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Bel Ami (2012)



Average Rating: 4.9/10
Reviews Counted: 88
Fresh: 25 | Rotten: 63

Bel Ami contains some soapy pleasures but it overall rushes through the narrative and suffers from a vague central performance by Robert Pattinson.


Average Rating: 4.5/10
Critic Reviews: 27
Fresh: 4 | Rotten: 23

Bel Ami contains some soapy pleasures but it overall rushes through the narrative and suffers from a vague central performance by Robert Pattinson.



liked it
Average Rating: 2.7/5
User Ratings: 9,106

My Rating

Movie Info

Bel Ami is the story of Georges Duroy, who travels through 1890s Paris, from cockroach ridden garrets to opulent salons, using his wits and powers of seduction to rise from poverty to wealth, from a prostitute's embrace to passionate trysts with wealthy beauties, in a world where politics and media jostle for influence, where sex is power and celebrity an obsession. -- (C) Magnolia




Guy de Maupassant, Rachel Bennette

Aug 7, 2012


Magnolia Pictures - Official Site External Icon

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All Critics (88) | Top Critics (27) | Fresh (25) | Rotten (63)

"Bel Ami" is a handsome production, yet riddled with weaknesses.

June 21, 2012 Full Review Source: Minneapolis Star Tribune | Comments (2)
Minneapolis Star Tribune
Top Critic IconTop Critic

The supposedly cunning protagonist registers as a cipher, and the directors' tendency to shoot dialogue scenes in close-up blunts any understanding of the social milieu he's trying to conquer.

June 21, 2012 Full Review Source: Chicago Reader
Chicago Reader
Top Critic IconTop Critic

The women are all elegant and intelligent, they know the ways of the world, and they know Georges' history. Why do they find him attractive? We don't, and that failure is the downfall of the film.

June 21, 2012 Full Review Source: Chicago Sun-Times | Comments (4)
Chicago Sun-Times
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Pattinson's passion is bloodless, his rakish George Duroy a font of undelivered potential.

June 15, 2012 Full Review Source: Newsday
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Good actors flit in and out of the movie - particularly Kristin Scott Thomas and Colm Meaney - but no one seems able to conquer the essential silliness of it all...

June 14, 2012 Full Review Source: Seattle Times
Seattle Times
Top Critic IconTop Critic

What distinguishes Pattinson in the role is the sense he conveys of someone roiling and churning beneath a surface that is almost, but not quite, calm.

June 8, 2012 Full Review Source: San Francisco Chronicle | Comment (1)
San Francisco Chronicle
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Unfortunately the rather ludicrous camp characteristics of the story, such as Uma Thurman rolling around on Egyptian cotton sheets shouting "Look at the grain exports to Algiers!" are never fully recognised...

September 8, 2013 Full Review Source: Trespass

"Bel Ami" ends up being a film that feels cold and distant because of the stale lead and a story that makes no room for the affection between any of the couples.

September 14, 2012 Full Review Source:

This is the perfect film to cure someone of an obsession with "RPatz".

August 5, 2012 Full Review Source: Limelight

A gassy, self-satisfied adaptation of the 1885 novel of the same name, threadbare Parisian period piece Bel Ami belies the erroneous notion that costume dramas automatically have a higher IQ than their contemporary dramatic brethren.

July 29, 2012 Full Review Source: Shared Darkness
Shared Darkness

Pattinson fails to step up and command this film with his performance, and never settles on anything definitive for his character.

July 26, 2012 Full Review Source:

As a caddish young man who seduces his way up the social ladder in late-19th-century Paris, Robert Pattinson looks much more the part than a too-old-for-the-role George Sanders in Hollywood's watered-down 1947 version, The Private Affairs of Bel Ami.

July 24, 2012 Full Review Source: Movie Talk | Comment (1)
Movie Talk

The film is far too concerned with its 'costume' and not nearly enough with its 'drama'.

July 6, 2012 Full Review Source: Dark Horizons
Dark Horizons

Visually, the film is ornate and very attractive while the story, based on the 1885 novel by Guy de Maupassant, is essentially a pulpy morality tale about the perils of taking short cuts through life. A very satisfying, rough-edged period drama.

