(2013)

Critic Reviews

47

Metascore

Based on 32 critic reviews provided by Metacritic.com
75
There's never any doubt that this will end badly for the lovers. But just in case, Jessica Lange as the fire-breathing mother-in-law seals the deal.
75
That's the key to this movie - the way Thérèse looks at things; it's a rare film that focuses on a woman actually looking and how she responds to what she sees.
75
An effective period piece thriller that incorporates love, lust, desperation, and madness into a stew thickened by a gothic atmosphere.
75
Here is a culture in which female strength, having no outlet, must become distorted or lethal. In Therese and her aunt, we find two manifestations of the same disease.
75
In Secret is a costume drama with a gigantic accent on the drama. It's my kind of crazy, and I was quite entertained. To borrow again from Shakespeare, "'Tis Madness, but there's method to't."
70
In Secret boasts vigor and thematic richness, that feeling of artists expressing something vital.
67
Therese is almost voyeuristically distant from what's happening on screen, asking the audience to observe, but leaving just enough a gap of being completely engaged, that while everything is very well articulated, the impact is more academic than sensual.
63
A genuine “bodice ripper” of a thriller, with the requisite heavy breathing that comes after said bodice is ripped. The sex isn't explicit, but Olsen and Isaac suggest the heat that gives this doomed affair its momentum.
63
Olsen is pretty good, too, though with her bald-faced, moon-eyed disdain for everyone around her, the material loses some of its tension between repressed surface and roiling underbelly.
63
There is nothing really wrong with In Secret, yet in the end one feels dissatisfied. It's as if you've just sat through a dry academic lecture dissecting the novel.
60
Jessica Lange, as rare as a unicorn these days, seizes on the role of a grieving mother with two taloned hands. If there are any tremors of shame to be felt here, they emanate from her.
60
The acting is good, the story of doomed lovers suitably tragic. But the film is never quite moving in the way one would hope.
60
In a showy adaptation by first-time helmer Charlie Stratton, the story is more glum than seductive -- offering surprising sexual encounters, yes, but too little of the slow burn and psychological depth that might have made the Les Mis-meets-Jim Thompson concept get under one's skin.
50
The generic title In Secret is as uninspired as the movie itself.
45
If the movie fails to conjure soiled 19th-century Paris, that's not primarily because it was shot in Hungary and Serbia. More problematic are the English-language dialogue and actors who speak in a variety of accents and perform in a range of styles.
40
Though it sounds like a contradiction, the film could be described as both dull and over the top.
40
What do we do about a movie that is half compelling and half unwatchable? Director Charlie Stratton seems to be onto something at the start of his period drama In Secret. Then it all slips through his fingers.
40
Serviceable but uninspired, this latest version of Emile Zola's much-adapted 1867 novel “Therese Raquin” sends its characters to their doom on schedule without stirring much sense of tragedy or emotional involvement.
25
A broad, crude mutilation of Emile Zola's noirish romance Thérèse Raquin that prioritizes heavy petting over plot.
25
Your average episode of “Days of Our Lives” is less soapy (and performed with more restraint).
0
Wall Street Journal
Whatever possessed the people who made this film to believe its ponderous style would appeal to contemporary audiences? One answer may lie in a variant of the mostly true proposition that no one sets out to make a bad film. No one chooses ponderousness as a goal; it comes unbidden, with deadly earnestness.
0
It takes a special talent to turn the romantic lyricism of Zola and turn it into chick-lit.

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