The Oxford Murders

Watch The Oxford Murders

"There is no way of finding a single absolute truth"
  • R
  • 2008
  • 1 hr 44 min
  • 6.1  (30,324)

The Oxford Murders is a complex and thrilling murder mystery directed by the Spanish filmmaker Álex de la Iglesia. The movie is based on the novel of the same name by Argentine author Guillermo Martínez, and stars Elijah Wood as Martin, a young American mathematician who arrives at the University of Oxford to study under the renowned logician Arthur Seldom, played by John Hurt.

The cinematic journey starts as Martin and Seldom meet, and Seldom invites Martin to his mansion to discuss philosophy and logic. During their conversation, they are interrupted by the discovery of the dead body of Seldom's former housekeeper. The murder appears to be a ritual killing, inspired by the works of the philosopher Wittgenstein, who said that "What we cannot speak of we must pass over in silence."

The movie is visually stunning, with breathtaking views of the prestigious university, the city of Oxford, and the British countryside. The charming setting is further complemented by the intriguing storyline, which is enriched with a plethora of philosophical and mathematical references. The intellectual banter between Seldom and Martin, as they try to solve the gruesome murder, forms the backbone of the film.

The Oxford Murders is aided by some brilliant performances by the cast. Elijah Wood, who started his career in the fantasy genre with The Lord of the Rings trilogy, demonstrates his range as an actor, portraying Martin, the math prodigy, with a nuanced and restrained performance. John Hurt, on the other hand, delivers one of his most compelling performances, embodying the character of Seldom, who is arrogant, enigmatic, and morally ambiguous with utmost ease.

The female lead of the film is the beautiful and talented Spanish actress Leonor Watling, who plays Lorna, a young nurse who initially befriends Martin and later becomes a critical element in the investigation. Her portrayal of Lorna is engaging, and she brings to the character a sense of mystery and charm.

The director Álex de la Iglesia deserves kudos for handling the tricky subject matter of the film with finesse. He manages to maintain a balance between the philosophy, complex mathematical theories, and the murder mystery without losing the audience's attention. The pacing of the movie is top-notch, allowing various theories and possibilities to be explored before the final reveal.

One of the strengths of The Oxford Murders is how it blends science with art, logic with emotion, and narrative with philosophy. The dialogues are well written, and the ideas are presented in a way that even a layperson can comprehend. It is an intellectual film, but it does not feel elitist or inaccessible to the average viewer. The film's central thesis is that the search for knowledge can sometimes lead to dangerous and destructive consequences. As Seldom says, "There are some ideas so dangerous they can only be dealt with through counter-intelligence."

In summary, The Oxford Murders is an entertaining, thought-provoking, and visually appealing film that appeals to both the brain and the heart. It is a rare cinematic gem that challenges its viewers mentally while keeping them emotionally invested in the story. It is a must-watch for fans of murder mysteries, intellectual thrillers, and arthouse cinema in general.

The Oxford Murders is a 2008 crime movie with a runtime of 1 hour and 44 minutes. It has received moderate reviews from critics and viewers, who have given it an IMDb score of 6.1.

The Oxford Murders
Where to Watch The Oxford Murders
The Oxford Murders is available to watch free on Peacock, Plex and Tubi TV. It's also available to stream, download and buy on demand at Hulu, Amazon Prime, FuboTV, Apple TV, Amazon, Google Play, YouTube VOD and Vudu. Some platforms allow you to rent The Oxford Murders for a limited time or purchase the movie and download it to your device.
  • Release Date
  • MPAA Rating
  • Runtime
    1 hr 44 min
  • Language
  • IMDB Rating
    6.1  (30,324)