Indignation ★★★★

It's strange being dead. As I have been for I don't know how long.

In many ways I find myself at a loss trying to sum up my feelings about Indignation. It's gorgeous, thoughtful, well-paced, fascinating, and frustrating cinema.

Now, technically, this film is quite flawless. It's impeccably shot, lit to perfection, and acted with conviction, if not quite with nuance. However, all of the characters, save Olivia, are immensely frustrating. They do and say stupid things, things which may seem realistic, but are nonetheless incredibly annoying. This isn't necessarily why I've given it a 4 star rating, that's mostly for the lack of nuance. But, it is what I'm referring to when I said that this is a frustrating movie.

Marcus so totally bungles so many of his confrontations and conversations that I couldn't help but peer at these scenes through my fingers. At points, I just wanted to reach through the screen and slap him across the face. I get that this is a melodrama, but good lord Marcus, if you just kept your mouth shut you could have avoided like 90% of this.

But, this frustration, in many ways echoes the sexual frustration that Marcus feels in the stifling society of the 50s - which apparently are now the go-to for tales of repressive conservatism in American society. Can we switch it up a bit in future? Maybe go for the 40s or 30s. Regardless, the way in which Schamus - the director - imagines this frustration is fascinating; nightmares coagulate into vignettes that bleed into reality. It's an interesting approach and one which distinguishes his melodrama from other, similar melodramas.

Still, in spite of my problems with the film, this is absolutely one of the best films of the year. Don't let it slip by. I give Indignation a 4/5.

Aaron liked these reviews