Box art for Secret Window

Secret Window

Superstar Johnny Depp gives one of the most captivating performances of his career in this grippingpsychological thriller.

Rotten Tomatoes® scores

  • Critic Score
  • Audience Score

common sense

PAUSE for kids age 14
0 out of 5
Drinking, drugs, & smoking
3 out of 5
3 out of 5
3 out of 5
5 out of 5

It all feels recycled and re-recycled.

what parents need to know

Parents need to know that this movie has a great deal of tension, peril, and graphic violence, with grisly dead bodies. Characters are injured and killed. An animal is killed and a house is torched. There are sexual references and situations, including adultery. Characters smoke and drink, and there is a reference to alcohol abuse. There is some very strong language for a PG-13.

what families can talk about

  • Families can talk about the clues that indicate what the final twist will be, including the very first scene and the scene in the bathroom. Why is it important that Morty had a past experience with a charge of plagiarism?

movie reviews from Rotten Tomatoes®

  • Tomatometer®

    reviews counted: 25
    see all Secret Window reviews
  • Audience


Top Critic Reviews

Rotten: Mr. Depp demonstrates once again that he never disappoints as an actor, even in something as fraudulent as Secret Window.

- Andrew Sarris, New York Observer, Thursday, April 1, 2004

Rotten: It wants to be surprising but merely grows foolish.

- Connie Ogle, Miami Herald, Friday, March 12, 2004


- David Rooney, Variety, Monday, July 7, 2008

Audience Reviews

3 stars

the #1 most stolen ending that ive seen. does that mean Stephen King is a genius? probably

- ColinCostigan8590, Friday, June 12, 2009

3 stars

From Stephen King's short story, Secret Window was a surprisingly enjoyable movie - I'm not sure if it was "good" or not, though. Personally, I readily connect with the frustrated writer figure, and the film's early-going was just more than enough to keep me interested. Then it slipped into bad horror movie for a while, but the twist ending very much redeemed it and made me glad to have sat through the excessive television commercials. One that's good to zone out to and features another enigmatic and maybe genius performance from Johnny Depp (not to mention a well-employed and steady John Turturro), it will make you think - but not too hard. Such a perfect balance... maybe THAT's why I wound up liking it...

- danperry17, Thursday, January 22, 2009

3 stars

"The most important part of a story is the ending." From writer/director David Koepp (Stir of Echoes) comes this filmed adaptation of Stephen King's novella Secret Window, Secret Garden, one of four stories in the collection Four Past Midnight. Johnny Depp stars as Mort Rainey, a recently divorced author who decides to take some time off at his cottage. Unfortunately for Rainey, John Shooter (John Turturro), an unbalanced wannabe writer, tracks him down, claiming that Rainey plagiarized his work. Also starring Maria Bello, Charles S. Dutton, and Timothy Hutton, Secret Window is the second story from Four Past Midnight to be adapted as a film, the first being 1995's made-for-television The Langoliers. Review "Based on a book by Stephen King" can be a blessing or a curse. In this case it's actually neither. There are good performances by the actors and Johnny Depp is fabulous as always, portraying a writer struggling with writer's block after he caught his wife cheating on him. Now he's being threatened by a mysterious hick who claims his story was stolen by Depp's character Morton Rainey. The tension is good in the first half of the film. The thing is, I figured the plot out quite soon, staying a step ahead every time. The film just wasn't fast enough. Depp's performance carries the whole film and without him, this would be another failed King adaption. Now it's just a well-acted thriller, but not top-drawer.

- mrpopcorn, Monday, December 22, 2008