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The Ninth Gate

7/10
Horror . Mystery . Thriller
 

An all-expenses-paid international search for a rare copy of The Nine Gates of the Shadow Kingdom brings an unscrupulous book dealer deep into a world of murder, double-dealing and satanic worship.

 
Actors: Johnny Depp , Frank Langella , Lena Olin , Emmanuelle Seigner , Barbara Jefford , Jack Taylor , José López Rodero , James Russo , Willy Holt , Allen Garfield
Directors: Roman Polanski
Country: SPAIN , FRANCE , USA
Release: 2000-03-10
More Info:
  • David Sterritt

    Polanski's directing is marvelously assured and Depp is always fun to watch.

    Christian Science Monitor Full Review
  • Charles Taylor

    Amusing, ultra-deadpan entertainment. The director was lucky enough to have a cast who were in on the joke and tuned in to his wavelength.

    Salon.com Full Review
  • Michael Wilmington

    Elegant, scary fun.

    Chicago Tribune Full Review
  • Jack Mathews

    The movie falls apart toward the end as it enters "Eyes Wide Shut" territory, but until then, it's fun to see bookworms cast in the James Bond mode.

    New York Daily News Full Review
  • Gary Thompson

    Begins to take on a striking resemblance to the infamously bad "Eyes Wide Shut."

    Philadelphia Inquirer Full Review
  • Don Kaye

    Fairly enjoyable as an old-fashioned horror yarn -- or, if that doesn't work for you, as a black comedy about an obsessive collector.

    TNT RoughCut Full Review
  • Rene Rodriguez

    A devilish little comedy whose urbane, satirical humor will probably sail right over the heads of audiences weaned on Scream.

    Miami Herald Full Review
  • Peter Brunette

    Compulsively watchable and its occasional lapses into that familiar Polanskian overkill are almost charming.

    Film.com Full Review
  • Jonathan Rosenbaum

    So visually striking, so compulsively watchable as storytelling, and so personal even in its enigmas that I found it much more pleasurable than any of the Hollywood genre films I've seen lately.

    Chicago Reader Full Review
  • William Arnold

    Exotic Ninth Gate breaks down into clichés.

    Seattle Post-Intelligencer Full Review
  • Andrea C. Basora

    As long as Polanski keeps his focus on character and ambiance, the film is an eerie pleasure. But he doesn't, and it degenerates into a second-rate chase movie which takes its supernatural overtones either too seriously or too lightly to be convincing.

    Newsweek Full Review
  • Wesley Morris

    Right up to its deliberate thud of a closer, Polanski had me.

    San Francisco Examiner Full Review
  • Bob Graham

    Summoning silliness Roman Polanski salutes and spoofs satanic thrillers .

    San Francisco Chronicle Full Review
  • Mike Clark

    The script is so bereft of real surprises that it's best to keep the lid on what few there are.

    USA Today Full Review
  • Shawn Levy

    After a cheeky, campy start, The Ninth Gate leaves you with a bitter and dull aftertaste.

    Portland Oregonian Full Review
  • A.O. Scott

    About as scary as a sock-puppet re-enactment of "The Blair Witch Project," and not nearly as funny.

    The New York Times Full Review
  • Maitland McDonagh

    This tale may well weave a more compelling spell on the page; onscreen it's simply ponderous.

    TV Guide Magazine Full Review
  • Manohla Dargis

    Euro-kitsch of the highest order, which doesn't mean it's necessarily bad, just unnecessary.

    L.A. Weekly Full Review
  • Robert Wilonsky

    The whole thing seems to meander aimlessly, rarely creating a chill.

    Dallas Observer Full Review
  • Kenneth Turan

    Lacking noticeable energy or drive, its almost visceral distaste for dramatic momentum is puzzling, especially in a film about the black arts.

    Los Angeles Times Full Review
  • Lisa Nesselson

    This is really a shaggy devil story whose giddy, ironic tone may throw viewers expecting a scary movie.

    Variety Full Review
  • Jonathan Foreman

    A non-thrilling occult thrillersolame and unoriginal that it would be an embarrassment for any director, much less a talent like Roman Polanski.

    New York Post Full Review
  • Chris Kaltenbach

    A film that really has no idea what it wants to be, so it tries a little of everything, and does nothing very well.

    Baltimore Sun Full Review
  • Richard T. Jameson

    The once-talented Mr. Polanski is hard to spot.

    Mr. Showbiz Full Review
  • Lisa Schwarzbaum

    A film not even a star as foxed and foxy as Johnny Depp himself could save.

    Entertainment Weekly Full Review
  • J. Hoberman

    Never quite becomes unwatchable.

