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Based on 40 Reviews
critic reviews (10)
fan reviews ( 1 )
  • 25
    Peter Travers Rolling Stone

    "Irritating" doesn't begin to describe Julia Roberts as Katherine, an art-history prof who arrives at Wellesley in 1953. show more

  • 50
    Mick LaSalle San Francisco Chronicle

    There's a spark missing, and where it's missing is in Roberts' conscientious but all too reserved performance. show more

  • 50
    Claudia Puig USA Today

    Rather than being a fascinating exploration of a much more constrained time in our social history, the film simply feels anachronistic. show more

  • 30
    Joe Morgenstern Wall Street Journal

    The performances, under Mike Newell's direction, range from conventional (Ms. Roberts) to dreadful, and the script is as shallow as an old Cosmo cover story. show more

  • 38
    Carrie Rickey Philadelphia Inquirer

    As artistic achievements go, Mona Lisa Smile is strictly a paint-by-numbers affair. No shading. Little in the way of perspective. To call it one-dimensional would be an act of charity. show more

  • 50
    Jami Bernard New York Daily News

    A movie about a maverick ought to be a little daring as well, and Mona Lisa Smile is as safe and predictable as chintz. show more

  • 50
    Kirk Honeycutt The Hollywood Reporter

    Rote characterizations and a trite, even condescending, attitude toward that era's misguided mores robs the film of the satiric punch Todd Haynes delivered in "Far From Heaven." show more

  • 75
    Roger Ebert Chicago Sun-Times

    The characters involve us, we sympathize with their dreams and despair of their matrimonial tunnel vision, and at the end we are relieved that we listened to Miss Watson and became the wonderful people who we are today. show more

  • 75
    Wesley Morris Boston Globe

    The reliable Mike Newell directs Mona Lisa Smile with such assurance that the important moments are never mawkish or dull, and he encourages the women to act with absolute conviction. show more

  • 75

    Director Mike Newell strips away facades and keeps this movie singing to the feel-good ending where everyone learns a life lesson by graduation time, whatever their choice may be. show more

similar movies

  • Freedom Writers (2007)

  • Dead Poets Society (1989)

  • All I Wanna Do (1998)

  • School Ties (1992)

  • Finding Forrester (2000)

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