmates ranging from a young woman descending slowly into irreversible madness and an elderly crone who believes her lifetime of servitude guarantees entrance to the Kingdom of Heaven. This tortured soul is the nuns' "capo," the inmate without whose help the asylum's strictures can't be enforced. Comparison to the Gulag camps and the Nazi concentration camps is apropos.

"The Magdalene Sisters" doesn't portray all the girls as angels but it does show the nuns and the occasional male clergy as evil exploiters and sadistic hypocrites. Is that fair? The end credits report that some 30,000 women were involuntarily placed in Magdalene asylums until the last one closed in 1996. Were all inmates so tortured and beaten? I don't know but these three girls certainly have had THEIR experience recorded for a population that appears to have turned a blind eye to what should have been a national scandal decades earlier. Their life after the asylum is reported in the end credits. All paid a price for a stolen adolescence.

The asylum in this film is pure evil, religious doctrine run amuck in the quest for money through cheap labor and in the riotous unleashing of perversity. English judges for centuries have often used a word rarely found in American case law to describe persons and events: the word is wicked. This film projects an unending parade of wicked people performing wicked acts. It doesn't condemn Catholicism, it indicts the operation by the church in Ireland of one type of soul and body destroying evil. The Church can no more defend the Magdalene asylums than it can the predatory pedophiles in the priesthood. That's the simple reality.

Audience members loudly gasped and a number cried during the showing. This isn't a film for the fainthearted or those who want their illusions about a bucolic and verdant Ireland filled with dancing and music unaffected by the reality of a genuine tragedy now coming to light.

8/10.


176 of 184 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
The Magdalene Sisters + The Catholic Church cohoman
Crispina/Harriet's sister lpgurl
nude scene peoplescommunistfront
Catholic Taliban cees-14
The Hair Ghasters
Similarities to our High School System. a244
Discuss The Magdalene Sisters (2002) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for:
?