Promising Young Woman ★★★★

An engagingly uncomfortable thriller about sexual assault touching on themes of comeuppance and forgiveness, with an outstanding lead performance by Carey Mulligan. It's not without contrivances, especially its final moments, but is generally barbed, vital and provocative, and I really appreciated its sidestepping of most varieties of redemption for its characters. I had real skin-crawling fun with this and I can't wait to see it again.

Once again, glancing at some of the divisive responses to this is a really fascinating look at how different people want or need vastly different things out of movies. For instance, there's a considerable number of reactions bemoaning that this wasn't a more straightforward revenge fantasy, was instead a bit mournful and verbal... but that sounds so dull to me, even just on a conceptual basis, and does it really truly feel like anything that does happen here for the first 95 minutes lets anybody off the hook? I often feel very lonely in my lack of affection for "genre" as a craft unto itself, and maybe it's my own failing. I've got a little more sympathy for the view that a certain choice at the end is a copout, both in a storytelling and a sociopolitical sense... even then it's like, I feel like a certain subset of Twitter folks are advocating a world in which films cannot be permitted to be less than 1000% ideologically pure unless Martin Scorsese or Clint Eastwood directed them, in which case they always have thousands of layers of subtext, buuuuut I can already sense the eyes of the scattered people reading this starting to roll back into their heads so that's enough for now!! (Did I mention I've been off Twitter for almost six months? I feel great!)

Nathan liked this review