woensdag 15 februari 2017

100 Movie Challenge 2017 - # 25: Stoker

Director: Chan-wook Park
Genre: Drama/ Thriller
Runtime: 99 minutes
Year: 2013
Starring: Mia Wasikowska, Nicole Kidman, Matthew Goode, Jacki Weaver, Dermot Mulroney

Description: After India's (Mia Wasikowska) father (Dermot Mulroney) dies, her Uncle Charlie (Matthew Goode), who she never knew existed, comes to live with her and her unstable mother (Nicole Kidman). She comes to suspect this mysterious, charming man has ulterior motives and becomes increasingly infatuated with him.

Review: Director Chan-wook Park created a cult hit with “Oldboy”. A movie that was later remade and made his way to the US. Park made a debut with “Stoker”, where it is his first English language film, based on a screenplay by Wentworth Miller. Miller you might know as Michael Schofield from “Prison Break”, but he has been working on the script for “Stoker” for eight years.
When her father unexpectedly dies on her 18th birthday, India Stokes and her mother Evelyn have to adapt to life without father and husband Richard. But then uncle Charlie appears, Richard’s brother that they never met. He moves in with India and Evelyn. But there is a mystery circling around Charlie.
With a plot like this, you expect a thriller or maybe even a horror film. “Stoker” is in fact more of an interesting character study of an unusual family. Mia Wasikowska, Nicole Kidman and Matthew Goode all deliver great performances. Their characters are intriguing. Even though India distrusts her uncle Charlie, there is also a certain attraction between the two. Matthew Goode plays the role of Charlie wonderfully. Creepy yet irresistible. Kidman shines as the fragile mother, but is also the most ‘human’ person in the film.
Acting is of a high level, but it’s Park who deserves the most credit. The images are mind blowing. His eye for detail really made me happy. He has a feeling for it, the camera work is beautiful. Almost every shot is a little work of art.
Although the thriller and horror element are more in the background, there is constantly this tension and dark atmosphere. “Stoker” is a great film, that is probably not for everyone. It’s a movie that is hard to categorize. Maybe it’s a darker version of a coming of age story. It makes for a hypnotizing viewing experience.

Rating: 4,5/ 5

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