    Village Voice Full Review
  • Gemma Files

    A nonsensical mishmash.

    Film.com Full Review
  • Russell Smith

    Most of the actors seem to have been issued one facial expression at the beginning of the film, along with pain-of-death instructions not to change it under any circumstance.

    Austin Chronicle Full Review
  • Jay Carr

    A supernatural thriller that is neither super, natural, nor thrilling.

    Boston Globe Full Review
  • Stephen Hunter

    Polanski, generally, has fallen farther than Lucifer, and into a more profoundly depressing hell, the hell of utter banality.

    Washington Post Full Review
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  • new york

  • obsession

  • passion for collection

  • southern france

  • mephisto

  • antiquary

  • book

  • picture puzzle

  • castle

  • satanism

  • millionaire

  • rare book

  • lucifer

  • sex

  • gnosticism

  • bare butt

  • satanic

  • femme fatale

  • book detective

  • blood on face

  • bare chested male

  • ambiguous ending

  • devil worship

  • new york city

  • bibliophilia

  • book dealer

  • unholy book

  • suicide

  • wheelchair

  • puzzle

  • gate

  • supernatural

  • collector

  • engraving

  • the devil

  • bookstore

  • devil

  • europe

  • legend

  • search

  • riddle

  • twin brother

  • spain

  • bodyguard

  • paris france

  • supernatural power

  • france

  • occult

  • amateur detective

  • collecting

  • desire

  • ambition

  • dead woman with protruding tongue

  • woman strangled to death

  • american abroad

  • priceless artifact

  • authority

  • wealth

  • man with glasses

  • st. martin

  • saying boo

  • lucky strike cigarette

  • restaurant

  • cafe

  • stairway

  • mercenary

  • aristocracy

  • fight

  • amputated hand

  • car theft

  • summoning the devil

  • hell

  • old man

  • orgasm

  • kiss

  • violinist

  • violin

  • drinking

  • drink

  • bar

  • ritual murder

  • gasoline

  • self immolation

  • telephone call

  • bloody nose

  • gun

  • beating

  • candle

  • theft

  • thief

  • eyeglasses

  • death

  • secret society

  • train

  • stalking

  • stabbed in the throat

  • seduction

  • scratching someone's face

  • satanic cult

  • robbery

  • reference to julius caesar

  • reference to don quixote

  • punched in the face

  • private library

  • pistol

  • pentagram

  • page torn from a book

  • noose

  • mysterious woman

  • motorcycle

  • magnifying glass

  • knocked unconscious

  • kicked in the stomach

  • investigation

  • hung upside down

  • hotel

  • hooded figure

  • held at gunpoint

  • hanged man

  • greed

  • fire

  • fireplace

  • female rear nudity

  • falling through the floor

  • deception

  • death of husband

  • corpse

  • cigarette smoking

  • subjective camera

  • chandelier

  • car chase

  • broken eyeglasses

  • breaking a bottle over someone's head

  • blowing smoke into someone's face

  • blood

  • airport

  • airplane

  • neo noir

  • library

  • actor playing multiple roles

  • postcard

  • chateau

  • burned alive

  • breaking and entering

  • reference to satan

  • book burning

  • murder

  • mansion

  • chase

  • person on fire

  • 666

  • suicide by hanging

  • satanic ritual

  • death of friend

  • independent film

  • based on novel

  • title spoken by character

  • number in title

  • portugal

  • stockings

  • conspiracy

  • detective

  • outdoor sex

  • scaffold

  • ice pack

  • missing arm

  • goldfish pond

  • unconsciousness

  • ransacked apartment

  • ritual

  • karate

  • following someone

  • climbing up a wall

  • hanging

  • copying machine

  • collapsing scaffold

  • biting

  • pulling someone's hair

  • carnapping

  • manuscript

  • pickup truck

  • french

  • track

  • baroness

  • burned at the stake

  • writer

  • widow

  • forgery

  • death stare

  • dead woman with eyes open

  • desk

  • sneakers

  • refrigerator

  • building a fire

  • dog

  • choking

  • logging truck

  • shell

  • microwave oven

  • filling station

  • reference to how to win friends and influence people

  • writing

  • witch

  • railway station

  • orgy

  • pay phone

  • albino

  • illuminati

  • water fountain

  • taxi

  • secretary

  • raised middle finger

  • rain

  • phone booth

  • penthouse

  • nude drawing

  • lecture

  • hand on crotch

  • gas station

  • falling down stairs

  • beaten to death

  • taxi driver

  • destiny

  • drowning

  • witchcraft

  • strangulation

  • tattoo

1