2016 – USA
Director: Tate Taylor
Starring: Emily Blunt, Haley Bennett, Rebecca Ferguson, Luke Evans, Justin Theroux
Words: C. Abbott
Upon entering the theatre to see this one the expectations were mixed to say the least. Hearing the murmurs of lacklustre changes from the book (which I have yet to read), yet excellent praise for the cast at hand, it seemed like one to be polarising at best. In truth, the results are simply too banal to justify any strong opinion. This year’s Gone Girl it ain’t.
Rachel (Emily Blunt) gets through her days by way of a bottle or two of vodka. She’s struggling to keep a grip on her life and continues to become increasingly obsessed with a couple. She witnesses something unusual about them during her daily commute and begins to uncover dark secrets about them, and herself.
The premise is solid, even great; an alcoholic protagonist is something different from the usual run of the mill fodder we continually see churned out. The cast matches this greatness in turn, yet are left with nothing to do. Emily Blunt clearly gave everything to her performance and it shows, she is a consistent delight to watch on screen and even in such dower and relentlessly bleak surroundings she manages to push through.
This however, is where the positives end. There are only so many ways one can criticise a thriller with no thrills, and it is in itself dull to hear it but there’s no escaping the fact that this film is simply boring. It’s tediously laborious to get through the various plot strands that all seem redundant and devoid of intrigue. The piecing together in the narrative is squandered by characters that are utterly lifeless. People stand in place as Emily Blunt shouts and spits the exposition at them.
There are unexpected twists along the way, and to disregard them would be unfair, but to care about them would be exhausting. By the time this glacial production hits the credits you’ll have forgotten most of it and as you close the door once home it’ll have entirely left your head. Skip it.