Queen of the Desert (2017) - Rotten Tomatoes

Queen of the Desert2017

Queen of the Desert (2017)



Critic Consensus: Queen of the Desert unites some undeniably talented professionals, but it's difficult to discern what drew them together -- or understand how its compelling real-life story became such a muddled mess.

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Movie Info

Nicole Kidman and director Werner Herzog bring to life the extraordinary true story of a trailblazing woman who found freedom in the faraway world of the Middle East. Gertrude Bell (Kidman) chafes against the stifling rigidity of life in turn-of-the-century England, leaving it behind for a chance to travel to Tehran. So begins her lifelong adventure across the Arab world, a journey marked by danger, a passionate affair with a British officer (James Franco), and an encounter with the legendary T.E. Lawrence (Robert Pattinson). Stunningly shot on location in Morocco and Jordan, Queen of the Desert reveals how an ahead-of-her-time woman shaped the course of history.

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Nicole Kidman
as Gertrude Bell
James Franco
as Henry Cadogan
Damian Lewis
as Richard Doughty-Wylie
Robert Pattinson
as T. E. Lawrence
Jay Abdo
as Fattuh
Jenny Agutter
as Florence Bell
David Calder
as Sir Hugh Bell
Christopher Fulford
as Winston Churchill
Holly Earl
as Florence Lascelles
Mark Lewis Jones
as Sir Frank Lascelles
Beth Goddard
as Mary Lascelles
Sophie Linfield
as Judith Doughty-Wylie
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Critic Reviews for Queen of the Desert

All Critics (79) | Top Critics (28)

As stunningly picturesque as all of this undeniably proves to be, Queen of the Desert is a barren emotional quagmire, Bell's incredible story deserving of so much more than this movie sadly proves to be willing to offer.

April 14, 2017 | Rating: 2/4 | Full Review…

The result is a well-made invitation to nod off.

April 13, 2017 | Rating: 2/4 | Full Review…

Bell was an extraordinary figure, tailor-made for a dazzling presence like Kidman, but Werner Herzog, directing his own script, unwisely structures Bell's story around her intimate relationships with men.

April 13, 2017 | Full Review…

A bland departure from the director's normally madcap norm.

April 7, 2017 | Rating: 1/5 | Full Review…

An emotionally empty, thematically ill-defined, and listless affair. It is never able to communicate the complexity of the woman at its center.

April 7, 2017 | Rating: 1/4 | Full Review…

Despite Kidman's best efforts, almost nothing clicks on an emotional level, and the movie passes as slowly as sand through an hourglass.

April 7, 2017 | Rating: D+ | Full Review…

Audience Reviews for Queen of the Desert


A frustrating biopic that lacks in consistency and real sense of purpose or direction, as it remains unfortunately nothing more than a reverential story that suffers even more from a complete absence of chemistry between Gertrude/Kidman and both her lovers.

Carlos Magalhães
Carlos Magalhães

Super Reviewer

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