"It's an inky-black comedy with a subject matter--the 9-to-5 sadomasochistic relationship that develops between a small-town lawyer and his mentally disturbed underling--that virtually screams unwatchable, perverted weirdness. Yet, against all odds, director Steven Shainberg has managed to craft an oddly compassionate--and often very funny--tale of an emotionally symbiotic affair...In the title role, Gyllenhaal morphs from a mousy typist in Annie Hall garb into a kinky office minx, employing pitch-perfect comedic timing and a devastating smile." --
Megan Turner, The New York Post

"'Secretary,' a small groundbreaking comedy, is a contemporary Cinderella story with a kink and a wink...The role of Lee, which Maggie Gyllenhaal imbues with a restrained comic delicacy and sweetness, should make her a star." -- Stephen Holden, The New York Times

"The meaning of 'Secretary' is that pain is liberation. This is not a comic idea but a pornographic idea, mixed with defiant anti-feminism." -- David Denby, The New Yorker

"Maggie Gyllenhaal plays Lee as a wallflower discovering her inner wildflower. There's a word for an actress who can go from nervous to winsome to raunchy to romantic in a heartbeat and get you to adore her the whole time. The word is star." -- Entertainment Weekly

"A lot of people who ordinarily would never get by 'Secretary's' premise--that a troubled young woman might be saved through spanking--will be seduced by director Steven Shainberg's subtle way with slippery material, and Maggie Gyllenhaal's winning portrait of triumph through submission." --