June 30, 2012 Full Review Source: 3AW

Pattinson doesn't work as the manipulative cad that this story demands.

June 22, 2012 Full Review Source:

A promising cast fails to save this period downer.

June 21, 2012 Full Review Source: ReelTalk Movie Reviews
ReelTalk Movie Reviews

All four of the main actors are worth seeing, but don't expect the movie to amount to much.

June 21, 2012 Full Review Source: St. Paul Pioneer Press
St. Paul Pioneer Press

Pattinson just stands there as if he's thinking, 'I'm sorry if this isn't enough for you, but I only have two faces I can make.'

June 21, 2012 Full Review Source: RedEye

Robert Pattinson is a terrible actor...Put him at the center of an actual movie and he's revealed as an empty pretty boy, a black hole of talent.

June 11, 2012 Full Review Source: Hollywood & Fine | Comments (3)
Hollywood & Fine

Robert Pattinson fits right into this material - a blistering critique of a man who can't overcome his self-hatred.

June 9, 2012 Full Review Source: amNewYork

Pattinson's weakness as an actor is all the more glaring when compared to his supporting players.

June 8, 2012 Full Review Source: East Bay Express
East Bay Express

Audience Reviews for Bel Ami

I like movies based on this era, but the subject of this movie was senseless to me...
February 19, 2013

Super Reviewer

Started off slow, but really was worth sticking with. I am not a fan of period movies in general, but was interested to see Robert Pattinson in something other than Twilight movies. Also quite like Christina Ricci.
This is a really well acted movie. Robert is quite convincing and you do see that all is not smiles as he seems to be on the surface. The women are also well written and convincing. The sex scene with him and Uma is quite brutal in an unexpected way. Actually hard to watch even though nothing is really shown.
Quite a dark little movie.
December 2, 2012

Super Reviewer

Possessed by love. Consumed by desire.

Not so great of a movie! The choice of Robert Pattinson as the hero, or antihero of Guy de Maupassant's novel is probably the main reason for the overall failure of the movie adaptation. Missing the artistic maturity necessary to sustain the depth of a complex character, he seems to feel uncomfortable in his role, and whereas at the beginning his pale, embarrassed face and posture may be suitable for the part of a former poor soldier entering the glittering world of high society, once he is part of it, those same face and posture reveal his true feeling ill at ease in what is a totally unsuitable role for him. That's why the story, centred on his figure, develops in a boring, pedantic way, showing no punch and no real pathos, in search for a bounce that never comes. Nothing to say against the brilliant female performances,the frivolous Christina Ricci is the only one who enlivens the pale and inexpressive face of Georges, but Uma Thurman and Kristin Scott Thomas compete for the best performance, the first perfect in the role of the ambiguous Madeleine, and the latter courageous in her role of an ageing married woman, losing her mind for a young lover, and the last scene with her dressed in black at her daughter's marriage to Georges proves the only vivid moment within the whole picture.

Georges Duroy is a penniless soldier returning from war. He travels to Paris in a search for ways to improve his social and financial status. He uses his wit and powers of seduction to charm wealthy women.
November 27, 2012
Manu Gino

Super Reviewer

Should have read the story line before watching this.
July 31, 2012
Dead Angel

Super Reviewer

    1. Clotilde de Marelle: You're just one of them, after all. Just another selfish, brutal man. Just another thief.
    – Submitted by Amit M (2 years ago)
    1. Georges Duroy: Well there is no next life.
    – Submitted by Amit M (2 years ago)
    1. Georges Duroy: That's because you've never been poor.
    – Submitted by Amit M (2 years ago)
    1. Georges Duroy: I will ruin you..
    – Submitted by Linda C (2 years ago)
    1. Georges Duroy: It's so clear to me.
    – Submitted by Sally M (2 years ago)
    1. Georges Duroy: Being loved is not enough.
    – Submitted by Jeane H (2 years ago)
View all quotes (8)

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