Movie: Nocturnal Animals (2016)
March 27, 2017 4:54 AM - Subscribe

A wealthy art gallery owner (Amy Adams) is haunted by her ex-husband's novel, a violent thriller she interprets as a symbolic revenge tale from director Tom Ford, based on the novel Tony and Susan by Austin Wright.

"On one hand, this is a story about guilt, revenge, and closure. On another, it's about reflection, revenge in a more personal sense, and proving how quickly swayed a person is. Tom Ford constructs a menacing thriller that's sometimes erotic, sometimes downright nasty, but continuously suspenseful the entire way through, as well as showing how affecting it is in two separate, but both meaningful, conclusions" -- Steve Pulaski, Influx Magazine

"Extraordinarily deft in the way it combines romanticism and bleakness" -- Geoffrey Macnab, The Independent

"Joan Didion wrote that 'we tell ourselves stories in order to live.' Sometimes, though, we tell stories to kill, to stick a stiletto in and watch the blood drain." -- Manohla Dargis, The New York Times
posted by Zonker (5 comments total)
Well, that description bridges the fourth wall very smoothly and subtly. Took me a couple readings to figure out where it stopped talking about the husband's novel and where it started talking about the film.
posted by Naberius at 6:23 AM on March 27, 2017 [1 favorite]

I liked that about it, which is why I copied it from IMDB. For a movie that's fairly subtle and that takes a bit of thought to unpack, it was a good fit.
posted by Zonker at 9:18 AM on March 27, 2017

This was one of my favourite films of last year. I thought Adams was fantastic in it & deserved an Oscar nom at the least for this (and for Arrival).
It it one that has stayed with me, always the sign of a good film.

I read the book as well, in many ways it is very different, but still very good.
posted by Fence at 12:50 PM on March 27, 2017

I really couldn't be bothered with this film by the end. I realise it's well shot and I LOVED Adams and her glasses, but it boiled down to metaphorical and literal misogynist revenge / masculine insecurity porn. Scene with the family stopped on the highway was definitely gripping, but considering that the final point was author's 'LOOK HOW MUCH OVER YOU I AM', left a really really bad taste. Boring, staid and sexist.
posted by litleozy at 3:14 PM on March 27, 2017 [3 favorites]

My initial reaction to the ending was pretty similar: Edward got his petty little revenge on Susan, and so what? But the more I've been thinking about it (and it does keep making me think), I've had the feeling that I'm missing something. I've read a couple of essays (which I'll link if I can find them again) suggesting that the ending also shows Susan resolving some of her issues and learning to move on from both Edward and Hutton. I need to watch it again.
posted by Zonker at 6:39 PM on March 27, 2017

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