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Overall Rating

Worth A Look: 13%
Average: 16%
Pretty Bad: 17%
Total Crap: 19%

4 reviews, 76 user ratings

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English Patient, The
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by spork-girl

"I'd like to thank the academy for being gullible."
3 stars

What the fuck. That's not a question. It is a statement to the academy. There is much to be said for pretty pictures in a movie, but that's why they have seperate catagories for cinematography and best picture.

I waited until the buzz had worn off this movie to see it. Until people had stopped saying "you HAVE to see it." No, I really don't. So in the end I saw it in a second run theatre and was fully prepared to like it or say I did. After all, my mommy was there. And in all honesty it was not a bad movie. but it was not a good movie. It was not the best picture of 1997. I am offended that the academy would think so. I feel they were seduced by it's "prettiness" and it's apparent, fake, "depth" and oh, isn't it poetic.


For one thing, this movie needlessly showcase's Juliet Binoche. Her character is necessary to the plot, and in a novel it would be fine to delve into her psyche, to give her a love interest, and whatever. But in a movie which is already needlessly long, there is no reason for that. Maybe she was banging a producer. It made no sense to me, since the entire movie was built up around discovering Fiennes's deep dark secrets. So why not get to it? Oh, I forgot, it's so poetic to make us wait and drag it out even more. It's a shame because actually, Naveen Andrews is one of the more compelling actors. But his character could easily have been eliminated and making the piece more focused. That, and cutting down Binoche would have have made this movie much more interesting. I kept thinking, "and this has to do with what exactly? Whay am I looking at this? How long is this movie?"

Now allow me to get to the heart of the matter. The movie is really about Ralph Fiennes (pronounced RaLph Fee-enn-es, no matter what anyone tells you. My last name, Martin, isn't pronounce Mahin just because I say so) and why he's all burned and shit. So what follows is a slow series of flashbacks, where secrets are revealed slowly and shockingly. This part I don't mind. I'm all for intricate plots and secrets and lies and finding out the truth and all that. but when the truth itself is a let down and not shocking at all, then that kind of approach is futile. Not once was I like "ohmigod! so THAT's why he's trying to forget." And, when your leading man takes lessons from Captain Kirk in a drama that's supposed to be heartwrenching, that is not a good sign.

Kristin Scott Thomas was robbed, man. Of all the cahracters I wanted to learn more about, I'd like it to be the reason for the man's sorrow, but no, I get some french floozie.

So basically this movie was a big let-down. If you want to see a quality flick about war in the desrt full of pretty pictures, I highly reccomend Lawrence of Arabia. 3 sporks. And no best picture oscar for YOU!

link directly to this review at
originally posted: 09/08/98 10:57:00
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User Comments

