Secretary

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Released 2002

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Movie Summary

Director:
Steven Shainberg
Released:
2002
Rating:
R

Secretary is a 2002 drama about a young woman, Lee Holloway (Maggie Gyllenhaal), who returns to her hometown in Florida to restart her life after being released from a mental institution. Upon her return, Holloway starts dating a mild mannered friend from high school, Peter (Jeremy Davies), and take a job as a secretary. Holloway soon develops a crush on her new boss, Mr. Grey (James Spader.) As their relationship develops, Mr. Grey's obsession to detail and overbearing manner become apparent. Rather than rebel, Holloway adores the attention and falls madly in love with Mr. Grey in what becomes a heavily masochistic relationship. While Mr. Grey struggles to control his masochistic tendencies, Holloway vacillates between a responsible relationship with Peter and her dark fantasies with Mr. Grey. Fans of psychological dramas will be fascinated by this in depth exploration of love and obsession. Directed by Steven Shainberg, this Golden Globe nominated film contains subject matter and nudity not appropriate for young viewers.

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Metacritic Score

  • 80

    The New York Times Stephen Holden

    A wholesome self-help fable about the unlocking of shame and its magical transformation into pleasure and personal liberation.

  • 80

    Los Angeles Times Manohla Dargis

    For all the dolorous trim, Secretary is a genial romance that maintains a surprisingly buoyant tone throughout, notwithstanding some of the writers' sporadic dips into pop Freudian...

  • 80

    Variety Todd McCarthy

    In a very demanding role demanding a vast emotional range from clueless innocent to confident role player and emotional adventurer, Gyllenhaal is outstanding.

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    Categories

    Drama

    Themes

    Love & Romance