You Were Never Really Here

You Were Never Really Here

Yessss!!

Always enthralled by witnessing this level of control, always hungry for that cinematic experience of at first being thrown into a new and unfamiliar landscape, as if you were a stranger introduced into a room where nothing is recognizable and even the language seems alien, but gradually, by the end of your time spent in this uncanny world, all will have sunk into your psyche, slowly but surely, until you cannot separate your own psychological synapses from those of the film itself.

At risk of being reductive: the film is possibly a direct descendant of Refn's seminal Drive, shares similarities with the Safdie Brothers' swirling Good Time (interesting to note both were made almost concurrently), and of course takes on the premise of Taken (but thematically - infinitely more resonant)... So what if it's a hyper-stylised underbelly-of-a-city grimy crime tale, featuring an amoral stoic protagonist who seems prone to ultraviolence, complete with pounding score, empty spaces in dialogue, maximum intensity levels of sound design, and dreamy poetic imagery in full effect not least because of some spectacular editing. Listing all these characteristics (genre tropes? genre is useless here) feels dismissive, as this film is wholly singular. Consider these points of reference, but then throw them out the window. This is one hell of a ride.