9/14/17 morris campbell very good 4 stars
2/17/13 softy mcgee excellent film despite firth, who's bland as toast 5 stars
1/13/12 Simon Great imagery, ok acting, & neat interlocking details,but its a telenovela at its weak core 3 stars
6/27/11 DR Interesting novel - average film. Not a classic, not terrible. 2 stars
11/26/10 Jeff Wilder Proof that Indie does not automatically = Good. 1 stars
9/23/10 Emily Sand I'd like to see anyone try and sit through this movie after all these years. Can't be done 2 stars
2/19/10 rita pantoja Overated - I 'm now conviced that C Firth is just plain bad luck to any movie he's in. 2 stars
10/24/07 Ivana Mann Binoche is about as believeable as O.J. saying "I'm innocent."The acting in this=excrement. 1 stars
6/14/07 Jenni OMG - I almost went into a coma! 1 stars
3/27/07 fools♫gold Rather average and uninteresting; I don't know what to think of it: it made me sleep. 3 stars
12/18/06 Sepi53 Interesting, different wartime film 4 stars
6/28/06 Dani Wonderful, opulent film. 5 stars
2/14/06 Two Gun If I had not busied myself sharpening knives, would n ot have made it to the end 1 stars
12/25/05 Vega Must be the most boring and pointless movie that I've seen 1 stars
11/14/05 Michael Choose an illicit partner, get macabre results. A Godless movie. 2 stars
9/27/05 Mactheknife I resaw the English Patient last evening. It's powerful images and storyline transfixed m 5 stars
8/23/05 ES Literally & honestly the most boring movie ever made about war and wartime events 1 stars
7/26/05 Laura Lee Macleod big soppy epic should have been made 1940 3 stars
2/23/05 andrea313 I laughed, I cried. It was really moving. 4 stars
2/21/05 Nadie The critics said this was a good movie. I will never trust them again. 1 stars
2/06/05 Nobody This movie is AWFUL AWFUL AWFUL I would pay money NOT to see it 1 stars
1/03/05 UMER desrves all the accolades it received at the time it was released-wonderful movie indeed 5 stars
12/23/04 Tatiana Pretentious, overblown, and emotionally hollow. Not to mention dull. 1 stars
10/24/04 ODH Good looking film, but boring and offers nothing that hasnt been seen before. Waste of time 1 stars
9/26/04 Bucky Buckner Boone Binoche is the heart and soul and won an unexpected but deserved Oscar; rest is ok 5 stars
7/04/04 Jeff Semlow Great looking film, but overly sappy. 3 stars
6/22/04 T. Maj Self-conscious epic; pretentious and lifeless 2 stars
1/17/04 Emperor's New Clothes? Nope. Just a Fat, Ugly, Naked, Guy. The script. The cinematography. The direction. The acting. Where's the HEART? 4 stars
10/29/03 ZF Great looking but skin deep and pretentious. Kip's dignity was robbed in the adaptation. 2 stars
8/14/03 Jeannie Karlsen Although I don't usually care for sappy love stories, Ralph Fiennes makes this work. 4 stars
7/02/03 your worse goddamn nightmare The script. The cinematography. The direction. The acting. Need I go on? 5 stars
5/17/03 Andrew Carden Thomas & Fiennes Are Amazing; Great Direction. One Flaw: An Awful Performance By Binoche. 4 stars
4/20/03 Jake Carlton fantastic film making 5 stars
3/28/03 Atanu I had 3 potentials scores with me while watching this, even then i had to tell it was crap 1 stars
3/25/03 Jack Sommersby Emotionally aloof and distressingly uninteresting. Dafoe comes off best. 2 stars
1/24/03 Pinkline Jones Recommend euthanasia for the entire Cast and Director 1 stars
9/29/02 Peter Sherlock A faultless movie and superb transfre from a excellent novel 5 stars
7/19/02 Charles Tatum Slyder is so wrong; seriously boring 1 stars
3/07/02 Caravaggio, Willem Dafoe's character Two thumbs up! 4 stars
3/02/02 Jenny Tullwartz Overlong and muddled, but at least didn't have Demi Moore in it. 3 stars
2/21/02 luda hoe guy gets burned, guy reveals past, no one cares, i'm glad i didn't pay a lot to see it 3 stars
2/17/02 ACBCorp Superb cinematography, visually dazzling, average acting, overly long but worth it... 4 stars
12/17/01 bobbuttons its ok i guess, whatever 3 stars
12/02/01 travis r. sorensen watch this with a girl and you'll get laid-i guarantee it. 5 stars
11/27/01 sdfr lyrical, mysterious, poignant, heartbreaking, uplifting. It all worked very well somehow. 4 stars
8/31/01 spaceworm Someone abandon the teen critics i a cave with a bank book and no pen. 5 stars
8/31/01 Hooker with a Penis worth seeing it if not onle for the beautiful cinematography 5 stars
5/18/01 Bada Bing Crosby Worth it for Binoche ONLY..she is perfection, the rest is worthless 4 stars
4/24/01 *~Danielle*Ophelia~* (formerly KyLe*BrOfLoVsKi) Great performances, but I like a little more bounce for my buck. That's just me... 3 stars
2/11/01 Gary Tooze Perfect film 5 stars
2/05/01 Triumph, the Insult Comic This was the perfect movie...for me to poop on!I kid!This movie was beautiful and haunting 5 stars
12/04/00 Cristopher Revilla at first i din't get it, but later viewings i understood it, it was good, liked it!!! 5 stars
11/14/00 The EVIL Penguin Please listen to Chris Drake, Gray, and BirdBrain 1 stars
11/03/00 dan nice full frontal nudity! 4 stars
10/16/00 BirdBrain No matter how pretty it is, boring as hell. 1 stars
9/07/00 Gray Looks great, Binoche is good but very boring, very shallow and lost up it's own ass. 1 stars
7/12/00 Chris Drake "Pretty" adultery is still adultery--I like Fiennes but (so far) none of his movies 1 stars
5/18/00 Keith contrary to Seinfeld, there's no bathtub sex in it, so save your money. 1 stars
4/13/00 Heather Awesome, intelligent, well acted, well deserved the Oscars 5 stars
3/03/00 Belinda Tardini I believe this film is so successful because of the acting. 4 stars
3/01/00 Ionicera Needs to be accepted and enjoyed on its own merit and not for the surrounding +/- hype 5 stars
1/12/00 John Markham VERY,VERY BORING. 1 stars
11/29/99 Mic Beautifully cinematographed. 5 stars
10/30/99 Bozo awesome ONLY for Binoche who was great & for once an Oscar was deserved-rest of it was OK 5 stars
10/13/99 little jerry A simple love story trying way too hard for the profound.Titanic was more meaningful. 3 stars
6/15/99 Dylan Yawn...zzzz...etc.etc. 2 stars
1/24/99 Hannah I might have said it was decent if it wasn't *supposed* to be great. Made me want to vomit 3 stars
1/10/99 Dasha I don't care what you say, it WAS the movie of the year! 5 stars
1/07/99 Jo Mama This movie almost made me cry. Call me a pussy. 5 stars
11/13/98 Jules I must be fucked up or something. I didn't like it. In fact, I walked out before the end. 2 stars
10/13/98 tom wood ralph fiennes is all this movie needed 5 stars
9/27/98 katherine SUCKED SHIT!!!! i hate this film! it bored me 2 death. 2 stars
9/26/98 Maegs I loved it. I'm a girl. I couldn't help it. *weeep* 5 stars
9/06/98 Badass Wrong Whoopee! Length and desert make for great films, such as this and LAURANCE OF ARABIA. 5 stars
8/28/98 Mister Whoopee Bored me to fuck. Fiennes is a lifeless actor. Length and desert do not make a good film. 2 stars
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  15-Nov-1996 (R)
  DVD: 29-Jun-2004



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